Woodworm is known to most people because it can affect wooden objects such as cabinets and wooden structures by laying eggs in untreated wood. And that, is of course, very detrimental for the wood. What can you do to get rid of a woodworm infestation, and how can you prevent it from entering your house?
The term ‘woodworm’ is the collective name for different types of wood-boring beetles, specifically, their larvae. These creatures can damage wooden objects such as cabinets and wooden structures by laying eggs in untreated wood. Many people are likely to be familiar with this household pest because woodworm infestations are frequent in houses with wooden furniture.
The larva eats through the wood and makes holes in the furniture or structures that break it down into wood dust or sawdust. And that is, of course, very bad for the wood in question. But what can you do once you discover a woodworm infestation, and how can you avoid it?
How do you get woodworm?
There are several things you can do to prevent getting woodworm. The main factor causing a woodworm infestation is damp wood. Therefore, the most effective way to counter any woodworm pests from entering your home is to make sure your home is as dry as possible indoors. If you have a leak in your house, you must repair it as soon as possible. Otherwise, you are purposely providing an environment where woodworm can thrive.
Woodworms like wet wood best because it is easier to pulverize, but this does not mean that dry wood is exempt from any woodworm problems. Therefore, always treat your wooden furniture preventively with protective paint, lacquer, varnish, or wax. To do this, coat the wood all over with paint or varnish so that the woodworm cannot easily penetrate it.
Tip: If you enjoy buying old furniture at the flea market, always treat it preventively. It is not unlikely that the previous owner threw this piece of furniture away because it was full of woodworm.
If you haven’t taken any of the precautionary measures stated above, how can you tell if you have a potential woodworm problem? You may not even realize you have a woodworm infestation until the resulting damage in your furniture or wooden structures becomes visible. Early identification is, therefore, extremely crucial before the pests cause more damage.
You can detect woodworm activity easily by checking for any sawdust and holes in and around your furniture. Woodworm that gnaws on your wooden structures also makes noise, and although this is very quiet, you can still hear woodworm feasting on your wood up close – which is indeed not an attractive discovery!
Tip: Woodworm can be in your home for years before you notice it, so do checkups regularly and check old cabinets that you do not use regularly.
Fighting woodworm with natural products
If you don’t like to use chemicals in your home, you can initially try fighting woodworm with natural products. Instead of buying a chemical solution, try to tackle the problem first with natural water-based pesticides. The first thing to try is to mix strong alcohol with some vinegar and pour it in a spray gun. Next, inject the mixture into the holes and openings in the wood and seams.
Woodworms also cannot tolerate extreme cold. If woodworm only occurs in a particular wooden item, you can put it in the freezer for two weeks, resolving the problem. If a woodworm has entered a larger piece of furniture, you can use petroleum as a pesticide. Lubricate the furniture completely with petroleum, and once woodworm comes into contact with it, they will die.
Tip: If the woodworm only occurs in one piece of furniture, consider throwing it away. That is probably the easiest way to prevent woodworm from spreading further.
Chemical products against woodworm
If natural products have little or no effect, there is no choice but to use chemical products against woodworm. The HGX spray is a commonly used product to get rid of woodworm. Woodworm pesticides based on boric acid and borax are safe to utilize but are not recommended for non-professionals.
Always read the labels before using chemical products, and do your research since they are dangerous if handled carelessly. Take precautions before getting started as chemical compounds can produce vapors that can cause adverse reactions when touched or inhaled. Therefore, always use a protective mask, safety goggles, and safety gloves.
Tip: If you have zero experience in using chemical products, have woodworm treated by certified woodworm control agents.