Woodworm are not actually worms but wood boring beetles that can cause structural damage in your home if left untreated. Woodworm is a common problem in homes in the UK and tends to be most problematic between April and September. This is because this is the time woodworm beetles look to mate and lay eggs in damp timber in your home. The woodworm larvae are born inside the timber and it is the larvae that cause structural damage as they eat their way through the wood. Killing woodworm in your home is not something that you should delay if you have spotted the signs of woodworm infestation. Treating woodworm quickly ensures the minimal amount of damage to timber is caused.
Can I Treat Woodworm Myself?
For woodworm infestations in furniture, there are several DIY “woodworm killers” on the market that can be very effective. If you are certain the infestation is localised to a sideboard, chair or dresser, then professional solutions are not necessarily required. If you are confident you can correctly use the DIY woodworm killer, then this is something you could treat yourself.
However, if there is any possibility that the woodworm has got into the timber frames of your property, then we would always recommend contacting a qualified woodworm specialist. Woodworm infestations often go undetected until it is too late. When the fully grown adult beetles emerge from the timber, they have already spent several years inside the timber making it a strong possibility that the wooden beam, joist, or surface has been structurally compromised.
If you have any uncertainty about killing woodworm, it is better to be safe and arrange a woodworm survey. A professionally qualified surveyor will be able to establish the extent of the infestation, whether it is still active, and the best methods of woodworm treatment. It is important to note that our professional surveyors use chemicals that are safe long-term and their application does require strict observation of COSHH regulations. This is why our team uses protective clothing and equipment when killing woodworm.
How do you Treat Woodworm in Furniture
If your woodworm infestation is localised items of furniture then you can treat it yourself using an over the counter woodworm treatment solution.
These store-bought woodworm killers will eliminate Common Furniture beetles using a fluid that usually contains permethrin as an active ingredient. These treatments are usually applied with a brush or as a spray. Any furniture that has had woodworm killer applied to it can be re-painted or re-varnished when dry and we would recommend this as varnish deters wood boring beetles and exit holes from an active infestation are very easy to spot in painted wood.
How to Prevent Woodworm
One measure that’s even more effective than killing woodworm is preventing a woodworm infestation in the first place. Take the following steps to reduce the likelihood that you will ever have to deal with killing woodworm in your home.
Keep timber dry – Damp timber is at greater risk of woodworm infestation as damp wood is easier for the larvae to chew than dry wood. When adult beetles start to mate, they will look for nearby damp timber to lay their eggs in damp wood.
Check second hand furniture – Before you purchase second hand or antique furniture, it is important to first ensure the furniture shows no signs of a woodworm infestation. The common furniture beetle is often mistakenly brought into homes via infested furniture.
Remove infected timber – Don’t hesitate to treat woodworm infestations in your home. The longer you leave infested timber, the more likely the adult beetles will emerge and spread to other wood in your home.
Apply varnish – Applying varnish to timber is an effective woodworm preventative measure. This is because it will become more difficult for water to penetrate it and therefore less likely to attract woodworm.
Contact Our Woodworm Specialists
At Rentokil Property Care, our woodworm specialists are at hand to offer you expert advice and solutions to any suspect woodworm infestations. Call us on 0808 271 9065 or alternatively fill out our brief contact form and one of our woodworm specialists will be in touch.