Termites impact 600K US homes yearly, costing $5B in damage and treatment. Large colonies can eat a pound of wood monthly. Unfortunately, since termites remain hidden while attacking a home, significant termite damage may already exist by the time signs of an infestation are observed, resulting in severe and costly damage.

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Do you know that?

Subterranean termites can damage your home throughout the year, but their activity may go unnoticed until swarming season in the spring or summer when the weather starts to warm up.

Wood-destroying insects do exactly that—destroy wood. 

Termites are the most notorious intruders, causing roughly $5 billion in home damage every year in the U.S., according to the National Pest Management Association. But other invaders can cause a lot of damage, too: Carpenter ants burrow deep into wood, causing structural damage; powderpost beetles, meanwhile, lay eggs on top of wood or just below the surface, with the larvae feeding on the wood once they hatch.  

A small infestation can turn into a major problem. Consider that a termite queen can produce more than 1 million offspring in a lifetime and is capable of laying an egg every second. Colonies, once established, never stop feeding or growing. Such damage can be devastating over time—so call us to get a free inspection today! 

What wood-destroying insects are common in Chicago?

Termites are the most-well known, but others can cause significant damage, too. In Chicago, you can find: 

  • Carpenter ants 
  • Powderpost beetles 
  • Wood borers 
  • Carpenter bees 

Are wood-destroying insects dangerous?

They aren’t dangerous to humans but can cause tremendous damage to the structures that we live in. Termite damage usually takes months or years to develop to the point where a homeowner or business owner would notice. 

Homeowner’s insurance typically doesn’t cover these costs either. It’s crucial, then, to commit to regular inspections for wood-destroying insects. Learn more about our programs today! 

What causes a wood-destroying insect problem?

As with most intruders, wood-destroying insects are looking for food and places to nest. With termites, for instance, they will eventually move inside a home when foraging for food. 

They typically enter through cracks in the foundation, walls or through pieces of wood that make contact with soil. They also typically get in through vulnerable wood in door frames or porch steps. Termites only need 1/16 of an inch to pass through a foundation and get to wood. Once inside, they’ll return every day to feed. 

Where do I find wood-destroying insects?

It depends on the type of insect. Subterranean termites, for instance, need moisture to survive. So they prefer wood that’s in dark, damp areas such as fallen trees, woodpiles, logs or areas of a home that don’t often get sunlight. They typically enter structures at the ground level, traveling upward over time. 

The areas in the home that are most susceptible are wood that is near pipes, windows, doors and air conditioners. Some signs of termites include: 

  • Blistered paint 
  • Sagging ceilings or floors 
  • Spongy floors 
  • Windows and doors that don’t properly open or close 

How do I get rid of wood-destroying insects?

Wood-destroying insects can cause thousands and thousands of dollars in damage. As such, it’s highly recommended that professionals treat any such problem. It’s critical to stop the problem as soon as possible since infestation can spread quickly. Remember—a termite queen can lay a new egg every second! 

However, there are steps people can take to help reduce the chance of getting termites in the first place: 

  • Keep mulch away from the foundation, leaving at least a 12-inch barrier between mulch and the foundation 
  • Ensure water isn’t collecting in the basement or in crawl spaces. Fix any leaks you see
  • Doors and windows should be weatherproofed to help prevent moisture from getting into your walls 
  • Use dehumidifiers to reduce moisture in your house 
  • Remove wood debris from your yard

Regular termite inspections are the best way to protect a home. Get a free quote today! 

How can Pest Guru solve my wood-destroying insect problem?

Our trained specialists know exactly what to look for when examining potential wood-destroying insect damage. While we can’t do termite treatments, we can inspect for termites when it comes to people looking to refinance, buy and/or sell a property.

However, our specialists can treat other wood-destroying insects, such as carpenter ants and carpenter bees. Call us to get a free inspection today! 


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