Quick diagnosis of a termite infestation is important if you want to prevent damage to your home. Know the signs so you can schedule an inspection to track the problem.
1. Clicking Noises
Rustling and clicking can be heard within the walls when the home is quiet enough if there are termites present. Feeding and movement can cause a rustling sound, most likely to be heard at night when the house is quiet. Clicking noises are also common, as termites bang heads on walls to alert others to threats and danger. Although these sounds alone do not necessarily mean you have an infestation, they do indicate that a termite inspection is needed.
2. Frass and Shed
Frass is the excrement of termites. It resembles sawdust because that is more or less what composes it. Termites will push the frass out of their galleries, so you may find it along the skirting boards and at the base of walls if there are termites present. You may also sometimes come across small piles of shed wings. Termites only have wings when they are mating and on the move. Once they settle down, they shed the wings and move on to eating your home.
3. Mud Tubes
Subterranean termites build mud tubes from frass along walls to create sheltered tunnels for accessing wood. You will likely find these on basement or exterior walls that the termites have to cross to make their way to the wooden components of the home. They will look like raised tunnel-like ridges of mud. These are a sure sign that a termite inspection is needed.
4. White "Ants"
Termites look very similar to ants at first glance. The most noticeable difference is the colour, as termites are generally white or translucent. Termites also are thick waisted with straight antennae, compared to the thin waists and bent antennae on ant species. For winged termites, another identifier is that their wings are the same size compared to the smaller back wings on flying ant varieties.
5. Weak Wood
Damage occurs from the inside out as termites chew galleries into the wood. This creates a thin veneer that will crack easily with very little pressure. If wooden door frames, window trim, or skirting boards seem to crumble easily when touched or knocked against, then termites are a likely culprit. The wood may also sound hollow when rapped against due to the feeding of the pests.
Contact a termite inspection service if you suspect that you may have an infestation in your home.