Houston, we have a problem: spring is here, which means it is swarming season for termites, so it is vital that you know the different types of termites, the conducive environments that invite these insects into your home, and the best termite treatment. More than five million homes a year in the U.S. have a termite problem, causing approximately $5 billion of damage. And if you live in the United States, unless you live in Alaska, then your home is under threat from termites.

Termite Infestation Signs, Conducive Conditions, and Termite Treatment

In the Gulf Coast alone, there are 15-20 termite colonies per acre. Therefore, termite prevention is important to keep your home safe, and if you already have an infestation, the sooner you have termite treatment performed, the more money it will save you.

We are going to take a quick look at the various types of termites, the conducive environments that attract these pests, the seven key termite signs, and the top termite treatment available anywhere.  

Five Conducive Conditions that Attract Termites

Living in a home brings many comforts but, unfortunately, it is also a vessel to attract termites, though some conditions attract these pests more than others:

  • High Soil: Subterranean termites must have contact with the soil and moisture to survive, so they form mud tubes to travel from the soil into a structure.  This is typically done through weep holes or cracks in the foundation of the home when soil or mulch is installed too heavily.  Ideally you need to have 4-6 inches of foundation exposed below any brick, siding, or stucco.  This prevents moisture from entering the structure, as well as allows you too see anything on the foundation, such as a mud tube or crack that may be a potential issue. If the foundation is covered, there could be several mud tubes entering the structure that you cannot see which allows termites to consume the wood studs in the wall for an extended period of time before damage on an interior wall is noticed.
  • Extreme Humidity: Moisture causes all round damage to your home, like warping the structure and even creating mold. But it also attracts termites, who just love areas of moisture, such as gutters, pools, bathrooms, and even the excessive moisture found in walls.
  • Home Renovation: You are finally putting up that new fence, or maybe even adding a deck or swimming pool, but this means you also need termite prevention: renovation disrupts the earth and often adds new wood to the soil, attracting termites from up to 100 yards away!
  • Trees: While trees are pleasant to look at and provide many benefits, their roots often penetrate the area beneath your home, creating a convenient highway for termites to enter your home.
  • Foundation Cracks: Having a concrete foundation protect against termites is a common misconception.  Termites are constantly and continuously foraging for food because they don’t know when the existing food source will run out, they will form exploratory mud tubes several feet in the air or along concrete piers to find the wood of a structure.  A preventative termite treatment is your only real protection against a termite infestation 

As you can see, if you have a home, sooner or later you will be under threat of a termite infestation. But Life After Bugs provides the best termite treatment and prevention: the Sentricon® System, and we are Certified Sentricon Specialists™.

But before we get into this EPA approved and environmentally safe system, let’s take a look at the different types of termites and the termite signs to watch out for.  

Types of Termites

The Queen Termite

Of all the different types of termites, the queen is, of course, the most important member. They are the largest of all termites and can get up to four inches long! They can live over a decade, laying up to one million eggs in her lifetime, a stunning – and scary – rate of one egg per second.

Soldier Termites

These types of termites defend the colony against natural predators, such as ants, crickets, and dragonflies.

Worker Termites

The workers make up most of the colony. They are responsible for feeding the queen and the entire colony.

Swarmer Termites

When a male termite and a female termite love each other, they sprout wings, fly away from their respective home, and make new colonies, thus the swarming season.

a photo of termites
A swarm of winged termites

Now that you see the various types of termites that make up a colony, it is apparent that the swarming season, which occurs in the Gulf Coast during spring, is very scary indeed because this leads to more colonies – and a queen to produce eggs at a very swift rate – and more eggs mean more swarmers, which equals more colonies, and the vicious cycle continues.

The Seven Signs of Termites

Mud Tubes/Tunnels: These very thin tunnels are one of the more common signs of termites. Worker termites create tunnels from mud to travel from the soil to their source of food, which, unfortunately, could be your home. You can often see these mud tubes at the base, or foundation of your home.

Droppings: Well, everyone has to go Number Two, including termites. As they bite and gnaw their way through your home, termites leave behind very tiny pellets of droppings, or frass. This excrement looks like sawdust and are usually found on wood.

Things that Go Bump in the Night (or Day): If you hear subtle ticking or clicking-like noises from your wall, this could be soldier termites banging their heads or rattling their bodies, signaling danger to the other termites when their colony is disrupted.

Wood Damage: Termites often eat wood from the inside out, so if you tap on wood and it sounds hollowed-out, this could be a sign of a termite infestation. Additionally, when you see exterior wood of your home that has been damaged, this could be a sign of termite infestation. Or, if the damaged wood was caused by other means (weather, rotten wood, etc.), then it works as an invite for termites to come feast on your home.

Bubbled Paint: If there are areas where the paint in your home is oddly uneven or bubbling, this is often because of a buildup in moisture, which could mean termites.

The Swarm: A termite colony must be mature before it can produce swarmers, which usually takes one to three years, depending on environmental conditions. If there are termites in a structure for over a year consuming wood, when you finally see the swarmers emerge, a significant amount of damage may have already occurred. So, while seeing swarmers is not a definite sign termites are in your home, most of the time it is. And if not, they are somewhere close, which is why preventative termite treatments are so important.

Abandoned Wings:  After the swarmer termites arrive to their new abode, which could be your home, they shed their wings because they no longer need them. These wings can often be found in windowsills since termites enjoy the light.  

a photo of termites
A termite mud tube

Contact us immediately if you see any of the signs of termites, so that our top certified specialists can inspect your home.

Sentricon Systems Termite Treatment & Prevention

If you are seeking the best termite treatment or proven prevention method, we have your back. When you choose us to protect your home from termites, there is no drilling or excavating in the foundation or walls, we do not use chemical treatments in the foundation, and you will not need any extra booster treatments.

Your safety is our top priority, so we only use safe products for all our wide variety of services, including termite treatment. Life After Bugs has a team of Certified Sentricon Specialists™, who use safe, green products for termite treatment and prevention.

The Sentricon® System is the only termite product to be awarded the Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award by the EPA for superior environmentally responsible chemistry. This termite solution is what is used in protecting important National buildings and landmarks, including the White House and the Smithsonian Museums.

So, when you use Life After Bugs, you know that our termite treatment will keep your home and family safe.  

A Brief Explanation of How the System Works

To fully eliminate a termite colony, the bait must reach nearly every member of the colony. We covered that the worker termites are charged with feeding the entire colony, including the queen, and they do this by ingesting the food, and then feeding it to other termites through their mouth.

The bait we use is slow acting, giving the worker termites enough time to feed enough of the colony that there will not be enough termites left to care for the colony or nourish the queen. Once the queen dies, the termite colony is eliminated.

Contact Life After Bugs for Termite Treatment

You can click this link to read more about Life After Bugs termite treatment and the Sentricon® System, or feel free to contact us directly to address any questions; we can set up a termite inspection for your home, and you can start termite treatment and prevention now.