11 Signs You Have Subterranean Termites Infestation {Facts You Should Know}

Subterranean termites are the worst from all termite species because they can reach the millions in their colony. This article is about 11 signs you have Subterranean termites infestation.

This is meant to help you find these nuisance pests who cause so much damage and frustration to you, your home and your mental health.

The information provided below will help you understand and notice the signs that subterranean termites are present before they make matters much worse.

11 Signs You Have Subterranean Termites Infestation

  1. Identifying Subterranean Termite Season
  2. Mud Tubes and Tunnels
  3. Bubbling or Peeling Paint
  4. Excessive Water Accumulation
  5. Destroyed Lumber and Firewood
  6. No Visible Termite Droppings
  7. Hollow or Damaged Wood
  8. Your Doors and Windows Are Opening With Difficulty
  9. Sagging
  10. Buckling of Walls and Floors
  11. Loose Bathroom Fixtures

Sign #1:Subterranean termites season

When Do Subterranean Termites Swarm?

The first sign of subterranean termites swarms begin during their peak season which falls on late spring and summer mornings. After rain showers, subterranean termites can begin to swarm.

This is a signaling of their mating ritual. Males grow wings and swarm to find the mate. Once the males have shed their wings, the mated pairs will crawl into the ground or cracks in wood to begin building their colonies.

If you find these wings on the edges of windows, doorways, or in your garden leading to your home, this could be the first sign of a Subterranean termite infestation.

Sign #2: Mud Tubes and Tunnels

Where Do Subterranean Termites Live?

Subterranean termite species are most popularly known to live under the ground. They are incredible builders and able to create large expansive mud tubes and tunnels. These highways they create help them to transport the cellulose in the wood that they munch on.

They will take some of this nutrition into their tunnel until they reach the motherload of colonies that can reach the millions who are all protecting their queen.

These tunnels can run under your home and through the walls. They can enter through the foundations and find their way all the way up to the attic of your home.

If you are finding long faint lines on your drywall or any exterior around your home, chances are there are subterranean termites present.

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Sign #3: Bubbling or Peeling Paint

Subterranean termites can cause so much destruction inside your walls that you may not end up noticing it on the exterior until there is bubbling or peeling paint. You may end up seeing the cracks in the wood or paint.

Paint may start peeling off in smaller pieces. If your wall is exposed to moisture, subterranean termites will be much more inclined to munch in these areas until the paint begins to bubble up.

The areas where the paint is bubbling has probably been destroyed by subterranean termites. You may also find this bubbling or peeling happening around window sills and baseboards.

Also look around the wood siding of your home and look for cracks running vertically or horizontally. You will need a consultation from a professional to determine the structural integrity of your home to make sure that it can be repaired.

Sign #4 Excessive Water Accumulation

Subterranean termites will gather around the areas where there is an accumulation of water. If the environment is hot, humid and moist then the location is ideal for subterranean termites to begin building long and intricate mud tunnels without you noticing.

The moisture and wood can attract termites to build their tunnels toward your home. If you have any pipes that are leaking or gutters that aren’t draining properly, subterranean termites will be attracted to your property.

Clogged debris and leaky roofs create moisture concerns. Sprinklers that are on too often may also lead to termite infestations. Try to point the heads of sprinklers away from your home to keep the perimeter of your foundation dry as possible

Sign #5: Destroyed Lumber and Firewood

Do you have stacks of lumber or firewood leaning against the exterior wall of your home? Termites are extremely attracted to lumber or firewood that is damp or rotting already.

They will contribute to the rot by consuming and excreting their own droppings which helps to spread spores of mold around the area. Subterranean termites can live inside firewood, lumber or a tree stumps.

If you are stacking lumber or firewood, keep them 20 feet or more away from the exterior of your house walls.

Sign #6: No Visible Termite Droppings

Termite droppings famously resemble sawdust. We call it frass, but it can also look like mounds of sprinkled sand.

Usually drywood termites will poke holes in your wall and push out their feces onto the floor beneath. This is where you might find mounds of droppings. These are not subterranean termites.

Subterranean termite feces are in liquid form which they use with their saliva to build mud tubes or tunnels. This is why liquid soil termite treatment is a better option for getting rid of subterranean termites.

A professional expert will assess the damage caused by the termites and inspect areas underneath to determine or identify mud tubes and tunnels that lead them to the conclusion of a subterranean termite infestation.

They will apply a soil treatment with a liquid products intended to create a barricade around the perimeter of your home. Subterranean termites in your home find cellulose and try to head back to the soil where the where it is moist. This is where their colony is located.

If you apply soil treatment for subterranean termites they will not be able to either access your home or return to their colony.

Sign #7: Hollow or Damaged Wood

What does it mean when you tap on solid wood and it sounds hollow? Termites consume wood from the inside out. You may end up with only a thin layer of wood on the exterior or just the paint in very serious infestations.

Knocking on wood that you thought was solid and hearing a hollow sound can be a frightening observation. Once you notice that the wood is feeling thin or like paper, you are a victim of a termite infestation.

If you do not find holes that are poked through the wood then you know that the subterranean termites are most likely the culprit. This is because they do not need to force their excrement out through holes in the wood much like drywood termites too.

Subterranean termites can use their feces in liquid form mixed with saliva to continue building more tunnels throughout your home.

Sign #8: Your Doors and Windows Are Opening With Difficulty

Is it becoming harder for you to open your doors and windows? Do you hear any creaking sounds or are they warped?  You may think that temperature and humidity changes are the reason but it’s probably due to termite damage.

This is a warning sign that you may have subterranean termites that have created tunnels which are unnoticed underneath the foundation of your home to reach doorways and windows.

They also may have flown in through their male winged counterparts who are searching for perfect locations to begin their colony. Hopefully the creaking or difficult moving doors and windows are due to other types of damage instead of colonies of Subterranean termite.

The only way to find out is to get a professional termite removal company to inspect these locations in confirm whether or not termites are present.

Sign #9: Sagging

A sagging floor could be:

  • dropping
  • dipping
  • sloping

Your home could have failing joists caused by subterranean termites. These joist are on a sill plate. If the area is wet or moist, termites will be drawn to it.

Sign #10: Buckling of Walls and Floors

Appliances can leak and buckle wood floors. Moist floor accumulate dampness and humidity.

This is a perfect invitation for subterranean termites looking for a direction to build their tunnels. They may end up buckling walls or floors and not the appliances themselves.

Sign #11: Loose Bathroom Fixtures

If bathroom fixtures are loose, they can fall off the walls.

Subterranean termites can eat the construction materials behind these fixtures and cause them to become loose.


We hope that you do not have a serious infestation of subterranean termites. Drywood termites are more localized and can be eliminated with spot treatments.

Subterranean termites get their name from living under the surface of the ground up to 18-20 feet deep. hey can and will find their way into your home and it’s up to you to notice the signs early and call for a professional inspection.


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