Termites are active 24 hours a day. This allows them a huge window of opportunity to cause havoc and destruction inside your home gradually, making them quite a nuisance. Inhabitants of termite colonies are known never to sleep. They are always occupied with tasks like gathering food, digesting it, and providing food for termite soldiers and mainly the queen. Termite queens also tend to lay many eggs that ultimately turn into termite workers, substantially increasing the termite population.
They are so active that by the time you happen to discover a termite problem in your home, the damage done is great. Termites tend to cause homeowners in the US billions of dollars of damages each year. Termites indeed break down dry, dead, and damp wood, allowing for nutrient-rich soil, but besides that, they can be a nuisance and bring aesthetic and financial damages.
If you wish to learn how termites destroy houses, here are some ways they tend to do so.
Termites tend to hide within cracked wall structures
The termite known for being the most notorious for causing damage is the subterranean termite. These termites make their home between wooden frames of a structure. They consume nearly every inch of wood and soil that makes up the home’s wall. Termites can cause a lot of money worth of damage and weaken an entire wall structure at the same time.
They essentially do this by eating up one part of the wall making the wall thinner and more fragile. In areas of your home where you may suspect a termite infestation, you can tap on the wall, and you are likely to hear hollow echoes because termites have consumed the area on the inside.
They tend to target walls with wallpapers, too. They do so by feeding on the cellulose within the wallpaper. You’ll notice a termite infestation when you see blobbing of wallpaper surfaces.
Aside from termites, the cracks and openings within your wall can also make passage for other pests like cockroaches, ants, and mosquitoes. They enter the cracks and would usually make their nests and lay eggs, causing a bigger irreversible pest infestation.
Termites do not only target wood
It is a common myth to think that termites target wood alone. As mentioned above, cellulose is the substance that all termites tend to go after. Cellulose is an abundant organic compound that is not only found in wood but in a wide range of plants.
In fact, termites require cellulose to survive. So what substances can contain cellulose? Here is a list:
- Cotton clothing
- Laminated or Hardwood Flooring
Your termite infestation can extend beyond your walls or wooden structures and potentially destroy any or all items containing cellulose. Aside from the type of substance termites consume, it is informational to note how different termites prefer different types of wood. For example, a dry wood termite will seek out dry wood, while a damp wood termite will unlikely go anywhere near dry wood and instead target firewood piles, dead trees, or tree stumps. Subterranean termites tend to get attracted to softwood like pine, cedar, redwood, spruce, and juniper.
Termites thrive in moist and warm conditions
Termites can survive majorly in all environmental situations but the condition in which they flourish the most is hot and humid weather. With the help of the moisture that humid weather tends to provide, they can easily grow and reproduce. They need moisture for better living conditions. In the absence of moisture, they are more likely to die out gradually. This is why it is vital to check your house for any leaks, water puddles in and out of your house, or loose water systems. The termites look for humid areas to make their home and might find areas with moisture and humidity. Moist regions do not only assist termites in reproducing, but they make them stronger, allowing them to work faster.
Colony sizes can affect how quickly they damage your home
Naturally, bigger colonies with a higher population will consume more of your wood at an even faster rate than smaller colonies. Determining an estimate of how big the colony is can be a challenge, and you can only effectively determine an approximate measurement with the help of a professional, which Easefix can help you find.
Another aspect harder to determine is how fast termites can destroy your home, depending on the size of the colony. But to get an idea, if your home has 2 million termite residents, they can leave your home in a wreck in nearly a year or two.
How fast can termites destroy your home?
To dive deep into how fast termites can wreck your walls substantially, as mentioned above, single termites should be the least of your problems, and their damage can almost be considered negligible. A single termite will take 3000 years to consume up to 1000 square feet, but it can only survive for two years.
Naturally, a larger colony can mean more termites will eat away your wood at a faster rate.
These pests are also good at staying undetected for a more extended period before you realize that the termites have caused substantial damage.
To sum up
Termites can cause a lot of destruction and havoc to your home, as we have seen through the facts discussed. They generally hide between cracks in walls and slowly eat away at the inside of your walls. This is why you may hear hollow echoing when you tap on your walls. Contrary to popular belief, termites do not only strike wood, but they have the potential to consume anything containing cellulose. There are different types of termites that have different wood preferences. It is unlikely that dry wood termites will eat away anything other than dry wood.
Termites will also grow, reproduce and work faster in humid and warm conditions, so checking for leaks or puddles is a good idea. Colony sizes can determine how fast termites may eat away at your home. An estimate of 2 million termites can wreck your home in two years.
With these informational facts, you can work towards preventing termite infestation or hire professionals to eliminate them before they do irreversible damage. Thank you for reading!
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