Unlike other ant infestations, a carpenter ant infestation isn’t just a nuisance: it can actually damage your home. Below, we’ll explain how to identify carpenter ants and the damage they cause so that you can stop the problem before it gets worse.
What Do Carpenter Ants Look Like?
Like other ants, carpenter ants have six legs, three body segments, and a pair of antennae. They range in length from ½ an inch to ⅝ of an inch long, making them one of the largest ant species (certainly bigger than your average black ant). They also come in a variety of colors, including red, brown, black, or a combination of red and black.
What Does Carpenter Ant Damage Look Like?
Carpenter ants damage wood to create nests. They don’t consume the wood (unlike termites), rather they tunnel into the wood and create a network of smooth, clutter-free galleries. Unfortunately, because the damage occurs inside beams and timbers, you’ll need to watch for subtle external clues.
First, check for any small holes in wood around your home as these could be carpenter ant tunnel openings. Also keep an eye out for tiny piles of wood shavings, insulation fragments, and insect remains. These materials often collect below the opening of a carpenter ant tunnel because the ants push them out while nest-building.
How Much Damage Can Carpenter Ants Cause?
If left to their own devices, carpenter ants can eventually cause significant structural damage to a building. Generally, these insects prefer to excavate rotting wood or softwood. However, after being initially attracted by wet or damaged wood, they may move on to a home’s support beams.
An untreated carpenter ant infestation can result in thousands of dollars in restoration costs—not to mention safety hazards for those dwelling inside the affected structure. Support beams keep a building from sagging and collapsing, so it’s essential to protect them from pest damage. A carpenter ant problem should be taken as seriously as a termite problem.
Carpenter Ant Exterminators In New Jersey & New York
Keep in mind that many DIY ant treatments can only treat visible issues. Trust the pest professionals at Horizon Pest Control to provide an effective solution to your property’s carpenter ant problem. Call us today at (201) 365-9886 or contact us online.