How To Spot A Termite Problem On Your South Carolina Property


Termites are one of the most feared pests of home and business owners alike – and with good reason! They’re one of the most devastating pests you can get in your house, able to destroy tall buildings in a single infestation! Luckily for us, we’re not unarmed in the fight against termites. Our two main weapons against these wood-chomping insects are prevention and extermination. Prevention is the far superior option. It’s a lot less expensive and more convenient than eradicating and cleaning up after an infestation. Let’s talk about what you can do.

Signs Of Termites

Termites don’t leave their nests very often. Unlike ants and roaches, they tend to live underneath or right inside their main food sources. That means they don’t have to forage very far – if at all – to feed themselves. You won’t ever see a termite scurrying across your floor like a roach or a line of termites headed to your cookie jar. That means you’ll have to look for other signs of termites.

Most signs of termites have to do with the havoc they wreak on your South Carolina home. If you see the following issues, they’re a good indicator that you have a problem:

  • Damage that looks like it was caused by water
  • Hollow-sounding wood
  • Tight-fitting windows and doors
  • Loose floorboards
  • Sagging ceilings
  • Peeling paint
  • Pinholes in drywall
  • Drooping or discolored drywall
  • Visible tunnels in wood components
  • Piles of termite sawdust (called frass/carton)

The one exception to the general rule that you won’t see live termites outside the nest is when they swarm. During the warm season, mature termite colonies send out thousands of reproductive males and females to pair off and find new colonies. These winged alates go on a mating flight before shedding their wings and starting their nests. If you see piles of live termites or long, white wings, there was a recent swarm on your property, and you should be concerned.

Termite Prevention

The best way to deal with termites is not to get them in the first place. That can be easier said than done, but there are some things you can do to make your home a less attractive environment for these social insects:

  • Eliminate soil-to-wood contact around your house. This includes things like keeping a six-inch barrier between mulch and your home’s foundation and storing firewood off the ground and away from your home. 
  • Get rid of moisture by trimming back shade to encourage soil evaporation, using dehumidifiers, and fixing leaky plumbing and clogged gutters. 
  • Trim back tree branches and shrubs away from your home’s exterior. 
  • Eliminate rotten wood components in your home, such as decking, rails, stairs, molding, and anything else that’s both wooden and decaying. 

If you wind up with a termite infestation, you shouldn’t try to get rid of it yourself. Things like over-the-counter (OTC) insecticides and termite baits don’t do a good job of eliminating the infestation because it’s usually much bigger and more complicated than you think it is. You’re unlikely to notice termites before you have a mature colony, and mature colonies send out satellite nests. That means you’ll probably do nothing more than make room for satellite colonies to grow by eliminating the more obvious larger nests. The good news is there’s a better way.

Here at The Original Bugman Pest Elimination, we’ve been taking care of termites for home and business owners in the Columbia and Lexington area since 1983. We won’t just find and eliminate the mature colonies on your property but also the less evident satellite nests. So call us at (803) 805-7410 or visit our contact page to schedule your inspection today and get started on our effective termite control services.

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