When it comes to feeding their appetite for wood, termites are indiscriminate. They’ll eat rotting logs just as soon as the foundation of your home. And once they’re inside, it’s not just studs behind walls and under floorboards that termites will devour—they’ll happily feast on anything wooden (or, more accurately, anything with cellulose in it) they encounter.

Over the last 75 years of providing termite treatment and protection, we’ve seen termite damage pop up in some pretty interesting places. From boats to books and boots to bedposts, these are some of the most unexpected spots Terminix has found termite wood damage.

7 Items Termites Damage Besides Foundations

1. Cold Hard Cash

A band of $100 dollar bills that has been destroyed by termite damage.

These termites brought a whole new meaning to putting the money where their mouth is.

They say termite damage can be expensive, but this is really taking it to the next level.

Just like any other paper product, money contains cellulose, the primary component of a termite’s diet. 

2. Books

Six books that have been ruined by termite damage. The book closest to the camera has no back cover and is filled with holes.

When it comes to libraries, most people think of book worms. Turns out, termites are the real menace to bibliophiles everywhere for just as long, and, during the springtime in the Southeast, represent a bigger threat to books than even the fabled bookworm.

If your books have been eaten by termites, don’t wait to call in the professionals. You’re likely to have an infestation somewhere in your home. Remember, the local experts at Terminix are just a call away with quick and effective termite treatment solutions.

3. Headphones

A lab-based demonstration of headphones covered in termites.

Even high-tech designer headphones aren’t safe from the wood-eating termite swarm. And no, it’s not because they heard you were listening to the Beatles

There’s cellulose in the thread and fabric of most padded headphones, which a band of termites will eat through quickly on their ceaseless search for food. 

4. Boots

A boot with holes chewed through the sole and heel by termites.

These boots were made for (termite) munching. Any natural fabrics and threads you find in shoes—excluding leather—is going to have cellulose in it.

5. A Boat

A boat docked on land, wrapped in plastic, that has been afflicted with termite damage.

This homeowner’s open water dreams were run aground when their boat took on some extra steerage in dry dock. The hull, stern and keel made a full termite meal.

6. A Bedpost

A hefty, antique wooden bedpost shown as a cross section. Tunnels bored by termites are visible throughout.

Good night, sleep tight, don’t let the… termites bite?

Did you know termites literally never stop eating. They don’t need to rest, sleep or take a break in the evening, and the dark of night provides the perfect cover for workers to seek new food sources. 

That’s what happened to this homeowner, whose thick antique bed posts became a tasty midnight snack for some termites. If there is a bright side, it’s that termites won’t try to drink your blood—unlike bed bugs.

7. A picture of the Blue Angels

A picture of the Navy Blue Angels jets flying over New York Harbor that termites have begun eating.

Unlike the high-flying Blue Angels, termites aren’t very good in the air. The winged termite swarmers that often appear during the spring are actually clumsy fliers, and never make it too far before pairing up and shedding their wings. 

Could jealousy have driven the pest to vandalism? (Unlikely—termites are only really motivated by hunger).

Common Signs of Termite Damage 

To avoid encountering some of these termite-damaged items in your home, here are tips from our Terminix termite experts.

What Does Termite Damage Look Like?

For the most part, termite damage in your home isn’t going to be anywhere near as dramatic as these examples. In fact, most termite damage is invisible from inside your home. Homeowners are much more likely to encounter other telltale signs of termites like discarded wings and piles of droppings.

Unsure if you’re dealing with termites or not? Call your local Terminix branch to request a free termite inspection today. One of our expert technicians will perform a thorough check of your home, answer any questions you might have and show you how to look for termite damage in the future.

Signs of Termite Damage

When there are outward signs of termite damage in your home, it often can be mistaken for water damage. Swollen floors and ceilings are sometimes a sign of termite activity, as is buckling wood and flooring that feels spongy. 

It should be noted, any of these signs of termite damage would represent an established colony inside your home, and the professionals would need to be called in ASAP.

Termite Damage vs. Wood Rot

At a glance, dry rot can look very similar to termite damage. While both termites and the fungus that causes wood rot leave wood fragile and spongy, there are several subtle differences a trained professional can easily spot. 

Trust Terminix for Termite Inspection and Protection

The best way to avoid a termite infestation—and the costly bills incurred by termite damage repair—is to take a proactive approach. Don’t know where to start? Check out all of our termite prevention tips and in-depth blogs, and request a free home inspection.Don’t let termites make a meal of your home and belongings. Call Terminix and request a FREE termite inspection today, and rest easy knowing you’re protected by local experts and the strongest guarantee in the industry.

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