What is a Wood boring insect?

18 June 2014

Woodworm BeetleA frequently asked question from many home buyers that have received a home buyers reports is“what is a wood boring insect?” This is a common term mentioned within many a home buyers reports that suggests “a survey is carried out to identify the presence of wood boring insects”.

So, what is a wood boring insect? A wood boring insect is a common term that covers many species of beetles that as larvae eat and destroy timbers.

Wood boring insects are usually found in areas within a property that are poorly ventilated with a high humidity such as for example a sub floor crawl space. This is usually because these conditions become perfect for the larvae to hibernate and transform into a beetle.

There are many different types of beetles are the most common beetles found in a property is a common furniture beetle which infests softwoods. This beetle does not cause structural damage however it does consume the sap wood edges.

House Longhorn beetleThe Death Watch Beetle is the 2nd most common infestation in the UK. Infesting hardwood timbers it can cause structural damage as it can consume the core of the timber. The life cycle of this beetle is between 8-10 years.

House Longhorn Beetle is the most devastating beetle; however it is limited to usually the county of Surrey. This beetle attacks the whole core of the timbers if not dealt with in the early stages and if found it is reported to the BRE.

The Wood Boring Weevil is a common species found in wet timber and often discovered in joist ends that are suffering from dampness.


For further information on wood boring insects and our pre-purchase damp & timber surveys see our Damp & Timber page.

If you believe your property is suffering from a woodworm infestation or you have received a home buyers report stating there may be a potential problem, with wood boring insects speak to one our experts for advice or to arrange a survey. Our surveyors are PCA registered and are able to confirm if there is a live infestation and identify the type of beetle that has infested the property and finally determine the best treatment. To arrange a survey contact an expert on 0800 288 8660 or complete our on-line survey request form.