Save Yourself Thousands of Dollars With Termite Control and Prevention
Termites are a common springtime nuisance in households across the U.S. They spend the winter building colonies deep within wooden structures of homes and other buildings, beginning their breeding cycle in spring. Warm air and heavy rains instigate the swarming cycle, and winged reproductive termites leave the colony in search of mates to form new colonies. Homeowners should always be on the lookout for signs of termite infestations because, left untreated, they can quickly spiral out of control and render your home temporarily unavailable.
There are three sub-types of termite frequently seen in and around homes, and all pose threats to the structure of a building:
• Subterranean Termites. Subterranean termites build their colonies underground, coming up for food using a vast network of mud tunnels and chambers. In the spring, the existing colony will send out swarmers in search of mates and new colony sites. Signs of these termites include piles of cast wings from swarmers and mud tubes running up the building’s exterior foundation.
• Drywood Termites. Drywood termites rely solely on the wood structures in which they live. They do not require any contact with the soil, and may be harder to spot. Unlike other termites, they do not require much moisture to colonize inside wooden structures. They are often found in attic wood, which is dryer. Excrement deposits outside the colony, called Frass, are a sign of a drywood termite infestation. Unfortunately, Frass usually indicates an infestation already causing significant damage.
• Dampwood Termites. Dampwood termites are similar to subterranean termites in that they need moisture to thrive; however, they are much larger than the subterranean species. These termites inhabit damp, rotting wood, and typically reside in moisture-ridden basements, not in the soil. Frass is not commonly seen with these termites because the moisture in the wood allows the Frass to accumulate inside the colony. Winged swarmers and wood damage are the easiest ways to spot this type of termite.
Termite damage can be extensive. It costs Americans an estimated $5 billion a year; that’s more than fires and flooding combined. Signs of damage can range from moderate tunneling in walls and furniture to severe, unlivable structure damage. Subterranean and dampwood termites usually cause damage similar to water damage, including buckling wood and swollen floors.
Drywood termites cause damage that produces maze-like cracks and tunnels in walls and furniture. Unfortunately, damage usually goes unnoticed until it is too late and expensive repairs are required.
Termite Treatment and Prevention
The best method for treating termites is prevention. Opt for professional inspections to look for early signs of termites and place monitoring devices around the home. Treating plumbing leaks in the home will rob dampwood and subterranean termites of much-needed moisture. Bait stations lure termites with poisoned food, which will then be brought back to the colony. This is effective at exterminating small termite colonies, but will not work when large populations have already caused severe damage.
Newer homes can be built using termite-treated wood, and existing wooden structures can be treated with termiticide. Larger colonies need more drastic measures and utilize a combination of methods to effectively target habitat, food sources, and entry points. Most professional pest control services provide ongoing monitoring of the property after treatment, and some may offer warranties on their services.
Professional Termite Control Services
Professional termite control is the best choice for homeowners who notice signs of termite damage. Avoid combining personal treatments. Incorrect application of commercial termite treatment chemicals can completely negate the effectiveness of professional treatments.
Depending on termite species, a pest control specialist can determine the fastest and most effective plan for dealing with a termite infestation using moisture meters and termite detection systems. Immediate threats will be addressed using insecticides or other chemicals, while baiting treatments eliminate the remaining population over time. After initial extermination, structural modifications and termite barriers may be applied to prevent re-entry.
Centurion Pest Management offers homeowners an in-home visit to assess damage, termite type, and colony locations. Professional control plans are customized based on these factors to effectively penetrate and exterminate each colony. We use the safest methods available in the pest control industry, only using chemicals when absolutely necessary. With over 14 years of experience, Centurion Pest Management is fully equipped to deal with the most challenging termite infestations.