The Complete Ohio Termite Guide

If you’re a homeowner in the state of Ohio, dealing with termites can feel like a never-ending battle. You’re not alone. Many Ohio homes grapple with these pesky invaders. 

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything from identifying the species of termites most likely to infest Ohio homes, how to spot signs of an infestation, how to prevent their entrance, and what steps to take if you find termites in your home.

Key Takeaways

  • The Eastern Subterranean termite is the most common species in Ohio, but Drywood termites also appear. Both types of termites can cause extensive termite damage to your home’s wooden structures.
  • Identifying early signs of termites can save your home from significant damage. Knowing what to look for is crucial.
  • Termite control measures are vital in Ohio homes. Proper preventative measures can save homeowners from the costly process of repairing termite damage.
  • If you already have an infestation, contacting a professional exterminator is essential. They can assess the extent of your termite problem and provide targeted termite treatment options.

Subterranean Termites: Characteristics and Habitat

Subterranean Termites

Subterranean termites, particularly the Eastern Subterranean termite, are the most common type infesting Ohio homes. These termites live in vast colonies underground where they feed on cellulose material like wood, paper, and cardboard. You might deal with a subterranean termite colony if you spot mud tubes on your home’s exterior walls.

These termites prefer moist habitats and typically reside in damp locations with access to a water source. They enter homes through stumps, crawl spaces, and other wood structures, leading to substantial termite damage if left unchecked.

Drywood Termites: Characteristics and Habitat

Drywood Termites

Drywood termites are less common in Ohio but still pose a risk to homeowners. Unlike their subterranean counterparts, Drywood termites require significantly less moisture to survive. They often enter homes through attic spaces, eaves, and even through the gutter system.

Drywood termites reside in the very wood they feed on. So, you’re likely to find these termites in wooden structures like attics, eaves, flooring, and furniture, leading to significant damage if the infestation is not addressed promptly.

Subterranean vs. Drywood Termites

Subterranean TermitesDrywood Termites
HabitatPrefer to live in the soil and build underground colonies. They create mud tubes to reach food sources.Found above ground in dry wood. They do not need contact with the soil to survive.
AppearanceCreamy white to dark brown/black, and around 1/8 inch long.Creamy white to light brown, slightly larger than subterranean termites.
Colony SizeColonies can contain up to 2 million members.Colonies are smaller, typically containing up to a few thousand members.
DietPrimarily feed on wood and other materials containing cellulose.Consume wood, wallpaper, and fabric made from plants.
DamageCan cause significant structural damage over time if left untreated. They can harm foundations, support beams, plastic pipes, insulation, etc.Damage is localized to their area since they live within the wood they consume. They can harm wooden structures, furniture, etc.
Geographical DistributionFound in every U.S. state except Alaska.Primarily found in coastal, southern, and southwestern states.
SwarmersTypically swarm on a warm day after rainfall. Swarms can contain thousands of termites.Typically swarm after a rise in temperature, often in the late spring or summer. Swarmers can be less in number compared to subterranean termites.
PreventionReduce moisture and wood-to-soil contact in and around your home. Regularly inspect your home for signs of mud tubes, uneven or bubbling paint, and wood that sounds hollow when tapped.Regularly inspect your home for signs like frass (termite droppings), discarded wings, and hollow-sounding wood.
TreatmentCan be controlled with various methods, including liquid soil treatments, bait systems, and physical barriers.Can be treated with whole structure fumigation, spot treatments, and wood injections.

How Do Termites Enter Your Home? 

Termites are skilled infiltrators. In Ohio, they can access your home through numerous routes, such as: 

  • Cracks in your foundation walls 
  • Gaps in window and door frames
  • Vents, and other vulnerable areas. 

They can also enter through exterior elements close to your home, like mulch, downspouts, stumps, and other wooden structures.

How Do You Know If There Are Termites in Your Home?

Timely termite detection can save Ohio homeowners from substantial damage. Look out for: 

  • Discarded wings from termite swarmers
  • Hollow-sounding wood
  • Mud tubes on your exterior walls
  • Piles of termite droppings (which resemble tiny pellets). 

Another telltale sign is structural damage to your home’s wood, indicating termite activity.

How Do You Prevent Termites? 

Preventative measures are crucial in termite control. Keeping your home dry and prevent a termite problem by:

  • Repairing leaky pipes or faucets
  • Ensuring your gutters and downspouts are clean and debris-free 
  • Reducing wood-to-soil contact by removing stumps or moist mulch near your home 

Consider scheduling regular termite inspection sessions, especially in high-risk areas like Cincinnati, Columbus, and Dayton, where termite activity is often high. Termite prevention is often the best cure.

What to Do If You Find Termites in Your Home

If you notice signs of termites in your Ohio home, don’t panic. Contact a licensed pest control company as soon as possible. An experienced exterminator can identify the species and extent of the infestation and advise you on the most effective termite treatment options, whether pesticides, insecticides, or even a termiticide if the infestation is severe.

Remember that dealing with a termite infestation isn’t a one-time event. Regularly monitoring your home for new colonies, taking appropriate preventative measures, and working with professionals can ensure your home stays termite-free. After all, termite control is vital to maintaining your Ohio home’s structural integrity. 

Don’t let the worker termites chew away at your peace of mind!