When you become a homeowner, it appears that everything is under control. While this may be a wonderful experience, many homeowners have ongoing battles with pests. Home invaders and pests, such as ants, termites, flies, and rodents, come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
Fortunately, there are many products available today, such as insect repellents, that may assist you in treating the problem before it becomes out of control.
However, if you have observed bugs about your property, wood waste, or strange sights, you may be dealing with carpenter ants or termites.
What Termites and Carpenter Ants Have in Common?
Carpenter ants and termites both like wood structures and may cause significant damage to your house or business.
Each year, millions of dollars are spent to manage and restore the damage caused by these little pests. Carpenter ants and termites like damaged and softwood, with a strong predilection for water-affected wood.
However, there are numerous distinctions between these two pests, and we will learn how to identify them differently and so effectively get rid of them.
Carpenter Ants vs Termites: Differences
While these bugs are something to be concerned about if you encounter them in the house, it is vital to understand the distinctions that define them.
This will guarantee that you pick the finest available methods to get rid of them as soon as possible before significant damage is done.
Although there are no visible distinctions between carpenter ants and termites to the untrained eye, there are several that will tell you what you are dealing with and how to treat it:
- Body shape – While both termites and carpenter ants have larger heads to eat through the wood, termites' bodies lack a distinct waist. Carpenter ants, on the other hand, have a well-defined abdomen and body.
- Wings - It may come as a surprise that both carpenter ants and termites have wings, yet this characteristic may be extremely useful in distinguishing them. Termites often have larger, smoky-colored wings that are highly brittle and break off from time to time.
Carpenter ants have wings as well, but they are smaller and do not protrude from the body.
- Antennae – While both bugs, like most of them, have antennas, there is still another distinction between them.
If you look attentively, you should be able to see that the carpenter ant has antennas that are bent at an angle, whereas termites antennae are long, straight, and beaded.
It is usually a good idea to catch one specimen and bring it to a specialist for evaluation. However, if you follow our recommendations and have patience, you will be able to identify the perpetrator on your own.
Distinctions in Behavior
Aside from their appearance, carpenter ants and termites exhibit distinct behaviors that might aid in identification.
- Preferences for wood - Carpenter ants and termites both like wet, damaged wood. However, because termites like to avoid direct sunlight, they prefer to build their nests in dark, damp locations such as attics.
Carpenter ants, on the other hand, generally start their house infestation near windows and doors and work their way in.
- Nesting - Termites are tenacious yet weak, so they avoid sunshine and create underground nests. Carpenter ants make their nests on the ground, in tree trunks, and other rotten wood.
- Dietary habits - Unlike termites, carpenter ants do not consume wood. To create the nest, they must dig it out and dispose of it. This can be a significant distinction since carpenter ants leave tiny mounds of sawdust-like wood.
Termites consume wood and frequently leave no trace of their existence until it is too late.
This is why it is a good idea to use pest repellents to safeguard your house before a larger problem arises.
- Tunnels - Termites blend the dirt into the walls of their tunnels, whereas carpenter ants construct flawless, smooth tunnels.
This is one of the most noticeable changes, and if you find mud tubes, you know you have a termite infestation.
Flying Carpenter Ants vs Termites Swarmers
Once the colony of carpenter ants and termites has grown large enough, some specimens with wings called swarmers will be sent out to locate a new spot and establish a new colony.
Both insects often reproduce and develop swarmers in the spring, however, unlike winged termites, which only travel at night, carpenter ants with wings can be seen during the day.
What Are the Signs of Termite Damage or Carpenter Ant Damage Inside?
Although both pests can cause significant damage before you detect them, there are a few things to look out for in carpenter ant vs termite damage:
- Wood that has been damaged;
- Paint that is bubbling or uneven on the walls and ceiling;
- Wood pellets and sawdust;
- Insect wings and other body parts;
- Mud tubes;
How to Get Rid of Termites & Carpenter Ants?
We can tackle the problem and try to fix it now that we know how to distinguish between termites and carpenter ants. It is vital to remember that occasionally you will need professional help, but there are certain home treatments you may try first.
Prevent the Issue
Prevention is frequently the best answer, and because carpenter ant and termite infestations may go undetected for lengthy periods, the best thing you can do is invest in smart home pest repellant solutions.
The Ultrasonic Pest Repeller is a fantastic device that is safe for humans and pets while effectively and quickly eliminating pests, rodents, and bugs.
Toxic Bait Technique
When you can see the damage in your house and know exactly what you are dealing with, this is one of the most common remedies. There are several termite and carpenter ant bait traps available that will limit the number of insects or totally destroy the colony.
The hazardous bait is placed in areas where the nest is suspected, and worker bugs will discover it and carry it back to the colony.
Because these poisons are designed to be delayed acting, they will kill not just the worker ants and termites, but also the whole population.
Keep your pets away from the poison, and preferably, install a box with smaller holes over the trap. This allows the bugs to enter and transport the poison to the nest while your pets remain protected.
Destruction of the Nest
If the infestation is large enough that you have seen not just the damage to your wood and home, but also where the nest is, you might try to destroy it.
Nests are frequently well hidden, and finding them might take months. However, after you have done so, there are various powders on the market that you may utilize.
These powders will destroy the entire colony and all of the insects, perhaps ridding you of the infestation.
Contact Pest Control Professional
If you have tried everything else and the insects are still in your house, the best answer is to hire expert exterminators. These experienced specialists will assist you in controlling the damage, eliminating any insects, and advising you on future actions to avoid the problem from recurring.
Prevent Carpenter Ants and Termites from Returning
Once you have gotten rid of the termite or carpenter ant infestation, think about all the precautions you can take to keep it from happening again. This might include:
- Replacing all structural beams and damaged wood
Because you never know if the insect population is entirely eradicated, all damaged wood must be replaced. In addition to pest control, this will guarantee the structural safety of your property.
- Clean all surfaces
Make sure the house, especially the flooring, is clean. This is significant because insects such as these require food sources to thrive. By cleaning surfaces daily you make your house less appealing to intruders.
- Dry any wet spots
Termites and carpenter ants love damp wood and aeries, so make sure your home's wood is dry and there are no concealed beams that attract more moisture and bugs.
- Clean the area around the house
Carpenter ants and termites typically enter your home from the surrounding regions and build new nests. This is one of the reasons why you should maintain your garden neat and clean.
- Use insect repellents
Once your house is clean and bug-free, use high-quality ultrasonic pest repellers to keep it that way. This will assist you in getting rid of pests such as flies, mosquitoes, and even rodents.
To summarize, there are several little risks to your house that, if left untreated, can grow into major issues. There can never be too much prevention when it comes to harmful insects that feed on the construction timber used in homes.
Always keep an eye out for any patterns in insect movement and take note if there are a lot of bugs in the same location.
Because carpenter ants and termites are both silent house killers, it might take years to discover and eradicate a colony. This is why prevention is essential, and the best option is to install a pest repellent.
You can be confident that your home and property are protected from undesirable visitors such as bugs and rodents, while your children and pets are completely safe.