The most common sign of carpet beetles is finding holes in your carpet, clothing, and general upholstery in and around your house. These pests are part of a beetle family known as demisted beetles. While the name implies that they live in your carpet, they can also prey on fabric, clothing, furs, and stuffed toys – the harm is done by the larvae rather than the adults since they are not picky or afraid of variety. If you have bugs in your carpet and think they are carpet beetles, the next move is to figure out how to get rid of them.
Carpet Beetle Prevention
Getting rid of carpet beetle food sources, vacuuming often, and using boric acid or indoor insecticides on a regular basis can keep carpet beetles at bay. Since carpet beetles are drawn to stored clothes or materials, consider applying cedar or mothballs to your storage boxes or sacks.
The outside of your house should be covered as well.
- Apply an outdoor carpet beetle insecticide around the exterior of your home. Spray your home’s foundation and the soil two or three feet out from the house. Apply insecticide to all possible access points, such as windows, doorways, vents, or utility pipes.
- Remove and destroy any bird or insect nests that have formed around your home. Carpet beetles lay their eggs in nests and will then move into your house.
- Since carpet beetles are so small, every hole is a possible entry point.
Carpet Beetle Removal
Cleaning is the secret to getting rid of carpet beetles. You’ll need to work hard to get rid of the eggs, larvae, and adult beetles.
- Vacuuming. Vacuum places where you’ve seen adults or larvae first, such as carpets, rugs, furniture, and curtains.
- Steam cleaning. The next move is to use a steam cleaner to go over the same places you vacuumed. This step’s heat and moisture destroy any remaining beetles and eggs.
- Laundering clothes and pillows. Clean clothes, pillows, towels, and linens in hot water with detergent. If you don’t want to keep infested clothes or it’s too damaged to wear, put them in plastic bags and put them in a sealed garbage bin.
- Using vinegar to clean or spray surfaces. To remove dirt or food residue, apply a solution of white or apple cider vinegar and water to shelves, drawers, hangers, window sills, and cupboards.
- Using boric acid. Any surviving beetles can be killed by sprinkling this mild insecticide on carpets, rugs, and furniture. Allow the boric acid dust to settle for two hours before vacuuming the residue and disposing of the vacuum bag.
- Using a carpet beetle-targeting insecticide indoors. These sprays, which can be purchased at local supermarkets, may be used around baseboards, under sinks, and in crevices where carpet beetles can hide. They should not be used on carpeting, furniture, or clothes.
- Hiring a professional exterminator. Carpet beetle removal can be challenging on your own. Carpet beetle eggs are tough and stubborn household pests, and do-it-yourself remedies aren’t always successful.
Carpet Beetle Deterrents
Cleaning is the number one deterrent to keeping carpet beetles out of your home. Trash disposal, daily vacuuming, and constant washing of clothing, linens, and pillows can make your house less appealing to these pests.
With a few extra steps, you can even install barriers to keep carpet beetles out:
- To store linens or clothes, use plastic containers or bags.
- Since carpet beetles hate sunshine, exposing drawers and closets to natural light will keep them at bay.
- Natural fibers in rugs, carpets, and chairs should be avoided. Carpet beetles do not usually eat synthetics.
- Keep an eye out and remove all other types of domestic pests.
Wrapping up: Identifying Carpet Beetle Infestation
The best way to tell whether you have them is from the harm they do, such as bare spots in rugs, holes in packed-away clothes, or wormholes in books. So, if you’ve been looking for a reason to do some spring cleaning, this is it.
Carpet beetles make a beeline for your home in the spring. Dust bunnies, cobwebs, dead insects, and tufts of shed pet hair are all open invitations for larvae, so get to work with the duster, vacuum, and broom.
After that, go through the stored clothes and look for any broken or infested items. Laundry kills active larvae, but any wool, leather, fur, or delicate objects that cannot be washed must be professionally dry cleaned.
The good news is that once you’ve identified their presence, you can usually get rid of carpet beetles without the expense of an exterminator.