The Top 5 Tall Tale Signs of Termites

March 16, 2021
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Termites are one of the most dangerous and invasive pests to have in your home. Hard to spot at first, by the time you’ve seen one, you could have a colony of thousands wreaking havoc and causing costly structural damage to your home. Don’t wait until your own home is collapsing on top of you before calling pest control. These invasive bugs are known for chewing directly through support beams in the walls and roofs of houses and leaving them hollow but intact. To the naked eye, these can look like perfectly stable beams, but just beneath the surface, there are colonies of termites eating away at the support. Let this go unchecked and you could have compromised support to your home’s structure. Those beams can no longer soundly hold the frame and fixtures and can lead to dangerous and costly collapses. Don’t wait until your own home is collapsing on top of you before calling pest control.

5 Indicators Your Home has Termites

You might be asking yourself – “How do I know if I have termites?” The qualified experts here at General Pest Control have compiled a list of signs to look for that can signify the presence of termites in your property.

Using this list and being mindful of these and other signs of termites, as well as contacting your local pest control specialist at GPC can prevent extensive damage and protect your home from further problems.

1. Wood That Sounds Hollow

To check if your beams or wood fixtures in your home are hollow tap or knock on them. You should be able to hear if the wood is hollow. A light tap is all you need to tell the extent of any suspected damage. This is similar to tapping your wall to find a support beam when hanging up a large picture in your home – your drywall will sound hollow, but when you hit a beam the sound is much deeper.

If you are unsure if your wood sounds hollow, check for some of the other signs of termites below.

2. Crumbling Wood and Pinholes

In addition to sounding hollow, termites will often leave subtle visual signs as they burrow into the wood. Upon first inspection, you may not notice anything, but look closer at termite-damaged wood and you’ll find an array of small pinholes the invaders use to enter the beam, floorboards, or molding. These look like someone took a sticky tack or tiny nail and drove it into the wood surface before taking it out. If you see multiple holes like this on the surfaces of your wood found throughout your home, you might have a termite problem.

In addition, near the pinholes and damaged wood, you will often find shards of wood or sawdust collecting as the termites continue to eat through your wood. If you do see sawdust collecting around the small hole or on the floor directly below this is just another sign you have termite damage.

3. Discolored or Drooping Drywall

Termites Tunnel on the interior of a wall. Drooping and sagging drywall from termite damage

While termites are most often associated with damaging wood, other materials that make up your home can be vulnerable to compromised structural integrity due to termite damage. One such example is drywall, which can droop and sink down from its positioning as termites make their way through the home. Your drywall will change in color in a few ways: You might see mazes show up on your wall, these are actually the tunnels the termites are creating. You may also see what looks like water damage, paint bubbling, and mud tubes protruding from the wall.

Not only do termites leave you with unsightly cosmetic damages, but the underlying structural damage can be even worse.

4. Buckling Floors

Your floors are not immune to the destruction termites cause. If you have wood baseboards, they are vulnerable to the damages caused by termites. As termites make their way into your home through their underground tunnels, one of the most common spots they attack is your wood and/or laminate flooring (even tile flooring is susceptible to damages). This is due to the darkness and moisture found under most floors, similar to walls and ceilings. At first, the damage can be very difficult to spot to an untrained eye, but it can quickly cause the floorboards and tiles to buckle and crack.

5. Mud Tubes on Your Foundation

Mud tubes on your foundation are one of the earliest signs of potential termite infestations, and a crucial step in diagnosing whether they have already entered the internal structure of the home. These narrow brown tubes start from the ground and lead up the foundation of your home eventually making their way into it. These tubes are the main route from the outdoor colony to your home and mainly serve as a way to move food back outside. The tubes sometimes stand out from the natural color of the foundation but can be difficult to diagnose as an immediate problem when you don’t know what you’re looking for. When in doubt, your best course of action is to contact a specialist to determine whether there is a problem and how severe it may be.

Don’t let termites wreak havoc on your home! When termites go unchecked they can cause serious damage compromising the look and safety of your house. Be on the lookout for wood that sounds hollow, pinholes, discolored or drooping drywall, buckling floors, or mud tunnels on the outside of your home. If you spot any of these indicators call an expert, call General Pest Control.

Hire Termite Extermination Experts

Don’t risk at-home remedies or do-it-yourself treatments when it comes to termite infestations and risk termites coming back. Whether you require a general inspection to assess the problem or full-on termite fumigation to remove a much more ingrained colony, General Pest Control can service all your pest control needs. Contact your local GPC or visit our website and let us do the rest.