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San Diego among worst U.S. cities for termites, report claims

Posted at 1:38 PM, Mar 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-04 17:39:23-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- San Diego is among the top cities for termites, according to a new ranking from Orkin.

San Diego placed 11th among 50 other cities around the U.S., but America's Finest City wasn't alone. Los Angeles was ranked 2nd on the list.

The company says all areas of the U.S. are prone to subterranean termites, but Pacific U.S. and coastal regions of the Southeast also have the threat of drywood termites.

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Termites generally swarm based on favorable weather conditions, Orkin says, but different types of termites swarm at different times.

Subterranean termites swarm in the spring and summer while drywood termites usually swam in the late summer and fall.

Orkin says termites find their way into homes because urbanization leaves fewer dead trees laying around.

"U.S. residents spend an estimated $5 billion annually to control termites and repair termite damage – which occurs in approximately 600,000 homes each year,” said Glen Ramsey, an Orkin entomologist.

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Orkin says the list is based on data from metro areas where the company performed the most first-time customer termite treatments from February 1, 2018 to January 31, 2019.

Check out the list below for the 15 worst cities in the U.S. for termites:

  1. Miami
  2. Los Angeles
  3. Tampa
  4. New York
  5. New Orleans
  6. Atlanta
  7. Washington, D.C.
  8. West Palm Beach
  9. San Francisco
  10. Dallas
  11. San Diego
  12. Orlando
  13. Phoenix
  14. Houston
  15. Raleigh, N.C.

According to Orkin, termites can get into homes through things like wooden structures like porches or decks, stacks of firewood leaning afainst a home and damp soil near foundations. Trees and shrubs close to homes can also pose a risk.

Check out the lists below for what to look for if you're concerned you may have termites:

Signs of a termite infestation include:

  • A temporary swarm of winged insects in your home or from the soil around your home
  • Any cracked or bubbling paint or frass (termite droppings)
  • Wood that sounds hollow when tapped
  • Mud tubes on exterior walls, wooden beams or in crawl spaces
  • Discarded wings from swarmers

Proactive tips that Orkin recommends for homeowners:

  • Check water drainage sites to ensure they remain cleared and effective.
  • Monitor the collection of moisture by fixing pipes, gutters, downspouts, A/C units and other fixtures susceptible to leaking.
  • Caulk around utility lines or pipes.
  • Get rid of rotting wood and debris near the home.
  • Place screens on outside vents.
  • Check wooden structures for damage.

So, if you do find termites, do you need to tent your home? According to Orkin, structural fumigation is a treatment technique used to control drywood termite infestations.

This type of treatment method should only be used when the infestation is extensive, hard to locate or difficult to access, the company says.

Other types of treatment include termidor liquid termite treatments, dry foam and sentricon bait and monitoring. Click here for more information.