Protecting Your Home In The Woodlands From Termites


The Types Of Termites That Infest The Woodlands Homes

Subterranean termites are the most destructive and persistent termites in The Woodlands. These termites eat softwood and have a strong association with the soil. What do we mean? These termites often create nests below the surface of the ground, they are subterranean. When they enter the wood of a structure, they bring soil up into the tunnels they create. The soil is mixed with saliva to create a paste that is perfect for creating above-ground tunnels on the sides of foundation walls. These above-ground tunnels are called shelter tubes. They also use the muddy paste to line the walls of their tunnels and seal moisture inside. Soil is very important to subterranean termites. You must understand this connection to the soil if you want to avoid termite damage. Here are a few reasons why:

  • Shelter tubes are evidence of termite activity. As you look for signs of termites in your yard, keep this in mind. Inspect your foundation walls, crawlspace walls, your block foundation if you have one, bricks surfaces, and structural timbers.
  • Sometimes worker termites in a subterranean termite colony will damage wood that is touching the soil. You'll most likely find this kind of damage in humid areas, such as behind your landscaping.
  • Subterranean termite workers will feed on any wood source that is in the ground and many sources found on top of the ground. Look for workers when you pick up dead branches, scrap wood, campfire wood, and other wood sources.

Detection is at the heart of termite damage prevention. Keep watch for signs of termite damage, shelter tubes, and worker termites.        

The Extent Of Damage Termites Can Silently Create To Your Home

Subterranean termites are a billion-dollar problem in the United States. The reason they're so destructive is that they are incredibly sneaky. Worker termites in a subterranean termite colony avoid light and do not like to come out in the open even on a moonlit night. For this reason, the evidence they provide is often hidden under structures, in crawlspaces, or within voids. If you hope to find active termites and uncover a termite problem, you'll need to get dirty and do some work. You may need to go so far as to use a mirror and a flashlight to look down each of the concrete piers under your home if you have a block foundation. Termites don't make your life easy.

Termites are also sneaky in the way they feed on property. They don't chew or crunch. You won't hear them munching inside the wood of your walls. They scrape, and the scraping sound is undetectable. But you may get lucky and hear soldier termites inside your walls. Soldiers bang their heads on tunnel walls to issue an alarm to the workers. That alarm warns of an impending threat, such as an invading army of ants. While it sounds like good news that soldiers will make this clicking noise to alert you to the danger of having termites in your walls, they rarely make the noise. Ants and other potential foes don't easily find their way into termite tunnels because the tunnels are sealed by mud. If an enemy gets in and stirs soldiers to make this clicking noise, you may still not hear it. You have to have a lot of soldiers in your walls to hear anything more than a gentle rustling noise.

Since termites are so sneaky, they can do a lot of damage before they're caught. We can't tell you how much damage they'll do to your home, but we can tell you these important facts:

  • Termite workers don't sleep. They can feed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, every year until they just stop moving.
  • Termite workers travel sea and land to find food. Okay, maybe not sea, but they cover a lot of land to get a bite to eat. They'll go as far as the length of a football field.
  • When termites find an ample food source, the queen knows it. She produces more workers to keep up with the new demand.
  • If a food source is large enough, a satellite colony is formed. The close proximity of a satellite colony allows for faster food collection (ie. more damage to your home).
  • A termite colony can have hundreds of thousands of workers, and more than one colony can feed on your home at the same time.

Termites cost U.S. property owners over $5 billion annually. It is wise to take steps to guard your property against termite damage, particularly if you live in The Woodlands. 

Effective Quality Prevention Is Key To Successful Termite Control

Termites go where conditions are favorable for survival and reproduction. They don't put a lot of thought into it. There are primarily two factors that drive them: Food and moisture.

Food: Termites eat wood. They also eat cardboard, clothing, upholstered furniture, certain insulation, and even animal droppings. When you remove termite food from your yard, you make it less interesting to these insects and you reduce the potential for termite activity. Here are some examples:

  • A pile of dead branches is a gourmet meal for termites. If you collect branches and stack them in a pile on the ground, you're ringing the dinner bell. It is far better to put dead branches in a bucket or plastic bin.
  • A stack of campfire wood is another delicious source of food for termites. Put campfire wood in a container or on a rubber mat.
  • A pile of junk that has cardboard or clothing in it will entice termites. Keep all junk stored in receptacles.
  • Stumps and logs are an all-natural source of termite food that some folks leave sitting in their yards. If you're able, burn those stumps out and remove those logs.
  • Wooden support posts in the ground provide an easy source of food. Consider using concrete blocks and fastening the wood on top.

Moisture: The skin of a termite worker is thin and will dry out quickly if it doesn't stay hydrated. For this reason, workers are drawn to moist soil and high humidity above the ground. Here are some ways to address termite-attracting moisture.

  • A clogged or damaged gutter system allows rainwater to run over the sides and dampen the ground. Damp ground attracts termite workers. Get those gutters up to speed to deter termites.
  • Untrimmed bushes, unwanted grass and weeds, and general overgrowth in your landscaping and yard trap moisture and create conditions for elevated soil moisture and humidity in the air. These conditions attract termites.
  • A leaky spigot or a hose with a hole can let water leak out onto the ground. Plumbing repairs help to keep things too dry for termites.

These tips should give you a start as you consider what conditions may attract termites into your yard. If termites are particularly determined to investigate your yard, more pest control is needed.   

Professional Termite Control Offers Lasting Protection For Your Home

There are many ways a certified professional can help you guard your property. At Chase Pest Control & Lawn Care, we offer the best options available.

  • We provide termite inspections that include a Termite Inspection Report, also known as a Texas Wood Destroying Insect Report. When you're looking to sell your property, you'll definitely want to get one of these in advance.
  • We offer pre-treatments for new constructions. If you're getting ready to build a home, it is smart to treat the land before anything is built.
  • We offer Termidor treatments to arrest termite activity. Termidor is the number one brand for professional termite control and it has a transfer effect that works to get to the heart of termite colonies.
  • We trench and treat the exterior of structures and insert Termidor for long-lasting protection.
  • We apply Advance Termite Bait stations to detect sneaky termites.

When you need a comprehensive termite control plan for ongoing protection of your property, we have the solution. If you're in The Woodlands, connect with us today to learn more or schedule service.     

Share To: