One of the biggest dangers that Alabama homeowners need to watch out for is termite damage. Termites cost Americans more than $5 billion every year, and they can cause major problems both on the inside and the outside of the property. The last thing that any homeowner wants is to end up with widespread damage from termites, which could cost tens of thousands of dollars to repair. So, the earlier you identify the possibility of termite damage, the better.
If you hired a pest control company to prevent and to get rid of termites in your house but you are still seeing signs of termite damage, you might have a claim, and you need to act quickly and contact someone who will fight for you. For a free consultation and case evaluation with an experienced termite litigation attorney, contact Hedge Copeland, P.C. today by calling (251) 432-8844 or sending us an online message. We are ready to go to work for you.
Warning Signs that your Home may have Termite Damage
There are several signs that you might have termites in your home, here are some of the most common:
Groups of Winged Insects or Discarded Wings
One of the most obvious signs of the likelihood of termite damage is the actual sighting of termites, or the evidence of their presence. You will usually notice groups of “winged termite swarmers” flying around in the late afternoon or evening and congregating by the dozens or hundreds near light sources. These are reproductive termites that are taking flight to form new colonies. Subterranean termites usually swarm during the spring, while drywood termites are not as predictable. Even if you do not see the termites swarming, you might notice groups of discarded termite wings, which is a tell-tale sign that there are colonies forming nearby.
After eating through the wood inside a home, drywood termites produce droppings that are known as frass. Frass looks similar to wood pellets or birdseed, and when termites are present, piles of it can accumulate in various areas of the home.
One of the main reasons that termites have the potential to inflict widespread damage in a home before the homeowner realizes it is because they prefer dark, humid environments such as the interior areas of the wood. Typically, you will not observe them feeding on the wood’s surface, so the surface may appear to be in good condition. The best way to find out if there might be termites munching on the wood from the inside out is to tap on the surfaces and listen for a hollow sound. If there is no termite damage, you should hear and feel a solid sound, but wood that is damaged on the inside will sound hollow, and the hollower it sounds, the greater the extent of the damage.
Subterranean termites that are building their colonies construct mud tubes that allow them to move from the ground into the home. These tubes are narrow tunnels that retain moisture while the termites search for food. You might notice abnormal mud or dirt buildups in corners and joints between various surfaces, which may be a sign of subterranean termites.
Small Holes, Softened, Bubbled or Cracked Paint on Walls and Windows
Termites can enter the home through even the tiniest openings. So, if you notice small holes, bubbling, softened, cracked or flaking paint on the windows, walls, and/or baseboards, this could be a sign of termite infestation. These signs are often mistaken for minor water damage and dismissed, so be sure to pay close attention and look for other signs of termite damage if you see any of these things happening.
Exterior Wood Damage
Any exterior wood that appears to have problems on the surface could be an attractive entry point particularly for subterranean termites. These types of termites are drawn especially to wood that has moisture damage, so be on the lookout for bare, exposed, or rotted exterior wood. Pay close attention to any areas of wood to ground contact.
What to Do if Your Home has Termite Damage
If you have noticed any signs of termite damage in your home, the first and immediate step is to get a professional termite inspection. Be careful, however, because termite fraud is rampant in the industry, and even some of the best-known pest control companies have been successfully sued and forced to pay significant damages to homeowners that they have defrauded.
If you are currently dealing with a pest control company that has not fulfilled their obligation to help you eliminate termites, contact Hedge Copeland, P.C. today to discuss your legal rights and options. We look forward to serving you!