Termites are more interesting and complex creatures than many are aware. Not only do different species of termites prefer different climates, but as a whole, they are beneficial decomposers for the environment.

Unfortunately, termites don’t actually know the difference between wood they should eat and wood they shouldn’t. So it’s our job as residents and homeowners to help them understand the difference and to keep them at bay when they threaten our homes and neighborhoods. Keep reading to learn more about termite identification, the damage that can result from a termite problem, and how to prevent a termite infestation in your home.

a drywood termite crawling in frass
many termites chewing into wood

What Are The Types Of Termites In Auburn?

There are two different kinds of termites most commonly living and destroying homes in Auburn. They both operate in unique ways, but if you don’t know what you are looking for, termite identification can still be tricky.

Drywood termites are named for their preference for dry wood. They are more likely to be found in attics or furniture. Working in smaller colonies of around 2,500, they can grow up to an inch in length and vary from creamy white in color to light reddish-brown. The signs of termites for this species may be harder to see. They do leave sawdust-like feces and shed wings on window sills and near holes in the wood. You may also see the termites swarming, particularly after a sudden rise in temperature on a sunny day.

Subterranean termites are slightly different. They build colonies that can exceed 60,000 members. Inside each colony, there is a complex caste system. Swarmers, workers, and soldiers each look a little different and perform a unique task for the colony. As this species can’t survive well in direct sunlight or dry air, they build mud tubes from the ground to the wood to stay moist and protected. Swarmers in this colony often swarm during the morning after a day of rainy weather.

Signs of termites for both species include blistering, swollen wood, discolored or drooping drywall, peeling paint that looks like water damage, small holes in the drywall, buckling wood or laminate, loose tiles, squeaky floorboards, windows or doors that don’t open easily, and maze-like galleries in wood. While subterranean termites will most likely stay close to the soil, attacking wood close to the home’s foundation, dry wood termites can and do go anywhere to make problems but prefer dry, untreated wood, such as support beams.

How Long Does It Take For Termites To Destroy A Home In Auburn?

Reports vary on how long it would take for a termite colony to essentially “total” a home to the point where it was irreparable. First of all, damage to this extent is not likely and quite rare. Homes destroyed by termites are more likely to have been abandoned or neglected for many years.

However, different kinds of termites eat through wood at different rates. There is a species of termite present in a few counties in Alabama called the Formosan termite which can cause severe structural damage to a home in as little as six months. More common species would take eight years or a decade to cause such severe damage, but noticeable damage can be done in just three years.

Why Termite Control In Auburn Is Necessary

While termites aren’t likely to level your home in the time it takes you to figure out they’re there, they can do costly damage not covered by homeowners insurance. In the United States alone, termites cause over five billion dollars worth of damage, averaging around $3,000 per family. It’s safe to say that many don’t have $3,000 to spend on home repairs following termite damage.

It’s also important to get on top of a termite problem because termites can spread throughout your neighborhood. All it takes is one person bringing termite-infested mulch into their yard to make a problem for everyone. Once a colony has been established in your home, termites can travel up to 130 feet to discover a new food source for expanding colonies.

Is There A Way To Prevent Termites In Auburn?

There are a few things you can do to prevent a termite infestation in your home, namely taking care of your wood, keeping a buffer between soil and wooden siding, and avoiding mulch in your yard. Aside from this, your best option is with preventative termite control treatments from Prewett Pest Control & Termite.

At Prewett Pest Control & Termite, we have different service options to fit your needs and budget. And no matter which plan you choose, you’ll enjoy year-round protection with a satisfaction guarantee. Don’t wait until termite damage becomes noticeable. Call Prewett Pest Control & Termite today for a free inspection and to get started protecting your home and neighborhood against termites.


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