Termites are a risk to homes in all the states except for Alaska. The property damage caused by termites amounts to an estimated $5 billion in losses per year. Your vigilance plays an important role in preventing an infestation in your home, so it’s important to pay attention to the signs of termites.
A termite infestation can potentially result in thousands of dollars of damage to your property, which is generally not covered by your homeowners insurance. Be proactive in protecting your home by periodically checking for signs of termites.
Here are the top five signs of termite activity to look out for:
1. Blistered Areas on Wood Flooring are Signs of Termites
Blistered wood flooring might be a sign of termites within or beneath the floorboards. If your subfloor is damaged, subterranean termites may be the culprit. Their impact on wooden floors looks similar to water damage.
2. Hollowed Out Wood
If you spot hollowed-out wood on the floor, wall, or other surfaces in your property, then termites are probably to blame. Termites eat cellulose and create long grooves in building materials as they eat. This causes wood to weaken, leading to structural damage.
3. You See Piles of Wings
Termites often shed their wings near home entry points like doors and windows. This happens when the swarmers come out of their nests to mate and establish a new colony. The insects discard their wings in piles since they no longer need them after the swarming season.
4. Mud Tubes are Signs of Termites
Termites build mud tubes from their nests to a food source. The pencil-sized tunnels are found on the exterior of the home, usually near or on the foundation.
Subterranean termites build their nests underground and forage out of the soil for a food source, which is often the structural wood in homes. The insects can only survive in specific humidity and temperature. Their shelter tubes protect them from dry air, allowing them to thrive regardless of the weather.
5. Termite Frass
If you find piles of termite droppings in your home, also called frass, then you have an infestation. Termites make exit holes to discard their droppings, which look like piles of ground coffee, sand, or sawdust.
Some infestations show few or no signs of termites. Termite activity may go unnoticed for weeks, months, or even years. And by the time damage becomes apparent, it might be too late. For this reason, it is always better to act fast and take precautions to keep termites at bay.