The Different Types of Termites Commonly Found in Homes
There are several different types of termites that are found in houses. Keep reading to learn how to spot and get rid of each termite.
Termites are nearly invisible to the naked eye, however, cause incredible damage to wooden structures. Every year, termites cause roughly $5 billion in property damage.
They quietly invade wooden structures and slowly start to destroy the structural foundation of your home. Termites are also known to eat through decks, sheds, fences, and more.
You can start protecting your home against termites by gaining some basic knowledge about these pests. Read on to learn all about the different types of termites. Explore topics such as the signs of termites and why termite inspection is so important.
What Are the Signs of Termites?
The first thing to look for is signs of termites in your home. There are many different things to look for.
Start off by walking around the exterior of your home. Look for mud tubes from the base of your home’s foundation. Mud tubes are constructed by termites to gain entry into your home.
On the inside of your home, check the window sills for evidence of termites. Look for piles of discarded wings on the window sill.
Your home’s drywall is another place to look for. Discoloration or sagging drywall is a common sign of termites. In some cases, the paint starts peeling as the drywall is eaten away from the inside.
Some termite inspections reveal pin holes in the drywall. You may see drywall debris near the room’s baseboard. It may look like wood dust or little black or white pellets.
Of course, termites prefer to attack wood first and foremost. Damaged or crumbling wood may be a sign of termites. Your floors may be sagging or excessively creaking if termites are present.
What Are the Different Types of Termites?
There are many different types of termites out there to look for. The type is typically unique to the region and conditions on the ground. Continue reading for a breakout of the different kinds of termites:
In the southern United States, subterranean termites are most populous. They are known for saw-toothed jaws that make them the most destructive type of termite. There are other kinds of subterranean termites in other parts of the U.S.
As the name indicates, subterranean termites live under the ground. They have colonies that number in the millions. Once they invade a home, they have the ability to wipe out the entire structure.
Subterranean termites move from place to place through mud tunnels. They create their nests in the soil and create connections to wooden food sources.
Drywood termites do not need soil to create a nest. Instead, they create their nests in wooden structures like dead trees or framing materials.
They are not as destructive as subterranean termites. This is because their colonies are much smaller. With a smaller colony, it takes a longer time to cause major property damage.
Drywood termites are often found in the southern half of the United States. On the East Coast, states south of South Carolina see drywood termites.
This kind of termite is attracted to moisture in certain types of wood. They do not need to build their nest in soil like drywood termites.
Dampwood termites pose less of a threat to homes. Unless there is a significant leak or moisture in the home, dampwood termites are not interested. They like tree stumps, logs, and other forms of outdoor wood.
Formosan termites are one of the most dangerous types. They are known to destroy wooden structures in less than thirty days.
Like subterranean termites, they also nest underground. The difference is that they create unique mud nests within wooden structures. Therefore, they bring the soil to their food source.
Formosan termites are found in the southern United States.
Conehead termites are rare but recently becoming more prevalent in Florida. They are vastly different from the other types covered here.
These termites do not require mud tunnels to travel. Instead, they move above the surface as ants do. Conehead termites are known to cause massive property damage.
How Are Termites Treated?
Now that you identified the presence of this harmful pest, it is time to prioritize termite removal. There are many types of termite treatment to consider. Treatment often is determined by the scope of the infestation and the termite type.
When a homeowner identifies a termite infestation, it often means that it is widespread. There are many hidden areas of the home that termites are likely to travel to.
These areas are often difficult to access and require special tools. The bottom line is that termite treatment is best left to professionals.
One treatment method involves injecting the soil around the home’s foundation with a special pesticide. This treatment method allows pesticides to reach difficult areas under concrete slabs.
Termiticides are another effective way to treat the pest. This involves creating a protective barrier around the house.
The barrier created is non-repellant. This means termites attempt to cross it and are killed.
Any termites that are within the house eventually die out as well. They are cut off from the soil that they need to survive.
Professional treatment companies also will consider using a baiting method. Baiting traps are installed in the ground around your home.
They include cellulose-based food to attract termites to the traps. However, the food is laced with a substance lethal to the termites.
The termites first share the tainted food with their colony. The bait then works its way through the colony and significantly diminishes their numbers.
It is not uncommon to see bait installed over a mud tube. This way, it guarantees that the bait gets to its intended source.
Target Termites Before It Is Too Late
The message here is clear; termites are destructive and common. When a homeowner notices the signs of termites, it typically is too late and the house is infested.
Gaining knowledge and awareness about termites is the start of defending your home. Next, enlist a professional treatment company to protect your home. If you are concerned about the different types of termites, contact us today for a professional consultation and inspection.