Can Woodworm Spread From Furniture Or Other Wood To Your House?

Can Woodworm Spread From Furniture Or Other Wood To Your House large

If you are like me, you may be worried that woodworm can spread from furniture or other wood to your house. In fact for me it was whether it can spread from wood I collected for our log burner. Some of this wood has woodworm holes in it, so initially I was worried about bringing it into our home.

Woodworm won’t spread from furniture or other woodworm infected wood to your house timbers. Woodworm are larvae that hatch from eggs laid by the adult beetle in damp or moist nutritious wood. If the timbers in your home are dry, as they should be if live in a normally heated home, you won’t get woodworm.

How does woodworm start in a house

How does woodworm start in a house?

Woodworm usually starts in your house if you have high-moisture content in your timbers. Between April and July adult beetles will be looking for somewhere to lay their eggs. If you have damp timbers it’s possible the female beetle will lay her eggs on this damp wood. You can have damp or moist timbers from penetrating damp, condensation or rising damp.

Understanding the woodworm life cycle

Firstly, woodworms are not actually worms. They are instead the wood-eating larval stage of many different species of the woodworm beetle.

  • Adult woodworm beetles lay eggs on moist wood between April and July. They normally lay their eggs in the cracks of the wood, allowing the newly hatched larvae to burrow into the wood. At this point you probably won’t know the wood is infected by the larvae.
  • The woodworm larvae spend up to five years in this stage inside the wood. The larvae will eat the wood and need the moisture to survive, as this is their only source of water. This is why you won’t find woodworm damage on dry wood. The female beetles won’t lay eggs on dry wood, as they know their larvae won’t survive.
  • The larvae pupate (i.e. transform into adult beetles) and burrow their way out of the wood. It is at this stage when you’ll find the tell-tale signs of woodworm. It is when you’ll see the small oval holes that are usually about 1-2mm in diameter. As they emerge from the wood they leave a powdery dust known as frass.
  • These newly formed adult beetles will lay more eggs and so the cycle continues. The adult wood boring beetle can fly, but they generally only live for about three weeks.

What time of year do woodworm beetles emerge?

Adult beetles usually emerge from infected timber between May and September. It is at this stage of the woodworm beetle’s life cycle when it becomes noticeable the wood is infected. This is because they bore out of the wood and leave the tell-tale woodworm hole.

Can woodworm be carried on clothes?

Woodworm beetles are unlikely to be carried on clothes. If you had any clothes in close proximity to woodworm infected wood they may contain the dust or frass. This can be washed out on a normal washing cycle. Any beetles emerging from the wood will not remain in the fabric of your clothes.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this article about can woodworm spread from furniture to house

If you’ve enjoyed this article about “can woodworm spread from furniture to house” please share it on your favourite social media site.

Also, if you have any questions, please feel free to comment below too. Alternatively, if you need more help, please feel free to contact us on our contact us page here. Or join the discussion and ask your question in the property forum.

Can Woodworm Spread From Furniture Or Other Wood To Your House?

Article written by Russell Bowyer who has been investing in property since purchasing his first commercial property in the 1990's for his own Chartered Accountancy business. But his first property investment project was to turn an old dilapidated restaurant into a large 5-bed home, which he purchased for £117,500 and sold for £450,000 (to see an "after" photo of the house before it was sold see here: About). Russell owns a number of investment properties, which includes houses, flats and HMO's. More recently he has turned his creative side to investing in property using lease options. His largest lease option deal to date was to acquire 12 properties worth over £2 million for just £12, which means he paid just £1 to acquire each property!

4 thoughts on “Can Woodworm Spread From Furniture Or Other Wood To Your House?

  1. I bought a second hand piece of furniture and after a couple of weeks I began seeing small beetles type insects that fly onto my windows I found a lot of dead ones under the unit I had bought ,I live in a new build and I’d not seen any until I brought the item into my home I’ve since put it outside but I keep finding the odd few beetles will they eventually go now I’ve removed the item from my home ,please advise me as I’m worried regards debbie

    1. Hi Debbie, thank you for your comment and question about beetles in your furniture, and whilst it’s difficult to know exactly what type of beetles these are, it’s unlikely they will remain in your new build house if they are woodworm beetles, as all the wood is likely to be too dry for them to lay eggs.

  2. “Woodworm usually starts in your house if you have high-moisture content in your timbers.”

    But how do they actually get into your house? Do they fly in from outside or do they come in from bringing into the house infected wooden furniture?

    1. Hi Alex, thank you for your comment and question – the woodworm beetles will usually fly into the house from outside, but will only lay eggs on high-moisture content wood. Having said that, if you bring furniture into your house that has live woodworm larvae, and then when they pupate into adult beetles, and if you have moist or damp wood in your house, they might lay eggs on this. A good question Alex, thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to top
Don`t copy text!