I was reading your website about how to treat carpet beetles and I just had a few questions if you don’t mind. We seem to have a good infestation in our home, I don’t know how we got it but they seemed to have lived in our home since we purchased it a year ago. I have noticed several of my sweaters were eaten which lead us to find the infestation. They have spread all over our house and we don’t know exactly where they are coming from. Over the last 2 months we have started vacuuming all the time and have used an ortho pest control around all the baseboards and in our crawl space. This has cut down the numbers but we are still finding at least 1 or 2 a day around the house.
I am nervous about them continuing to eat my clothes. I put the items that needed to be dry cleaned in the dryer on high for a half an hour and the ones that could be washed normally I cleaned. I also inspected them thoroughly for bugs and holes. (Now all my wool and cashmere is stored in zipper bags) How do I know I got all the eggs off them though? and that they will not get eaten any more. Should any other treatments be done?
Also you keep mentioning about treating the carpets. Our home has all wooden floors except for 2 area rugs, 1 wool and 1 synthetic and a 2 month old industrial carpet that we had installed in our basement. I have vacuumed the rugs but how to I ensure they are safe and there are no eggs on them?
Any help you can give me is greatly appreciated. These bugs are starting to get the best of me and I am going nuts trying to get rid of them. I feel like they are eating the money right out of my wallet.
As our online article about CARPET BEETLES explains, this pest can come from many sources outside the home. During the warm months, they can live most anywhere and will readily migrate inside with pets and family members. Once inside, they’ll infest carpeting but love to live on any fabric. In fact, they are more likely to be found in closets on clothes than actual clothing moths and they love furniture as well. Sofas, old chairs, blankets and pet dander are all prime sources of food for this pest and it only takes a small area for them to find refuge and create a nest site.
Once in the home, they mostly go unnoticed till their feeding is discovered. Their damage is minute and when done to carpeting, furniture or drapes many times won’t be seen. But clothing in the closet being damaged is usually one of the first signs you have activity and based on your message, it sounds like that’s the deal here. Dry cleaning as well as washing will help get the larva, eggs and adults off the clothing but to solve the problem, you really need to treat the main nest sites. If you do clean your clothing well but find activity keeps returning, it means adults are flying to your clothing, laying eggs and continuing the cycle from somewhere else in the home. It would also mean the pupa are located elsewhere and to solve the problem, this other location must be found and treatments done to break the cycle. Trying to guess the spot is tough to do so a thorough application or “shot gun” approach inside is usually the best program to follow. This insures you’ll get them no matter where they might be living, eating and pupating.
As for your questions regarding the eggs; you don’t ever really “know” if you’ve been able to remove all the eggs in the home which is why a thorough treatment is the best approach to solving this problem. Some of the products we suggest you apply will in fact get the eggs so any that are left behind will be shut down and rendered useless by the treatment. With that being said, your hardwood floors can be vacuumed thoroughly which will remove dust, hair and other organic matter the larvae can eat. Vacuuming will also remove carpet beetle eggs so be sure and do that once a week at least. The carpet in the basement probably isn’t contributing to the problem but I still recommend treating it at least once with the CYFLUTHRIN and GROWTH REGULATOR tank spray. You should also treat area rugs and any other carpeting that might be in the home. Remember to get the bottom side of these area rugs as carpet beetles will many times live on the underside of these locations most of their lives avoiding both the light and the treatments which are being done “topside” only.
Furniture, drapes and high risk rooms should be treated with LICE KILLER which also has Carpet Beetles on the label. This light spraying aerosol is ideal for misting lightly over baseboard molding where these beetles will accumulate. And if you have a gap along the toe molding on the floor, make sure you vacuum in there well. I’ve seen roaches, ants, carpet beetles, crickets and many pests live in this crack as it provides excellent shelter and harborage. ECO KO EXEMPT is labeled for crack and crevice treatment and is an excellent product to use along these seams if you believe there is something living in there you cannot remove with the vacuum.
Treat at least monthly till the cycle breaks which usually takes 2-4 months. If done right, you should be able to eliminate the main living area of the home as a breeding ground and I think this will solve the problem. Based in the information you’ve provided, I think a mattress, couch, sofa or some other piece of furniture is involved here and a good treating with the Lice Killer should help control this important location so I’m hoping this will be the “key” that solves your problem. If after 3 months you are still seeing activity in the closet, you may opt to install an AEROSOL MACHINE and have it pump out some PURGE III on a daily basis which will get the foraging adults and larva for sure. This would be a last result and is usually not needed but does work well. And one other thing I forgot to mention was to consider installing some of the CARPET BEETLE TRAPS. They can help identify “hot spots” of activity in the home you may have otherwise missed. Once known and identified, contributing fabric in the area can be treated again to get them at their source. Usually 1-2 traps per floor can help and last 2-3 months per installation.
Carpet beetles can be persistent but with a thorough treatment and regular inspections to monitor for new activity, you can usually break their cycle. If you have any questions about the procedure explained above, give us a call on our toll free 1.800.877.7290 number.
Hello! My husband and I have been dealing with a black carpet beetle issue for about three weeks now. We have bombed and we did not see any for about ten days. Now we have seen about 5 of them. Usually we seem them in the bathrooms or in our hallway however today we also spotted them on our mattress. My daughter and I are leaving for a trip and wanted to know how make sure the larvae and eggs are not on our clothing. Is there any sure fire way to avoid this?
Tech Support says
@Mari: There really isn’t any “surefire way” to avoid getting them on your clothing except making sure they’re not in the home. As our Carpet Beetle Control article explains, once in the home these guys will forage relentlessly for anything fabric. The short list of targets for carpet beetles includes rugs, furniture and clothing. If you start treating and setting up traps inside the home as explained in our article, you can no doubt control the local problem which in turn will help to diminish or even remove the chance of any getting onto your clothing.
Carpet Beetle Control: http://www.bugspray.com/articles98/carpetbeetle.html