The Key To Spotting Termite Activity Around Your Norfolk Property

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termite colony on the ground

Despite their reputation for being tireless, social, and immensely destructive pests, termites are a risk to your property that can be hard to spot. Virginia termite colonies live within the ground and inside homes eating the structural supports of buildings 24 hours a day 7 days a week without rest. They often go undetected for years within homes as they eat them from the inside out.

Mature colonies have between 100,000 and 1,000,000 individual termites. Each colony has three castes of termites to perform specific functions. Workers are creamy-white and seldom seen unless infested wood is broken open. These are the insects causing most of the damage. Soldier termites are a similar size at about ¼ inch in length but have elongated yellowish heads and large jaws used to defend any breach. Alates can be black or brown and are ⅜-½ inches in length with two pairs of translucent wings of equal length that break off after swarming. Often these wings are the only evidence of termite infestation.

Signs Of Termite Activity

  • Shed wings are often the first but certainly not the only sign of termite infestation. Others include:
  • Tightfitting doors and windows
  • Soft, clicking noises in the walls
  • Termite tubes especially on cellar walls, wooden posts, wall studs, mudsills, or window and door trim
  • Wood that appears blistered or peeling
  • Wood that is hollowed out or appears rotten

If you suspect termites may have made their way into your home be sure to check warm and humid areas in your home such as around the furnace, chimney, water heaters and hot water pipes. If wood is weakened and you probe it with a screwdriver or similar tool, hidden worker termites are likely to spill out.

Limiting Termite Attractions

The state of Virginia is one of the hardest hit by termites. This results in millions of dollars in damage each year. Given the cost of termite infestation there is plenty of reason to look for ways to prevent termite infestations in the first place. The number one imperative for the prevention of termites is to limit wood to soil contact.

  • Remove wooden debris and moisture damaged wood from the vicinity of your home
  • Replace wooden posts, steps, trellises that are in contact with soil with either non-cellulose material or pressure-treated wood
  • Replace damaged timbers
  • Keep mulch at least 15 inches from the foundation

Second to wood/soil contact, is moisture control. Keep termites away by reducing excess moisture in your home. Make sure there is adequate drainage in basements, cellars, and crawlspaces. Use gutters, downspouts, and French drains to direct drainage away from your home. Finally make sure to fill in all visible cracks and voids in your foundation with concrete or caulking.


While there are a variety of soil treatments and baits available on the market, it is best to contact a professional at the first sign of termites. PESTOUT’s termite treatment program follows a comprehensive and powerful regimen to exterminate all termites from your building and save you from having to make costly repairs.

Rather than depending on costly and outdated liquid treatments that have a tendency to fail or less expensive bait stations that require constant monitoring, PESTOUT uses advanced materials that combine the benefits of traditional and newer technologies. This approach is more effective and has lower costs both initially and over time in maintenance.

At PESTOUT, each of our technicians is state-registered and ready to deliver the most comprehensive pest, termite, and fungus control throughout Hampton Roads.

Call PESTOUT today for your courtesy comprehensive inspection or to schedule a service