September 18, 2018
Carpenter ants have the ability to do damage right under your nose and without you even noticing. Don't underestimate them because of their size! These small insects can do some major damage. In fact, they’ve been known to compromise the structural integrity of homes, making them unsafe to live in. The damages done by carpenter ants is comparable to the damages done by termites. However, unlike termites, carpenter ants don’t feed on the wood. Instead, they bore holes in the wood and create their tunnels and galleries inside. Even though they don’t feed on the wood, their tunnel-making behavior can still weaken wood of homes. Bowing floors and sagging ceilings and walls are often the products of a carpenter ant infestation that has remained untreated for too long.
You may think that seeing one or two ants inside your home is nothing to worry about, but that’s not the case. Carpenter ants will send out a “scout” to search the premise and deem whether it's fit to inhabit or not. If the scouts give the go-ahead, the colony will arrive soon after. A colony of carpenter ants can contain hundreds and even thousands of members. These ants do not only have a nest where the queen lives, but also have satellite nests both indoors and out which allows them to cover large areas. Once they've created their nests inside your home, it can become extremely difficult to find and eliminate all the ants, not to mention frustrating! When it comes to avoiding carpenter ant infestations, prevention is key! Here are a few prevention tips:
- Eliminate any sources of water or moisture around your property.
- Keep tree branches and shrubs trimmed back away from the exterior of your home.
- Seal any cracks or openings in your foundation that could function as entry points.
- Replace any torn or damaged screens.
- Store firewood a distance from your home.
- Store all food in your refrigerator or in airtight containers.
- Take out your trash regularly and clean up any food or drink spills as they happen.
- Use dehumidifiers in your home to reduce excess moisture.
- Replace any damaged wood in your home
When trying to determine whether you are dealing with a carpenter ant infestation in your home, there are a few signs you can be on the lookout for. The easiest way to identify an infestation is seeing the worker ants foraging for food around your home. These pests are typically found in the areas with easy access to food and water sources. If you have a carpenter ant infestation, you may also see wood shavings called “frass” that they’ve left behind or notice faint chewing noises coming from behind the walls that they’ve infested. Another common sign is seeing winged ants in and around your home. These winged ants are mating ants. If you notice any of these signs, it is likely that you are dealing with a carpenter ant infestation.
If you’ve noticed ants in your home or any of the signs mentioned above, it’s time to contact your local pest control company! If the ants infesting your home are carpenter ants, eliminating them is not something to put off! At Pine State Pest Solutions, we can help identify the type of ant you’re dealing with and eliminate them as soon as possible. Our professionals can also help prevent ant problems before they start. At Pine State Pest Solutions, we will inspect your home, identify the pest you’re dealing with, develop a plan to meet your specific needs, treat for that pests, and monitor your home afterward. Contact us today to determine which of our pest solution plans is best suited for you! If at any point in between services you see a pest in your home that’s covered under our plan, we’ll come back and treat again for free! If you live in southern Maine, contact us today to get started.