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Last Updated on By Jon
Read our updated 2021 guide to treating woodworm in your home or workplace for in-depth information and how to save on prices by comparing free quotes online.
If you've noticed the tell-tale signs of wood-boring larva these average costs should help you:
|Professional woodworm survey||£156.75|
|Loft treatment (average house)||£617.50|
|Boron treatment (25m2)||£28.50|
(Prices taken from multiple sources and averaged)
Prices Checked 09/07/2021
A Woodworm is a wood-boring larva of the Common Furniture Beetle (Anobium punctatum). Other common beetles include the Deathwatch beetle, Wood boring weevil and House Longhorn Beetle. Woodworm infestation is a common problem and a menace in many homes in the UK.
If woodworm infestation is left untreated, it may worsen and not only damage your furniture but also the timber structure of your house. Reversing the immense damage is never a cheap venture.
Wood-boring beetles are attracted to damp conditions (wood with a moisture content of more than 20%). The damp conditions encourage the Common Furniture Beetles to lay eggs. The real problem arises when the eggs hatch to form larvae (woodworm)-the woodworm like to burrow and eat their way through the wood causing significant damage.
When the larvae burrow into wood, they pupate, hatch out and eventually leave the timber structures through holes. If the holes are all over, the timber structure may weaken. The effect can be more detrimental if the infested timber is structural and bearing and other building components.
If you are reading this, high chances are that you already know how woodworm holes look like. However, you should note that not all woodworm holes have active insects. Some may be remnants of past treatment, while others may be deserted.
One common sign of an active woodworm infestation is fresh fine wood dust below where there is burrowing. Here is a breakdown of these and other common signs of active woodworm infestation.
The treatment approach you will use, depends on the woodworm type you are dealing with. Some woodworm treatments can be done as a DIY, while others will require professionals intervention.
Here are three Common beetles with an explanation of the best strategies to treat them:
An infestation of wood building components by this beetle can be tricky to treat on your own and you should always engage a professional.
Since this beetle is capable of burrowing deep into the wood, it can cause structural damage. In this regard, the surface treatment may never work for this beetle as it will spend most of its time deep in the wood. For this beetle, it would be best to reach out to a professional to evaluate the infestation and suggest an appropriate treatment strategy. The most common treatment strategy for this beetle is injecting boron into the affected timber.
This is also a notorious wood burrowing pest often attracted by damp conditions of wooden floors or walls. They are known to burrow wood along the grain and their exit holes are rugged and relatively smaller (1mm in diameter). The perfect treatment solution for the wood boring weevil is getting rid of the damp wood, allowing the timber to dry out then replacing it with new wood.
This is the most popular woodworm but is luckily not known to cause any form of structural damage. The treatment of this woodworm is done by an odorless, vapourless and water-agent called boron. This treatment agent should be applied to the infested wood in at least two coats, either by spraying or painting.
If you’ve been wondering what you will spend in a typical wood treatment strategy, this is the segment that you should pay much attention reading. The total cost will, of course, depend on the strategy you will use and these are the main options:
This is a highly disruptive woodworm treatment method (it will take more than one day for the area to be declared safe to reoccupy). The reason for this is that the chemicals used (fumigants) are usually harmful to health.
This is the least disruptive method (the treatment area can be inhabited within 2 hours) to eliminate woodworm effectively. Here, you will put the treatment agent beneath the infested floorboards and let the fog it produces, seep into the timber.
This is easy and come be done as a DIY following manufactures’ guidelines.
To be used as a guide, you’ll generally spend £500 - £1000 to treat your home with pesticides to eliminate woodworm. This is just a generalization and the overall price you pay will depend on the following factors:
It is somehow uncomfortable for a homeowner to diagnose a destructive woodworm infestation and it would be best if professionals are left to handle this work. A highly experienced specialist will evaluate the beetles' problem and come up with an effective treatment strategy. Expect to pay £90-£250 for this. The specialist will also do the following tasks:
The suitability of a Boron surface treatment depends on the beetle you want to eliminate. Generally, Boron surface treatments are either water-based or in form of gels. For a 25 square meters section, expect to pay around £30. A cheaper fumigation chemical called Permethrin can also be used mainly for DIY treatments, but safety precautionary measures must be followed strictly. Care should be taken for the chemical not to come into contact with children and pets such as fish.
Permethrin is a Borax compound and a cheap fumigation agent commonly used due to its relatively lower cost. The chemical is specifically designed for DIYs and hence should be used following manufacturers' guidelines.
The perfect solution for floorboards is first removing all of them, thoroughly inspecting if they are damaged and repairing/ replacing those you find damaged. Before reinstalling, treat them by spraying the underside, the corners and the upper side and also soak the joints even if there is no sign of infestation.
If you have old furniture in your house, they are also prone to woodworm infestation. The most commonly used woodworm treatment for furniture is surface treatment. This can be done whether the furniture surface is polished or not. However, you should note that some furniture preservatives will not work on painted or varnished furniture. During treatment, you should coat the entire surface with the agent and also inject it into areas with surface holes.
For woodworm infestation, we can conclude that identifying the exact problem is the only way you will resolve it effectively. Although you can still handle this as a DIY, it is better to contact a specialist who will not only identify the problem but also come up with an effective way of resolving it. Keep in mind that how you deal with your home’s woodworm infestation today will have an implication on its future selling price. So, do it the right way!