As a homeowner in the Phoenix metro area, it is important to understand the potential warning signs associated with a termite infestation. Termite activity here in the Valley is very common and often very destructive. However, if you catch the signs of an infestation early, you can help prevent destructive damage from being done to your home.
The longer the time that termites have to feast on your home, the more expensive it is going to be to make repairs and treat the infestation. That’s why detecting early warning signs is so important. However, detecting these signs are almost impossible if you don’t know what you are looking for.
In this article, we will discuss 5 of the most common warning signs that you have a termite infestation. If you notice these signs in your home, it’s a good idea to go ahead and call Arizona’s Best Choice Pest & Termite Services to get started removing them as soon as possible!
1. Mud tubes
Mud tubes are what give the termites a way to travel and a source of moisture while they make their way into your home without being exposed or drying out in the Arizona heat. You may notice a mud tube climbing up your home’s foundation, and still see no signs of active termites in or around it. However, if you were to dig around in the tube a bit, you would probably catch a few termites scattering towards safety.
These mud tubes are the subterranean termite’s primary means of travel and almost serve the same purpose as an anthill would for ants. You will find these mud tubes most visible when they are on flat and conspicuous surfaces like foundations, walls, floors, and ceilings. They may also be found in the small cracks and crevices of your home as well, so keep an open eye out for the tubes as they are an almost definite sign of termite activity.
Swarmers are termites that have wings. Both kinds of termites that you will find out here in the desert (subterranean and drywood) both have swarmers in their colonies. Drywood termites will usually have smaller swarms, typically less than 100, while subterranean termites can have thousands in their swarm. You’ll likely notice the swarms outside, but sometimes they can be found inside your home as well.
These swarms are often usually missed by the homeowner, but you can be on the lookout for discarded wings around your home. This will be a sure sign that a swarm has been around. Either way, make sure you call Arizona’s Best Choice Pest & Termite ASAP is your see signs of swarms or discarded wings!
3. Damaged wood
It’s no secret that termites and wood damage go hand-in-hand. Different types of termites will devour wood in different, unique ways. For example, drywood termites will eat across the wood grain, while subterranean termites will follow along the grain of the wood. This wood damage can be detected in any area around your home. There are also many tools that professionals use to inspect homes for termite wood damage. If you see signs of wood damage in or around your home, it’s a very likely sign of termites and you should call in a termite professional.
4. Holes in floors and paint
The damage being done by termites in hidden areas of your home—such as underneath floors, inside walls, and above ceilings—may be the most extensive, but the hardest to notice. However, look for swollen surfaces, chipped or damaged paint, and small surface holes. These are some of the same signs you might see with water damage to a home. This damage also includes a musty, distinct smell.
5. Termite droppings
As with any insect or rodent that can potentially infest your home, one of the biggest warning signs they can leave behind is their droppings. Termite feces, known as frass, can present itself in several different ways. Subterranean termites will use their frass as building material for their mud tubes. Drywood termites, on the other hand, will leave small pellets that look like wood pieces piled up around their active areas. If you notice any frass in or around your home, this is probably a good sign that you have a termite problem that needs to be addressed immediately!
Schedule annual inspections to prevent termites
As a homeowner, your eye for detecting termites may not be well-trained. That’s why it’s important to have an experienced and trained professional come out to your home and take a look. It’s recommended that homeowners schedule yearly termite inspections of their home to help prevent full infestations.
Between inspections, make sure you are paying close attention to the 5 warning signs of a termite infestation that we mentioned above. If you do happen to notice one of these signs, call the professionals at Arizona’s Best Choice Pest & Termite Services so we can complete a thorough inspection of your home and help you decide on a plan of action to tackle your termite problem before it gets any worse.