Why Termite Damage is Most Common in the Summer
In order for a termite to damage a home, it has to be a termite that eats wood. Now, you may be thinking, "hold on a second, don't all termites eat wood?" Yes. That's true. All termite species do eat wood. But not all the termites within a colony eat wood. Understanding this is the first step in understanding why termite damage is most common in the summer.
Spring is a big season for termites! They are visibly more active in the spring than any other season, not because they do more damage in the spring but because spring is when termite swarmers take to the air! Termite swarmers are male and female winged reproductives that leave their nests in search of mates and new locations to establish brand new termite colonies and unfortunately, our homes make the perfect place for these new termite colonies to take up residence. But, this higher visibility does not equate to more property damage. The time of year when termites do the most damage is actually during the summer. We just don't realize it because the damages take place inside the walls of our homes and are not visible to us!
The termites that feed on the wood of our homes are called worker termites. These termites tunnel underground and come up from the ground to feed on the inside wood, so you're not likely to see them unless you dig a hole next to your foundation wall or you do some remodeling. But just because you can't see them doesn't mean they're not there!
Worker termites feed on wood 24 hours a day without sleeping and under the right circumstances, they can continue to do this 365 days a year! But, during the summer, they work much faster because the warm temperatures allow them to become more active. Conversely, cold temperatures slow them down. So, in the peak of the summer season, termite workers are as active as they're going to be all year long. That means they are capable of doing much more damage in the summer than during the rest of the year.
So how do you detect summer termite activity? In a recent article, we provided some common warning signs of an active termite infestation, but it is important to understand that these signs are sometimes extremely difficult to see. Termites actually leave the evidence of their presence in hard-to-see areas by nature. It all has to do with their sensitivity to light!
Worker termites avoid light at all costs. Some workers use simple eyes to detect light while others are born without eyes and must rely on chemical pheromones left by other termites to avoid light. Either way, termite workers prefer locations that are dark. That means they will emerge in the areas around or under your home that are secluded and hidden from the sun.
You may know that termite workers create mud tubes to protect themselves from the drying effects of the air. But, what you may not know is that they will most often establish these tubes under decks and porches, behind exterior stairwells, in crawl spaces, and in other places that provide the darkness they need. Sure, they can create a mud tube at night in a visible location, but they don't prefer to. The darker a location is, the easier it is for workers to get their job done. For this reason, mud tubes can elude detection even when they are created in a crawlspace because termite workers build them inside concrete piers where it is darker. However, termite control technicians use mirrors to check each and every pier and may even dig into the ground of a crawlspace to look for evidence, if necessary.
Not Just Summer
Termites are active all year long. Summer is just the time of year when they are the most active. To protect your home from these damaging pests, your termite protection needs to be a year-round solution!
The experts here at American Pest trust the Sentricon® System with Always Active™ to protect homes from termite damage. Sentricon® with Always Active™ works to completely eliminate the termite colonies plaguing your home. In most cases, colonies can be eliminated with the active ingredient available in monitoring stations. But, a more powerful bait can be applied when a large colony strikes or when multiple colonies send out workers to feed.
Don't let worker termites silently feed on your equity! Contact the certified Sentricon® with Always Active™ Installers at American Pest and get your protection in place today!
Newsletter Sign Up
Form key: "e-newsletter-signup" does not match a valid form