Woodworm treatment for a South Hams home


Halwell is a quaint village located within the South Hams area of Devon. The South Hams area of Devon is classed as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and has within it some Devonshire gems such as Dartmoor and the beautiful stretch of coastline between Torbay and Plymouth. The Timberwise Torquay team were called upon to a period detached home and accompanying small stone barn to determine if the property was suffering from a woodworm infestation.

Woodworm is the generic term given to wood boring beetles and weevils that lay eggs in furniture, beams and floorboards. The eggs hatch into larvae that burrow into the wood, remaining there for anything up to five years, potentially causing extensive harm. Timberwise Torquay instructed to only inspect the accessible timbers within the detached barn along with an external canopy to the rear elevation of the main property as well as substantial lintel timber at the front elevation of the property.

There are several different types of woodworm beetles, and it takes a qualified expert to spot potential problems with timber infestation in a building and to ensure that any problems are diagnosed correctly. Our Torquay woodworm surveyor, held the industry recognised CSRT qualification (Certificated Surveyor of Remedial Treatments), so the customer knew their property was in safe hands.

Did you know?

Totnes, a market town in the South Hams area, has more listed buildings per head than any other town in Britain. A stroll up the steep and narrow Fore Street takes in the Eastgate arch and many of the town’s 66 characterful properties that were built pre-1700.

Detached Barn

The barn was beautifully and sympathetically converted in the late 1990s and now offers bright and spacious accommodation arranged over two floors. At the time of Timberwise’s visit, further refurbishment works to the barn were in progress. In the two-storey section of the barn, the floor joist timbers to the upper floor level were exposed and there was little evidence of any current woodworm activity.

External Canopy

At the rear elevation of the main property, a substantial canopy wraps around two of the wall areas with visible timbers present to the underside. These timbers showed evidence of historic woodworm infestation along with some suggestions that small amounts of current activity by the Common Furniture Beetle (Anobium punctatum) were present.

Common Furniture Beetles are a dark-reddish colour with lines running down their wings and can leave exit holes up to 2mm in diameter. It’s the most common kind of woodworm beetle and favours eating sapwood and European hardwoods.

Exposed Lintels

At the front elevation of the property, a substantially exposed lintel was present that showed evidence of significant amounts of historic infestation by both the Common Furniture Beetle and the Death Watch Beetle (Xestobium rufovillosum) in the form of tunnels in the timber as a result of boring woodworm larvae. Death Watch Beetle is a chocolate brown colour with patches of yellow hair, they prefer oak wood to create a large amount of frass.

Woodworm, like fungal decay, can cause considerable damage resulting in the weakening of structural and joinery timbers. Luckily, this customer spoke to Timberwise before it could lead to structural damage or before anyone was hurt.

Timberwise South West


Timberwise’s recommend solution included spraying an insecticidal fluid to all first floor joist timbers within the two-storey section of the detached barn, along with the accessible roof timbers to the rear single-storey section. Before Timberwise’s arrival, the customer removed all floor coverings and stored items before our arrival on site.  It was essential this was carried out before arrival as failing to do so would have caused delays to work being carried out. Timberwise Technicians then ensured all the timber was clean and free from dust and other contaminants. The concentrate was then diluted with water and applied with a low-pressure spray to provide long-lasting protection.

The insecticidal fluid was also applied to the timbers to the underside of the exposed canopy at the rear elevation of the property and the lintel noted at the front elevation. Using a traditional deep penetrating water-based insecticidal fluid, this then prevents and exterminates woodworm and wood-boring insects from the existing timber.


The treatment was applied to all designated areas in under 2 hours. The formula used was a water-based product producing a non-flammable, quick-drying solution containing no volatile organic compounds with virtually no odour.

The timber treatment benefitted from a Timberwise 20-year guarantee giving the customer total peace of mind that should there ever be an issue Timberwise would be there to help.

Woodworm Treatment in South Hams from the Experts

If you live in the South Hams area and you suspect you have a woodworm infestation in need of treatment, please contact your local Timberwise team on 0800 288 8660 for advice or to arrange a survey. Alternatively, complete the online survey request form to arrange a surveyor to visit your property.