The above photograph was taken by Mr Inspector, a qualified and independent Building Inspector in Melbourne during a building inspection and depicts powder post borer damage to a floor joist.

The photographs was taken during a recent building inspection in Prahran Melbourne and our client was concerned that the damage was termite damage.  This is a common error that people make, including builders.  There is a large difference between borer and termites and what they actually do to timber.

Powder Post borer attack the sapwood in hardwood timber and this can include roof frame and floor frame. The sap wood in the timber normally is within the timber when milled and powder post borer eat it and then die.  They leave a fine powdery dust behind, hence the name powder post borer.  Most of the time the timber member that has been attacked does not need to be replaced.

During a lot of our Building Inspections in Melbourne, we come across borer damage, especially older homes constructed from hardwood.

Newer homes using pine framing do not experience powder post borer problems.

I will endeavour to include other borer articles soon, as some pine flooring can be attacked by borer and this also has people worrying that it is termite damage.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact Mr Inspector.