Are Termites Making a Noise in Your Walls?

Posted on: 26 May 2019

Termites don't tend to advertise their presence in your home. They can be inside for a while before you realise they are there. Sometimes, you only find out that you have a problem when you spot signs of damage.

However, sometimes you can spot signs of termite activity earlier than this. For example, you may even be able to hear them in your walls. While termites may not be noisy neighbours, they may make sounds that are loud enough to hear if you listen at a wall.

How can you tell if the noises you're hearing are termites at work?

Create a Quiet Environment

Termite sounds aren't necessarily going to be that loud; they may also be muffled by the wall between you. If you've heard the odd noise coming from your wall, then it'll be easier to investigate the sounds if you get rid of background noise.

So, for example, turn off anything that is currently making a noise, and close the windows in the room to shut out external sounds. Fans, air conditioners, TVs and radios will all prevent you from hearing faint termite noises.

When all is quiet, put your ear up against the wall and listen for a few minutes. If you don't hear anything right now, keep trying periodically. You may have more luck at night when things are naturally quiet or after rainfall when termites may be more active.

Listen For Identifiable Noises

Termites can make a couple of different sounds that you may be able to hear. For example, if you have a gang of termites chomping down on wood in the walls, then you may hear a slight rustling or even papery sound as they move through their tunnels and eat the wood.

Termites also make noise when they are alarmed or sense danger. For example, soldier termites are always on the lookout. If they sense that something is wrong, it's their job to warn the rest of their group.

To do this, the soldiers usually bash their heads or bodies against wood near them. This sends vibrations to the other termites to warn them that something is wrong in that location. Given the tiny size of termites, these bashes aren't that loud. To you, they'll sound like quiet clicking noises.

If noises in your walls make you suspect that termites have moved in, then your best move is to arrange a pest inspection. A pest specialist can check your home for termite activity and, if you do have a problem, they can treat it.