Termites can devour your home. You should know how to get rid of termites of any kind. They eat furniture, trees, and worst of all, homes.
If termites eat the wood inside your house, it could collapse.
Types Of Termites
There are three types of termites. Today, there are three categories for the 45 termite species in the US.
Subterranean or Rhinotermitidae termites live underground. They build the biggest nests of any insect. Mud tubes connect their nests. The mud tubes allow them to travel to and from food sources.
They live in every state except Alaska. There’s a good chance you can get subterranean termites in your home or yard if you have soil. The wood-eating insects thrive in soil where they build their nests.
Drywood or Kalotermitidae termites live in deadwood. Dry wood termites have smaller colonies and nests.
The termites thrive throughout the southern US and on both coasts. They live in dry, warm climates but can survive in cold temperatures.
Dampwood or Hodotermitidae termites live in moist wood. They’re not as common because they aren’t found in houses. They need moist wood to live. The wood in houses is dry.
Keep your house dry to keep this termite out of your home. Moist wood rots, and rotting wood can become weak, creating an unstable foundation for your home.
Signs Of Termites
Watch for the signs of termites and catch them as soon as possible.
- Bubbles In Wood – one termite sign are wood bubbles or blisters. The termites can eat underneath, causing the wood and the finish to pop up. Dampwood termites are also drawn to moisture, which will show signs of bubbles.
- Discolored Drywall – discolored drywall is an unusual sign that termites are in your walls. Termites can make tiny holes in drywall studs that affect the texture and color of the drywall.
- Mud Tubes are how subterranean termites travel. If you notice tiny pencil-thin tubes in your dirt, you might have termites. You can poke holes in suspicious areas to find mud tubes.
- Termite Droppings don’t look like other insect droppings. The pests eat wood, so their droppings look like sawdust or coffee grounds.
- Squeaky Floor is another termite sign. When termites eat away at your home, your floors will shift and become squeaky. This is a dangerous sign. If you notice it, call a professional.
- Damaged Wood – damaged wood can mean termites. Look for patterns in wood, chips out of wood, and other marks. Termites only know how to damage wood, but that can mean trouble for any home.
Signs Of Termites
Subterranean termites are the most annoying of the three termite species. They live under the surface and are hard to spot before it’s too late.
- Pesticide Barriers – pesticide barriers aren’t easy to find in some states. Termite barriers use chemicals to stop termites before they start to nest. You pour it around the perimeter of your house or under your home’s foundation.
- Spray Them Directly – you can spray with termiticide. This isn’t easy with subterranean termites, but you can crawl under most houses and spray the areas where you suspect they are living.
- Wood Treatment – wood treatment involves spraying your wood with something that can kill termites. If the termites are under your house, you’ll need to spray your foundation. If they are new, you can spray around the skirting.
- Bait The Termites – Place termite bait around your home. After you bait and trap the pests, you can prevent them from returning.
How To Get Rid Of Drywood Termites
While subterranean termites are hard to predict, drywall termites are typical. Getting rid of them is easier than the subterranean termites that run deep and far.
- Drill And Fill – this is a common way to get rid of dry wood termites. You find the holes they make in wood or drill your own in a safe way. Then, you can fill the holes with termiticide or sealant.
- Spray The Wood – another great way to get rid of drywall termites is to spray the wood. This works better than with subterranean termites because drywall termites don’t just eat the wood, they live in it too.
How To Get Rid Of Dampwood Termites
Dampwood termites will leave when the wood is too dry for them to survive. Keep the wood dry to prevent them entering your home. If they’re present, then try the following methods.
- Dry The Wood – Use a blow dryer. Dry the wood where the termites live. Use a cool setting to dry the termites out. Make sure you keep the wood dry and check it daily for a few weeks after you get rid of the termites.
- Baking Soda – Baking soda can dry dampwood termites. If they dry out, they won’t live long. This method works well with many bugs with exoskeletons, including ants.
How To Get Rid Of Termites With Household Products
If you don’t want to take an easier path and prefer a natural approach, then you can do that. Here are ways to get rid of almost any type of termite.
- Boric Acid kills termites. You need to know the termite’s path. If they walk on boric acid, they will dry and collapse. Since termites are small, you don’t need to clean them up.
- Diatomaceous earth – You can buy it over the counter or online. Keep it on hand so you’ll have it when another infestation appears. It works fast.
- Essential oils – termites hate essential oils like cinnamon. If you can spray essential oil on the wood they live in or eat from, it will work wonders. This is great because essential oils smell amazing.
How To Prevent Termites
Using chemicals to prevent termites is effective but it isn’t cheap. Don’t use the chemicals around children and pets. There are other measures you can take.
- Fill Cracks in exposed wood. This will make it harder for termites to build nests as they won’t have a place to start. It will also suffocate homes.
- Finish Wood – if the wood is sealed and varnished, it will be more difficult for nests to be built. Varnished wood isn’t as easy to penetrate. You should finish wood that termites can eat.
- Check For Leaks – moisture can attract subterranean and dampwood termites. Neither can survive without it. Make sure there are no leaks anywhere.
- Clean Pipes – keeping pipes clean can prevent buildup that attracts termites. It can also stop the pipes from leaking. Clean your pipes every few months with pipe cleaner.
- Schedule Inspections – if you have a monthly or every other month visit, then you can prevent infestations. Have a pro check for termites on a regular basis.
When And Where To Hire A Professional
It can take one day for a group of grown termites to eat a 2×4. However, if you catch them when they are young, you won’t have to worry.
It takes years for a colony to develop. It doesn’t mean you should continue to fight termites without seeking help. After one week things do not change, call a pro.
Region: 47 states and 22 countries.
Price: $50 to $100 a month.
Terminix is a nationally known pest control business. They can get rid of pests and bugs in one visit. The company offers long-term services where they spray for termites once a month.
According to their site, offers a free inspection to let you know what to expect. This includes a simple inspection of the damage and a quote for how much it costs to remove the termites.
Price: $80 to $200 a month.
Orkin has a national reputation for killing termites.
Region: Select States.
Price: $50 to $100 a month.
They are an eco-friendly company. Aptive uses natural methods to kill termites rather than chemicals.
Local Pest Control
If all else fails, call a local bug control business. If they have good reviews, chances are, they are good.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ
What Is The Most Termite Infested City In The US?
Miami, Florida has the worst termite problem in the US. Other cities include Los Angeles, Tampa Bay, Jacksonville, Dallas, Baton Rouge, Houston, and Little Rock.
Do Termites Fly?
Flying termites are called “swarmers.” Some termites can fly but not all. When you see a flying termite, it means a termite colony is nearby.
A flying termite is a signal that expansion is underway.
Do Termites Eat Dry Wall?
Yes, they do. If you see small holes with dirt in your dry wall, then you have a termite problem. Also, look for small lines. That’s where the termites travel in your home.
What Are Some DIY Methods To Get Rid Of Termites?
Vinegar is one of the best DIY termite killers. Mix half a cup of vinegar with two lemons. Squeeze the lemon juice into the vinegar and stir the solution.
You can use a spray bottle for the mix. Spray the vinegar wherever you see termites. The acid in the lemons and vinegar will wipe out the termites.
What Time Of The Year Are Termites Active?
Termites appear in the spring. During the winter months they aren’t active because of the cold. The insects thrive during warm weather.
How To Get Rid Of Termites Conclusion
Termites are serious. When you see them, get rid of them. Do not wait.
The insects are active and never stop. They can and will destroy your home if you do not wipe them out first.