Category: Home Improvements

Leaving No Stone Unturned: 3 Risks and Consequences of Failing to Remove a Tree Stump

On occasion, a tree grows in the wrong place or gets old and diseased. Trees can also be destroyed by bad storms. Whatever the cause, some trees become a danger and must be removed. Tree removal involves more than cutting down a tree and hauling it away. Once the tree is gone, the tree stump must be dealt with. If this stump is left in place, it can cause hazards and inconvenience.

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Stump Removal Importance and Methods

Good tree removal companies such as Tucker Enterprise cut down the tree and haul away all the debris and then use special stump grinding machinery to get rid of the stump. This step costs a little extra but is well worth the investment. The tree they removed was probably hazardous and needed to be removed. The stump presents another hazard. When the stump is removed, healthier grass can grow, and tripping hazards are removed. Stumps are not easy to remove, and older methods could cause damage to the landscape that then needed to be fixed.

Older methods of stump removal included using explosives or wrapping a chain around the stump and pulling it out with a truck or other heavy equipment. Some people attempted to dig the stump out. All of these methods were time- and labor-intensive and had risks. The new stump grinding equipment makes short work of stumps as they are ground down to four to six inches below ground level. The resulting stump grindings can be used as garden mulch or the homeowner can pay to have it hauled away.

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3 Risks of Failing to Remove Stumps

It is tempting to save money and live with the stump, hoping it will rot away over time. But there are three main risks to leaving stumps in place.

  1. That stump left in place can sprout new growth with small unwanted trees growing around the stump. These trees can be cut off but will keep growing back unless permanent steps are taken to get rid of their roots.
  2. The stump is going to be an eyesore and take up space the homeowner might want for other purposes, such as flower beds or yard furniture. The tree stump will be inconvenient to maneuver around when lawn mowing.
  3. That tree stump can present a tripping hazard or damage the lawnmower. In addition, the tree stump can attract insects as it decays. These include beetles, termites, ants, and other wood-boring pests. It would be very expensive if the termites migrated from the tree stump to the house.
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The Advantages of Removing Tree Stumps

The advantages of removing tree stumps outweighs the costs of the removal. When that unsightly stump is ground down and away, there will be additional space in the yard for other purposes. The yard will be safer and more attractive with no stumps. And, most importantly, the yard will be safer to use with the tripping hazard gone. Avoiding the invasion of pests and insects that feed on decaying tree stumps is also important. If there is no money to grind the stump of a tree being cut down now, the stump grinder can always come back when there is money in the budget for the job. If you’ve got questions or need a stump removed, contact the experts today.


7 Ways to Protect Yourself Against Attempted Burglary

No one wants or plans to be the victim of a burglary. However, the FBI has reported there are more than one million burglaries across the country, every year. One of the best ways to protect a home is by installing an alarm system from a reputable company.

There is an array of other products to use as well, such as Security Film for Office, access systems, and smart technology. Additional actionable tips to provide protection against burglars are listed here.

  1. Be Sure the Home Appears Lived In

Burglars are trying to find an easy target. They are going to search for homes that appear to be vacant. If a homeowner is going to be away from home for a week or more, make sure something is looking after the property. Be sure the snow is shoveled, and grass mowed. Don’t let the mailbox get full or newspapers to pile up. It’s also smart to put lights on a timer or invest in automatic window treatments. These are the steps that will help ensure it looks like someone is home.

  1. Lock Windows and Doors

If a homeowner isn’t locking their doors or windows when they leave, or even when they are at home, they are inviting a burglar to come in. It’s easy for a burglar to locate an open house. Approximately 40 percent of burglaries don’t happen because of forced entries. Additionally, don’t put a hide-a-key in an obvious place. Burglars are going to know where to look.

  1. Keep Entry Ways Open

There are some burglaries that occur in a hidden entryway where a person can break a window or pick a lock. If there are shrubs or trees that block the view of the door, now is the time to have them trimmed. Another step is to install motion sensor lights to deter a burglar.

  1. Hide Valuable Items

Some robberies occur because valuable items are left out in the open or in plain sight. If a person has a fancy television or expensive entertainment system, be sure it isn’t close to the windows. Don’t leave jewelry or cash on the dresser either.

  1. Avoid Opening the Door for Strangers

Some home invasions occur just because someone opened the door. In fact, 27.6 percent of all burglaries occur while someone is home. If someone comes to the door, they may have a reason to try to get inside. Have a peephole in the door to ensure that anyone answering the door knows who is there before opening it.

  1. Consider Getting a Dog

Dogs, particularly a bigger dog, will be a great deterrent for a burglar. There are many people who are afraid of dogs and even if they aren’t, a big dog barking will scare them off.

  1. Don’t Advertise Going on a Vacation

There are some burglars that are going to stake out a house before they try to rob it. They will watch a person’s routine to find out when no one is going to be there. They will also look at social media to see when people are going to be away. Avoid doing this.

When it comes to protecting a home or business, there are several steps that a person can take to protect themselves and their home. Being informed is the best way to ensure that a home is well-protected from nefarious individuals.

Rocklin CA Plumbing Companies

Dealing with plumbing disasters is never fun. There is never a convenient time to have malfunctioning plumbing. What’s worse, usually these issues occur at the worst possible time.

If you are dealing with a plumbing emergency or not, you will want to does your due diligence to identify the right plumbing company to hire. Below, we shall talk about some of the key tips that you should be using when you are looking to hire one.


Finding The Right Rocklin CA Plumbing Companies:


1. Factor In Plumbing Company’s Experience

By identifying a company with a lot of experience within the plumbing industry, you should be able to find the right one. One such experienced plumbing company you can consider is Experience is everything when it comes to plumbing because a lot of it involves trial and error. Therefore, you want to be sure you are choosing a company that has already made their fair share of mistakes working with other customers, so they are more likely to offer you the best service. By identifying a plumber that has been there and done it, you should be able to find one that is going to provide you with excellent results.

2. Look At Reviews

One of the best things you can do to identify the best plumbers in your immediate area quickly has to be looking at their reputation online. Nowadays, there is so much information available to us. Because of this, you should be leveraging this information to make a better decision about the plumbing company you should hire. By identifying a company with a lot of positive reviews, you should be able to minimize the chances of making a poor hiring decision. While you shouldn’t place all of your trust in online reviews, it can be an easy and effective way to limit the total number of companies you have to choose from. You want to look at various review websites to ensure you are getting an accurate snapshot of their reputation within the marketplace.

3. Do They Offer Emergency Services

Not all plumbing companies are going to be there when you need them the most. You need to figure out whether or not they offer the kind of services you need. If you are dealing with a plumbing emergency, finding a company that is willing and able to help is key.

4. Do They Have Insurance?

You need to be sure that you are choosing a plumbing company that offers you the kind of protection you need. Hiring a plumbing company without adequate insurance is going to put you in a bad situation. You need to identify one that has the necessary plumbing insurance to give you protection and peace of mind. After all, the plumbing company is going to be working on your property. If they are not adequately insured, and if they don’t have a license to offer plumbing services in the state of California, you might be held liable for any potential damages or injuries on your property.

5. Do They Communicate Well?

A plumbing company that communicates quickly and effectively with you can make your life easier. Because of this, you should attempt to find a company that is going to be very responsive with their communication to identify one that is going to give you the best chance of solving your plumbing issue as efficiently and as effectively as possible.

6. What Is Their Quote?

Finding a plumber that is going to be willing and able to offer you the plumbing services that you require at a fair price is another major thing that you want to be considering when you are shopping for one in your area. After all, no one wants to have to pay more for their plumbing services than they have to. There are several plumbers to choose from, so you should be able to do a good amount of comparison shopping by getting quotes from various plumbers. By doing this, you will have a good list that you can choose from that are offering excellent value for their plumbing services for all your plumbing issues.

7. Do They Offer A Guarantee?

Another thing that you should always be looking for when you are hiring a Rocklin plumbing company is whether or not they offer any guarantee. You want to try to find a service that offers a reasonable guarantee on their servicing, including parts and labour. That way, if something goes off, they will be obligated to fix it for you.


You want to try to find a plumbing company that is going to give you the best service for the money. By doing your due-diligence and finding a plumbing company that offers a reasonable quote with good experience, you should be able to find one that you will be satisfied with. The key is doing your due diligence to ensure that the company you are hiring has the insurance and licensing needed to protect yourself. There are plenty of experienced plumbing companies on the market. Therefore, you shouldn’t be forced into paying extreme prices for plumbing services if you are willing to do the right amount of comparison shopping to identify one that offers a reasonable quote. By choosing the wrong plumber, you might end up putting yourself in an even worse situation than you started with. That is why it is so crucial to pick and choose carefully.

Common Gate Repairs to Look Out For

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The main gates to your property are obviously very important, and not just for security reasons, as the gating is a major aesthetic feature of the front elevation. Like anything else, gates do require maintenance, and with that in mind, here are some of the common gating repairs you might encounter, along with effective solutions.

  • Lack of Lubrication – All gates need regular lubrication to ensure smooth operation, especially the tracking and bearings, which, if not greased regularly, will soon break down. If your front gates have seen better days, you might want to look into the cost of electric gates residential properties have, and this can be done by carrying out an online search to find a local gate supplier. Once you have made contact, they will send an expert to view your property and make some design suggestions.


  • Cold Weather Issues – The freezing weather can cause gating problems, as freezing can cause electric motor issues, which can render the gates inoperable, at least until the ice thaws out. Sprays can be used to make the tracking usable by thawing out the ice and should be used prior to opening or closing the gates. There are informative articles that reviews motorised gating options, which might help you with your selection.


  • Metal Tracking Issues – If dirt or grime builds up along the main metal tracking rail, this could cause the gate to stop, and the tracking should be regularly cleaned, thus ensuring there are no obstructions. This is something you can do, checking that the tracking is clean and free of any debris.


  • Remote Control Issues – These can be frequent, with batteries running out of power, and should a remote control become wet, this could render it useless. However, the gate supplier would be able to supply you with a replacement remote control unit. It is easy to lose a remote unit and a replacement can be ordered.


  • Motor Failure – This is very rare, as the motors that power electric gates are guaranteed for 5 years. However, should there be any issues, the supplier would arrange for a replacement to be fitted, which would usually be free of charge.


If the gates to your property are old, it might be wiser to replace rather than repair, and a quick online search will help you find a local electric gate supplier who would be happy to quote for the project. There are several designs that might suit your property, with many extras like an intercom and remote-control access, and it is only by calling out an expert that you can examine all your options.

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If your gates are in need of repair, the first people to call are those who installed the gates, as they know the system well and should be able to pinpoint the fault. If your gates are designed and installed by experts, there’s very little that can go wrong if they are serviced at regular intervals.

What to Consider Before Renovating

It is a New Year, a New Decade! So let’s start the New Year right with a piece on renovating which brings my experience working in the Construction field into my blogging world!

For the last three years, I have been working for Sherhill Construction and it has been such an eye opening experience. The Construction world isn’t just a hammer and nails. It is much more complex than that and this is why I thought it would be great to share some tips for home owners looking to renovate.

Renovating can be extremely rewarding as it can add value to both your property and lifestyle. However, no matter if you’re undertaking a big or small project, there are a few factors to consider before beginning the renovation work.

Urgency of the Issue

Renovations cost money and if you have a lengthy “to-renovate list” start slow. Look at what items may need urgent action first such as a leaking shower for example. These items could cause bigger problems down the line and should be dealt with first.

Doing one project at a time is ideal financially and if you are living in the home while the renovation is being done, it will be a little less chaotic. It truly is up to you and your needs.

Financial Budgeting

Before doing any renovation, it is best to find out the costs involved in every detail of the renovation. You can speak with a contractor or you can do your own in-depth research to see how much you should be budgeting. The more detailed the budget, the better it is for you in the long-run.

Always set a realistic budget with at least 10% to 20% as a buffer for any unexpected expenses that may arise. When homes are a bit older, you may never truly know what is behind the walls or under the floors.

There are a few financial options that you can undertake if you don’t have the funds at the present time to carry out the projects. I recommend to speak with a financial advisor to see what options are available to you.

Many people would want to save on cost by doing much of the work themselves. A word of advice is to hire professionals, especially in specific trades such as plumbing and electrical. It is the safest route and can save you a lot down the road.

The Return on Investment

A good first impression of your property can dramatically increase its price.

There are many renovations that can increase the value of your home and this is something to consider before renovating. For example, upgrading kitchens and bathrooms are areas that add much more value to a home. There are also other upgrades such as painting and landscaping that can add value but not as much as a kitchen upgrade.

Therefore, look at your home goals and see which project will give you the best return on your investment. If you are planning to sell then this would be ideal to look at before renovating. Always speak with a professional realtor to see the best route for you to take.

Before any renovation it is best to consider all these factors before starting. It can save you time, money and stress by preparing yourself the best way possible. I know personally how it can be when you catch the “renovation bug” but luckily I was able to prepare ourselves slowly with the experience that I gained through work. These tips above truly helped our family keep in budget and slowly cross off our “home to-do-list.”

If you are looking to renovate and not sure how to get started and live in the Greater Toronto Area, give Sherhill Construction a call at (toll free) 1-833-597-8887. Also if you have someone handy at home but they are taking way too long to complete the simple handy tasks at home, Sherhill can help with that too through their handyman services. Just give them a call to get started! 😉

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

Momma Braga

*This is not a paid or sponsored post. Momma Braga did not get compensated for advertising companies mentioned.

Tips and Ideas for Fireplace Mantle Decoration

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When revamping your living room, there are obviously many things to consider, and the fireplace mantle will require some careful thought. Very much a central feature, the fireplace feature offers many opportunities, and with that in mind, here are a few tips and ideas on mantle decoration to give you a little inspiration.


  • Make Good Use of Wall Art – This is a great idea, and if you place a couple of prints on either side of the mantle, this will give the fireplace some balance. This is also a chance to add a touch of bright colour into the room, in fact, some people like to make the fireplace wall an art wall, which looks ideal with the right antique overmantle mirror. Wall art also adds texture and depth to the room, and with many online suppliers, you can browse until you find something ideal. A pair of old oil paintings in ornate frames would really add that finishing touch, and with a couple of very small LED spots, you can feature the paintings.


  • Antique Mirrors – Regardless of style, an antique overmantle mirror could take pride of place, and with a leading UK antique dealer that has a fine selection of overmantle mirrors for sale, you can browse in the comfort of your own home. Victorian or Edwardian mantle mirrors certainly add style and character to any living room, and you might want to choose something that is wider than your mantle, which will make the room look a little larger than it actually is. It is important to select a mirror that is proportionate to the room, and by taking accurate measurements, you can browse the selection of fine antique mirrors that the online antique dealer has to offer. Make sure that the mirror is placed with an adequate spacing from the mantle, which should never be less than 4 inches.

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  • Consider Candles – A couple of antique candelabras made from wrought iron adds that finishing touch to any mantle, and you can light them in the winter evenings for that added glow. There are established online antique dealers that are based in the UK, and they would have a large selection of antique and vintage candelabras at very affordable prices.


  • Unused Fireplaces – In the event you don’t use the fire, there are a number of ways to improve the feature, and that fire hearth could also be a great spot for some art, and even though they aren’t needed, some brass fireplace tools can take pride of place on either side.

Image Source: Pixabay

If your decor is modern or contemporary, an antique overmantle mirror would be an excellent addition, and it will make a room look and feel more spacious. Another thing to consider is lighting, as this will have an effect on how the room looks in the evenings. LED offers you far more choices that the traditional incandescent bulbs, and your lighting should focus on the fireplace, which is, after all, the centrepiece of the room.

Keep The House Tidier By Making A Garden Play Area

Okay, you’ve gotten sick of looking around your house and seeing how untidy it is. The children’s toys are everywhere, you can’t take one step without hitting a racing car or princess doll with your foot. You’ve probably already designated one particular room where the kids can play but still it’s not enough. Maybe you don’t have such a room and the living room is always looking like a bomb site. It’s time to make an area for the kids where they can play and not make you so worried over the mess they create. The garden comes to the rescue in many situations and this time is no different. We so often don’t think of the garden as useful space in our home. We tend to just keep it tidy and maybe sit outside every once in a while. All that space and nobody’s is really using it. It could be where there kids have their own play area, keeping the inside of the house tidier.

Start digging away

First thing’s first, you need to dig away the soil. You don’t need to make the entire garden into a play area, so select one corner or half. From then on you need to buy some soil bags or rather, just some large garden bags. These are made from strong synthetic fibers allowing them to bear a lot of weight. All the grass, leaves and soil should be placed inside these. Alternatively, if you have a large amount of earth to move you can use a skip bin. These can be hired in many different sizes. The truck will drive up to your house to drop it off and also pick it up when you’re finished with it. This is a very practical option as you might need to buy multiple bags as the job gets broader and tougher. So instead an open top container like a skip comes in handy.

Flatten and compact

The soil should then be flattened by either using a rake if it’s not that bad or a soil flattener. You can use your feet and hands to press the soil down evenly but this isn’t as consistent as the former option. These aren’t like tar flatteners which require a powered motor, soil flatterners are pushed by hand. Lawn rollers are also useful in this regard as they operate in much the same manner. Compactors are the last option as some soils are very tough, dense and perhaps have a lot of stones making the soil and lawn flatteners skip over the area.

Border and cover

Next you need to create a border around the area, which can be easily done using cylindrical wooden logs. These can be picked up in any garden and home improvement store. Fit them around the area by first digging into the soil as much as you need to. Keep the logs up at around waist height of the children. You can then cover the area with rubber chips and make the area safe to play on.

The garden is the most versatile part of our homes yet we never think of using what we have. A garden play area for the kids will keep the inside of your house tidier and give them somewhere to have fun.


7 Ways To Design Your Windows

Ask any homeowner what is the number one thing that they love about their home, and they may just say location and views. Many homeowners prefer a great view and pretty much every room in your home can benefit from lovely windows. Best of all, there are plenty of designs to choose from.

Here are some ways the design of your windows can influence your home.

  1. Natural Light

As human beings, we are just like green plants. When we have natural light, we feel inspired and prosperous. It’s the source for body and mind and a connectivity to the outside world. So, make sure your home has natural light in every room.

  1. Windows That Complement A Room

If you are lucky enough to be involved with designing your home, consider the spaces where windows will be placed.  Large rooms and tall ceilings can benefit from clearstory windows that sit high above the ground, whereas smaller rooms can take advantage of views and sunlight with windows that have lower windowsill heights.

  1. Framing The View

There’s nothing like waking up to a beautiful view right through floor-to-ceiling windows or marvelling at city lights through curtain wall windows. Figure out what perfect views you want to capture and then choose windows to match. Don’t forget to look at those pretty made to measure blinds to finish the look.

  1. Different Opacities

Is there a room in your house where natural light streams in, but you also need your privacy? Bathrooms are the perfect example. For such rooms, consider a range of opacity levels. For instance, transparent glass is completely see-through, whereas translucent glass is more common in bathrooms.

  1. Light And Space

In most homes, wall space is important. Whether you like to display art or just prefer privacy, having clearstory windows is a great solution. These windows can be located high off floor level and close to your roofline, but still allow natural light to flow in while freeing up wall space.

  1. The Right Design For Your Property

If you are just planning your home, do consider the location and how your house will be situated in terms of sunshine. You may not want to put a window wall of glass in your bedroom where early sunshine will wake you if you prefer to sleep late. Also consider climatic and seasonal changes so you can effectively maximise hot and cold temperature changes when picking the perfect windows.

  1. Use Different Sizes And Shapes

When it comes to picking window sizes and shapes, there are no design rules set. So, get creative and play around with solid spaces and voids and come up with interesting ways and configurations for your home’s windows that are aesthetically appealing and that take advantage of your beautiful views.

From curvilinear to rectilinear varieties of windows, to custom shapes and sizes, there are so many creative and functional options available for your home.

3 Non-Toxic Flooring Options for Your Home

With society’s rising concerns on health and wellness, the choice to go for non-toxic substances comes as no surprise. This is clearly shown in what articles we have at home, from ensuring that our floors are safe up to the bits and pieces on our cupboards. These choices are especially highlighted when you have children at home.

For starters, let’s look into the flooring of your house, which occupies a significant area of your living space. It is important to ensure that your flooring is free from toxic materials, as the presence of harmful chemicals can be a source of indoor air pollution. So, in order to avoid the largest environmental health risk in the world, learning about the proper flooring to use can prove to be advantageous. In fact, while carpeting is a popular choice, carpet installations are to be avoided as they are a large contributor to indoor air pollution.

Here are some useful information about alternative choices for flooring materials and how they could impact indoor air quality that you should look into:

  1. Ceramic Tile Flooring

Generally, a safe, non-toxic flooring option that is also easy to maintain are ceramic tiles. Glazed ceramic flooring tiles are resistant to water, humidity and stain penetration, which makes them an ideal flooring for moist areas in the house such as bathrooms or kitchens. However, unglazed ceramic tiles have to be sealed in order to protect their surfaces from water.

Ceramic flooring is also very durable, they are difficult to crack. A quality ceramic tile installation can last for as long as twenty years or even longer if it is well-maintained. Also, if a single tile succumbs to severe impact and cracks, then you can easily replace the cracked tile.

  1. Vinyl Flooring

Opting for vinyl flooring is a popular choice among consumers because they are durable, versatile, and economical options. Vinyl flooring can come in large, continuous, flexible sheets or as modern tiles or vinyl planks. Unlike vinyl floor tiles, a vinyl sheet floor is completely water-resistant. Aside from being impermeable, vinyl flooring is also easy to install, fairly durable, and resilient. They are also available in a variety of appearances and are affordable flooring materials.

For those looking for vinyl flooring in Melbourne at Market Timbers, check out their assortment of non-toxic flooring materials. They offer a hybrid vinyl/cork flooring system that replicates the natural look of timber flooring.

  1. Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring is the best option for anyone with allergies because it improves air quality. The surface allows for easy removal of dust, pollens, dander, and other allergens. Aside from enhancing the look of your home, there are a lot of major benefits of hardwood flooring. These include being low maintenance, versatile, durable, and cost effective. Not only do wooden floors save you money, but they are also natural, eco-friendly, and more sustainable. Instead of replacing hardwood floors, they can be refinished so it costs less than getting new flooring.

Wooden floors are timeless, and if you want, you can sand and stain them to make them darker.

Indeed, picking flooring can be a daunting task with the variety of materials to choose from and each of the flooring types has an assortment of options too. Other factors such as moisture retention, wear resistance, maintenance, durability, and costs should also be taken into consideration. Plus, the impact of toxic substances on health and wellness should be a significant influence on your choices for flooring materials, so you can look into these three flooring type options.


4 Top Pests That Can Harm The Home

One of the biggest things many homeowners worry about is discovering mysterious holes burrowed in their wooden floorboards or hearing scurrying in the attic. It can only mean one thing: pests have gotten into your home.

There are a number of common pests you should keep an eye out for as they can do a great deal of damage to your home.

  1. Termites

Termites eat on wood. In fact, they are one of the biggest pest threats to homeowners. They mostly feed on wood and can cause significant damage to the structure of your home. The damage that termites can cause may be so extensive that your home could become unliveable until repairs are made.

Sadly, many homeowners don’t find the damage until it is too late. Even if your property is not made of wood, take note that termites may still pose a threat. They can happily travel through plaster and even metal siding to get to wooden structures like floors and wardrobes.

  1. Mice and Rats

Rodents can, at times, be unassuming animals, but over time they can cause a great deal of damage to your home. Mice and rats get to work chewing through just about anything – wiring, thermal insulation and even wood. By chewing through wiring and insulation, the rodents could cause electrical damage and, worse, fires. Their droppings are also a serious danger as they hold several problems. For instance, the smell of the droppings may attract more rodents and the dropping could carry infections and diseases such as tapeworm and salmonella. Pest Free USA has electronic pest control to keep these pesky mice and rats at bay.

  1. Bedbugs

While bedbugs may seem rather harmless, they can be a massive nuisance in your home. What’s more, if the situation escalates, it can render your property unliveable. While bedbugs don’t normally carry disease, they do soil your furniture and bedding. They are a highly unattractive problem that must be dealt with right away, before they get the chance to spread to any other part of your home.

  1. Carpenter Ants

There are a number of different kinds of carpenter ants that can be found in homes. The worker carpenter ants are black with just a hint of red. The ants feed on organic materials containing sugar or protect as well as on other insects. They don’t eat wood, but they can remove wood to hollow out tunnels for the purpose of nesting.

Once the ants create tunnels in your wooden structures, they won’t leave sawdust or debris. The damage they cause can vary, too, depending on how long the pests have lived in that colony. While the damage may not compare to the destruction that termites create, they can still do a great deal of harm to your home, and ant issues should always be dealt with immediately.


Having annoying, destructive pests in your home can be a potentially massive financial burden. But, if you deal with an infestation quickly and professionally, you can successfully rid your home of pests and save your structure.