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Termite Control: Signs It is Time to Call a Termite Exterminator

Termites are wood devouring insects that do their work covertly, quickly, and insidiously. In fact, many homeowners are unaware that they have a termite problem until a pest exterminator uncovers the situation. However, there are also some signs of termite damage that you can notice on your own, as long as you vigilantly inspect your home for the presence of the critters.

If you notice any of the signs below in your home or building, call Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions right away at (314) 732-1413. The sooner termite control is performed, the less termite damage the structure will incur, and the less money you will spend on restoring its condition.

Soft Wood That Should be Firm
Termites create tunnels through wood that are comprised of mud, termite feces, and saliva. Because the insects don’t chew through the outer layer of wood and reveal their tunnels, termite infested wood is often discovered by chance, such as when someone is cleaning the baseboards in his home and finds soft places in the wood, where it has lost its original strength. Poking a hole in the softened wood may even reveal termites traveling through their tunnels.

Buckling Paint on Wood and Drywall Surfaces
Sometimes, you don’t even have to press on wood to see if it has been softened by termite activity. Instead, you can observe that activity is present by noticing buckling paint on wood surfaces. When termites thoroughly devour a piece of wood, the pulp of the wood is almost completely chewed away, leaving little more than a coating behind.

The same phenomenon is likely to affect other wood areas in the structure, unless termite control is performed thoroughly and expeditiously by an experienced pest exterminator.

Visible Mud Tunnels in Various Places
Although termites are known to swarm to new locations during the day — particularly after it has rained and the weather is warm — they prefer their living environment to be dark. This is why they construct mud tunnels to travel through, as they move to different places in a home or building. Visible mud tunnels on exterior surfaces — particularly surfaces comprised of wood — is often one of the first indicators that an experienced exterminator should perform termite control.

Contact Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions
A termite infestation can do more than damage the aesthetics of your home or building. If the infestation is left unchecked, it could eventually compromise the structural integrity of the structure, as termites continue to look for new sources of wood to devour. To prevent this from happening to your home or building, Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions will perform termite control, eliminating the termite colony and proposing solutions to prevent it from reforming.

Termites can work fast. So, now is the time to address their presence. If you think that you may have termites in your home or building, call us today at (314) 732-1413, or refer email us at info@holperspest.com. We look forward to helping you keep your residence or building free of termites and other troublesome pests that can ruin your piece of mind, and your property, too.

Get Rid of Termites | St. Louis Termite Control

When Should You Use a Termite Control Professional?

“Why do I need a pest control professional to come to my house to get rid of termites? Can’t I just do it myself?” Given the number of termite control options available at your local hardware or home improvement store, this is a pretty fair question. For the DIY inclined homeowner especially it is tempting to get rid of termites yourself. But there are some things to consider before jumping in to the task.

Unlike a mole problem, which we believe you might be able to eradicate yourself if you’re up to the challenge, it is a bit more complicated to get rid of termites. Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions is your St. Louis termite control expert, and as a trusted adviser to the St. Louis community, we want to make sure you don’t waste your time and money on ineffective solutions.

Get Rid of Termites | St. Louis Termite Control

Treating the Source

One of the most common problems people experience when they try to get rid of termites themselves is that they buy chemicals and bait stations that just treat the problem, not the source. Many homeowners end up just moving termite colonies instead of eliminating them altogether.

A termite control company will be more effective in treating the source instead of just spraying the problem and moving it around or at best disabling it temporarily. However you should also ensure your St. Louis termite control company is honest – this isn’t always a quick fix and it requires monitoring even after the original termite treatment.

Unique Skills to Get Rid of Termites

It takes special skills and knowledge to get rid of termites. First of all, you need extensive knowledge of building construction concepts in order to identify critical areas where termites are likely colonizing and entering your home. Often times these points of entry are hidden or difficult to access. Your local pest control company should know right where to look and willing to crawl into tight spaces that you might be less comfortable with.

Additionally, effective termite control often utilizes specialized equipment such as masonry drills, pumps, large-capacity tanks, and soil treatment rods. Your local termite control professional should have access to tools that you might not otherwise have access to, or want to invest in, just to get rid of termites. These extra tools are often hidden costs to DIY solutions.

Chemicals for Termites

Treating a whole home is different than treating a single space isolated from vulnerable structures. A typical home termite treatment may involve hundreds of gallons of a liquid pesticide (called termiticide) injected into the ground alongside the foundation, beneath concrete slabs, and within foundation walls. Buying that much chemical is expensive over-the-counter, but your local termite control professional should be able to purchase it in bulk discounts. Also consider the hidden costs of equipment required to apply the termite treatment that you might purchase or create yourself.

When You Should Get Rid of Termites Yourself

Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions is a locally owned pest control company. Founded and still operated by Jeff Holper, this family business knows a thing or two about the DIY movement and entrepreneurship. In fact, we absolutely love how hard working, creative, and resourceful our fellow St. Louisians are. We certainly don’t want to discourage that.

One rule of thumb we use when considering whether to get rid of termites yourself or with a termite control partner like us is – if your home is infested, use a pest management company. If something like just your mailbox, sandbox, or other small wooden object not attached to the house is infested, a smaller scale treatment that you can get over the counter may suffice.

If you want to get rid of termites yourself, feel free to call us and talk with us anyway. Ask us your questions and bounce your ideas off of us. We’d be honored to help you in your pursuit to protect your home. If you do have a termites problem but aren’t comfortable with a DIY solution, give us a call too. We’d be honored to partner with you as you seek to get rid of termites and protect your home!

St. Louis Termite Control

Five Ways to Tell if You Have Termites

Did you know termites are a bigger threat to Missouri homeowners than fire, flood, and storm damage? Even though we hear more about these unfortunate events in the news than we do termites, it’s the tiny pests that do the real damage. In fact the National Pest Management Association, to which we belong, estimates that termites cost American homeowners $5 billion in damage each year!

Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions has been a St. Louis pest control expert for nearly three decades. We’ve experienced firsthand, over and over, the type of damage termites can do to your home. The good news is that you don’t have to live in fear of termites. You just have to know a little bit about termite control and how to spot them, treat them, and keep them away.

Termites are most active in spring as termite swarms gather for reproduction and new colony formation. But the reality is termites are active year round in one form or another. They just happen to be spotted by humans more frequently in the spring. An important aspect of effective termite control is to know how to spot termites even when they aren’t swarming.

St. Louis Termite Control

Mud Tubes on Exterior Walls

Termites mostly travel in tunnels made of mud as they search for food. You’ll typically find termite tunnels on top of brick, concrete, or other hard surfaces (like your foundation). If you spot even one mud termite tunnel on the outside of your home you have termites and should immediately consider investing in termite control.

Hollow Wood

Termites eat wood 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The problem is they don’t eat in plain sight. Termites prefer dark and humid environments so they typically eat wood from the inside out. Hollow logs around your lawn are one thing, but also look for soft or hollow sounding wood in your walls and door frames. Cracked or bubbling paint might also reveal the tip of an iceberg. In our experience with St. Louis termite control we’ve seen the harsh realities of undetected termite activity that had been going on for years.

Frass and Sawdust

Drywood termites especially produce wood-colored droppings called frass. If termites are present in your home you might spot trails of frass or sawdust left behind by a hungry colony of termites. Frass is often encountered in small piles and it looks like tiny wood pellets or salt and pepper colored sawdust.

Discarded Wings

Termite swarms generally go about 600-900 feet from their original nest. They don’t get very far before their wings fall off – which you’ll find often en masse near windows, doors, or light fixtures. Windowsills are an especially common place to find discarded wings.

Cracked Entry Points

You’re more likely to have termites if your home is an attractive environment for them. Termites enter your home through wood-to-ground contact such as doorframes, deck posts, and porch steps. They also exploit cracks in your foundation or in brick mortar. Finally, they prefer moisture. So the more moisture you have close to your home – the more likely they’ll be nearby. Watch for water pooling around your gutters and structure.

St. Louis Termite Control

Termites are tricky business. They’re hard to spot and homeowners often discover them before it is too late. Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions is the St. Louis termite control expert and would be honored to partner with you in termite control. We have tremendous local knowledge, award-winning customer service, and a passion for enabling peace of mind in your home through effective pest control. Call your Holper’s St. Louis termite control expert today and let us partner with you in your battle against termites!

Termites Spring Into Action

Monday is the St. Louis Cardinals home opener and the arrival of baseball is once again bringing the city back to life after a cold winter. Cardinal Nation is filling the streets to enjoy Opening Day – but they aren’t the only ones coming out of the woodwork to celebrate spring. Termites have spring fever, too.

Spring into action before termites take a bite out of your home - and wallet.While you’re headed outside to enjoy the St. Louis spring, termites are headed inside. The warm weather stimulates termite activity and the formation of termite swarms. Termite swarms are an endeavor of reproductive members to find a mate and a new colony. That new colony might just end up in or around your home, which means you need to be thinking about termite control as much as you’re thinking about how the Cardinals rotation will fare this year.

The High Cost of Termite Damage

Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions has been a St. Louis termite control expert for decades, and we’ve seen our fair share of termite damage. The National Pest Management Association, to which we belong, estimates that termite damage costs Americans over $5 billion each year. Because they eat wood 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, termite damage can accumulate quickly. What most homeowners don’t realize is that termite damage isn’t always covered by insurance and out of pocket costs can run into the thousands for just one home. You should spring into action before termites take a bite out of your home – and your wallet.

How to Identify an Infestation

There are a lot of ways to identify termites and we strongly recommend researching termite control strategies to protect your home. As your St. Louis termite control expert, we have plenty of information to help you in that regard. But what is most important right now is watching for termite swarms.

Termites are most visible in spring, which means this is your best opportunity to spot the subterranean creatures short of a termite inspection. Even if you don’t spot a termite swarm you may find groups of discarded wings – evidence that a swarm was there before. Upon identification of termite swarms you should immediately consult with a local termite control expert.

What to Do About Termites

If you suspect termite activity around your home, we strongly recommend contacting a local termite control expert who can conduct a quality termite inspection. Because termites mostly cause their damage out of plain sight, termite control requires expert eyes and experience.

A termite inspection is important to effective termite control because it informs strategy for effectively removing termites and ensuring they don’t come back. A good termite inspection will provide you with answers about why termites have invaded your home, what kind of damage they’ve caused, and what the most reasonable termite treatment is specifically for your home.

Holper’s Pest & Animal Solutions would be honored to assist you with a termite inspection and treatment for your home. Contact us today, obligation free, and spring into action before termites spring into your home.

Happy spring, go Cardinals, and go away termites!