how to get rid of carpenter bees wd40

How to Get Rid of Carpenter Bees with WD-40

Carpenter bees are a common sight in many areas around the world. They are a type of wood-boring bee that can cause significant damage to wooden structures, furniture, and outdoor structures if left unchecked. These bees are often mistaken for bumblebees because of their similarity in size and color. However, carpenter bees are a different species and require a different approach when it comes to treatment and extermination. One popular method of getting rid of carpenter bees is by using WD-40, a popular household lubricant. In this article, we will explore how to get rid of carpenter bees with WD-40 and answer some frequently asked questions about this method.

Understanding Carpenter Bees

Before we discuss how to use WD-40 to get rid of carpenter bees, it’s helpful to understand the behavior of these insects. Carpenter bees are solitary and do not form colonies like honeybees or wasps. They are attracted to wood and will use their powerful jaws to burrow into wooden structures to create a nest. The holes created by carpenter bees are roughly half an inch in diameter and have a slightly curved shape. Female carpenter bees will lay their eggs inside the nest and provide food for their young until they are ready to emerge as adult bees.

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While carpenter bees are not aggressive and will not sting unless provoked, their nesting habits can cause significant damage to wooden structures. Over time, their burrowing can weaken the wood and lead to structural damage. Additionally, the sawdust created by their burrowing can attract other wood-boring insects and pests.

Using WD-40 to Get Rid of Carpenter Bees

WD-40 is a versatile liquid that is primarily used as a lubricant to protect metal from rust and corrosion. However, it can also be used to get rid of carpenter bees. Here’s how to do it:

1. Locate the Nest: First, you’ll need to locate the nest where the carpenter bees are hiding. Look for the characteristic round holes in wooden structures or furniture. You can also observe the bees flying in and out of the holes to confirm their location.

2. Apply WD-40: Once you’ve located the nest, spray a generous amount of WD-40 into the hole. Make sure to spray directly inside the hole for maximum effectiveness. The lubricant will cause the bees to suffocate and die.

3. Seal the Hole: After spraying the WD-40, seal the hole with wooden dowels or caulking to prevent the bees from re-entering. You can also patch up any damage to the wood with wood filler.

4. Repeat as Needed: Depending on the size of the nest and the number of bees, you may need to repeat this process several times to eliminate all of the insects. Check the area regularly for signs of activity.


Is WD-40 safe for use around humans and pets?

Yes, WD-40 is generally safe to use around humans and pets. However, it should not be ingested or inhaled in large quantities. As with any chemical, it’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid contact with the eyes or skin. Keep the product out of reach of children.

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Will using WD-40 harm other insects or pollinators?

While WD-40 is effective at killing carpenter bees, it can also harm other insects and pollinators. It’s important to use this method of extermination carefully and selectively to avoid causing harm to beneficial insects like honeybees and butterflies.

Can I use other household products to get rid of carpenter bees?

There are several other household products that can be used to get rid of carpenter bees, including vinegar, rubbing alcohol, and Borax. However, the effectiveness of these products can vary depending on the size and location of the nest. It’s always best to consult a professional pest control service for severe infestations.

How can I prevent carpenter bees from infesting my property in the future?

Preventing carpenter bees from infesting your property in the first place is key to avoiding damage and costly repairs. Here are some tips to keep these insects at bay:

– Paint or stain wooden structures to make them less attractive to carpenter bees.
– Fill or seal any cracks or holes in wooden structures to prevent bees from burrowing inside.
– Install screens or other barriers over openings and vents to keep bees out.
– Use treated lumber or other less attractive materials for outdoor structures and furniture.


Carpenter bees can cause significant damage to wooden structures and furniture if left untreated. While there are several methods of getting rid of these insects, using WD-40 is an effective and affordable option for smaller infestations. By understanding the behavior of carpenter bees and using proper precautions when using WD-40, you can eliminate these pests and protect your property from future damage.

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