Date Posted: February 3, 2021
Signs Of Infestation
- Ant Activity – One major sign you could have a carpenter ant problem is if you actually see them. These ants don’t hide in their nests; they often travel significant distances to forage for food. The mere presence of workers doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve got an infestation, but it definitely means you should start looking for other signs.
- Wood Shavings – Like termites, carpenter ants bore tunnels through their nests both to open passageways for travel and to create exits that they use to push unwanted material out of their homes (kickout holes). If you see frass (insect-made sawdust) underneath kickout holes, it could be a sign you have carpenter ants. Since carpenter ants don’t actually eat wood, they just chew it up and push it out of their nests, you can expect a pretty significant amount of frass around the kickout holes.
- Winged Ants – Flying ants may start to appear both inside and outside of your house. These winged ants are reproductive males and females sent out from a mature colony with the express purpose of founding satellite nests. The presence of these ants means you’ve had an infestation for a while, and significant damage to your property may already have occurred.
- Noisy Walls – Since these ants spend a lot of time on woodwork, you may actually hear the sounds of their carpentry activity. It will sound like soft rustling or scratching emanating from inside your walls.
- Damaged Wood – A severe and prolonged infestation of carpenter ants will eventually lead to serious wood damage, such as weakened or warped door frames and support beams. These could lead to windows and doors sticking or no longer shutting, bucked walls, sagging ceilings, etc. If you see this kind of damage, it’s likely you’ve had an infestation for years.
Tips For Prevention
- Make sure leaks, plumbing issues, and other moisture problems are taken care of to avoid having moist wood that attracts ants.
- Keep stored wood, like lumber or firewood, away from your exterior walls and elevated off the ground to prevent outdoor nests from morphing into indoor nests.
- Ensure there are no branches or limbs touching your house.
- Make sure cracks and holes in your home’s foundation, walls, and frames around windows and doorways are well-sealed.