How to Get Rid of Carpenter Bee

Carpenter Bee, How to get rid of


Carpenter bees are similar when it comes to controlling bees; however, in some ways they are different. Carpenter bees will drill a hole into the wood structure and will habit in the hole, whereas, other bees will build a hive. When carpenter bees drill through the wood, the females are the ones that usually do. The hole will be big as the female and she will build a nest in a 90 degree angle. Most of the carpenter bees do not sting, however there are some situations when they will. Male carpenter bees do not have stinger, but the females do and they have a very low dose of venom; so still be extremely cautious when you are approaching them. Be careful when you are trying to control a carpenter bee, because the male bee will confront you when you enter their territory. The carpenter bee looks similar to the bumble bee except that the carpenter bee abdomen is black and shiny instead of yellow. The male carpenter bee will have a yellow face and the female will have a black face and they are about 1″ long.


Carpenter bees normally prefer unpainted and weathered wood; although that does not mean that they will not tunnel into your home. They can also be found in partially decayed live oak, deciduous oak, eucalyptus, and other hardwoods, some nests in incense cedar and redwoods and structural timbers. You can also look at your home to see if there are small holes on your structure such as the side, under gutters, shutters, wooden decks/patios, attics, and any where else that is made out of wood.


When treating the carpenter bees nests, avoid the entrance opening of the hive when you are treating it because it only increases the chance of being stung.

Carpenter Bee treatment is generally applied with a liquid spray (FenvaStar EcoCap, LambdaStar 9.7% CS), dust (DELTA DUST), and aerosols (STINGRAY WASP & HORNET SPRAY, PT WASP-FREEZE AEROSOL). They are to be applied to small cracks and crevices in a structure with a bee might enter or build its nest near. For liquid spray application(FenvaStar EcoCapLambdaStar 9.7% CS), you will need to have a pressure sprayer or a gallon sprayer (CHAPIN 1 GALLON SPRAYER).You will need to apply using the amount that is directed on the label and may need to reapply if needed. You will have to use a low pressure system with a pinpoint or variable patter nozzle to apply the spray mixture to areas such as the side, under gutters, shutters, wooden decks/patios, attics, and any where else that Carpenter Bee nests are found.

The dust application is simple. However, when using dust please be cautious especially when children and pets are present. Dust (DELTA DUST) and aerosol formulas ( STINGRAY WASP & HORNET SPRAY, PT WASP-FREEZE AEROSOL) are generally preferred here.If you find a hole on the side outside of your home, you will insert the tip of the duster with an extender (BELLOW BULB DUSTER) containing the dust into the hole and use as directed to holes or channels in damaged wooden member of the structure, to cracks, spaces or bearing joints between the wood members of the structure, or in the holes of the hives. Apply lightly and uniformly to infested area. DO NOT OVER USE DUST. We suggest that you use DELTA DUST  because even in moisture, it will not wash out or be blown out. This dust is active for 6 to 8 months.

Using the aerosol formula (STINGRAY WASP & HORNET SPRAY, PT WASP-FREEZE AEROSOL), be cautioned because aerosol is a liquid so do not use in electric outings, use only dust. You will just need to attach a thin straw to the nozzle depending on the product, and spray into the hole. Since the aerosol and/or dust will be the outer part of the hole, it will rub off on carpenter bees and it will transmit them inside the tunnel which in turn will cause them to die.

LambdaStar 9.7% CS FenvaStar EcoCap
LambdaStar 9.7% CS FenvaStar EcoCap

These products can be used with this item:

Chapin 1 gallon Sprayer

These products can be used with these items:

Bellow Bulb Duster
Stingray PT Freeze

Date: Wednesday, 14. April 2010 12:32
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  1. 1

    is’nt there a trap or something, with a 2 story house it is hard to spray everything

  2. 2

    There are not any traps for carpenter bees. We recommend using Masterline Bifenthrin 7.9 along with the plugs (TREBOR TRIPLE SEAL PLUG).

    Masterline Bifenthrin will kill the Carpenter Bees, and the Plugs will seal the holes these bees make. We hate to tell bad news to our customers, but there’s no other way to control Carpenter Bees.

  3. 3

    We have a log home ( two & three story) from the first warm days carpenter bees swam all around the house. Power or liquid best method.

  4. 4

    Hi Hugh,

    Usually recommend both liquid and dust form, but dusts might be more effective.
    You would apply the dust or liquid insecticide into the holes that the carpenter bees make in your wood and plug it with one of our plugs.
    We also have carpenter bee kits. They include both dust and liquid forms of insecticide along with the plugs.
    CARPENTER BEES CONTROL BASIC KIT is one of our kits that we recommend for the control of carpenter bees.

  5. 5

    How to keep bees away from hummingbird feeder,they really scare away the hummingbirds.

  6. 6


    Because the hummingbird feeder is nearby,
    I would not recommend the use of any chemicals around the area.
    It’s actually kind of an iffy situation, but if you can find their nest–
    I would recommend using the Wasp Freeze Aerosol.
    It can spray up to 15ft and is known as the quick knockdown for wasps/bees.
    It suffocates the bees/wasps inside the hive and repels any other returning ones.
    We recommend using the Wasp Freeze when the sun is not out–
    as bees are diurnal creatures like us!

    If you cannot find their nesting areas, I would recommend removing the hummingbird feeder
    and treating for the bees. Delta Dust is very effective for the control of bees.
    It can be used indoors and outdoors as it is waterproof.
    Just apply it into areas where you most commonly see the bees landing with a bellowbulb duster.
    Apply it in a very thin and evenly distributed layer, almost invisible,
    so the bees cannot sense it and will become exposed to the Delta Dust.
    When they go back to their hive, they groom each other or theirselves and will consume the Delta Dust.
    The Delta Dust works as an ingestion kill.

    Once the infestation is gone, put your hummingbird feeder back up and watch those majestic creatures come back!

    If you have any other comments, feel free to post again!

  7. 7

    Bees (? carpenter bees)have taken up residence in a knot of a tree (live ornamental, flowering tree) next to our kitchen window. What product/treatment do you recommend that will kill the bees but not harm the tree?

  8. 8


    There is no need to worry!
    We have two products that can solve your problem.
    We have the Delta Dust, which is one of the most commonly used products for the control of bees.
    You would basically apply it in the area where the bees are constantly coming in contact with.
    Once they are exposed to it, it will stick to them, and they will groom themselves or other bees
    in the hive will groom them, and once the Delta Dust is consumed, they will die of ingestion kill.

    There is a faster knock down method, which is by using the PT Wasp Freeze Aerosol.
    You would apply it around the hive, and into the hive as well.
    The bees inside the hive will suffocate and die, while returning bees will be repelled.

    Both of these products are not harmful to the tree. We also advise that whenever treating for bees,
    to do it when the sun is down, as bees are diurnal like us, and is most inactive during those times.

  9. 9

    I have read somewhere that we need to paint, not stain, our cedar siding. Is it true that paint is the way to go? Also, you have mentioned hives; I have never seen a hive. Our siding, eaves, deck, pump house roof, etc. have so many holes and I am so tired of these bees!! Do I have hives in my attic or eaves and just not know it? We are ready to spray and plug holes and paint soon. Please give Hadvice – dust and spray? Plug and then paint? How long will it laast? Thank you.

  10. 10


    The hive could be below the deck, it is just a matter of being able to spot it.
    However, they lay their eggs inside the holes that they burrow into the wood.
    As long as you apply the dust into the holes and seal them, it should get rid of them.
    The dust has a residual time for 6 months to a year!

    It is preferable that you do apply paint over it after the treatment is done.

    If you have any further questions or comments, please feel free to post again!

  11. 11

    Great information! I hope (and have not) had to deal with carpenter bees but if I ever do now i know! I found the information about the bees themselves to be particular fascinating. I didn’t know they resembled bumble bees so closely.

    Your friend from Twitter,

  12. 12

    Thanks!!! We’re happy to hear from you!

  13. 13

    I’ve noticed that if you leave the eggs in the wood and dead bees you will get those wood pecking birds who rip open the wwod to get at the bees and ofspring. Talk about a hole in the wood now. If I had known that I was in for this when I built my house with cypress siding I would have went brick.No money now to side it with vinyl or paint.Ive been using a tennis racket, spraying holes and thought about using expandeding faom. What do you think.

  14. 14

    Two things I would recommend… First try to get rid of the bees inside the hole by using delta dust to dust outside of their nests. As for the birds use a bird repellent to try to keep them out of that area. You should also close any holes back up to prevent future water damage and to keep the birds away from that area.

  15. 15

    HELP!! This is the second summer that I have noticed these carpenter bees. They dive bomb us when we are in the pool and it is no nerverackng!!! Today I have all my tropicals out and the pool open and have 2 of them hovering this one dark green plant that looks like a elephant ear but its not (not sure what it is, but it si a tropical with no flowers) and also our hot tub and this other plant that just came up, no flowers yet, but strong scent of something. Are they there because of my plants or is there a hole im missing?? We have an all brick house and a thin old fence surrounding the yard. I have looked but cant seem to find any holes. I also have 3 dogs that I am worried that if I just sprayed the entire yard and fence that they may get sick from eating the grass on occasion. What do I do?? I love to sit outside but with these two I cant possibly enjoy myself with all the buzzing and dive bombing me! Im PETRIFIED of bees anyway, even if I know it wont sting me!! Please help me. Im ready to call an extermintor!!!!

  16. 16

    Hi Heather,
    You know, it could be bumble bees that you are dealing with. Next time you see one see if it has a shiny black rear body segment (carpenter bee), or yellow and black hairs on their abdomen (bumble bees). For treatment, if you are mostly seeing them near your ornamentals I would probably spray near those areas so that once they come in contact with its surface it will spread the poison to the bees. Most concentrated liquid insecticides have a long residual time up to 2-3 months and has a delay kill effect which allows the bees to be able to spread the poison to any other bees it comes in contact with. This should do the trick. Masterline Bifenthrin is a popular product for both carpenter and bumble bees. As for your pets, you should keep them out of the treated area until it has fully dried. Once it has fully dried its okay for pets and small children to be around. And I wouldn’t worry too much about occasional consumption of the grass by your dogs. They would need to eat at least half a gallon of the pesticide in order for it to harm them. But of course it is recommended to discourage them from consuming the treated grass. haha. Try the Masterline before you hire an exterminator. It might save you a couple hundred dollars. Also be patient for the result…(1-2weeks) since the pesticide carries a delay kill effect may take some time for the poison to spread. OH and ONE more thing! Try to treat the areas right before sun down or sun rise because thats when the bees are the least active. Good luck!!

  17. 17

    Thanks for writing back so quickly! Im stuck inside here because the wont leave me alone out there!! It is DEFINITELY a carpenter bee. And it doesnt land on anything unfortunately! We have looked EVERYWHERE for a hole and NOTHING! So what should I treat/spray??? The air?? rrrr HOW FRUSTRATING!!!

  18. 18

    We actually have a new carpenter bee trap that we recently added to our store. It has great ratings and hundreds go out everyday. Can you imagine all the carpenter bee problems this world is having? … haha. Anyways, very good success rate with the carpenter bee traps, especially if you do not know where they are harboring. The traps are made with the same size holes that carpenter bees usually create, therefore they do not hesitate to enter the traps. The traps work best when hung in areas with lots of sun.

  19. 19

    I have been battling carpenter bees with a spectracide used for wasps. My bee problem is that the bees go into the space between facial board and the side of the house which does not allow me to see the holes hence the reason for the spray. I usually wait for sundown just so the bees are under the facial board and not flying around.
    First question. Is this a good way to get rid of the bees
    2nd. If I do purchase delta dust is there a particular time of day to dust
    Lastly if I cannot get access to the holes (if there are any under the facial board) do they have to be plugged or can dusting every few months keep them away
    Thank you for your time

  20. 20

    Hello John. I’m not sure if Spectracide Insect Killer will be good for use for carpenter bees. I may be wrong, but to my understanding, it may not be as effective as using Delta Dust and a liquid concentrate spray with a residual like Onslaught Insecticide. There is actually no particular time to dust the holes. You want to try and dust as many of the holes that you can reach as possible. Because carpenter bees are frequently traveling through the holes to store their food, dusting directly in the holes will prove to be effective. If you cannot reach the holes like the holes that are behind the facial board, you want to use the Onslaught to spray behind there on the surface. The holes should ultimately be plugged and painted over when there are no more signs of bee activity. This will prevent a re-infestation. If you can not check, then continue to spray or apply the dust. However, since the dust cannot really stick on vertical surfaces, using the spray might be better. I hope this helped you. Good Luck! :)

  21. 21

    Is it safe to say that carpenter beetles are not active now. I know where they drll their holes in my fence posts, because I have traced the dust they left behind. A lot no doubt. Can I remove the posts now that they are inactive? What do I do from this point?

  22. 22


    If you know that you have treated the wood and completely eradicated the beetle infestation, then you actually dont have to remove the posts. Instead, if the wood is unfinished or raw, then coat it with a wood preservative like Boracare and then furnish it or paint over it on all sides. This will provide a natural protection and wood preservatives like Boracare give you a long residual. As a matter of fact, the residual time is at least 12 years. If you want to remove the posts to treat it and then paint over it and then reattach the wood, thats perfectly fine to. I’m glad it’s sounding like you got rid of those beetles! :)

  23. 23

    I have what I think are carpenters bees in my garage by a shelf in the corner what can I do?

  24. 24

    Hi Connie,
    We have a ton of carpenter bee products available: Since your carpenter bees are indoors, I think a carpenter bee trap or even Delta dust would be the best products to use. The carpenter bee trap is a mechanical, natural trap that attracts the bees due to its unfinished wood. The bees that crawl through the trap and die in the attached bottle then release pheromones that attract other bees into it. The Delta Dust can be applied around the outside of the trap to be an even more efficient killer.

  25. 25

    I have Big Black Carpenter bee’s in my back yard that have drilled holes in western holly trees. Live tree and dead ones. Are the bees killing the trees or do they like to live in both? I do not want to kill the bees, but do not want them in my yard if they are killing the trees! How do I get rid of then if they are the culprit?

  26. 26

    Hello Cindy!
    Many things can lead to trees dying including carpenter bees. Although it is not likely, unless they have settled in the trees and have established a colony there for some time, it is possible that carpenter bees have led to your trees dying. As the carpenter bees establish their homes in the trees, they create massive tunnels and habitually return to the same tunnels every season. It may not be their intention to kill the trees, because carpenter bees do not necessarily have a preference for live or dead trees, however, they will attack almost all softwoods and many hardwoods as well. We have a popular product called the Carpenter Bee Trap that will trap the carpenter bees without the use of any pesticides. However, for a complete control, you may want to consider using the Carpenter Bee Trap in conjunction with a Carpenter Bees Control Basic Kit.

  27. 27

    We have some bees that have found their way into a small 8 x 8 upstairs toy room. I can see where they’ve found into the room at the peak of the ceiling … but before I seal that up I would like to make sure I’m not going to get stung. Is there a fogger I can use to put them down innitially? I cannot find an entry point outside becasue we have vinyl siding covering the wood.

  28. 28

    Sprays like Wasp Freeze or StingRay provide an instant knockdown of bees, but keep in mind that they do not have any residuals.

  29. 29

    Can I spray the Bifenthrin on the wood surfaces of my house to prevent drilling or is it only effective when used in the holes that have already been drilled. I live in NY and can’t get anything with Cypermethrin (i.e. Demon EC) shipeed to me here….

  30. 30

    There are traps for carpenter bees. All you do is bud a small square box with small overhang on it. Then place the floor of the box on and drill a medium size hole. Then take two water bottle, take one and cut it near the cap, then take the other and cut it near the bottom. This allows the bee to become confused and go towards the lite. Then put the smaller bottle top inside the bigger piece then hammer it on or something. Be sure to put the cap on the bottom part of the bottle. Then on all four sides drill a hole vertically facing up that is big enough for a bee to fit. Then take the box near a lightly covered area or in the tree or on the outside of the house. It will take time to see results. When carpenter bees have filled the bottle and are dead, take the cap and screw it off and throw away the bees. That’s what I use to rid my property of carpenters.

  31. 31

    Hello Chris,
    You can spray the surface. Surface treatments will last about 2 months, so you must be consistent. It is also very effective to apply a dust insecticide inside the already open holes that were made by carpenter bees. Unfortunately though, New York is, in fact, very strict with the chemicals that are applied in the state. Therefore, it is difficult for us to send many products there because a lot of the killing concentrates and wet-able powders are not registered in New York. You should thoroughly review the product label before purchase.

  32. 32

    That is precisely what we sell in our store. The carpenter bee trap made by Carpenter Bee Solutions can be found here:
    The trap is simple but totally effective.

  33. 33


    Thank you for your response, although I am still somewhat confused. Would Bifentrin be appropriate to spray on a dark wood stain house and can I have Bifentrin shipped to NY? (I understand about treating the existing holes but would like to prevent as many from being drilled to begin with…)

  34. 34

    I am being bombarded by carpenter bees the second I walk out my back door onto a small deck which has that plastic wood on the bottom but the railings are wood, I also see them on my awning which is metal attached to a brick wall… I cant see any holes so I hired an exterminator… $300.00 and 4 hours later they are still hovering…
    I need something to get me out the back door, I live in NY.. please help me get out!!!

  35. 35

    Hi…just had our house “dusted” for carpenter bees. I was told to give it 2 weeks. is this a reasonable amount of time? Our bee population was crazy this year…

  36. 36

    I have filled the holes with caulk and that stops them dead.

  37. 37

    Hi Janine,

    If you are referring to dust insecticide in the carpenter bee holes, the residual time for the dust is longer than 2 weeks. If they have told you that it will take just 2 weeks to eradicate the infestation, although this may be true, sometimes, it may take longer than that and can may take up to one month. Once you are sure that they have been eradicated, you should plug up the holes so that they cannot re-infest.

  38. 38

    Hello Fran,

    Unfortunately, there are not many insecticides that are registered in the state of New York that can be used by the general consumer. These insecticides can only be applied by professional applicators. We do have the carpenter bee traps that are poison free and simply set up in areas where you see the bees most. I’m sorry I wasn’t able to better assist you.

  39. 39

    We have been using Raid hornet and bee spray in the holes on our deck.While it kills the bees, more show up. The spindles of our deck railing are made of cedar. How can we keep them from trying another spindle?

  40. 40

    Hi Chris,
    Most likely, the Raid product that you used is an instant knockdown without any type of residual. You can try to use a residual spray like Fenvastar EcoCap on the surfaces of the spindles. This will not prevent them from being in that area, but it will kill them when they make contact with the surface through a delayed kill effect. Unfortunately though, there is no preventative for carpenter bees. Good luck with the treatment! I know carpenter bees can be very annoying!

  41. 41

    Our cedar deck has had the pleasure of being visited by carpenter bees. They are drilling into the handrails. Their drilling particles are found underneath their holes. We just had a lawn service spray for both carpenter bees and carpener ants. The product they used is Bifenthrin. Is this an effective chemical and how long does it last?

  42. 42

    Hi Connie,
    Bifenthrin is an effective active ingredient for a wide variety of pests including carpenter bees and ants. Outdoors, depending on the formulation of insecticide, it will last up to 2-3 months, but we recommend that you reapply it every month outdoors.

  43. 43

    HI . How soon after I dusted the holes with Delta Dust can I cover the holes? Can I use steel wool than caulk to seal the holes.After the holes are covered I’am putting Bee traps by the existing holes. Any input will be appreciated. Thanks, Louie

  44. 44

    Hi Louie,
    There are many different theories about the carpenter bees and their holes. Many people say that they will redrill a new hole and some people say they will not redrill. We always recommend that you close up the holes at the end of the season after making sure that the infestation has been eradicated.

  45. 45

    Just noticed bumble bees in our attic. Access point outside appears to be in a corner under the gutters in the siding. Someone suggested spectracide (?spelling). Please advise if this would be a good product to use (or if you have any other suggestions). Also, please advise its proper use.

  46. 46

    Hello Anne Polllna,
    Unfortunately, we do not carry a product called Spectracide and do not have much information on it except it can be ordered online. Therefore, we will not be able to give you information on how to apply or if it is a good product to use. You definitely need to close off all entry points and even if it requires you to hire a professional to seal off cracks and crevices, it is important that you do so because those cracks and crevices can be the cause of a reinfestation or a new infestation of a different pest. We recommend using Suspend SC on surfaces. Suspend SC is a concentrate insecticide with a long residual and will kill on contact. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us again by email at or by phone at 1-800-788-4142.

  47. 47

    We have carpenter bees underneath our deck. We can not see the holes because the go inbetween the floor boards. We have no access underneath due to the fact there are side boards. We have been spraying but it appears that they are mulitplying. We see about 20-30 bees in an hours time. What should be purchase?
    Jen Wills

  48. 48

    Hi Jennifer,
    We would love to help you out with DIY pest control, but sometimes, there are situations when DIY can be dangerous or just too difficult. Unfortunately, it sounds like an infestation that has to be dealt with by professionals. They will have the correct tools and knowledge to access areas that are not readily accessible to fog out or kill the bees on contact. We apologize that we are not able to better assist you.

  49. 49

    Okay I have carpenter bees under my shed they are driving me crazy what can I use to get up under the shed?

  50. 50

    You can try luring them out with the carpenter bee traps and use Delta Dust to dust around the areas underneath the shed where you are seeing them travel back and fourth.

  51. 51

    I saw some holes under the rail of mu wooded deck and some yellowish dust particles on the stairs just under the holes. There are many holes. There is no hole on the upper side. What is this? How we can treat this? How to protect my deck from this and restore my deck rail.

  52. 52

    Our deck is painted.

  53. 53

    For Carpenter Bee treatment we recommend that you lightly puff some of the Delta Dust inside the holes. After you stop seeing their activity around the holes it is best to close up the existing holes to prevent reoccurring infestations. Following the initial treatment of the Delta Dust I would recommend a follow up application of a residual insecticide on the surfaces such as Demand CS.

  54. 54

    I know where Carpenter Bees are going into my house – above the brick and under the siding. I’ve heard them drilling and laying eggs over the last month. I have the bottom row of siding off and want to fill the gap. Is it OK to do that knowing the bees that will come from the nest in 40 days or so will be under the house? Will they just die quickly if they don’t find a way out (into the light)?

  55. 55

    Many will drill new holes to get back outside. It is best to treat the entrance holes and wait until most have come out of the holes before closing them back up. You can treat the holes with Delta Dust which is a moisture proof dust, great for outdoor use.

  56. 56

    I either have carpenter bees or bumble bees living in my retaining wall by my mailbox. I never see a lot of them but there is always one loudly buzzing around. I see where they are entering the wall. My question is this: If I spray inside the wall with Spectracide Carpenter bee foaming aerosol, are they going to come flying out angrilly, swarm and sting me?

  57. 57

    Carpenter Bees are not very aggressive. The males are unable to sting and will usually hover around anyone who comes in close proximity to their nest. Its the female carpenter bees that can sting, but they will rarely take action unless she feels extremely threatened.

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