Termites cause immense amounts of damage to property all over the country. There are three types. You might see tubes made out of mud that run from an underground nest to a wood source. That's a sure sign of Subterranean Termites, the most common variety. Drywood termites live in the south and prefer dry wood, while Dampwood termites live in the west and seek wet homes. Most termites are white with thick waists and sightless.
Termites : the ultimate home wreckers
It's hard to believe, but termites are very beneficial creatures - when they're not in your house. Their unusual digestive system allows them to eat wood, helping it decompose. That's good news for nature, bad news for the floor joists in your home. How do you know whether you have them in your house? Keep your eye out for the signature damage, and inspect the soil near your foundation for tubes - evidence that termites have been there. Look for what seems like flying ants that are thick around the middle and have two sets of wings of equal size. If you see some, call a licensed pest-control operator. Here's how to keep them outdoors where they belong.
Create a Barrier Against Termites
You want to make your house uninviting to termites, especially if you see them in the yard. To kill termites outdoors, try a termite killer such as Ortho® Home Defense MAX® Termite & Destructive Bug Killer. When used as a trenching treatment, it keeps termites away for up to 5 years in treated areas*.
*Not in MA, NY, and RI.
If termites do get into your house, call a professional. It takes a great deal of expertise to assess the damage and determine what kind of termites you have.