Signs of a Woodworm Problem
Identifying a woodworm problem in its early stages is the most important stage in treating a woodworm problem. In many cases, you may not even be aware that you have a woodworm problem until the damage has been done and you can see the evidence that wood-boring beetle has been at work. Left untreated woodworm will continue to feed on the timber resulting ultimately in the structural failure of the timber.
There are a number of different types of woodworm beetles that can affect property but there are tell-tale signs that you can look out for. Our list below details what to look for when you suspect you may have a woodworm problem. If you are seeing any of the signs below then it is advisable to contact a specialist to start the process of treating your woodworm problem. You can learn more about how we treat woodworm at Timberwise by visiting the woodworm treatment page.
Typical Signs of Woodworm in a Property
Sign 1: Exit Holes in Timber
When identifying if you have active woodworm in your property one very visual sign is the holes created by the woodworm as they exit the wood. The size of the holes varies depending on the species of woodworm but typically they are between 2mm and 5mm. if the woodworm problem is active the holes will have a ‘clean’ or ‘fresh’ appearance. Check out our examples below of different types of exit holes:
Sign 2: Presence of Frass (Bore dust)
Another sign that you have a live woodworm infestation in your property is the presence of frass being left by the beetle when it chews its way through the wood. Frass, which is sometimes known as bore dust, is the waste product of the woodworm. The colour of the type of frass depends on the species of woodworm but tends to be light and has a texture similar to fine wood shavings. The images below give an indication of what to look out for:
Sign 3: Tunnels within the wood caused by woodworm
Although this is an obvious sign that you have a woodworm problem it is also one of the least visible. The tunnels are created by the woodworm as it makes it way through the timber.
Sign 4: Damaged wood
Damage wood is a clear sign that woodworm are causing damage to your property. Damage could range from weakened floorboards through to crumbling skirting boards. It is important not to confuse woodworm damage with the damage caused by dry rot or wet rot. If you are unsure which of these property care issues are causing the damage then it is important to contact a timber specialist to inspect the timber to avoid unnecessary treatments that may not be appropriate.
Sign 5: Actual beetles (Dead or alive!)
Dead woodworm beetles may be seen near timbers that are infected. Likewise, during the beetle ‘flight season’ between May and October, you could see live beetles as they emerge from the timbers. Learn more about the lifecycle of woodworm here.
Need more Information about Identifying Woodworm?
It is always best to get an expert opinion if you suspect that woodworm is causing damage to wood within your property. You can contact one of our woodworm specialists at Timberwise for free advice by calling 0800 288 8660 or can request a woodworm survey to arrange for a fully qualified surveyor to inspect your property.