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Carpenter ants affect buildings by attacking wood. As they prefer damp, rotten wood, their presence may indicate a problem with moisture or decaying wood structures. S i it is not r é Glee, the infestation can last long because the a queen of the colony has a life expectancy of 17 years!

The carpenter ants represent an actual on nuisance when they lodge in your building. A mature colony can count alone over 2,000 workers! They can cause s damage important to the structure in addition to hinder the people there.

Identifying an infestation before purchasing a property will save you many headaches. Their presence does not necessarily mean that you should not buy the building, but it is absolutely fundamental information to make a good decision. The seller may undertake to take care of the extermination and repairs or the sale price will reflect the work to be undertaken.

Note also that a carpenter ant is the only insect that can retroactively be declared as hidden defects. It is therefore essential to call on a certified building inspector before the sale of your building .

How to recognize a carpenter ant infestation?

To recognize an infestation of carpenter ants, you can denote certain signs of their presence:
  • Several  worker ants can be seen  inside  (especially in winter)  looking for food ;
  • ‘re winged ants appear in the spring, in or around the building ;
  • only wood dust may appear near the ground or small cracks ;
  • Some structures (door or window frames) show signs of damage ;
  • dry rustling may emanate from the walls, which is easier to hear at night.

What do carpenter ants look like?

The carpenter ants vary in size and can measure between 6 and 25 mm long e ueur . Although black carpenter ants are common, these pests can be a combination of black and red, or completely black, red, or brown. Sometimes confused with termites, they are distinguished by their thin size and the shape of their antennae. A building inspector (homepage link?) Is able to identify them with certainty and thus can recommend the necessary actions.

I think my building is infected, what should I do?

It is not enough to exterminate the colony to ensure that you are rid of the problem. It is important to identify all the probable causes to prevent it from happening again . Indeed, the presence of carpenter ants often denotes a problem of humidity, water infiltration and even rotten wood inside the structure. Before calling the exterminator, a home inspector can help you identify and fix the problem at the source.

What are the causes of carpenter ant infestation?

Got a carpenter ant infestation on your hands and wondering why? Several factors can be involved. Here are just a few:
  • Cracks in the exterior siding or in the foundation 
  • Insufficient sealing around doors and windows 
  • Sloping land towards the house which encourages moisture build-up 
  • The gutter system that pours water too close to the house 
  • Presence of rotten wood on the ground (such as an old fence or damp firewood  )
  • Insufficient thermal insulation which causes condensation inside the walls 
  • Insalubrity inside the building 
  • Food stored in a leaky manner  

How to prevent an infestation?

The infestation of buildings by carpenter ants is an increasingly common problem in Quebec. Fortunately, there are a few easy steps you can take to reduce your chances of getting infected with this plague.
  • Eliminate the piles of rotten wood debris around your home 
  • Store firewood away from buildings  
  • Replace infested lumber with materials in good condition 
  • Cut the branches of trees and shrubs that touch the building   
  • Check the condition of the ventilation system to ensure its proper functioning 
  • Identify damp or  poorly ventilated areas  likely to attract insects  
  • Identify and repair cracks in the siding  where  the carpenter ants are might leak 
  • Make sure doors and windows are properly caulked 
  • Examine the gutter system and identify weaknesses 
  • Use airtight containers to store food  
  • Keep the house clean by sweeping regularly 
  • Have the building inspected by a  certified building inspector licensed by the Régie du Bâtiment du Québec
Whether it’s time to sell, buy, or just maintain your building, the home inspector can help you detect the presence of such pests and many other problems. If you think you are struggling with carpenter ants, contact us to make an appointment now.