Occasionally mistaken for termites, carpenter ants are troublesome pests that can cause just as much damage. Texas' year-round warm climate means you'll be dealing with them every year. Their nests could cost you thousands in repairs! Your best weapon in the fight against carpenter ants is knowledge. Protect your home from carpenter ants by using this quick reference guide. Spotting Signs Of Carpenter Ants In Your Home
Carpenter ants are about 1/4 to 3/4 of an inch long, with an oval-shaped segmented body. They look similar to most other ants. Typically, they are red or black; sometimes, they might be a mix of these two colors. When they fly, take note of their wings – one pair of wings is larger than the other. Unlike termites, they do not have a pinched waist, and their antennae are bent.
Most damage to wooden structures occurs because of carpenter ant nests. However, any wood can house their nests, such as fence posts, stumps, firewood piles, wood furniture, and other wooden structures on your property. They are useful for breaking down decomposing wood, but you don't want them nesting in your home or on your property.
When you find a carpenter ant nest, it may not be the central nest. Often, carpenter ants set up satellite nests, which lets them protect their colony and gain easier food access. Attacking a nest when you find one is not recommended – doing this causes the carpenter ants that survive to move away and set up another nest, creating even more damage.
Why You Don't Want Carpenter Ants In Your Home
Carpenter ants are obviously dangerous to the wooden structures in and around your home, but that's not all they do. They are ants, so they seek out food sources. Once a scouting ant finds a food source in your home, they will leave pheromones behind that allows other ants to find their way to the same food source. This trail can lead to widespread food contamination, costing you even more money.
Carpenter Ant Prevention Tips For Homeowners
Keeping carpenter ants out of your home is better than dealing with them once they're inside. There are a few tips you can take to prevent carpenter ants from invading.
- Repair any openings on your home's exterior. Cracks, holes, and entry points for utilities can let carpenter ants inside.
- Reduce moisture in and around your home. Carpenter ants love damp, rotting wood – keep moisture down with dehumidifiers and repair leaks to remove stagnant water build-up.
- Clean up regularly. Food messes and spills can attract carpenter ants and other troublesome pests, like cockroaches.
- Remove wood debris around your property. Any wood structure or object could attract carpenter ants and bring them closer to your home.
- Store food in hard plastic containers. Cardboard boxes and opened bags may not prevent carpenter ants from reaching a food source.
The Secret Method To Remove Carpenter Ants In Your Home
If carpenter ants are destroying your home and contaminating your food, call the pest professionals at Innovative Pest Control. Our quarterly pest control treatments help to keep your home free of carpenter ants and other pests year-round. We even offer free return treatments if you spot pests in or around your home before your next treatment.
Our affordable treatment plans cover carpenter ants as one of our 16 common pests covered. We'll make sure pests leave your home alone! Get creative with your pest control and call Innovative Pest Control for a free inspection.