Are there small, worn-out circles on your carpets or rugs? It is highly likely that you have a moth infestation. Remember the food spills on your wool carpet that you forgot to clean up? That acted as a feast for the moth larvae.
Dealing with carpet moths is similar to getting rid of carpet beetles. Wondering how to get rid of the moths residing in your carpet? You have come to the right place. After doing solid research, we have found the best and easiest tips and tricks that will do the job! Ready? Read on!
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Where do moths come from?
Not only is carpet moth infestation harmful in many ways, but it is also costly as well. They can mulch their way around your lovely, soft, wool rugs and carpets. Most of the flying insects are drawn towards light, but moths prefer to hide away in undisturbed, dark areas.
They like to stay near food sources. Usually, moths enter your place via open doors or open windows. Moreover, they can also be carried in on soft furnishings and clothes. They can also get in the house as small, tiny eggs, picked up by pet dogs and cats as well as shoes.
They cannot fly very far. In fact, a few of them can’t even fly at all and they scuttle about. Moths have an expensive taste and they favour natural fibres such as cashmere, silk, and wool.
When they are outdoors, the carpet months are dormant during the winter and manage only a couple of lifecycles in a year. However, in nicely heated homes, they can remain active all year round and they can manage as many as 6 to 7 lifecycles in a year.
Signs that you have carpet moths
If you have moths in your carpets, there will be visible signs of the infestation. You only need to know what you are looking for. An interesting fact about moths is that they are not attracted to light and seek dim, dark places.
Therefore, it is very hard to see them and it is very likely that you will experience moth damage before you see the moths themselves. They don’t lay eggs in areas where there is high traffic, nor are they present in places where you use the vacuum regularly.
Here are a few signs that let you know that you have moths.
- You will be able to see actual flying moths. When there are various moths flying around your home, it is very likely that you have an infestation.
- Can you see loose carpet fibres on top of your carpet? This is a sign that the larvae are eating the bottom of your rug and loosening its foundation.
- If you know what to look for, you will be able to see the cocoons of moths. They are slightly fuzzy, few centimetres long cylinders. Since the larvae camouflage their cocoons, they will be the same colour as the wool or carpet fabric that surrounds them.
- See something squirming along the surface of the rug? Check the bottom and you will be able to see the actual moth larvae.
- Are there any threadbare patches on your carpets and rugs? It is a tell-tale sign that you have an infestation.
How to get rid of carpet moths easily
Even though it is hard to detect that you have moths before they start causing damage, once you know that you have an infestation, you can get rid of them easily using easy pest control methods.
1. Find out the Intensity of the Infestation
The first thing that you have to do is identify how much of a problem you have in your hands. They prefer undisturbed, dark places. We have mentioned the tell-tale signs of the infestation above and you can use them to see if there are moths in your carpets.
2. Clean the Carpets Thoroughly
What attracts moths? Dust! Dust contains high content of pet hair, skin cells, human hair (keratin) etc. which they feed on. If you keep vacuuming behind door crevices, under the furniture, and along the baseboards, it is very likely that you will remove any moths living there.
Cleaning all kinds of stains off your carpets is important. Also, take out your rugs and throws so that you can shake them and air them. Once you vacuum, make sure that you empty the vacuum cleaner outside in a plastic bag. Tie the bag tightly and dispose of it in the trash bin carefully so that no moths remain inside your home.
3. Get carpet moth traps
Want to reduce the population growth of moths in your living room? You can do so by getting traps. The moth pheromone traps will catch adult male moths and will contain the growth as they will remove them from the breeding cycle.
This will reduce the damage that the moths will be able to do to your carpets, and will contain the moth problem. Even if the adult moths don’t cause damage to the carpet, they mate and lay hundreds of eggs which are responsible for your troubles.
In colder homes, the carpet moth larvae have the tendency to live up to 3 years – eating your carpets all that time! In warmer places, they become adults very quickly and lay more eggs that further ruin your rugs. Therefore, it is very important that you remove the adult moths with the help of moth traps instead of using harmful pesticides.
4. DIY carpet moth treatment
Once you have thoroughly cleaned your carpets and have gotten rid of all adult moths that you could trap, you need to go for the carpet moth treatment. It will ensure that all the eggs and larvae are gone as well.
Get a carpet moth killer spray as well as powder and use them together. They will kill everything instantly and will keep your carpets protected for two weeks. If you have a serious infestation, you can apply the powder and spray twice for better moth control.
If you have any pets or children, don’t let them stay in the room while you’re going through this process. Let the powder and spray work their magic for at least 2-3 hours. Open the doors and windows of the room to ventilate it properly.
Vacuum your carpet thoroughly and keep it in the sun for at least a couple of hours. We recommend that you use a natural carpet moth killer to reduce moth activity. This will ensure that you are not exposing your home and its inhabitants to harmful chemicals. You can keep lavender sachets as well to keep them away.
Extra tips and how to prevent an infestation
We all know that prevention is better than the cure, and the same goes for moths. If you can prevent them from entering your home in the first place, you won’t have to go through the entire process of removing them.
Plus, you won’t have to spend a fortune replacing the carpets and rugs that have been completely ruined by the moths. Here are a few extra tips to help you.
- Change your vacuum bags often. It will ensure that all the moth eggs and larvae are getting removed from your property.
- Wash all the soft furnishings, curtains, linens, towels, etc. in the affected area.
- Place moth traps even if you think that you have gotten rid of the infestation.
How can I prevent an infestation?
To stay one step ahead of them, you should regularly treat your carpets for infestation, even if you don’t see any signs of damage. It is better to clean your carpets than spending hundreds of pounds on new ones, right?
Human hair, sweat, dust, food stains, etc. attract moths to the carpets. Therefore, regular, thorough cleaning of the carpets is necessary. Deep clean your carpets every month. Remove your sofa cushions and clean underneath them as well.
When we think of moths, the ones that we see at night around lights are what comes to our minds. However, it is the common clothes moths and carpet moths that we don’t see – the ones secretly residing in our homes – that are the main problem.
Moths are harmful household pests and that is why we recommend that you adopt a continuous prevention regime. Use the tips and tricks that we have mentioned above to keep your carpets and home moth-free!