Termites are small but extremely destructive insects that eat wood and cellulose-based materials. Although useful for breaking down dead plant matter in nature, a termite infestation in your home can cause costly damage. However, knowing the early signs of termite infestation will help you to take steps to greatly minimize damage and prevent future problems.
10 Warning Signs of Termite Infestation in Your Home
Here are ten signs to look out for:
1. Hollow or flaking wood
Termites eat through wood from the inside, leaving it hollow or flaking. If you tap or knock on a piece of wood and it sounds hollow or feels brittle, this can be a sign of termite activity.
2. Holes in wood
Termites leave small holes in wood as they eat and tunnel through it. These holes may be difficult to spot, especially if they are in hidden areas. It is important to keep checking for these holes around your home to detect termite infestation early.
3. Tight doors or windows
When termites eat wooden doors or window frames, they produce moisture that causes the frames to warp or swell, making it difficult to open or close them properly.
4. Termite frass/droppings
Termite droppings, also known as frass, look like tiny pellets or coffee grounds and are usually found near the site of termite activity. Dry wood termites live inside wood and to keep their workspace clean, they make small holes to deposit their droppings.
5. Discarded wings
Termites swarm to mate and establish new colonies, and once they find a suitable location, they shed their wings. If you see discarded wings in your home near doors or windows, termites might have established a colony nearby.
6. Mud packing
Termites use mud to seal off cracks and gaps in the wood or other materials that they are feeding on. This helps to maintain a stable environment inside the feeding area by retaining moisture and temperature. Check cracks in your wall, floor, door and window frames for pencil-width tunnels of mud.
7. Floppy and squeaky flooring
When termites eat through your wooden floors, the affected areas will be floppy or spongy when you step on them. Termites can eat the timber floorboards and major parts of your home’s floor substructure causing serious damage.
8. Damp spots
When you notice damp spots in your home, you could have a termite infestation because termites add moisture to wood as they build their nest. So, if the damp spot is big, then you have a large termite nest and vice versa.
9. Clicking sounds
Worker termites make clicking sounds as they eat through wood. You can hear these faint sounds if you listen through the walls or wood they are burrowing through. They make loud clicking sounds by beating their heads against the tunnels to warn others in the colony.
10. Termite swarms
Termite swarms can indicate that you already have a termite infestation, and they are currently reproducing. It is therefore important to contact an exterminator urgently to get rid of them before they cause more damage to your home.
Although termites are useful in nature, they can cause extensive damage to your home if you don’t get rid of them immediately you spot a sign of infestation. You should always use services from a qualified pest control company for ethical and effective termite removal.