Having termites is every homeowner’s nightmare. Little creatures in your walls, roof, and floorboards, eating away at your home- it sounds like the plot to a horror movie, but it isn’t. 

Termites are very real, and they can go unnoticed for a long time. That’s why homeowners need to know how to spot them. But how can you find an insect that’s hiding in your walls? Do termites make noise? Or are they silent sources of destruction? 

We can answer these questions. 

Do Termites Make Noise?

Believe it or not, termites do make noise! You may think such a small creature would be inaudible, but like the buzzing of a bee, you can hear termites if you’re listening. 

The sound is subtle, and you won’t hear it during the day when your house is full of activity. But at night, if you have good hearing, you can hear the results of termites in your walls. 

It may sound like snapping or popping. If you physically tap on wood and hear a hollow sound, that is a good sign that termites have done some damage there.

Typically, you’re not hearing ceaseless termite chomping when you hear those sounds. Instead, you’re hearing the results of their destruction. Tiny wood fibers in your walls, ceilings, and floorboards can snap due to termite damage. 

That’s not to say that termites don’t make actual sounds themselves. They’re deaf, but they can’t avoid making noise to communicate. Formosan termites bang their heads against the wood to send signals to their colony. You can find Formosan termites in Houston and throughout the Southeastern U.S.

The headbanging activity sends vibrations that call to fellow termites. And you might be able to hear it. It’s a rattling sound that you may notice when your house is otherwise silent.  

You may also hear a sound similar to that of somebody crumpling a paper bag in their fist. This is the sound of termites moving through tunnels near the wood’s surface. 

If you hear rustling, popping, or the rapping sound of headbanging, it’s time for a termite inspection. Termites often go unnoticed until they cause irreparable damage. But by listening closely and being observant, you can stop termites before something serious happens.

Sounds To Listen For

You can hear termites if you listen close. Below, we summarize the typical sounds of infestation. If you hear any of them, it’s time to schedule a termite inspection. 

Common Sounds of infestations:

  • Headbanging: This is the loudest sound, and it will sound like a sharp rattle. 
  • Clicking: This will be a softer sound. It’s the sound of worker termites eating out tunnels
  • Rustling: This sounds like someone is crushing a paper bag. It could be from worker termites moving around, or it could be wood fibers cracking in their wake. 
  • Snapping: This comes from wood fibers breaking as a result of termite damage. 
  • Buzzing: Homeowners report this sound in the spring during termite mating season. This is when swarms of flying termites may be in the area around your home.

Where to Look for Termite Infestations

termite damage

Termites eat wood, so you’ll find them in beams, wood floors, ceilings, and walls. As they eat, they tunnel, creating hollow spaces. That’s why professionals will tap the wood in your home during a termite inspection. They’re looking for a distinct, hollow sound. 

Giant termite colonies can easily thrive in walls or beneath your floors, but that’s not the only place homeowners should look for them. Termites can also be found in yards and the surrounding area of your house. They may be in tree stumps or rotting logs, or they could be hiding in dilapidated fences.  

Termites feed on the wood of your home, but they don’t always live there. Subterranean termites are common. They’ll live underground in your yard and use mud tunnels to enter your house or garage.  

They use wood there as their primary source of food. And though they hide their nests deep underground, the mud tunnels are easy to spot. A termite professional will have no problem pointing them out. 

Drywood termites are often a problem for homeowners too. They don’t need as big of a water supply as subterranean termites do. So, they tend to make themselves comfortable in roofs and attic spaces. 

Professionals are good at identifying them, but they tend to evade detection by homeowners. That’s why regular termite inspections are a good idea whether you hear termites or not. 

What to Do if You Hear Termites in Your Houston Home

If you hear termites in your home or notice any signs of infestation, it’s crucial to call the professionals right away. Termite damage can be devastating if left unchecked. The longer it goes unaddressed, the worse the damage will be. 

Stampede Pest Control has over ten years of experience and a large professional team. We can help you get rid of termites quickly through our various termite plans. If you think you hear termites in your home, call and get a free quote. There’s no time to waste when termites are involved!