Different Types of Termites

Termites can be a real nightmare for homeowners all over the US, and there are four major kinds of these pests to be aware of: Dampwood, Drywood, Formosan, and Subterranean. In this article, we’ll burrow deep into the intricacies of each type, their characteristics, and how you can protect your home from these pesky creatures. So sit tight and read on!

Subterranean Termites

Subterranean termites are a highly destructive species. They reside in underground colonies that can consist of up to two million members. These termites have scissor-like mandibles which they utilize to constantly consume wood around the clock, 7 days a week.

Subterranean Termites

Subterranean Termite – From Pest World

Drywood Termites

Drywood termites are a rare species in the United States that have a unique preference for extremely dry wood, such as that found in attic framing. They are social insects that live in colonies consisting of up to 2,500 members. During sunny and warm days, they often swarm after a sudden rise in temperature.

Drywood Termite (Long wings)

Drywood Termite – From Pest World

Dampwood Termites

Dampwood termites commonly live in heavily forested areas of the country as they prefer wood with high moisture content. They are normally larger than other termite species. Specifically, their bodies are usually a light brown color and can grow up to 1 inch in length. They have straight antennae that are shorter than their body length and wings that are equal in size and shape.

Dampwood Termites

Dampwood Termite – From Pest World

Formosan Termites

Formosan termites are an extremely aggressive termite species originally from China. They live in huge underground colonies, with an average of 350,000 workers and build intricate mud nests in the ground. When it comes to the termites’ appearance, they have long, narrow and creamy-white bodies which are almost transparent. Their heads look rectangular and they have tiny antennas. Their wings are long and narrow, with two sets that are almost equal in size. They also have two large eyes on either side of their heads.

Formosan Termite

Formosan Termite – From Pest World

Termite Treatment FAQ

What are some of the signs of a termite infestation?

Depending on where you live, termite swarms may be visible in the early spring. Termite swarms can sometimes be confused with flying ants. Telltale signs of a termite infestation include soft, decayed wood in the home, mud tubes in the interior or exterior of your home (often near the foundation), and darkening or blistering of wood structures.

How much damage do termites cause?

Termites eat 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, meaning damage to wood in and around a structure can happen very quickly. In fact, the National Pest Management Association estimates that termites cause $5 billion in property damage each year. The good news is that termites can be controlled with the partnership of a trained pest professional.

What can a homeowner do to prevent termites?

There are many steps a homeowner can take to help prevent termites from infesting their property.
  • Most importantly, a homeowner should eliminate or reduce moisture in and around their home, which termites need to thrive.
  • Divert water away from the home’s foundation by installing properly functioning downspouts, gutters and splash blocks.
  • Reduce humidity in crawl spaces with proper ventilation.
  • Trim vines, hedges and other vegetation to prevent them from blocking vents.
  • Remove old form boards, grade stakes, tree trunks and roots near a building, as they may attract termites.
  • In addition, maintain an 18-inch gap between soil and any wood portions of your home. Finally, routinely inspect the foundation of the home for signs of termite damage.

Does homeowners insurance cover termite damage?

Typically, homeowner’s insurance does not cover termite damage. Most pest infestations and accompanying damage are considered maintenance issues by insurance carriers.

How difficult are termites to treat?

Termites cannot be effectively treated by a homeowner on their own. Pest control professionals have the training, expertise and technology to eliminate a termite

How are termites controlled?

A licensed pest control professional will be able to recommend a course of action depending on many factors, including the area of the country that you live in, the size of your infestation, the termite species present and your home’s construction.

What is the most effective type of termite treatment?

The National Pest Management Association and the entire pest management industry are committed to providing highly effective treatment options for all pest issues. The most effective type of treatment depends on the severity of the infestation, the species of termite, and the location and contruction of the home. A trained and licensed pest control professional can assess each infestation individually and recommend the most effective treatment plan.

How much does a termite treatment cost?

A termite treatment can cost anywhere from $800 to $1,800 dollars, depending on where you live, the construction of your home, severity of the infestation and the type of contract offered by your pest control professional. After a thorough inspection, in most cases your pest control company will give you an estimate at no charge.

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