Woodworm Identification Qualification

Qualifications - what do I ask a Surveyor for if he is inspecting my house?

Woodworm Expert Advice Forum

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Q. Qualifications - what do I ask a Surveyor for if he is inspecting my house?

A. There are many types of Building Surveyor and many valid qualifications. Some of these Surveyors will have a limited amount of background training in the identification of wood boring insects in properties. However, if you want to be certain that the Surveyor has been specifically trained in the identification of Wood Boring Insects and Wood Rotting Fungi then ask for evidence of Property Care Association Membership and of the Surveyor him or herself having the qualification C.T.I.S. - Certified Timber Infestation Surveyor or C.S.R.T. - Certificated Surveyor in Remedial Treatment.

Q. What should the Surveyor look for?

A. Insect holes and wood rots.

Q. Where should the Surveyor look and how?
A. At the roof and floor timbers. If he finds holes he or she should look down the holes with a magnifying glass. If the wood dust and hole edges look bright in colour, it is most likely to be an 'active' infestation. An 'active' infestation is considered to mean that the insect emerged in the last 2 years and therefore Chemical Treatment is justified. If the wood dust and hole edges look grey and dirty, it is probably an old infestation and there is no need to carry out Chemical Treatment.

Fresh woodworm holes showing bore dust

Fresh woodworm holes showing bright bore dust, indicating recent activity.

Q. I don't trust Surveyors. How can I identify these rots and insects myself?

A. Buy their 'bible' - the BRE Book called "Identifying Wood Boring Insects, Rots and Moulds", available from Property Repair Systems, plus an illuminated magnifier, for looking down holes and at fungi. If your 'Surveyor' does not have one he is immediately suspect, so ask.

Click to buy a BRE Book

Q. Where is woodworm dust most likely to be found?

A. In the roof timbers, in floor timbers, in skirting boards and In the back of old furniture. Woodworm love to eat old plywood because of the animal bone glues used in it's construction. This plywood is often found in the back boards and drawers of old tallboys, wardrobes, dressing tables and cupboards.

Where can I buy Boron based Woodworm Treatment?

Woodworm Identification and easily mistaken identity - your Surveyor should be aware




Hole size - 1mm to 2mm in diameter.

Common Furniture Beetle - 2.5 to 5mm long

Common furniture beetle, Anobium Punctatum, has a 5 year life cycle, but the adult only lives for a few weeks and cuts the hole you see in order to exit and find a mate. Eggs are laid onto the timber surface or in old holes. The baby grubs bore back in and the cycle repeats.




Hole size - 3mm in diameter.

Death Watch Beetle - 6 to 9mm long

Death Watch beetle, Xestobium rufovillosum, has an 8 to 10 year life cycle, but the adult rarely visits the surface. Eggs are laid inside the timber or in old tunnels. Only found in Hardwoods, such as Oak and Elm. Always starts in Wet Rot, usually the embedded ends of structural support timbers, like Joists and Roof Timbers.

Bore Dust - cream coloured disc shaped pellets, gritty when rubbed between the fingers.

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Other Property Repair Systems Sites:

www.boron.org.uk - how to use Boron based insecticides/fungicides to treat timber rots and insect attack

www.dampness-info.co.uk - how to treat penetrating dampness in walls and plaster

www.deck-treatment.co.uk - how to treat patio decks and yacht decks

www.dryrot.biz - how to kill Dry Rot in buildings

www.drywallandfloor.co.uk - membranes for lining damp walls, floors, basements and cellars

www.epoxy-info.co.uk - epoxy resins for repairing wood, concrete, brick and stone

www.fire-door-paint.co.uk - upgrade doors to 30 minutes fire resistance

www.joist-repair.co.uk - how to quickly repair joists and beams of any size

www.steel-fire-paint.co.uk - treat steel with Intumescent Paint to provide fire protection

www.timber.org.uk - systems of repair, with step by step methods

www.timber-repair.co.uk - how to repair timber beams

www.woodworm-info.co.uk - how to kill and prevent woodworm and death watch beetle