What are termites?
Termites are wood-eating insects that are helpful in nature but harmful when living close to our Hawaii homes. The termite's ability to feed on wood helps to speed up the decay process and returns nutrients to the soil. When these pests find their way into our homes and begin feeding on structural wood or other wooden structures inside, they become damaging pests that cause costly damage.
There are two main species of termites living in Hawaii, ground termites and drywood termites; both feed on wood, but are two different species.
- Ground termites nest under the ground in damp soil. They prefer to feed on damp, decaying wood because of their high moisture needs. They live together in very large colonies, with hundreds of thousands to millions of members in a single nest.
- Drywood termites have lower moisture needs than ground termites and naturally prefer to feed on dry or sound pieces of wood. These termites nest within the wood they are feeding on. Drywood termites tend to live in much smaller colonies with only several thousand termites. They make up for their smaller colony size by being very efficient feeders.
Are termites dangerous?
There are many reasons why termites are considered dangerous and destructive and are so unwanted inside human structures. Some of the main reasons are listed below:
- Most homeowners' insurance does not cover termite damage. You will be responsible for repair costs.
- Each year across the country, termites are responsible for billions of dollars in damages.
- Their feeding habits help to weaken the structural integrity of a home, cause windows and doors to no longer open and close properly, and cause sagging floors and ceilings.
- Termites also feed on and damage wooden furniture, beams, trim, and shingles.
Why do I have a termite problem?
Hawaii's plentiful vegetation and tropical climate provide termites with a perfect habitat to call home. There is plenty of sound or water-damaged wood for them to feed on.
Ground termites are attracted to properties with a lot of decaying wood; if they are feeding or nesting in an area close to your home, they will eventually wind up inside your house. Some of their most common entry points include wood making direct contact with the ground, cracks in the foundation, or spaces around ground floor doors or windows.
Drywood termites also find their way into homes on their own. Holes along the roofline, exterior walls, windows, and foundations, are common entry points for these termites. They can also be brought in inside of wood furniture or other wood that you bring into your home.
Where will I find termites?
Ground termites create nests under the ground. Preferring wood damaged by water inside homes, these termites regularly feed on structural wood found behind walls, below floors, and above ceilings, usually near pipes and sinks.
Ground termites sometimes build mud tubes to travel above the ground and up walls. Mud tubes prevent them from dehydrating and protect them from predators. Spotting mud tubes about the width of a pencil around your house is a common sign of these termites.
Drywood termites feed on sound wood not damaged by water. You'll commonly find them infesting things like building timbers, structural lumber, wood furniture, railings, wood steps, and wood trim. Outside, drywood termites sometimes attack things like wooden fences, play structures, and utility poles.
How do I get rid of termites?
Termites are destructive pests that have no business turning our homes into their source of food. Get rid of termites by trusting the team of Honolulu pest control professionals at Pest Tech Hawaii. We are a locally owned and operated pest control company dedicated to delivering pest control services in the Aloha spirit!
For over 20 years, we have provided the residents of Honolulu with affordable and reliable pest control solutions. Committed to our customers, we offer a full range of customizable drywood termite control and ground termite control services. To learn more about our termite control solutions or request an estimate, give Pest Tech Hawaii a call today!
How can I prevent termites in the future?
Termites are tough pests for homeowners to prevent; partnering with a professional is always the best way to avoid these pests. The following tips will help to make your Hawaii home and property less attractive to termites:
- Use dehumidifiers and ventilate crawl spaces to reduce moisture levels in your home and reduce the likelihood of the wood inside your house from becoming damaged by water.
- Further prevent water damage in your home by ensuring gutters are working properly, weatherstripping is intact around windows and doors, and repairing roof damage.
- Seal up cracks and crevices in your foundation, exterior walls, and roofline to help keep termites from gaining access inside.
- Inspect antique furniture, barn wood, and other wooden items for signs of termites before bringing them into your home.
- Maintain a barrier between any soil or mulch and your foundation.
- Remove fallen trees, tree stumps, and other excess debris from your yard that termites could use as a food source.
I have been using Pest Tech for the unit I manage and my personal property for the last 3 years. They are always on time, makes sure to follow up before regular service, cost efficient and always friendly.