While they might cost Americans big dollars – more than five billion dollars in property damage each year – termites are small, usually only measuring up to ½-inch long. Coloring can vary based on the species of termites you’ve got. For example, drywood termite soldiers often have reddish-brown coloring, while subterranean termites are known to have yellowish heads.
Even though there are over forty species across the country, subterranean termites are the most common type of termite that you’ll find in Aiken. For Aiken homeowners, here’s what you should know about the five major signs of termites, how to prevent them, and what to do if you think you might have an active termite problem.
Five Signs Of Termites In Aiken, SC
While some pests may be easy to spot from the moment they enter your home, termites aren’t one of them. These critters keep a low profile and may go undetected for months or even years. The key to catching a termite infestation early is understanding what to look for.
1. Tight-Fitting Doors & Windows
Clothes may shrink in the wash, but doors and windows shouldn’t. If your wooden doors and windows suddenly won’t close all the way or seem too tight for their frames, it could be a sign of termites. Termites introduce excess moisture to wood, which can cause it to become warped and no longer fit its original frame.
Like cockroaches or rodents, termites also produce droppings that get left around your home. However, these droppings don’t look like the excrement you’d expect from other pests. Termite droppings are called frass, and often resemble dark coffee grounds, dirt, or powder. When they build their tunnels inside your walls or floors, termites have to kick their frass out, so you’ll often find it piled around the floor or baseboards of your home.
3. Clicking Noises From Your Walls
While you may not notice it with minor termite infestations, many people with severe termite problems report hearing a “clicking noise” from their walls. This comes from termites, which bang against the tunnels they’ve created to alert other termites of danger. The result is a distinctive clicking noise, and if you hear it, it’s usually a good sign that it’s time to call a professional pest control service.
4. Warped Floors & Walls
Just like termites can bring excess moisture to windows and doors, they can also warp the appearance of your hardwood or laminate floors – and even sometimes your drywall. As a homeowner, it may look like there’s sudden water damage or peeling paint on the structural parts of your home.
5. Termite Wings & Swarms
Perhaps one of the most obvious signs of a termite problem is discarded wings and termite swarms. When it’s time for them to reproduce, termites leave the colony in swarms to look for a mate. You may see these swarms flying around your property or even your home. Once they’ve swarmed, termites discard and shed their wings, which may end up in piles around doors and windows.
How To Prevent Termites In Aiken, SC
Effective termite control means actively working to prevent them. Here are some quick tips to prevent termite problems around your Aiken property:
Make sure you’re keeping firewood, mulch, and cellulose materials (like cardboard) off your property or several feet from your home.
Don’t let mulch or other wood touch the foundation of your home, and if need be, you can use a gravel barrier to prevent this.
Keep overhanging branches or shrubs trimmed back.
Minimize any moisture, such as flooded or obstructed gutters, from collecting around your home’s foundation.
Inspect your property for rotting or damaged wood regularly, and get rid of any that you find.
How To Deal With Termites In Aiken, SC
If you do find termites, or even spot the signs of termites on your Aiken property, there’s only one effective solution: contacting the pros at Aiken Pest Control. Home remedies, like orange oil or cardboard traps, are rarely effective for getting rid of termites. These methods not only waste time and money but allow these pests more time to cause damage around your home.
If you see signs of termites, your safest option is to get an inspection from a professional. Call us at Aiken Pest Control today to learn more about our termite control services or schedule an inspection of your home.