How to Get Termites Out of Your House
March 23, 2022
Your Fort Lauderdale, FL home may be in danger and you don’t know it. The danger comes from a pest that you won’t notice until it’s too late.
Termites are a nuisance wherever they are, but South Florida seems to be ground zero for their brand of terror. They rarely bite, posing little threat to children and pets. Instead, they threaten homeowners’ properties across the area.
Termites eat wood. Damaged wood might seem insignificant at first, but termites can create a severe problem for home and business owners.
- In the United States, termites cause approximately $5 billion in damage each year.
- Subterranean termites produce 80% of the damage.
- Certain termite species can eat 3 pounds of wood every day.
How can you stop such a menace from destroying the house you worked hard to own? How do you treat termite infestations?
Identifying the signs of termite infestations is the first priority. Removing termites from your property is second. Preventing them from returning may be the third step, but it’ll prove to be an ongoing process. You can take steps to protect your Fort Lauderdale, FL home now!
Keep reading to find out how to protect your home from termite activity and the various treatment options available to you!
Signs of Termite Infestations
Termites primarily eat wood and paper. Because they eat wood, your house is at risk of permanent structural damage if infested. Any wooden structure is in danger. Just one sign means termites have invaded your home. Some common signs include:
- Hollow places in the wood of your house.
- Mud tubes in the dirt alongside your home’s foundation.
- Musty odors.
- Small fragments of wood on the floor or windowsills.
- Swarmers inside and/or outside the house.
- Droppings (frass).
- Tiny wings near doors and windows.
Where Termites Hide
Simply put, termites can be found in any place that has wood. They commonly make their homes in wooden buildings and structures. Some locations around the house to check for subterranean termite infestations include:
- Door frames.
- Hardwood floors.
- Wooden furniture (tables, bookcases, etc.).
- Wooden studs inside walls.
Examine these areas for termite mud tubes and any other signs of these insects.
Swarmers are attracted to light. They can typically be found near light fixtures and windows.
When Termites Swarm
Termites usually swarm all year in Florida. Their peak season occurs during spring and summer. Since Florida has the most termite species in the country, seeing them swarm is unfortunately too common. Always keeping an eye out for termites can cut them off before your home sustains serious harm.
What Termites Look Like
Termites have thick waists that are the same width as the rest of their bodies. As opposed to ants, termites have straight antennae.
Depending on their type, they are generally 1/8th to 3/8th inches long. Colonies regularly have three castes:
- Swarmers: These flying pests travel the airways to mate and form new colonies. They are dark and can grow between 1/4th to 3/8th inches long.
- Soldiers: The colony protectors are pale yellow. They are approximately 1/8th of an inch long.
- Workers: Making up most of a colony, workers are cream-colored and 1/8th of an inch long.
3 Common Types of Termites
There are several types of termite species. Each one has its defining features and tell-tale signs.
Subterranean termites usually enter homes from the ground. The insects need soil to survive. They use mud to keep themselves moist. As such, they leave behind mud tubes when they move among food sources. In addition to mud tubes, their discarded wings are a sign of their presence. Subterranean termites can penetrate your home through cracks in foundations and plumbing.
Subterranean termite colonies may contain up to one million termites. The damage they cause can be quite severe, even in concrete blocks and new construction homes. They can destroy quicker than their drywood counterparts.
Drywood termites live where they eat – in wood. They are commonly identified by their fecal pellets, which are called frass. When they eat dry wood, they expunge frass out of the wood away from them. Frass can be smaller than rice grains. It can be found in piles on floors, windowsills, and beneath furniture. Drywood termite infestations can happen when infested furniture is brought into a house.
It can take a drywood termite colony 3 to 5 years to mature. After this period, termites with wings may appear. Their appearance means they’ve been inside the wood of your home for at least 3 years, inflicting structural damage without you knowing.
The largest of all termite species, dampwood termites do the least amount of damage to houses since they largely live outside in wet or rotted wood. Trees, fence posts, and logs are their common homes. Despite this, they can still damage any wet wood attached to your house.
Getting Rid of Termites
Finding signs of termites might seem like the end of the world, but it isn’t. You shouldn’t wait to kill the termites. Contacting a pest control company like Native Pest Management to help you get rid of an infestation as soon as possible can place you firmly in control.
There are several types of treatment pest control companies can use:
- Bait treatments: Bait stations containing poison are set up in the ground around an infested structure. Termites take the bait and bring the poison back to their colonies. Termite baits can then wipe out the infestation. A baiting system is a relatively safe treatment method for the environment.
- Chemical treatments: This technique involves placing poison around a home’s foundation, killing current termites, and preventing future infestations.
- Fumigation treatments: Sometimes known as “tenting,” this treatment involves pumping toxic gasses into the tent, killing nearly everything inside, especially termites. Fumigation is one of the most expensive termite control options and does not prevent future termite infestations.
- Heat tenting: This environmental-friendly method forgoes inserting gas into your house or spraying your property with chemicals. Instead, the tent warms up to 120 degrees, heating the wood and killing termites.
Identification is essential in preventing termite infestations. In fact, it's the first method of termite control possible. Inspecting your property regularly can make all the difference. You should search every possible place termites can be found, including light sources, attics, and crawl spaces.
After identifying the infestation, termite control and prevention must be done as soon as possible before your house suffers more damage, especially if your house has recently been treated. You can perform preventative methods yourself or hire a pest control company.
- Cut access to food sources: Termites might not stick around your property if they don’t have anything to eat. Get rid of dead plants and trees that may be around your home.
- Close entry points: Sealing any gaps can limit how termites invade your house. Caulk off any spaces you find, especially around water lines. You should also clear any areas where wood meets the ground around your home.
- Remove moisture: Termites need moisture to live. Getting rid of their water sources can help prevent them. Standing water and leaks can attract pests.
- Decrease exterior lighting: Lights can draw termites and other insects to your home. Yellow or purple lights can give you the security you need – from big and tiny intruders.
Native Pest Management Termite Control in Fort Lauderdale, FL
Termites are attracted to hot and wet weather. South Florida has ample amounts of both. Early and frequent prevention can help avert a termite infestation. Identifying them can be demanding. Preventing them yourself can require much time and effort. Do you have time to stay on top of termite control and be responsible for everything else in your life?
You don’t have to get rid of termites yourself. Save yourself the hassle and stress by letting a team of specialists identify and prevent termites from making a meal of your house.
If you suspect your Fort Lauderdale, FL house is infested with termites, the experts at Native Pest Management can confirm your suspicions and work diligently to remove them. A trained and licensed inspector will inspect the interior and exterior of your home. Then they will use any method they can to treat the infestation until it’s gone – no matter the type of termites.
Our termite treatment methods come with a one-year warranty that allows you to receive free treatment if another termite infestation occurs in that time. Follow-up services are free. You can purchase additional years on the warranty if you feel that your home is in competent hands. This warranty is also transferable if you sell your home.
Our Dedication to Customers
Since 2015, Native Pest Management has been helping homeowners control the many pests that live in the area. Our reputation for comprehensive and effective termite control has been noted in over 1,000 reviews. We’ve won several awards including the 2021 Better Business Bureau Torch Award for Ethics. We can consistently give you and your family an unparalleled customer experience.
Contact us for the right experience and equipment to solve your termite problem.
Request your free quote below.