Termite Control Done Right For Your Woodlands Property


Termite Activity Can Be Hard To Identify

It might seem like it would be easy to detect insects that devour your home or business, but they're actually quite sneaky about how they do this. Subterranean termites live in the ground. There are primarily two ways termites may enter your home or business. When they enter a structure, they may come in through wood that touches the soil or they may create above-ground tunnels. 

Ground Entry: Direct access through wood-to-soil contact is often impossible to detect. Termites bore into the wood below the surface of the ground and make tunnels right up and into the structure, going from one timber to another.

Above-Ground Entry: The above-ground tunnels created by termites are called shelter tubes. Termite shelter tubes are sometimes easy to see but they can also go undetected. Termite workers hide from the light, even the light cast by the moon. Therefore, they will create tubes on surfaces that are sheltered and hidden. It is also possible for someone to see termite tunnels and not realize they're looking at one. You may mistake them for mud runoff, or some other natural phenomena.

When termites infest your home, the termite nest may create termite swarmers. The appearance of termite swarmers is another warning sign you may see on your property. Sometimes swarmers are easy to detect. You won't have trouble noticing a dozen or more winged termites in your home. Their white wings give them away. But it isn't always easy to see swarmers.

  • A swarm typically lasts less than an hour. When it dissipates, the swarmers shed their wings and go into hiding to create their nests.
  • An indoor swarm can happen in a secluded space, such as your attic. In this space, shed wings can go undetected.
  • A swarm can occur outdoors. If so, the swarmers can simply leave your property and create a nest in a neighboring yard. But, since termite workers can travel as far as the length of a football field to find food, a
  • nest on a neighboring property can still present a risk to your home, depending on the size of your property.
  • Outdoor swarms can occur underneath structures, such as a deck, patio, porch, or shed.
  • You may only see one tiny swarmer, rather than a swarm. A swarmer is only about ⅜ of an inch long, so it is easy to miss when it is crawling on your driveway or walkway.

Do you see how it works? While swarmers can provide a clear warning of infestation, they have ways of avoiding your detection.

There are several more ways you may notice termite activity in your yard but not recognize the threat. Here are a few quick examples before we move on.

  • A dozen worker termites clinging to a dead branch. Worker termites are about ⅛ of an inch long and look like fat, pale-white ants. You may pick up a branch in your yard and pay no attention to these insects when you see them because ants are generally harmless.
  • When dead branches appear in your yard, it is evidence of a dying tree. It is possible that it is also a termite-infested tree. Termites are strongly attracted to unhealthy trees and will aid in the demise of a tree.
  • When you crawl into a dark area underneath a structure, you may see wings littered on the ground, or you might see wings stuck in a spider web. Termites are far from the only insects that shed their wings. So, you may not stop to examine them and identify the characteristics of termite wings, such as uniformity of size, stretched tear-drop shape, or white coloration. 

Subterranean termites in The Woodlands are sneaky pests. The warning signs they provide are usually sneaky as well. Let's turn our attention to the sneakiest of all warning signs: Termite damage.  

Recognizing Termite Damage On Your Property

If you do your own termite control, you may know that routine inspections are essential. As you perform a termite inspection, you may notice wood decay near the soil of a structure and not realize that the damage is related to a termite infestation. Many organisms can cause decay and deterioration of wood. It is helpful to know how to evaluate the damage and determine if termites are involved.

  • Look for trenches. When you inspect your home in areas that are dark and damp, you might see trenches in the wood. The trenches are exposed tunnels made by wood-damaging insects. If subterranean termites created the tunnels, they will feel gritty to the touch. If they were created by carpenter ants, they will feel smooth.  
  • Look for mud. Subterranean termites bring mud up into their tunnels. That is why the tunnels feel gritty when you touch them. They also use mud to create shelter tubes or patch holes in the tunnels they create inside wood. When you see tubes or mud patches on wood, it is evidence that subterranean termites are active within the wood. 
  • Dig and inspect for termite workers and soldiers. Subterranean termites are active below the surface of soil around wood. If you have wood-to-soil contact, you may detect workers or soldiers in the ground. Dig at the soil to check.
  • Rake mulch. If your landscaping has mulch, you might detect termite activity underneath, even if your mulch is protected by a product that is resistant to termites. Rake a spot until you can see the soil and look for termite workers, soldiers, or swarmers.  
  • Cut into wood if possible. If you have a stump, log, dying tree, a stack of campfire wood, or some other source of food termites eat, you could cut into the wood to look for workers or soldiers.
  • Inspect junk piles. Termites don't just eat wood. They'll eat books, magazines, documents, clothing, and other items that are made of materials with cellulose. If you have a junk pile on the ground, you may inspect it for termites. After doing so, we strongly recommend storing the junk pile in a plastic bin to remove it as an attractant.
  • Knock on wood. We're not saying this for good luck. If you actually knock on wood, you may detect whether or not the wood is hollowed out on the inside. As termites damage wood, they consume it bit by bit, tunnel upon tunnel. Extensive damage to a wood beam or stud is easy to detect. 

Most of the damage termites do is on the inside of the wood they're feeding on. For this reason, damage is sometimes impossible to detect. Some certified termite control professionals, like Chase Pest & Termite Control, use high-tech devices to detect infrared and track termite activity. When it comes to performing a termite inspection, it is best to have your local termite company handle the task annually.   

Why DIY Termite Control Can Do More Harm Than Good

Termite control is a complex process. It requires a knowledge of termite development and behavior patterns as well as training in the application of trusted control materials. Professionals are certified by manufacturers to apply termite control products and ensure the success of treatments. Professional service is the best way to get rid of termites and prevent termite infestations. 

Contact Us For Termite Control Done The Right Way

Do you live in The Woodlands? Contact Chase Pest & Termite Control for termite pest control in The Woodlands. Our certified technicians use leading technologies and field-tested strategies designed by manufacturers and experts in the pest control industry. We also provide a range of solutions so you can get the control you want within the price range you can afford.

  • We offer professional termite inspections that come with a WDI (wood destroying insect) report. The report provides a written evaluation of the conditions present on your property that are conducive to termite infestation, along with warning signs of any termite activity detected.
  • We provide ground treatments in advance of new constructions or perimeter protection around current structures. Our licensed technicians have the training to trench, drill, and apply the products without harming your property.
  • We can apply a Termidor treatment within your home to arrest termite activity within your walls and monitor the success of the treatments.
  • We can install a termite bait system around the exterior of your home. This works to provide termite detection and colony elimination.

Your home is unique in many ways. Let our certified technicians evaluate the unique characteristics of your home and provide you with options that will meet your specific needs. Contact us today. Chase Pest & Termite Control is a trusted termite control provider with over two decades of experience in solving termite problems in The Woodlands. We can help you protect your property and guard against termite damage.

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