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How Do Termites Get Into Your House?

Knowing what attracts termites to your home is the best way to prevent another invasion, if you’ve discovered a termite infestation on your property. So, how do termites get into your house? Let’s find out.

Termite Identification

While there are various termite species globally, only four types of termites are known to invade U.S. homes.

Subterranean termites

Drywood termites

Dampwood termites

Formosan termites


1/8 inch, a narrow body, and creamy-white

.05 to 1 inch, slim, and creamy-white

½ to ? inch, thin and light brown

½ inch, tapered head, slender body, and creamy-white


This species is the most common invader in North America. Also, they tend to live in colonies

Thrives in warm temperatures, so often found in coastal states.

Commonly found in Southern Florida and the Pacific Coast.

Also, they live in damp wood, usually close to a water source.

Tend to live in huge underground colonies. Primarily found in Southernmost counties.


  • Most active in the spring season
  • Builds mud tubes for shelter and to access food
  • Can form colonies of up to 2500 termites
  • Do not have worker termites
  • Often feed on house wood and furniture
  • Gets into your house through damp wood
  • Builds mud tubes for preserving moisture
  • Fecal pellets are the earliest sign of infestation
  • Most aggressive species
  • Swarmers are the most obvious sign of infestation(around trees and poles)
  • Can feed up to 31g daily

How Do Termites Get Into Your House?

So, how do termites get into your house? Before we answer this, it’s crucial to understand what these pests eat. Termites eat cellulose, a compound present in wooden structures and plants.

Subterranean termites prefer softwood, while drywood termites, like their name suggests, feed on dry wood. There are specific conditions that attract termites to your property.

  • Damaged roof tiles allow moisture to form. It’s best to fix tiles immediately to avoid termites from entering.
  • Cardboard boxes are another excellent food source. Consider replacing them with metal storage items.
  • Furniture – Consider using termite-resistant polish and keeping furniture dry.
  • Kitchen – There are plenty of wood structures in the kitchen. So, keep the area dry. Plus, keep windows closed during termite swarming season.

Subterranean termites enter your home by creating mud tubes and using ground-level entry points such as door frames and porch steps. They may also take advantage of foundation cracks and concrete blocks to enter.

Drywood termites move in when flying termites spot a nesting site. They aren’t picky and can inhabit any flooring type. Afterward, they will start laying their eggs to create a termite colony. If they go undetected, the colonies will grow to a colossal size capable of causing extensive damage to your home.

Signs of a Termite Infestation

Not sure whether you’ve got termites living in your property? Well, here are some obvious signs of termite infestations.

  • Termite swarmers are often the earliest sign of termite activity. Not to be confused with flying ants, termite swarmers have equal-length wings.
  • In comparison, ant swarmers have longer front wings. Furthermore, the weather influences the type of swarmers. For instance, drywood termites swarm after a rainy season.
  • Wings – Termites tend to remove their wings when they find a mate. Look out for wings on window sills or the porch.
  • Mud tubes
  • Sawdust-like fecal droppings
  • Hollow wood
  • Chewing noses

Termite Prevention and Control

Here are a few termite prevention tips.

  • Getting rid of moisture inside your home or around your property
  • Storing firewood about 20 feet away from your home
  • Fixing any broken pipes and faucets
  • Seeking regular termite inspections

Two types of termite control applications exist pre-construction and post-construction. As for the former, these treatments tend to consist of termiticides applied in two phases. Post-construction termite control, is often used in older properties. These control strategies include baits and insecticides.

Are You Worried About a Termite Infestation?

Termites are a property owner’s worst nightmare. Following the listed prevention measures can save you thousands of dollars for repairs. If you discover termite activity, the best move is to call McDonald Pest Control.

We offer a wide range of termite treatment services, including drywood and termiticide services. Don’t wait for these pests to ruin your home. Call us to schedule regular inspections for a termite-free home.