Damp and Timber Specialists for 50 years

What is woodworm?

Woodworm is the generic name given to the wood-eating larvae stage of many different species of wood boring beetle. They can infest timbers of any age, old or new, and can be found in properties of all types.

There are many different species of woodworm, but the ones most commonly found in the UK are:

  • Common furniture beetle
  • Deathwatch beetle
  • House longhorn beetle
  • Powderpost beetle

Each woodworm beetle has characteristic features and can cause significant damage during their life cycle, so it’s important to get them dealt with as soon as you spot the signs.

For over 50 years, Prokil have been assisting property owners by identifying and carrying out the most effective methods of treatment for woodworm. If you suspect you may have a woodworm infestation, contact our professional team today to arrange a timber survey on 0800 048 9488.

What does a woodworm look like?

Adult female wood boring beetles lay their eggs in the cracks and crevices of wooden structures. Once the eggs hatch, the larvae bore into the wood to feed and develop. Woodworm larvae are usually creamy white in colour and measure between 4 – 10 mm.
Adult woodworm can measure between 3 – 25 mm in length, depending on the species, and can range in colour between reddish-brown and grey. See our images for examples.

You are much more likely to spot the signs of woodworm long before you see a live specimen, however. Find out how to spot the signs of woodworm below.

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What causes woodworm?

Adult female wood boring beetles are drawn to damp, soft timber where they can lay their eggs during the spring and summer. Timber planks and rafters with a high moisture content are preferred, because damp softens wood fibres and makes it easier for the woodworm larvae to tunnel and feed.

Woodworm tend to be more prevalent in homes with high humidity and poor ventilation, or where there is water damage or leaks, as these conditions create ideal conditions for woodworm to thrive.

Prevention is the best cure when it comes to woodworm, so you should ensure that you have sufficient ventilation in place and no underlying damp problems that may affect your structural timber.

Why is woodworm a problem?

Woodworm can remain in its larval stage between 2 –10 years. During this time, it will continue to eat through your timber, causing irreversible damage. If left untreated, woodworm can cause your timbers to become structurally unstable, which is a potential danger to you and all inhabitants of your property.

Adult woodworm beetles are capable of flight, and once they emerge from the wood, they are able to rapidly infest other timbers in the vicinity. Without treatment, you could be looking at a serious and widespread infestation, and since most of the damage happens within the timber itself, it is often spotted very late.

At Prokil, we are experts when it comes to identifying and treating woodworm infestations. Contact us today to arrange a woodworm survey of your property.

What are the signs of woodworm?

A woodworm infestation often goes undetected until the adult beetles emerge. Look out for the following tell-tale signs that you may be dealing with a woodworm infestation:

  • Small round or oval holes in the surface of wood, approximately 2-4mm in diameter.
  • The presence of frass / powdery refuse.
  • Small beetles on timbers measuring between 3-25 mm in length.
  • Tunnelling or scoring along marks along timbers.

If you have spotted any of these signs of woodworm, you should contact an expert as soon as possible to put in place an effective woodworm treatment.

How do I get rid of woodworm?

So, you’ve spotted possible signs of a woodworm infestation. How do you get rid of it?

The first step is to establish the extent of the problem. At Prokil, we can carry out a comprehensive woodworm survey to evaluate how far woodworm infestation has spread and suggest the best course of treatment to stop it in its tracks.

We have been providing property owners with effective woodworm treatments and preventative solutions for over 50 years.

Whether you require a spray treatment or timber replacement, we can provide you with a cost-effective solution that will protect you against woodworm now and into the future.

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