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How To Know If The Wood In Your Home Was Damaged By Termites Or Ants

How To Know If The Wood In Your Home Was Damaged By Termites Or Ants | Phoenix Pest Control Experts

Termite damage is not always easy to recognize, and they are not the only wood-boring insects that exist. Upon noticing unexplained damage to areas of structural wood, you should first have a termite inspection conducted immediately in order to prevent irreparable damage from occurring. When it comes to wood-boring insects, termites are the last insects that you want infesting your home. When compared to other wood-boring insects, termites cause the greatest degree of structural damages. When a home’s structural damages become extensive enough to clearly indicate a termite infestation, the damage can sometimes be irreversible. Although termites are destructive creatures, they cannot render a home unlivable within a few days; instead, homes become structurally compromised only after long periods of destructive termite activity. Many people whose homes are protected by termite barriers and insecticides may still notice structural damage that indicates a termite presence. When this occurs, many homeowners may assume that they had been ripped-off by a shady exterminator who failed to install effective anti-termite barriers. However, it is far more likely that another type of wood-destroying insect is responsible. Termite poisons and repellents may not be as effective at killing other types of wood-boring insects, this is why it is important to understand the difference between termite damage and damage caused by other forms of destructive insects.

In addition to termites, carpenter ants can also cause damage to the wood in people’s homes. However, only termites are capable of causing damage that is extensive enough to render a home unlivable. No other type of insect can destroy a home’s structural integrity. One difference between the two insects is the type of wood that they are attracted to. Termites excavate wood that is intact and free from rot, such as timber and tree stumps. Carpenter ants, on the other hand, are attracted to wood that has already sustained damage, whether it be from rot or fungus. Carpenter ants, like termites, leave behind noticeable amounts of wood-shavings since they do not consume the wood that they excavate. Although termites consume the wood that they excavate, they can also leave behind wood shavings, albeit far less. In cases where wood destruction makes it hard to determine the type of insect pest responsible, you can instead attempt to locate the insect culprit yourself. Termites and carpenter ants are the same size, and they both swarm. These similarities can make the two different insects hard to discern, but termite workers are pale-colored, and nearly translucent, while carpenter ant workers are reddish or dark in color. Since termites consume wood, they often remain unseen within hollowed sections of wood, but carpenter ants can often be spotted foraging for food within people’s homes, as they do not consume the wood that they excavate from structural timber.

Do you know of any other type of insect species, besides termites and ants, that are capable of inflicting damage to timber structures?

Nelson Ruiz No Comments

Termite Warning Signs | Phoenix Termite Control

Termite Warning Signs | Phoenix Termite Control

Magic Pest offers the following signs that termites may be present in a home:

  1. Mud tubes (used by termites to reach a food source) on the exterior of the home.
  2. Soft wood in the home that sounds hollow when tapped.
  3. Darkening or blistering of wood structures.
  4. Cracked or bubbling paint.
  5. Small piles of feces that resemble sawdust near a termite nest.
  6. Discarded wings near doors or on windowsills, indicating swarmers have entered the home or swarmers themselves, which are often mistaken for flying ants.

Phoenix Termite Control Experts. Call Today For A Free Inspection!

Termites Are Most Active Right Now

Termite season is quite literally year round. If there is a time of year when termites in Arizona are least active, it could be said that it’s in the middle of winter when temperatures cause termites to seek deeper hiding areas. However, the moist air in wintertime also leads to damp, soft wood, which Arizona termites live for.

As our temperatures warm up and springtime bugs make their way, including bees and scorpions, termites are becoming more active. Termites can breed and invade your in complete silence, hiding in plain sight.

Termites feed off the soft wood that might be within your walls, around your windows and doors, collecting in your garage or backyard, or within your attic. Termites tend to slow down in the winter but become more active as temperatures rise, just like many other insects and animals of the desert.

Some of the most obvious signs to start looking for as Spring approaches are termite tubes and wood debris. When you’re doing your springtime planting or cleaning, look around the foundation of your home, your windows, and in the garage for termite tubes. They look like sticks of mud running vertical along the walls, trim or foundation.

If you think you might have termites, don’t wait and don’t’ try to get rid of them on your own. Arizona termites can potentially destroy your home, causing a great deal of damage in very little time. Call us as soon as you think you might have a termite problem.

Why Your Arizona Business Needs Pest Control

How Commercial Pest Control Can Benefit Your Business

If you have pests in your Phoenix, AZ business, you will want to call commercial pest control as quickly as possible to deal with whatever pests you have. When you are running a business your reputation is of the utmost priority, and by having pests you can lose customers and have other issues with your operation. Commercial pest control can get rid of your pests quickly and ensure that your business can resume options without a hitch.

 

Calling Commercial Pest Control Lets Your Deal With Your Business

You don’t want to waste time trying to handle a pest problem on your own. If you own a restaurant or retail location, pests can seriously affect your business. By calling commercial pest control you can focus on managing your business while we take care of the pests using the latest and most effective methods. This will protect your company’s reputation and ensure that the problem is dealt with quickly and efficiently.

Commercial Pest Control Can Eradicate the Problem Thoroughly

The other reason to call commercial pest control for your Phoenix, AZ business is the fact that they will be able to deal with the problem more thoroughly. A commercial pest control company has the equipment and tools to find out exactly where your pests are located and catch any other nests that you may have missed. It can be difficult to know exactly where the pests in your building are located, but a commercial pest control company like Magic Pest will be able to find all of them and eradicate the problem thoroughly.

Don’t Treat Commercial Pests the Same as Residential Pests

Residential pests can be handled with your own efforts in some cases, because you might have more time to deal with them. In your business, you often won’t have the time to try to eradicate pests on your own. You will also have to take time away from your other important priorities to try to deal with pests, and this will negatively affect your business. The best choice in the majority of circumstances is to call a Magic Pest Control as soon as you start having pest problems.

How To Keep Termites From Destroying Your Home

The professional word for these ravenous mash eaters is cryptobiotic: They’re so great at finding the stowaway, you may not know they’re there—but rather they are. The most widely recognized underground assortment settles in the clammy soil in each state spare Alaska. While termites might be useful in the woodland, where all that crunching dispatches dead stumps, when they move from the yard to your home, they can wipe you out. What’s more, think about what: Insurance doesn’t cover the harm. Here’s the way to abstain from transforming your greatest speculation into a creepy crawly gut work.

They’re subtle

Termites tiptoe through soggy mulch and soil, while winged ones fly amid swarming season—which is currently. Be that as it may, they settle outside of anyone’s ability to see. An invasion may not become visible until the point that you remodel or an auditor jabs around.

They overshare

Scavenging laborers leave the home looking for sustenance, frequently scored in a warm, moist place, similar to an inadequately vented slither space. They at that point return home to share the ingested products, utilizing an expertise known as “the common trade of gut substance”— net, yet accommodating in conveying poison through a state.

They have a desire for…

Foragers are attracted to rotting wood and plants, a few sorts more than others, and warmed up if conceivable—a board under a releasing high temp water pipe, say. They burrow through the delicate springwood, deserting the harder grain, making the present milder, quick developed wood a genuine termite treat. FYI: Several settlements can flourish in one house.

They eat relentlessly

Eating every minute of every day, they utilize dampness, sharp mandibles, and intestinal smaller scale living beings to hand cellulose over wood, plants, and even paper into sustenance.

They leave confirm

Giveaways incorporate light wood and thin mud tubes, which termites make with spit and bits of wood or drywall; on the off chance that you tear one open and see specialists, you have an issue. Swarmers shed their wings previously tunneling outside of anyone’s ability to see; in the event that you discover shed wings inside, bring in an ace.

They have complex social lives

A detailed standing framework doles out errands: rummaging; bolstering and preparing different termites; shoring up the settlement’s safeguards; and basically increasing. When swarmers discover succulent landscape and shed their wings, they begin reproducing to shape a subcolony or another one. It might take a long time to develop, and afterward it implies inconvenience.

Step by step instructions to Keep Them Out

Remove their nourishment and water

Store kindling no less than 20 feet from the house. Keep up a 6-to 12-inch line between mulch or soil and wood parts of the house; foliage ought to be no less than 3 feet away. Point garden sprinklers from the establishment, and direct downspouts far from the house.

Play it safe

Try not to bring home wood unless it’s been dealt with to kill termites—most new sheets have. Keep vents clear so dry air can flow. Freshen up upper rooms, cellars, and creep spaces consistently.

Go on edge

Fill or fix any passage focuses, from torn blazing to breaks in your storm cellar’s solid. Screen patios, fence posts, and ledge plates for indications of termite intrigue.

Let down your monitor? Contract an ace

Get three offers, check references, analyze fight designs, and read the fine print. Fluid termiticides work by entering the foragers’ stomach related frameworks and traveling through the state when nourishment is shared. It’s a monstrous business, however get genuine: This is your home, not theirs.

The Most Common Winter Pests

Most common winter pests in Phoenix, Arizona

It might not feel like winter outside, but we’re still in the thick of the winter season. And while temperatures are rising above 80 degrees, winter pests are still invading your home getting ready for the warm weather and influx of food.

Some of the most common winter pests are mice, spiders, rats and scorpions.

Mice – A mouse can act like a contortionist, squeezing and bending their bodies to get into houses through openings as small as 1/4 of an inch. Once inside mice reproduce quickly, and before you know it – your house can be overrun with mice. Not only are they destructive to property, building nests and chewing on wood and furniture, but mice present a health hazard through their bites, urine, and feces.

Rats – Slightly larger than the common house mouse, rats are rodents that destroy property by chewing electrical wires and building nests in walls and under appliances and leave a trail of potentially hazardous excrement. Both mice and rats thrive in the many nooks and unused spaces a house offers for nesting.

Spiders – While spiders are often thought of as beneficial pests because they eat other household pests, most people don’t want to share their homes with a bunch of creepy, crawly spiders. One of the most unfortunate things about spiders is that they often enter homes while hunting other pests that have come before them.

Stink bugs – Another nuisance pest, stink bugs don’t transmit diseases to humans or pets, nor do they cause damage in homes. Still, they are unsightly, and like their name suggests, can cause quite a nasty odor in your home. Stink bugs will sometimes leave stains on curtains and walls and can invade your home in large numbers, which they do simply to survive the low temperatures.

So, how can you prevent winter pests from invading your home? First of all, get yourself a reliable pest control professional, like Magic Pest Control. A great relationship with an expert in pest control can make all the difference.

Secondly, get those pest control professionals out to your home once a month. Have our experts seal up your home to keep winter pests away. All cracks, holes and soft wood needs to be patched and replace. All carpeting that doesn’t attach needs to be placed down correctly. All ceiling fans that do not fully cover the hole needs to be repaired.

Thirdly, keep a mindful eye on the floors at night when scorpions roam, and during the day when spiders and cockroaches invade.

 

Termites Remain Active in Winter

Termites are pretty active all year round, even in the middle of winter. OF course, the middle of winter in Arizona is not the same as winter in, let’s say New England. But, our Arizona termite season is neverending.

When temperatures drop, termites do move below ground even farther, which can just mean they are tougher to find and seek out. The warmth that termites seek is deeper into the dirt, so they dig down farther and farther, but never really disappear.

Here in Arizona, queen termites produce eggs at a steady rate year round. Because our winters are fairly mild, egg production doesn’t necessarily slow down. Which could mean that there are termites laying eggs right now far below your home, just waiting to be born and attack your home.

In colder temperatures, queen termites do, in fact, slow down their egg production. While they don’t hibernate, they do cease egg production during the coldest months of winter.

Finding termites in the winter time inside your home is possible. Subterranean and drywood termites that have found shelter and food in your home’s foundation and walls will not be as affected by cold outdoor temperatures.

It’s imperative that you have a termite pest control come out to your home to inspect for termites immediately, particularly if termites have been in your neighborhood in the past few months. Termites can wreak havoc on your home, causing hundreds and thousands of dollars in damage, including hotel stays while pest control companies treat your home.

Kandice Linwright No Comments

Termites Hiding in Plain Sight

Termites Hiding in Plain Sight

Termites aren’t always easy to find. From rotting wood to water stains, strange lines on the garage wall to cracks in the foundation of your home, termites can hide in plain sight.

From Gilbert to Phoenix and Glendale, termites are invading the valley. They are causing millions in damage every year, and your home could be next.

Today, let’s talk about some of the places termites like to hide in plain sight…

Rotting Wood: When the mornings are dewey and moist, and water droplets form out of thin are and attach themselves to your car and grass, it’s easy to see some rotting wood along the trim of your house and think, “That’s perfectly normal. I’ll take care of it later.” Unfortunately, the longer you wait the more termites will invade your home. If you have rotting wood in your home, you have a termite problem…I can pretty much guarantee it.

Paint Chipping: Another tell tale sign of a termite problem is paint chipping along the wood of your home. Either on the wood trim around your roof, doors, and windows or the pain on the inside of your walls, these are all signs of a termite problem. Paint chipping could mean that the wood underneath that paint is moving, Moving would, disturbed wood, is a tell-tale sign of termites.

Hollow Trees: If you have any trees of firewood on your property, you probably have had termites, or you currently have a termite problem. It’s difficult to tell if termites are invading your trees unless you look closely. Any frass on the ground or sawdust could be a sign of termites hiding in plain sight. If you were to cut a branch off of one of your trees and notice termite tubes within the tree itself, you have a termite problem.

Oddly Shaped Designs: I drove past a home the other day with oddly designed lines running up from the patio roof to the bedroom window. Initially, these designs looked like water lines, perhaps left over after some house cleaning or heavy rain. Maybe you’ve noticed these strange lines on your foundation, the inside of your garage or the outside of your home? These strange lines are not water stains or dirt stains, they are termite tubes….termites hiding in plain sight.

If you think you might have a termite problem, call Magic Pest Control immediately.

Kandice Linwright No Comments

Heavy Termite Season Hitting Arizona

We have been seeing an influx of termite infestations here in Arizona. From Gilbert to Phoenix and Glendale, termites have invaded the valley. Part of the problem is that homeowners aren’t being diligent enough to seek out termite symptoms and signs of a termite problem until it’s too late.

Termites will hide within the walls of your home, but there are nearly always signs and symptoms of a termite problem.

Today, let’s talk about some of the termites that might be living in your home right now, and what to do about it…

Subterranean Termites

This termite species is extremely common in southern states and hotter climates. Subterranean termites live in underground colonies with as many as two million members and are also found in moist, secluded areas above ground. They build distinctive tunnels, often referred to as “mud tubes,” to reach food sources and protect themselves from open air. Subterranean termites are by far the most destructive termite species — their hard, saw-toothed jaws work like shears and are able to bite off extremely small fragments of wood, one piece at a time. Over time, they can collapse a building entirely, meaning possible financial ruin for a homeowner.

Signs of a Termite Problem

Symptom of Termite: Discarded Wings

What To Look For: Wings all of the same size (look like tiny fish scales) shredded near an entry point to your home.

Swarmers are usually winged and as a part of their behavior, they usually discard their wings in places like windowsills, doors or in cobwebs.

Symptom of Termite: Mud Tubes

What To Look For: Mud tubes are usually built by Subterranean termites, which are the most destructive species. As they move out from their colony in search of food, they build mud tubes to provide moisture. These mud tubes are often found near the foundation of the home, so those places should also be checked regularly.

Symptom of Termite: Wood Damage

What To Look For: Termites often eat wood from the inside out thereby making the wood soft. The damage may not be visible on the outside. The wood’s surface might still appear smooth even if termites are causing damage from inside. So if the wood sounds hollow when tapped, it may be because termites are eating the wood from the inside.

Symptom of Termite: Cracked Paint

What To Look For: Swarming drywood termites can enter through very tiny openings. Always try to cover up cracks in the home’s foundation, near roof siding, vents and windows. If your paint is cracking, it means there is moisture build up in it which could be as a result of either water damage or termite problems.

Symptom of Termite: Frass

What To Look For: As Drywood termites infest wood, they leave behind wood-colored droppings called frass. You can prevent this by keeping gutters and crawl spaces free of debris and cellulose materials so that termites don’t use them as sources of food.

Symptom of Termite: Noise

What To Look For: Some species of termites, like the soldier termites, usually make loud noises while eating or while trying to sound alarm to warn others of impending danger. The soldier termites make a banging noise with their heads on the wood to serve as an alarm to alert others. So if you tap on a piece of wood where you suspect termites, and you hear a loud banging sound, then there is termite infestation in your home.

Slow Moving Scorpions…

Slow Moving Scorpions…

You may have noticed the weather dipping. It’s beautiful outside now, which can lead many to think that pests like scorpions and termites are done for the season. In fact, the opposite is true.

Scorpions and termites are simply seeking better shelter to keep them warm and fed during the chilly winter months. As they seek out the warm places to spend the winter, they’ll find their way into your home.

Let’s take a flashback to a blog we posted last winter on the topic of scorpions, and other pests, during winter…

When it is mild winter weather, so many pest populations stay active. Although there is a common myth that scorpions die off during the winter time, they don’t, they just hibernate. In fact, since scorpions hate cold weather, they often choose a time to hibernate in homes where they can stay warm throughout the wintertime. Here is what you need to be aware of about scorpion operation in the winter months.

Scorpions are very resilient insects, and just like a termite, they can survive the freezing weather and bark scorpions hibernate during the winter. While scorpions are creatures, naturally live in solitary, bark scorpions hibernate together in clusters of up to 30 scorpions.

Even though scorpions can survive cold temperatures, they don’t like the cold, so they hide in warm places in the winter. As the temperatures begin to decrease in the fall, scorpions search for warm dark places to hibernate. Many times, this indicates that they will make their way into your home during the winter months in order stay warm. Once they are inside, they will find any warm, dark crevice to hide. Scorpions only need an opening 1/16” wide to intrude into your home so that they can be found in crevices between baseboards and floors, behind furniture, layers of clothes and even in shoes.

You will likely start to notice scorpions’ activities in your home during winter as the days start to get a little bit warmer. It is common to see people requesting for scorpion control when the weather starts to heat up, and one of the widespread misconceptions is that scorpion season is approaching. Indeed, these scorpions found in your house were most likely hibernating in a dark, warm crevice all winter long. Sometimes, they aren’t noticed at all until the outside temperatures start to warm up, and scorpions come out of their hiding place.

To tackle scorpions’ scourge, prevention is one of the best processes you can embark upon to ensure winter control of scorpions. You start by making sure that all entry points are blocked off, and no space enough to accommodate the poisonous insect is left open. Scorpions can break into a home through the tiniest space, so it’s imperative to make sure that your home is sealed at utility entry points, pipes, and doors. A firm rule of thumb is that if you can see daylight into your home through an entry point, it probably needs to be replaced or repaired. For instance, changing old weather stripping on doors will help prevent scorpions from accessing your home. Another good step to take to avoid scorpion entry into your home is to make sure trees, shrubbery and foliage are trimmed away from your house, and not to overwater plants as scorpions thrive on water.

If you have taken the necessary steps to repair common entry points into your house, your home is adequately prepared to begin preventative scorpion treatment. A licensed pest control company can then come in to exterminate scorpions and focus on areas that are difficult to seal. A precautionary approach to winter scorpion control will set you up for success in wintertime. You don’t to let your guard down because it is wintertime, insects like a scorpion, termites are hiding somewhere in the dark and warm crevices, furniture present in your home.