Is a woodworm active or not?

Often, in old pieces of furniture or wood trades in houses the typical holes left by a woodworm can be seen. The active infestation may have been a long time ago. A modest number of "uninhabited" holes may go unnoticed after testing. Whether beetles and larvae are still active or not, can be recognized.

Assess the situation and check it reliably

Hardly anyone has yet experienced finding the typical holes created by the woodworm in wooden components in buildings or old furniture. The larvae of the common rodent beetle can have a lifespan of up to eight years.

If, in the meantime, the external circumstances change, but it can also come to a complete leaving the affected wood. For safety reasons, components with static tasks such as truss and stairs must definitely be checked for the status of the infestation.

The result must deliver two reliable results:

1. Are there living beetles and larvae in the wood?
2. How far has the inner cavity and amount of holes progressed?

Indicators and test methods

Woodworms are most clearly betrayed by the production of wood flour. This circumstance is helpful, but not always completely meaningful on its own. If the larvae eat very deeply in the wood, the flour trickling out can only take place days or even weeks after the actual feeding.

A good way to test the infestation in addition to the occurrence of flour, is the home of the acorns against woodworm. The acorns do not serve as a removal aid, but as an indicator of the activity status.

Helpful test measures are:

  • Place plate with acorns close to the hole and check for infestation
  • Put different colored (dark-light-contrast) underlay in front of holes and check for days
  • Photograph the surface of the wood and more often compare the damage picture
  • Check odor for damp and musty odors
  • In case of doubt, "blow out" individual holes and pay attention to larvae, beetles and droppings

Tips & Tricks

Do not rely on sounds. The gnawing and crunching sounds in a woodwork usually come from other pests. Larvae of woodworm or common rodent beetle "eat" almost noiseless.

Product Image: Fabrizio Misson / Shutterstock

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