How Do I Know I Have a Termite Infestation?

It’s one thing to leave your home to enjoy the great outdoors. Who doesn’t love spending time on the beach, hiking through a verdant and beautiful forest, or testing your strength and endurance with a little rock climbing? But it’s an entirely different scenario to have the great outdoors come to you. Case in point: a termite infestation.

Termites are tiny insects with soft, pale-colored bodies. They love living in colonies, big ones, and typical colonies number between several hundred to thousands. We should also mention, they absolutely love chewing wood, and these little pests are responsible for billions of dollars worth of damage annually. The three most common species are:

  1. Subterranean termites make their homes in underground colonies. They excel at tunneling and can create underground routes to feeding sites that are hundreds of feet long. They need moisture found within the soil to survive, and when they emerge, they build protective tubes made from mud and fecal matter. This type of termite is found virtually everywhere in the continental United States.
  2. Formosan termites are similar to subterranean termites but worse in a few ways. First, they are a more aggressive species of termite. Second, they aren’t as vulnerable to light and air, and they often establish secondary nests aboveground. They make their home on the coasts, the South, and the Southwest.
  3. Drywood termites are usually found on America’s coasts and in the South. Just like their name suggests, they live within dry wood. When they move into your home, they generally spread out, and it’s very common to find multiple colonies within the same house.

As a homeowner, the last thing you need is a bunch of these little buggers setting up shop in your home. Read on to learn about the telltale signs of an infestation.

  • First, the most obvious sign that termites have called your home their home is if you see them. Particularly, if you see swarms of winged termites hanging out around door frames and window frames, or small white insects disappearing into the walls, you’ve likely got a problem.
  • If you see small piles of what looks like sawdust, there’s a good chance that these are actually termite fecal pellets. You should see small holes in wood nearby these piles.
  • Termites shed their wings, and small piles of wings is a telltale sign that they have moved in.
  • Check door and window frames, as well as baseboards, for indentations on the surface of the wood. They look somewhat like blisters, and they are created by termites tunneling close to the surface of the wood.
  • If you come across what look like small tubes made of a mud-like substance, these are small tubes constructed from glued together fecal pellets. Termites make these to safely travel from one piece of wood to another.
  • Drywood termites love to chow down in walls, floors, and ceilings. If you see evidence of sagging in any of these, or if it looks like water damage has occurred but there isn’t as much accompanying moisture, those are signs of their presence.

If you think you might have unwanted guests, or you’ve got questions about pesky termites, feel free to contact us today! We proudly provide termite inspection and treatment services for folks throughout Southern California!