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Powderpost Beetle

What are Powderpost Beetles?

Powderpost beetles, wood-boring beetles can range in size from 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch long. Some of them can also go up to 2 inches or more if found outdoors. Their color can be anywhere from reddish-brown to black in a cylinder-shaped body. Powderpost beetles go through four life stages: the egg, larva, pupa and adult. The first three stages are found only in the infested wood. The larva stage specifically is found creamy white with a C-shaped grub. This stage specifically causes the most damage to the wood as this is where the actually feeding occurs. In the outdoors the life cycle of a powderpost beetle requires a year, indoors however, can require anywhere between two to five years to complete their development and emerge from the wood. This means the larva is eating the wood for many years. This specifically makes it harder to detected infestations for several months or years after completion of a new home. For this reason it is important to contact a licensed pest control company to help detect this. 

Close Up Powderpost Beetle

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How Did I Get Powderpost Beetles?

Often times, these beetles are brought into their homes through tools or imported wood decor. Bamboo is one of the most common sources of powderpost beetle problems. These pests will bore tiny pin sized holes to tunnel deep into the wood and deposit their eggs. 

Inspection & Treatment

While it is difficult to detect infestation one way of knowing if you have powderpost beetles in your home is by seeing the frass that they leave behind. This is typically a mixture of the powderpost beetle larva's feces and wood particles that fall out of the exit holes the adult insects create as they emerge. Inspecting all exposed wood surfaces and probing them for evidence of internal damage is important. Typically this is common in attics, crawl spaces, unfurnished basements and storage areas. To ensure that the infestation is active and not old damage there should be fresh frass which the color of newly sawed wood or live larva or adults in the wood itself. Rechecking the wood periodically to see if there are new holes or damage to the wood is also important. This will determine if the infestation is still active. Typically seeing exit holes that are the same color as the wood surrounding the holes mean that the infestation is inactive and old.


Powderpost beetles are known to damage the following:

  • Cabinets

  • Furniture

  • Musical Instruments

  • Wood beams such as cabins, homes and/or barns

  • Hardwood floors

Pest2Kill Exterminating will inspect your home and evaluate to determine whether powderpost beetles are in fact in your home. Once detected, a treatment plan is then created to get rid of your pest problem and provide helpful tips and tools to prevent these pests from coming back. Pest2Kill Exterminating will have multiple methods based on your customized plan to remove powderpost beetles.


Prevention is key when avoiding powderpost beetles in your home. There are a number of different ways to prevent them from entering. Here are some helpful tips to avoid them:​

  1. Prior to purchasing it is important to inspect the wood you plan on purchasing.

  2. Do not use wood that has not been stored or dried properly.

  3. Avoid using old lumber that may have been infested at another location.

  4. Always inspect older furniture for signs of exit holes and signs of damage. Any exit holes or damage should be thoroughly investigated. 

  5. Seal all wood surfaces.

  6. Use chemically treated wood which include wood preservatives or insecticides. 

  7. Central heating and cooling systems speeds up the wood drying process, especially in damp areas.

Call Pest2Kill Exterminating today to set up a custom plan just for you and help eliminate your beetle problem! 

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