Because termites devour their way through wood from the inside, exterior damage may not be visibly obvious. From the surface the wood may seem solid, but from the inside, it has been riddled with termite galleries. This can make it difficult to determine if a termite infestation is actually present, so during an inspection The Termite Guy will look for the following indicators to be certain:
1) Wood damage Damaged wood can be indicative of a termite infestation. Look for small holes in wood, sagging doors, loose window frames and crumbling drywall. If the wood is heavily damaged, it will crack or puncture easily and sound hollow when it is tapped. Because drywood termite colonies are typically small and grow slowly over time, it will usually take them between five and 10 years to cause significant structural degradation to a large wooden beam.
2) Termite swarmers! Usually during the spring and fall, both drywood and subterranean termites start new colonies by swarming. Swarming termites will typically be seen flying near windows or lights.
3) Termite wings, lots of them Piles of discarded wings are a great termite infestation indicator because they shed their wings when they swarm.
4) Fecal pellets Drywood termites make fecal droppings that look like tiny hexagonal pellets, called frass, which they discharge from their nests. These droppings resemble granulated sawdust and are often found below infested wood or in small piles in attics. Seeing termite pellets will not only confirm the presence of an infestation, but also help determine where the infested wood is located.
5) Mud tubes The presence of mud tubes on the outside of the foundation will certainly indicate a subterranean termite infestation. In the case of a subterranean termite infestation take quick action because they can cause a lot of structural destruction.