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Signs Termites are Causing Damage in Your Lorton, VA Home; Mud Tubes, Wings, Frass & More

Termites are notorious for the destruction they cause. Having mastered their chaos for over 120 million years, they cost the commercial and residential owners in the United States billions of dollars a year in damage. With over 2,000 of species of termites found around the globe there are about 50 known termite species in the United States classified under three groups that include subterranean, drywood, and dampwood termites. In Virginia the most common termite species are the Eastern subterranean termites, and though not nearly as common, West Indian powderpost termites, which are prone to infesting furniture, and though they are not native to the area. Also it is a very slim possibility that Drywood or dampwood termites could been brought in to your home. We at CSI Home and Commercial Services would like to discuss the fundamentals of the termites of Virginia.

Termite Caste System

Termites live in colonies and in general, are social insects. Their castes include workers, soldiers, and swarmers (which are the reproducers and/or the kings and queens). Workers are responsible for nearly everything; from constructing the galleries, or tunnels, to foraging for food, taking care of the young, feeding the king, queen, and soldiers, repairing the tunnels, and so on. Soldiers are genetically enhanced to defend the queen, colony, and nest from, predators, and other known enemies. Swarmers are the only termites that have wings, once they live the colony, and become kings and queens of a new colony, they shed the wings and reproduce.

Termite Damage

Subterranean termites actually hunker down beneath the soil under the foundation of the property, easily gaining access to the structure where they forage for food, without the owner being aware of their activities. Termites not only consume wood, but all cellulose materials including destroying furniture, books, cloth and carpets. Once the infestation begins, the destruction can compromise the integrity of the building’s structure.

Signs of Termites

When swarmers leave their original colony to begin a new colony, it is generally in the late spring, early summer. Once they find a place they like, they will shed their wings. Discarded wings around windows and doors is a sign termites have chosen your home or business to establish their new colony. Late signs of a termite infestation include the following:
– Exterior of wood that appears thin and brittle and feels hollow when you tap on it because termites will consume and excavate the inside of wood.
– Walls, ceilings, and floors that sag.
– Mud-like tubing stretching up from the ground to the ceiling that allows them to travel from their nesting areas to a food source.
– Bubbling paint and tiny holes.

Termite Inspection & Treatment

After you have witnessed enough of the red flags to believe your home or business is infested with termites or you just want to be proactive, you can call in professional pest control company for an inspection service. A professional, such as one from CSI Home and Commercial Services, will perform a comprehensive termite inspection on the structure, soil, and surrounding property grounds. Once the termites are confirmed there are several treatment options that are available depending on the surrounding circumstances, the most optimal will be selected. Contact us to schedule your inspection today!