Spring is right around the corner here in Indiana, and we’re ready! Daffodils, farmer’s markets, spring soccer, gigantic carpenter ants – yep! We’ve got it all.

Wait a second! Carpenter ants? We know – not what you bargained for. But carpenter ants are another pest to keep an eye out for in the spring months. If you’re not paying attention, they could do some serious damage to your home. Here are a few signs of carpenter ants to watch for this spring.

What are carpenter ants?

Like termites, carpenter ants are another common pest that leaves wooden structures at risk. It’s a common misconception that only homes with wooden siding are at risk for damage by carpenter ants, but almost all structures have some type of wood in them that could leave them vulnerable.

Carpenter ants are one of the most common household pests in Southern Indiana, and the largest pest ants in the United States. Although carpenter ants are not necessarily dangerous to humans, they can certainly pose a risk to the structures they’re infesting. They do not eat wood, but they make their nests in wood structures, especially structures that have been exposed to severe moisture.

If treated early, carpenter ant infestations are seldom responsible for severe damage to a structure. However, left if left undetected or untreated, a carpenter ant infestation could be the cause of extreme structural damage to a building.

Signs of Carpenter Ants

Part of being a good homeowner is keeping an eye on the state of your house at all times, including pest activity. Many pests are great at working quietly behind-the-scenes and are easily missed, especially if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Here are some of the most common signs of carpenter ants.

  • The presence of carpenter ant workers and swarmers (ants with wings).
  • Wood that sounds hollow when tapped upon.
  • Shed wings of carpenter ant swarmers on window sills, baseboards, and vents. (The presence of wings may also be an indication of termites.)
  • Trails of sawdust left behind where carpenter ants have bored holes into wood.
  • The faint rustling sound within the walls can be heard in infested wood.
  • The surface of wood that has been infested with carpenter ants is easily penetrated or broken.
  • What should I do if I find carpenter ants around my home?

Although the damage caused by carpenter ants is not as severe as the damage caused by termites, a carpenter ant infestation in your home has the potential to cause significant damage over a period of years. As the colony grows, the ants expand through the wood, causing more and more damage.

What Should I Do If I See Signs of Carpenter Ants?

If you find swarmers (or other signs of carpenter ants) on the outside of your window, take notice. Carpenter ant swarms don’t last long or travel far. If you have swarmers on the outside of your home, it is likely there is a mature infestation somewhere on your property.

If you find swarmers (or other signs of carpenter ants) on the inside of your home, there is little doubt that there is a mature nest inside your walls. Unfortunately, many people don’t realize the implications of finding swarmers inside their home and simply clean up the ants.

Signs of carpenter ants, especially swarmers inside your home, shouldn’t go ignored. Because carpenter ants build two types of colonies (parent colonies and satellite colonies), extermination can be a challenge for a pest control novice. YES Pest Pros will fully inspect the area indoors and outdoors to find any nesting areas, both parent and satellite colonies. After a thorough and meticulous inspection of the structure, we will then recommend a treatment plan tailored to your situation and your needs.

Knowing what to watch for when it comes to any household pest can go a long way in preventing damage and controlling an infestation. Schedule a free inspection with YES Pest Pros today to make sure your home doesn’t become home to any unwanted guests this spring.