Why Do I Have Drywood Termites In My Home?

There are few household pests as frustrating as the drywood termite. These wood eaters aren't content to stay inside the walls of your home--not that you want them in your walls either. They can also feed on furniture, baseboards, banisters, crown molding, and important keepsakes inside your home. If you have antique wooden furniture or valuable heirlooms that are made of wood, this is not a pest to have in your Hawaii home. So, here is a short list of reasons people get drywood termites, and what you can do to get rid of them if they ever appear. 

Reason You Have Drywood Termites 

  • You have gaps in your defenses. When drywood termites come to feed on your home, they come as winged alates. These winged reproductives--that will one day be the kings and queens of their own colony--do not feed on wood. In fact, they are incapable of eating wood. So, they don't land on your window sills and chew their way in. They have to find an entry point. This can be a gap, tear, or hole in a screen, which lends access to a window frame or wall void. It may be a gap around pipes that enter a foundation wall. It could be tiny holes in a roofline. There are many ways for swarmers to get in. It can help to seal gaps and make sure all your screens are in good condition, but at the end of the day, these insects can find holes you don't know exist.

  • You have contruction materials near your home. Before drywood termites get into a home, they may establish themselves in nearby wood. While subterranean termites love rotting wood, and will quickly infest an old stump, drywood termites will look for hardwood. Construction materials offer the perfect place for drywood termites to make a nest near your home. If those materials stay in your yard long enough, it can help these termites establish themselves in your home.

  • Outside furniture. If you have hardwood furniture on a deck or outside area, these could be a staging location for drywood termites. 

Signs Of Drywood Termites 

  • Tiny holes: When drywood termites infest window and door frames, baseboards, furniture, banisters, cabinets, picture frames, and other hardwood objects inside a home, you may see tiny holes develop. These are kick-out holes. Drywood termites use them to push their droppings out.

  • Frass: Often mistaken for sawdust, frass is the droppings left by drywood termites. These are tiny, hard pellets that are about the size of a grain of pepper. As a nest grows, the amount of frass grows with it. When frass is kicked out into well-lit areas, it is quite noticeable.

  • Swarmer termites: Usually mistaken for an impending termite infestation, the appearance of swarmers is actually a warning sign that there is already a mature nest present in the structure. Using a vacuum to suck these winged termites up--especially when you find them inside your home--will do nothing to arrest a termite infestation. When termite swarmers of any species appear on your property it is time to call a certified professional. Be aware that swarms do not last long. Sometimes the only sign you'll get that termites have swarmed will be the appearance of tiny wings on your window ledges and along baseboards. 

What To Do About Drywood Termites 

If you live in our Hawaii service area, let the experts here at Sandwich Isle Pest Solutions help. Our QualityPro-Certified team is one of the best in the industry. Through ongoing inspections and appropriate treatments, drywood termites can be identified and controlled before they do damage. We use a process called S.T.A.R (survey, target, analyze, and report) to ensure your home is protected from the destructive influence of these wood-eating pests. 

For a current infestation, we have many cutting-edge options for complete control. One of the most powerful tools in our arsenal is fumigation. Fumigation can be performed on everything from a large warehouse down to a single piece of furniture. It is a versatile method that works to destroy drywood termites in all stages of development and is able to get into hard-to-reach areas within a structure. 

Reach out to us today for immediate assistance for all of Hawaii's pest problems.