How to kill woodworm – top tips to prevent and remove woodworm

Gardening expert gives tips on deterring pets and pests

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Woodworm is a nuisance pest which feeds on all kinds of wood, creating small round holes and leaving behind a powdery residue. While often the damage is just cosmetic, sometimes woodworm can cause serious structural problems to furniture, wooden beams and more.

Despite the name, woodworm are not actually worms at all.

Instead, woodworm are wood-eating larvae of various species of beetle, but often the Common Furniture Beetle (niche name).

The larvae then drill into any wooden surface – furniture, beams or flooring – and bore through, leaving behind a powder.

They infest all types of wood, and can sometimes cause serious structural damage.

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How to identify woodworm

According to Rentokil, the signs of a woodworm infestation are

Fresh Exit Holes – Holes can be found all year round but often form from May to October.

Tunnels In Wood – Tunnels in timber are the result of boring woodworm larvae.

Bore Dust – Woodworm beetles leave bore dust when emerging from timber.

Weak & Damaged Floor Boards – This could indicate a serious infestation.

Live Adult Beetles – Woodworm beetles will often be looking to mate.

Dead Beetles – On occasion adult woodworm beetles cannot escape the property and die.

Eggs – These are often difficult to spot.

Woodworm Larvae – Can be called wood grub and are usually a creamy-white colour.

To treat woodworm you can either call a professional, or look for a specific treatment.

You need a brush, dip or spray application of a Permethrin-based woodworm treatment.

They cost between £6 and £20 depending on where you buy and the size of treatment you need.

This needs to be applied on all timbers which are impacted by woodworm.

You should also treat any wood items close by to protect against future outbreaks.

You can then re-paint and re-varnish treated surfaces when they are dry.

Can you prevent woodworm?

There are some steps you can take to prevent a woodworm infestation in your home

1. Reduce humidity levels

2. Remove infected items away from other wooden items

3. Treat any items you spot with woodworm as soon as you can

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