Many pests that enter your home are fairly harmless to humans, despite being creepy looking. For instance, sugar ants pose no real threat to humans, it's just gross to see them in your home. There are some pests that, even if they pose no immediate threat to you, can cause some serious damage to your home. The largest threats to your home are termites, carpenter ants, rodents, yellow jackets, and bed bugs. Read below to find out what to look for, and how to get rid of these pests.
The most dangerous pest for your home, termites cause an estimated $5 billion in damage to homes each year. There are over 2,000 known termite species worldwide, but the most common in the United States are Subterranean Termites and Drywood Termites. While both of these species live in large colonies, the damage that they cause looks different. Drywood termite damage appears clean and neat, while subterranean termite damage is usually accompanied by dirt or mud. These pests are hard to spot, because most of the damage they cause is behind walls or under your home. Because they are so hard to spot, best practice is to hire professionals to take care of your termite problem. As a rule of thumb, if your neighbor has termites, you do too.
Similar to termites, Carpenter ants cause damage to the wood in your home. The key difference between them is that termites eat the wood, while carpenter ants use the wood to create tunnels. If you have a carpenter ant problem, you may see small piles of sawdust near your baseboards, or on the outside of your home. Additionally, carpenter ants forage for food alone, or in small groups. If you see a single carpenter ant, you may have a lot more. Purchase some traps or poison for an inexpensive solution, and if the problem persists, call the pros.
Rodents, such as mice and rats, will make their way into your home when temperatures drop, in search of food, water, and warmth. If you see a mouse scurry across your kitchen, you may have a solitary mouse, but if you see one in low traffic areas of your home, such as your garage or basement, you likely have an infestation. For a DIY solution, traps work well to gauge the scale of your infestation.
Yellow Jackets are small wasps that are named for their black and yellow back. They’re known for being extremely aggressive towards humans, and pack a painful sting. Besides the threat of being stung, yellow jackets are a threat to your home as they’re able to eat through drywall and surface to find materials to build their nests. If you see a yellow jacket or wasp nest, you should call your local pest control company to take care of it, to prevent you or your family from getting stung.
These irritating pests often show up around the holiday season to terrorize your home and guests. Bed bugs are particularly hard to get rid of, as they reproduce extremely quickly, and are hard to spot. They can make any mattress a lost cause in a hurry, and are hard to spot unless you’ve been bitten. If you wake up with bites or blood smears, you likely have a bed bug infestation.
To prevent bringing bed bugs home from travels, place clothing in sealed bags until you can wash it, and wash all bedding regularly. To prevent your mattress from getting infested, look into purchasing a mattress protector or encasement. If you have an active bed bug infestation, you should call the professionals immediately.
While many pests can be handled at home, these pests can cause serious damage to your home, and incur high repair costs. Because of this, we recommend hiring a pest control company to handle these problems, it will cost you less in the long run.