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How To Get Rid of Drywood Termites

drywood termites eating through a baseboard

As their name implies, drywood termites build their nests in dry wood. In comparison, dampwood termites and subterranean termites need extremely moist environments. Drywood termites commonly nest in wood beams, wall framing and even wooden furniture. Drywood termites typically don’t even need a reliable water source as they can derive enough moisture from the wood pulp that they eat.

Homeowners who suspect they may have a drywood termite infestation should contact a professional. Even a moderate size colony can inflict serious and widespread structural damage and massive expense in a short amount of time.

In fact, termites cause more than five billion dollars worth of damage annually, just in the United States. Unfortunately, most of which is not covered by conventional homeowners’ insurance.

In this article, we’ll take a look at the common signs of a drywood termite infestation, how to identify the various types of drywood termites, their lifecycle, and (most importantly) … Read Full Post »

Identifying & Controlling Subterranean Termites

subterranean termites in soil

Subterranean termite damage costs American homeowners billions of dollars every year. These pests are discreet and it’s hard to spot the signs of an infestation unless you’re a trained professional. Many times, homeowners are unaware a problem has developed until a full-blown population has been established. So, what can you do if you think you have a subterranean termite problem or want to prevent a termite problem?

The first step to determine if there is a problem is to learn more about subterranean termites. It helps to understand the appearance, behavior and signs of these pests.

What Do Subterranean Termites Look Like?

Subterranean termites are separated into three different castes: reproductives, workers and soldiers. The reproductives include the king, the queen and the winged alates. The queen is the largest termite in the nest. She stays hidden underground, so you will likely never spot her. The alates, which are pictured above, are also … Read Full Post »

What To Do if You Find White Ants in Your Home

a termite that can confused as a white ant

If you’ve found white ants in your home, you’re probably wondering what to do. Are they pests that need to be treated? Is there a product you can use to get rid of them? The important thing to understand is that white ants don’t actually exist. If you see what looks like white ants in or near your home, what you’ve actually found is termites.

Different ant species do come in a variety of colors, including red, brown, black and even yellow. There is no such thing as white ants, however. What some people call “white ants” are actually termites. Depending on which type they are, adult termites are either black or white. They do look a lot like ants, and it’s common to confuse the two. Termites need identification and treatment as soon as possible because they can cause major structural damage to your home.

Subterranean termites are the most common … Read Full Post »

I Found Termite Droppings but No Termites

termite droppings on a baseboard

Termite droppings are called frass. They look a lot like piles of sawdust or tiny wood pellets, but they are actually termite feces. They look like wood shavings because they contain a lot of wood. Termites feed on wood and consume the cellulose within it. Unfortunately, when you see termite droppings but no termites, it’s still a likely sign that these pests are wreaking havoc in a hidden spot nearby.

The reason why most homeowners fear termites is that these tiny pests can cause a lot of damage. As they eat through wood, they create tunnels and chambers that weaken the wood over time.

If you’ve ever seen wood that had termite damage, you’ve seen the way it simply crumbles away. When this kind of damage is done to a house, garage, deck or fence, it is dangerous and needs repairing.

Termite Frass: A Common Sign of Termite Activity

Termite frass is one of … Read Full Post »

What Does a Termite Mud Nest Look Like?

Termites crawling in dirt

Termites. Even the word can make a homeowner shudder and feel anxious. This idea of this pest taking up residence brings up thoughts of extensive damage—and cost. Termites generally feed on wood, but they also snack on insulation, pool liners, books and paper. Knowing what to look for and how termites operate will help you make smart decisions if you come across them.

How To Tell You Have Termites

You might see what looks like flying ants around your home, but don’t be so sure. They could be termite swarmers. You may also find dead swarmers on a windowsill. If you aren’t sure whether the insects you are seeing are termites, contact a pest control professional to get the answers. Learning how to spot signs of termites in your home is actually pretty easy.

Subterranean termites live below ground, so you wouldn’t be able to find a termite mud nest. Instead, what you … Read Full Post »

How To Identify Formosan Termite Swarmers

termites in dirt

Subterranean termites may be responsible for the most damage to U.S. homes each year, but Formosan termites come in at a close second. In fact, Formosan termites are sometimes called “super termites” because they destroy wood faster than their subterranean cousins. If you spot Formosan termite swarmers in or near your home, it’s a sign of an infestation. That means it’s time to take action before they destroy your property any further.

One thing to understand about Formosan termites is that they are actually a type of subterranean termite. Subterranean means underground, and that’s where these termites build their colonies. Just like the termites we more commonly call subterranean, Formosans also build mud tubes along foundations, walls or support beams. They use these tubes to connect their colonies to their food source—wood.

The problem that all types of termites pose in our homes is that they chew through wood for its cellulose. … Read Full Post »

How To Identify Termite Damage Versus Wood Rot

termites in dirt

No one wants to see something odd going on with the wood in their homes. Whether it’s a door or window, any kind of damage can send a homeowner into a panic. What if the wood has rotted? Or what if termites have invaded and moved into the home? First, it’s important to know how to tell each type of damage apart from one another.

How to Tell If It Might Be Termites

There are a few tell-tale signs of termites. First, you might see termite swarmers lying dead on a window sill, around a door or flying around. Or you might see mud tubes going up from the ground to your foundation or along a wall in a crawl space. These are shelter tubes that do what they sound like they do. They shelter termites while they march into your home for a wood feast. The third obvious sign is wood … Read Full Post »

How Do Termites Get in Your Home?

a home with tree branches touching the roof which is how termites could have gotten in the home

If you’re dealing with a termite infestation or if you think you may be dealing with a termite infestation, you may be overwhelmed and confused. How did termites find your home? How did they make their way inside? What can you do next?

To answer these questions, it’s important to know the different types of termites that are likely to infest your home. In the U.S., the two most common types of termites are subterranean termites and drywood termites. Knowing the differences between these two types is important because the way they enter homes and the treatment methods for each are different.

Subterranean Termites

Subterranean termites travel around by crawling through a network of underground tunnels. This species of termite needs a moist environment to survive. Once they get beneath or to the edge of a house, they build mud tubes, which they use to get into the structure. These tubes are about … Read Full Post »

There Are Termites in My Carpet: What Can I Do?

termites in a carpet in a living room

Finding what seems to be termites in your carpet is a worrying experience for any homeowner, as termites can cause a lot of damage. Most people would expect to find these pests someplace where there’s wood, but termites in carpet? Though that’s not where most people might expect to see them, this is entirely possible.

If you find termites in your carpet, the first thing to do is to determine whether they actually are termites or if they are some other type of pest. Termites look a lot like large, winged ants, and many people can’t tell the two apart. There are some differences you can look for, though, to determine which type of pest you’re dealing with.

Termite Identification Tips

The first thing you should know if you are trying to determine if what you saw is a termite is that these creatures have bodies that are long and straight. Ants’ bodies, … Read Full Post »

Do Home Remedies for Termites Work?

cleaning products that some say can be used as home remedies for termites

If you spot termites in your home, what do you do? Across the internet, people have posted home remedies and do-it-yourself methods for tackling these pests. These techniques range from using vinegar to using the sun to using microscopic worms. However, not every method has been scientifically proven to work. Here’s a run-down of home remedies for termites to help separate fact from fiction.

Vinegar

One method you might have heard about is to spray pure vinegar or a mixture of vinegar and lemon juice onto the termites or possible infestation areas. Similarly, some articles mention spraying window cleaners containing ammonia on termites or on your walls. Liquids like vinegar or window cleaners can help kill termites if you spray it directly on them. But, you’ll want to keep in mind that subterranean termites that do the most damage live the majority of their lives underground.

That means that you are unlikely to … Read Full Post »