Woodworm


While doing some wiring work in the garage of my son's bungalow I discovered that the ceiling joists (covered with plasterboard) have a pretty bad woodworm infestation. The garage is built on the side of the house - with the ceiling joists 'let' in to the side wall. However, because of the way that it is constructed, there is a link from the garage roof to the loft of the bungalow - so there is a real possibility that the infestation has spread into there, which we will have to check. The first task will be to remove the plasterboard from the garage ceiling and treat all the timbers. Anyone here got any experience of these matters who has any advice/suggestions?
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Firstly, is it an active infestation? Is there any fresh newly cut wood coloured sawdast coming from recent holes? Most old houses have had woodworm, but it may have stopped some time ago (often when central heating installed).
Woodworm seem to prefer timber that is slightly moist (maybe not enough to rot) and not dried out by central heating. Might want to check the roof isn't leaking and that there's ventilation in the space. I doubt any link is going to be significant - the beetles are small enough to get anywhere anyway - it's more a question of if the timber is ideal for their lavae.
--
Andrew Gabriel
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writes:

First of all thanks for the reply. The house isn't that old (1960s), and at the moment there is no central heating in the place. I'm not sure if it is an active infestation - I only cut a small area of the plasterboard away to feed some cables through. In the next couple of weeks we intend to remove all the plasterboard so that we can give it a proper inspection. Before that my son is going to up into the loft and inspect all the timber up there.

There is no sign of a water leak anywhere, everything is bone dry. It could well be a old infestation that was treated in the past (he has only been there 6 months) - let's hope so! If it isn't, any recommendations on treatment?
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Check with a knife to see how deep the infestation as penetrated. Woodworm normally only goes about 1mm in. Bad infestation goes deeper. If there is a bad infestation then you may have re new the timbers. I would spray to be on the safe side. Activity is seen by small piles of saw dust on top of bore holes..
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Kipper at sea wrote:

Underneath surely? (on the surface where they dropped the dust as they cut their way out)
Andy
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wrote:

I'm now told that a loft inspection has revealed a relatively small infestation up there on the side close to the garage roof - with some fresh sawdust around, so clearly it is still active. It doesn't look too bad, although I have told him to try your knife test. I don't get the impression that it is bad enough in the roof to have to think about new timbers, so fairly quick treatment will be carried out up there. The garage is a different matter. As I have said, we have to remove the plasterboard to check that. Tell me, Keith (or anyone else, please), your roofing experience must have led you to having to remove quite a bit of plasterboard. So do you think that the stuff put in a building of that era - 1960s - would have a significant (or any) amount of asbestos in it, and, if so, is there a danger?
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In my opinion the only place you will find asbestos is around pipes, under eaves soffit and sometimes shelves and of cause the roof sheets. If in doubt wear protective cloths and discard them on completion of the work at the end of the day, not at the end of the completion of the work, in other words new days work fresh clothes and take a shower.
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On Mon, 24 May 2010 11:54:15 -0700, Kipper at sea wrote:

and Artex . . . .and remember that asbestos is controlled waste needing proper disposal.
--
David

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Tell me, Keith (or anyone else, please), your roofing experience

In my last house the whole garage ceiling was asbestos, half inch thick for fire proofing.
Mike
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Was it normal, brittle, asbestos sheeting or did it resemble plasterboard?
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Thanks Mike, thats one I forgot. I have seen asbestos used for ceiling in garages. If I remember its usually held up with nails like plaster board with strips of wood about 38mm or 1 1/2" wide and 3/8" 5mm thick fixed over the joints for extra support because it a heavy material.
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