Beetles are everywhere in the world. There are varieties of woodworm species, but the common types are woodworm, House longhorn beetle, and the death-watch beetle. All these beetles are destructive, but the damage they cause may differ for each species.
The best way to avoid the infestation of the woodboring beetles in your furniture is prevention, but the problem is that there are different sources of infestation — some of which you can’t control. The major attraction for common furniture beetles is dampness, or you can bring them home through untreated wooden products such as firewood. Below is a guide on how to prevent, control, and get rid of common furniture beetles at home.
Understand the Woodworm Life Cycle and the Signs of Infestation
The first step before you determines your treatment approach is to understand the worms better. Some people may mistake the signs of woodworm infestation with something different. Woodworms are not worms as the name suggests, but they the larval stage of the different species of the woodworm beetle.
Most of the damage occurs when the worms are at their juvenile stage and hidden in the inner parts of the wood. The larvae spend five years munching through the deep parts of the wood before they transform into fully grown adults and borrow their way out.
One of the tell-tale signs is the little round holes left by the adult beetles when exiting the wood. The holes are the first thing that any homeowner will notice if there is a woodworm infestation. It is, however, essential to note that the presence of these holes only cannot confirm whether the woodworms are active or not. The wood may have the holes, but all the beetles could have escaped to find another fresh weed to lay their eggs. You can identify an active woodworm infestation by looking out for frass.
Frass is a product of the woodworm’s drilling process and looks like fine sawdust around the holes. The presence of frass means your wood needs treatment because the woodworms are still active. If there is no frass, you can either seal the wood with a sealant or replace it with new wood.
Replace the wood
The best thing to do for wood that was previously infested with woodworms or beetles is to replace it with new wood. The quality of the affected wood is compromised due to the holes and tunnels made by the woodworms. Such wood can also affect the strength of your structure.
A replacement will, however, depend on the extent and the level of the damage. Replacement is the best option when only a few pieces are affected and when the damage is severe.
Treat the Wood
Treatment is the best pest control method when you are not sure if the worms are still active or not. Removing a few pieces may not work if the worms are still active, given that they could have spread to other parts. Treating the wood will kill the worms and prevent future infestation. You can apply the chemical directly if the wood is unfinished, but you have to remove the finish first before treatment if the wood is painted or sealed.
First, you have to choose your treatment product wisely to ensure that you treat and also prevent future pest infestation. The best product to use is a borate-based chemical, which could be ready to use or may require mixing with water. After mixing the chemical, you can use a sprayer to spray around the wood or use a brush or a paint roller. You should ensure that you have applied all the visible parts of the wood for the maximum effectiveness of the chemical.
Treat Your Home for Beetles
Apart from spraying the affected wood, you can better prevent you home from beetle infestation if you knock down all the beetles in the home before they get to the wood. The first step is to choose an insecticide labeled wood-infesting pests or woodboring beetles to ensure its effectiveness. The next step is to add water and mix as per the guidelines given by the manufacturers.
You can use a sprayer or a hand pump to spray the insecticide in the cracks on your home surfaces or the possible infestation areas. Some of the areas where beetles are commonly found include; around doors and window frames, room corners, beneath permanent furniture, where baseboards meet the wall and the spaces between the flooring and the wall. Most of these products need reapplying after a week.
The best way you can control woodworm infestation is by preventing the humidity inside your house. The worms prefer the wood with a high moisture level. Keep the house well ventilated to get rid of moisture and regularly check the humidity of the timber inside the house. You can use a timber moisture meter to check the moisture. You can also consider hiring the services of professionals such as Monroe Pest Control when the infestation is severe.