carpenter antsCarpenter ant infestations, like termite infestations, sometimes go unreported until it is too late.  Carpenter ant damage is distinct from termite damage, despite the fact that the two are frequently confused. Carpenter ants create galleries or tunnels in decaying wood, while termites feed on the cellulose in the wood. 

Carpenter ants do not eat the wood, contrary to popular belief. Instead, they hollow it down so that they can nest within, causing structural damage. Carpenter ants, unlike termites, typically take years to wreak serious damage.

Carpenter Ant Damage

A carpenter ant infestation in a structure suggests a moisture problem. These pests are commonly found near dishwashers, sinks, laundry areas, and restrooms, especially when plumbing leaks are present. 

Carpenter ants can infest a variety of building materials, including wood and foam insulation, as well as hollow doors and window frames. Because ants eat dead leaves and other insects, they could be living outside but looking for food crumbs or moisture within. 

Signs of Carpenter Ant Infestation

Before you find the nest, you'll very certainly see the worker ants. The presence of a few carpenter ants inside your home does not necessarily indicate the presence of a large colony. 

A springtime swarm of winged carpenter ants, on the other hand, indicates the presence of an established parent colony, as these swarms do not emerge until a colony has been present for at least two years.

Small holes in the surface of the wood where the ants have burrowed may also be visible. There will very likely be little mounds of coarse sawdust beneath the holes if they were created by carpenter ants. The wood shavings may also contain dead ants or ant body parts. 

These ants prefer moist, decaying wood to build their nests, so check for them around water leaks, such as in bathrooms, under sinks, or around windows and door frames.

How to Prevent Carpenter Ant Infestation

Applying some of these basic strategies around your home will help prevent a carpenter ant infestation:

  • Caulk around electrical and water lines to prevent carpenter ants from getting inside the structure.
  • Trim branches that are close to your home. As a result, ants are unable to use the branches as a passage.
  • Consider putting a gravel or stone strip around your house to keep firewood off the ground and away from your house. Before carrying firewood inside, look for evidence of ants.
  • Food should be stored in airtight containers, and the kitchen should be cleaned regularly.
  • Clean out clogged gutters to avoid water damage.
  • Ensure that crawl spaces and attics have enough ventilation.
  • Repair any roof or plumbing pipe leaks as soon as possible.
  • Logs, stumps, and wood near or under the structure should all be removed.

Contact Pest Control Professionals

When a carpenter ant infestation is suspected, it’s best to contact a licensed pest control management professional. Rid-A-Bug technicians are trained to help manage carpenter ants and similar pests. 

Because every structure or residence is different, we will create a custom carpenter ant treatment plan for you. Contact us for an estimate or to request an inspection today