What are wood-destroying insects?

Homeowners in Salisbury need to be proactive in guarding their homes against two types of wood-destroying insects; the subterranean termite and the powderpost beetle. 

Subterranean termites are the most widespread across the United States and are especially problematic in the southern regions. These termites have high moisture needs and prefer to feed on wet or decaying wood. Subterranean termites build their nests under the ground in areas of damp soil. 

Powderpost beetles are second to termites in the damage they can cause to wood. The female beetles lay their eggs on the surface or in the cracks in pieces of wood. When the larvae hatch, they will tunnel through and feed on the wood, causing damage to its structural integrity.

Are wood-destroying insects dangerous?

Wood-destroying insects are insects whose feeding or nesting habits cause damage to pieces of wood they infest. These insects aren't usually directly dangerous to people, but they are destructive and cause significant damage to our home's structure and wooden items inside, like flooring, trim, and furniture.

The damage that wood-destroying insects cause doesn't happen overnight, but over time, the damage these pests can do becomes significant, costly, and challenging to repair.

Why do I have a wood-destroying insect problem?

Wood-destroying insect damage can happen in any of our Salisbury homes. These pests can enter our homes on their own through minor defects they find in a home's exterior. Common entry points include:

  • Cracks in the foundation.
  • Pieces of wood that is in direct contact with the ground, like wooden shingles, porch steps, deck posts, and exterior trim.
  • Spaces around exterior lights.
  • Gaps around windows and doors.

These pests also move into our homes unnoticed by hitchhiking indoors. Wood-destroying insects can enter our homes in wood or wooden furniture we bring inside.

Once in your home, these pests work mainly out of sight, allowing them to cause significant damage before we ever notice their presence. Never underestimate the threat of wood-destroying insects, and never assume they won't find a way into your home!

Where will I find wood-destroying insects?

In our homes, powderpost beetles are most likely to invade and damage things made out of hardwood, like flooring, antique furniture, structural timbers, and wooden trim. Common powderpost beetle signs you are likely to discover if these pests are in your home include finding small holes in pieces of wood or a fine powder-like substance on pieces of wood or on the floor underneath the wood. 

We will most likely discover subterranean termites in the structural wood behind walls and under floors. These termites have high moisture needs and prefer water-damaged wood. Therefore wood near pipes, drains, windows, doors, and leaky roofs will most likely become infested by these termites. 

Both powderpost beetles and subterranean termites live their lives largely out of our sight. The best way to avoid issues with these pests is by scheduling regular pest control services. During regular visits, professional pest control experts can identify an infestation and provide treatment to minimize the damage these pests can cause.

How do I get rid of wood-destroying insects?

Getting rid of wood-destroying insects can be a time-consuming, frustrating, and difficult process. The most stress-free way to remove these destructive pests from your home is with the help of a local pest control expert. 

Here at Peeler Environmental, we will work closely with you to identify the pest problems in your home and provide effective services to target and remove these pests. Our quarterly pest control services offer the regular visits necessary to maintain a pest-free home. 

To learn more about powderpost beetle control and termite control or to receive a free estimate, reach out today!

How can I prevent wood-destroying insects in the future?

Use the following tips to help stop wood-destroying insects from feeling at home inside your Salisbury house.

  • Make sure to stain, paint, or otherwise treat the wood on or in your home.
  • Remove water-damaged wood from on or inside your home.
  • Get rid of fallen trees, tree stumps, and other decaying wood debris from your yard. 
  • Make sure any wood you bring into your home is adequately dried out.
  • Use dehumidifiers in your home to reduce excess moisture.
  • Inspect your home's exterior for gaps and cracks, and use a silicone caulk to seal any defects you discover. 

For more information about controlling wood-destroying insects, please call today.