How Dangerous Can Carpenter Ants In Covington, TN Be?
They are extremely intelligent, amazing builders, and are surprisingly fun to watch while they work. Of course, not all ants are kept as pets. Many exist in the wild and can sometimes be found inside homes causing problems. One ant species, in particular, is causing more trouble than most. What are they called? They’re called carpenter ants. Are they dangerous? Let’s find out.
Problems Carpenter Ants Cause
Carpenter ants are not as dangerous as they are destructive. Unlike other ants, carpenter ants are usually not in your home to scavenge for food. You might find one wandering about inside from time to time, but this is rare. Most often carpenter ants scavenge for food outside of the home. The only reason they are a threat is that they use wooden structures to build nests. Assuming your home is made primarily of wood, carpenter ants may choose your walls, floors, and supports as their new development project. This, over time, can cause some serious and sometimes irreparable damage to your home.
Carpenter ants do bite on occasion. Luckily, they are not venomous, and a nip from their fangs will cause no more pain than a pinprick. They do, however, spray formic acid into wounds as a defense mechanism upon contact. But again, this shouldn’t cause you too much pain.
Warning Signs Of Carpenter Ants
The good news is your home won’t fall in on itself before you notice carpenter ants. Of course, this isn’t how you would want to find them. You will likely know carpenter ants are around long before the damage they do becomes irreversible. Here are some ways you can spot these wood-destroying pests.
- Inspect the structural wood around your home. Is any of it water-damaged or rotting? Although this is not a direct sign of carpenter ants, it does show that your home is at risk.
- Check around wood for frass (wood shavings). This sawdust-like powder is expelled from tunnels by working carpenter ants and can sometimes be found sticking to walls.
- Listen to your walls. If carpenter ants have infested your home, you might be able to hear them rustling about.
- Tap on your walls and listen for hollow-sounding wood that should be hard.
- Keep an eye out for winged ants. These are better known as swarmer carpenter ants. These flying ants are both reproductives and scouts, tasked with finding and building new colonies.
- Also, keep your eye out for swarmer wings. Although finding insect wings isn’t a clear sign of carpenter ants, it can hint at a possible problem.
Prevention Steps To Keep Out Carpenter Ants
Now that you know how to spot carpenter ants and some problems they cause, you are probably wondering how you can keep them out of your home. Here are 6 prevention steps to start with.
- Start by making sure you do not have a problem. Follow the steps above to check for carpenter ants yourself, or let HTP Termite Pest Control, Inc, come out to do an inspection.
- Check the condition of your home’s wood. Make sure none of it is water-damaged or decaying. If any damaged wood is found, have it repaired or replaced.
- Make sure your gutters are properly channeling water away from your home and that no leaks or water build-up are negatively affecting the wood of your home.
- Clean your yard of natural debris, such as branches and leaf piles, and make sure firewood is stored at least 30 feet from the exterior of your home.
- Seal up gaps, cracks, and holes in your home’s exterior using a caulking gun, and repair or replace torn or ripped screening.
- Keep your home clean and store leftover foods inside sealed plastic containers.
What To Do If You Find Carpenter Ants
If you find signs of a carpenter ant infestation, you are not out of luck. Here at HTP Termite Pest Control, Inc, we offer extensive and effective treatments for carpenter ant infestations. With just a single visit from one of our highly trained pest control technicians, we will have your home well on it’s way to being carpenter ant-free.
Give us a call today to schedule top-of-the-line pest control services. We would be happy to find your pest solution.