long term effects of untreated woodworm

Long-Term Effects of Untreated Woodworm

Woodworm can burrow deep into the timbers of your home, causing damage as they move from one location to the next in search of nourishment.

While woodworm are often unseen, if left untreated a small woodworm infestation can quickly grow, before causing long-term structural problems within your property. For this reason, it’s incredibly important to act fast if you believe there might be woodworm in your home.

In this article, we ask our expert team at Danford, Brewer & Ives to explain the potential long-term effects of untreated woodworm.

Long-Term Effects of Woodworm Infestations

Woodworm are small larvae laid by wood-boring insects that burrow into timbers in search of cellulose, which they feed off as they grow. Woodworm eventually hatch into beetles, but to do this they must first bore their way out of the timbers where they’ve established themselves earlier in their lifecycle.

Woodworm has a number of long-term effects on buildings, but while they are often difficult to spot, there are several key signs that your home might be infested. If you see any of the following effects of woodworm, you should call in the woodworm specialists.

● Small, rounded holes that appear in timbers and other woodwork in the home

● Frass - powdery dust left behind by burrowing woodworm

● Crumbling skirting boards

● An abundance of larger adult beetles in your home

These tell-tale signs are often not found in obvious locations, however, making them more difficult to spot early on. Woodworm can be found in basements or attics, and in other places that you might not check on a regular basis.

What Happens When Woodworm Is Left Untreated?

While these initial effects might seem harmless, over time these minuscule problems expand and become much worse, leading to long-term effects that could have been avoided if treatments were applied earlier on.

Woodworm moves from one timber to the next in search of new sustenance. They dry out the timbers as they feed on the cellulose, and leave behind a tell-tale trail of frass, as they continue to penetrate into your home. Over an extended period of time, there could be few timbers remaining that haven’t yet been affected by woodworm.

If left untreated, woodworm multiplies and bore their way through timbers and wooden supports in your property. A large infestation can lead to an enormous network of boreholes, which seriously undermines the timber.

What Damage Can Woodworm Do?

Woodworm can cause serious damage if left untreated, so it’s important not to underestimate the disastrous effects that a long-term woodworm infestation can have on your home.

Because woodworm burrow into the timbers and feed off cellulose, this can cause timbers to deteriorate and eventually collapse. While this damage could be superficial if it’s skirting boards or furniture that’s affected, if the affected timbers are found in important locations providing support to the building, then in severe cases the structure of the property can be compromised.

This is a hazard not only to the building, but also to anyone living inside. If woodworm have caused serious damage to a property, then it’s going to be an expensive and time-consuming (but necessary) effort making the property structurally sound again. Affected timbers would need to be taken out and replaced, and treatments laid down to ensure the infestation can be destroyed.

If woodworm infestations are caught before they start to cause long-term damage to the structure of a building, then treatments are much quicker and much more cost-effective.

Woodworm Treatment with Danford, Brewer & Ives

Different types of woodworm can pose different threats to your property. Different species also require different solutions, but it can be difficult to identify different types of woodworm and how far they have penetrated into timbers without experience.

Treatment depends on the severity of the infestation. Often, it’s only the surface of the timbers and affected areas that need to be treated to remove the woodworm.

To ensure that infestations are dealt with efficiently and effectively, we recommend calling in a specialist, such as our professional team at Danford, Brewer & Ives. If you’ve seen tell-tale signs of woodworm or the damage they might already have caused, then don’t hesitate to act fast.

Contact Us for Woodworm Treatments

For more information and advice on woodworm infestations, the damage they can cause, and possible treatments, please contact our friendly team on 01765 804050 or fill in our online contact form to carry out a survey of your property. Our technical team will be on hand with expert advice tailored to resolve your woodworm infestation problem.


We are open

Open As Usual

Tuesday, 03 November 2020.

We are still open! 👷‍♂️

Following Prime Minister Johnson’s announcement on Saturday, we would like to inform you that as we are part of the construction industry we are expected to remain open throughout the next lockdown, allowing us to continue to carry out surveys and works within people's homes.

Danford Brewer & Ives are continuing to operate as normal with all safety precautions in place. We have a COVID policy in place to ensure the safety of our customers and employees whilst a survey/any works are being carried out.

If you wish to arrange a damp, timber or basement survey please do contact us on 01765 609990 or visit our website www.dbi-ltd.com!

We can take and discuss any enquiries and are looking to book in surveys, carry out works and site visits whenever and wherever it is safe to do so.

Thank you to all our customers for your support during these uncertain times!

David Ingham