The words “pest” and “eats wood” do not seem like they should go together. But when it comes to termites, these words are perfect descriptors. Despite being beneficial insects out in the wild, termites can be a major problem for homeowners with homes that are made primarily out of wood, (and most homes are made primarily out of wood). If you have never heard about these destructive and elusive pests, today is your day to learn. We have everything you as a St. Charles homeowner ought to know about termites.
What Do Termites Look Like?
Within each termite colony exists a caste system comprised of workers, reproductives, and soldiers. Each looks slightly different and have their own unique jobs.
Worker termites look like cream-colored ants and can most commonly be found harvesting wood to feed their colony.
Soldier termites are slightly larger and darker than worker termites and are tasked with the defense of the colony from other tunneling insects and threats.
Reproductive termites are larger and longer than worker termites and are capable of growing wings, when this happens we call them swarmers. These leader termites are responsible for two things: reproduction, and colony expansion.
Signs Of Termite Activity
When termites get into homes, they usually do so very quietly. Unless you are directly looking for them and the signs they leave behind, chances are you won’t find them. That is unless they have been eating at your home for a long, long time.
To check your home for termites, consider the following tips
Check exterior foundation walls for mud tubes. These are constructed by worker termites to get to the wood of your home.
Tap on solid wood beams and supports and listen for a hollow sound. This could be an indicator of termite damage.
You can also listen to your walls for barely audible clicking noises. As ridiculous as this sounds, if termites are in your walls eating away, you should be able to hear them if you listen closely enough.
Look for water-damaged wood as termite prefer to eat through wood that has been softened. This may not be a direct sign of termites but it does show that your home is susceptible to a termite invasion.
As a termite invasion becomes more severe, you may start to notice some more clear signs such as bubbling wallpaper, dipping floorboards, buckling walls, and other severe structural damage.
How To Make Your Home Less Attractive To Termites
To make your home less attractive, you'll want to do three things: make your home’s wood less accessible, reduce moisture, and remove available food sources. Here are some ways you can do these things.
Make sure there is a non-wood barrier between exterior soil and your home’s wood.
Store firewood at least 30 feet away from your home’s exterior.
Repair or replace water-damaged wood around your home.
Keep your yard free of clutter, especially leaf piles, wood, cardboard, and other organic debris.
Fix leaks around your home and install dehumidifiers in particularly humid rooms around your home.
Make sure your gutters are properly channeling water from your home’s exterior.
Invest in high-quality termite control.
We can not stress that last point enough. Although every other step can help keep termites away, only investing in termite control can ensure your home remains termite-free. At the Pest Control Consultants, we have long-lasting, effective solutions to deter termites from your home and property. With our team of pest control professionals on your side, you will never have to worry about your home being destroyed by termites ever again.
Don’t wait, give us a call today and find your solution to home-wrecking termites.