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Everything You Need To Know About Termites In Aiken, SC

a termite crawling on damaged wood

Termites are fascinating creatures. They have a caste system whose central purpose is to expand their colony, and they will work 24 hours a day to do so. Their tremendous ability to work together towards this central aim makes them incredibly productive. Unfortunately, if you have termites in your home, this productivity is quite problematic. As a result, our experts at Aiken Pest Control want to provide some practical advice about termites for homeowners. We will tell you how to prevent, identify, and eliminate termites in hopes that this information will help you control a termite problem before it does irreparable damage to your home.

Prevention Tips

1. Termites will cause lots of damage if they get into your home, so knowing ways to prevent them from getting inside is important. Worker termites feed themselves and other termites in the colony from cellulose. Cellulose is a complex carbohydrate found in wood and other organic materials. Though they will eat dry wood, they are particularly attracted to rotting, wet wood. Therefore, seal any cracks or leaks in pipes both inside and outside of your home.

2. Secondly, inspect your home for any damaged or moisture-ridden wood that serves as an attractant to termites. Termites won’t touch pressure-treated wood and are less likely to dine on dry wood. Therefore, if your porch or wood around the foundation of your home is rotting, it's important to replace it as soon as possible.

3. Taking measures around the exterior of your home will also make your property less attractive to termites. Prevent exposed wood from rotting by keeping sources of moisture such as soil or mulch at least eighteen inches (3 feet) away. Ensure that you have a proper drainage system that defers water away from your home, and make sure that gutters are installed properly and remain clean. If you have a fire pit or fireplace, firewood should be kept 20 feet or more from your home.

These prevention tips are not foolproof, but they will help make your home less enticing for termites. If you’re looking for advice on how to prevent termites, contact a professional from Aiken Pest Control to inspect your property. 

Identifying An Infestation

Being able to find and identify a termite infestation is key in keeping your Aiken residence termite-free. To invade effectively, termites need to spread quickly, and that’s where swarmers come in. Swarmers or alates are the only termites in the colony that have wings. They are often confused with ants because they have two sets of wings. However, unlike ants, their wings are equal in length. Termites swarm with the sole purpose of flying from their current colony, mating, and creating more colonies. Know that if you see swarmers in your home, they're indicative of a termite infestation.

Non-flying termites travel through mud tubes. Mud tubes are small structures made of soil and wood that protect the termites from predators and adverse weather while they travel from their food source to their nest.

If termites have already begun feasting on the wood in your home, you may find frass; fine, powdery piles of termite excrement that often look like sand or sawdust. These piles indicate that termites already exist in your home and action needs to be taken immediately before immense damage is done to your house.

How Long Will It Take Termites To Destroy A Home?  

While it may take a few years for damage to become noticeable, as termites begin to infest, their colony continues to grow. As they increase in number, they can damage your property at a faster rate. An established termite colony can eat through a foot-long piece of 2x4 in only 5-6 months, which, as you can imagine, will cause severe structural damage to the home.

How Much Damage Do Termites Cause Each Year?

Termites cause billions of dollars in damages to homes and properties each year. If a homeowner discovers termite damage, they will spend an average of $3,000 annually on repairs. In the long run, this money can be saved by taking proper precautions in your home and developing a partnership with a professional who knows how to control a potential termite infestation.

How Do I Get Rid Of Termites?

If termites have already taken root, then getting rid of them on your own will be next to impossible. Our experts in Aiken pest control can help. Our licensed professionals use The Sentricon® System with Always Active technology to control and eliminate termite populations.

Contact us today if you’re worried about an infestation.