“There are two types of homes in Arizona…ones with termites and the ones that are gonna get termites!”
Arizona is home to at least 17 known species of termites. Some “experts” claim we have up to 25 different species reported statewide. The most common Phoenix area termite is the Gnathamitermes, or Desert Termite. The Spanish name is Termitos.
While the Desert Termite is capable of invading homes and causing structural damage they are primarily seen outside on wood fences, tree trunks or wood left on the ground. They construct distinctive sheets of mud on or around their food source. Thick mud tubes constructed up from the soil are often seen in crawl spaces. Most damage caused by the Desert Termite is cosmetic.
Treatment for the Desert Termite is consistent with most subterranean termites found in Arizona. By treating the soil around and under your home they can be easily eliminated and controlled. Treatment to areas away from your home can be challenging and may require periodic retreatments.
Arguably the most destructive termite in Arizona is our native species subterranean termite (Reticulitermes, Heterotermes). Our Native subterranean termite accounts for most of the structural damage reported in Arizona.
In the northern part of Arizona (above 4000 feet) Reticulitermes is the dominate termite. Shelter tubes they build are “flatter” and darker in appearance.
In the southern part of Arizona (below 4000 feet) Heterotermes is the dominate termite species. Shelter tubes built by these termites are smaller, round in appearance and lighter in color. Heterotermes can be distinguished by the appearance of shelter tubes hanging from a ceiling.
Control is achieved by treating the soil around and under a home’s foundation. Creating a continuous barrier is important to gaining full control of a subterranean termite infestation. Critical areas include treating below abutting slabs that provide shelter and moisture for the termite colony.
Dampwood termite activity has increased in the Phoenix area in recent years with most infestations being reported in older crawl space homes in areas like Encanto Park. Healthy Dampwood termite infestations require a consistent moisture source. Treatment for the Dampwood Termite includes correcting existing moisture sources and treatment to areas of infestation (similar to the subterranean termite).
A Drywood Termite colony can takes years to establish itself. Once established (7+ years) a mature Drywood Termite colony can cause major structural damage seemingly overnight. The presence of Drywood Termite fecal pellets is usually the first noticeable clue of infestation.
Treatment of the Drywood Termite can vary from removing the infested wood, treatment of the infested wood to a tent fumigation of the entire structure. Costs can range from near $100 up to several thousand dollars.
Every home in Arizona should be inspected at least once a year. It’s important the inspector has knowledge and experience with all species found in Arizona. An inexperienced termite inspector can miss obvious signs of a less common termite resulting in additional structural damage. Bills Termite Control Phoenix provides free termite inspection Phoenix services.
Bills Termite Control Phoenix is Arizona’s Termite Experts. We provide free termite inspection Phoenix services, along with safe effective Termite Control Phoenix services for all types of termites found in Arizona.