How to Find a Termite Nest

How to Find a Termite Nest

How to find a termite nest?

  1. Know your enemy
  2. Look for the signs
  3. Use the proper tools


Termite infestations are the bane of houses with wooden foundations. It could spell disaster especially if the infestation has been going on for a long time. Termites could cause significant damage to almost all kinds of houses. And the best course of action is to do something about it as soon as possible. Locating the nest also lets you employ some temporary termite control solutions of your own.

To learn how you can find a termite nest in your home, keep reading below!


Know your enemy

Know your enemy

The first thing to do before you try to find a termite nest is to be knowledgeable about your enemy. Generally, termites gravitate towards wood and would settle down on woody parts of the house, but each different species of termite would have its own preferences. If you know what species of termite you’re dealing with, you should have a better idea of what areas of the house they might be nested in.

You can categorize termite species into several types based on their nesting habits. Drywood termites can survive and typically make themselves at home in hardwood. You would often find these termites in furniture, walls, floors, or ceilings. They are different from subterraneous termites because they don’t need the soil to survive. As their name suggests, subterraneous termites like to live underground. These termites will create their nests beneath the soil, and they may reach your basement if it is near enough.

Dampwood termites are very similar to drywood termites except they prefer wood that is damp or moist. If you live in Africa, Australia, or South America, you also might encounter mound-building termites. Determine what kind of termite you are dealing with based on their nesting habits so you can quickly infer about the location of their nests.


Look for the signs

If a termite colony has made its nest in your home, there will definitely be telltale signs around the house. You just need to know what they are and how to spot them. Here are some of the most common signs of a termite nest:

  • Mud Tubes – Mud tubes are tunnels created by subterranean termites to protect their workers when they leave the nest. Sometimes, they are also used for ventilation and to block out dry air. Try breaking the mud tubes to see if there are termites inside. If there aren’t, then the tubes may be abandoned or they’re using a different route to go inside. Either way, mud tubes are clear signs of a termite nest as workers put much effort into creating them.
  • Winged Termites – If you see swarms of winged termites inside your house, then there’s a good chance that you have an infestation. Winged termites swarm out of their nest to mate during mating season. They also tear off their wings when they land somewhere they want to settle in, so if you see discarded termite wings, a budding infestation may be happening within your home’s walls.
  • Bulging Walls – If your wooden walls, ceilings, or floors are bulging, it could be a sign of an infestation from a certain species of termite. Formosan termites create aerial nests under the wall coverings. If you take the coverings off, you might find a Formosan termite nest.
  • Holes and Termite Droppings – Small holes in the wood, especially if you see mounds of wooden pellets that might look like sand or sawdust next to the hole. The pellets may be termite droppings that they cleaned out of their tunnels. You may also find holes in the ground outside your house that could be the work of subterranean termites.


Use the proper tools

Use the proper tools

To find the exact location of a termite nest, you should use the necessary tools. Some of them are:

  • Screwdriver – Carry a screwdriver, ice pick, or anything that you can use to poke wood to look for soft or hollow spots.
  • Moisture Meter – Termites prefer a damp and humid environment. If you have a moisture meter, you can use it to look for humid areas in the house (moisture levels of 15% or above).
  • Borescope – A borescope lets you peek into harder-to-reach spots in your house to see if there are any signs of infestations there. Try using it to see behind walls or under hard-to-move furniture.
  • Trained Dog – Some dogs can be trained to sniff out the methane that termites emit when they digest wood.


Key Takeaway

Knowing how to find a termite nest does not mean you are automatically free of a termite infestation. Even if you know all the signs and use all the tools, you would still need professional help to fully eradicate the threat.

In the Philippines, the best pest control solutions provider you can find is Topbest! If you have a termite problem, feel free to contact us for a FREE consultation!