Carpet beetles will eat just about anything, and I mean anything: carpets, furniture, lint, hair, garments, blankets, pet food, animal nests, animal carcasses (think: dead mice), dead insects, leather, even pollen from those flowers your significant other gave you on a whim. So, let’s talk about how to get rid of carpet beetles, because if you know you have them in your home, they’re busy eating your stuff right now.
There are three primary Carpet Beetle species you should be on the lookout for varied carpet beetle, furniture carpet beetle, black carpet beetle.
Carpet beetles are harmless, but their larvae are dangerous because they eat everything that comes out of their clothes, from clothes to books. If you see something suspicious, watch your clothes carefully and wash them or take them to the cleaner. Finally, give insecticide to get rid of these larvae.
Best Methods on How To Get Rid Of Carpet Beetles
1. Identify the source if you want to get rid of carpet beetles.
Look for fecal pellets and the shed skins of the larva. Also look for holes in fabrics. Carpet Beetles tend to feed in dark, secluded areas like closets, drawers, basements, in between walls and insulation, attics, and storage boxes. You may want to check under carpets and rugs, pick up couches and large pieces of furniture and inspect those thoroughly as well. If you’ve seen one of the Carpet Beetles shown in the sidebar to your left, search your home up and down until you find the source of the infestation.
2. Immediately and directly remove the carpet beetles with a vacuum.
This should be the first thing you do to get rid of Carpet Beetles. Just go ahead and suck those suckers right up. Make sure to get their babies too; they’re the hairy little caterpillar looking type things. The larva are the stage of the Carpet Beetle that is most harmful to fabrics. How do you think they grow up to be such pretty little beetles? They gotta eat! And lordy, they’ll eat.
3. Wash your fabrics in hot, soapy water to make sure you get rid of carpet beetles, their larva, and their eggs.
Like many pests that feed on animal waste (by waste, I mean remains), Carpet Beetle eggs are incredibly resilient. You’ll need to get all of the clothes and fabrics you think are infested into hot water and soap right away. Hell, use the pre-wash just to make sure you get everything. If you’re dealing with a rug or a carpet, you’ll want to hire a steam cleaner from your local hardware store or have a professional come in.
4. If you want to kill carpet beetles and keep them out, try dusting with boric acid.
Boric acid is great stuff. It kills just about any insect that comes into contact with it, yet it’s almost completely harmless to humans. I wouldn’t eat a spoonful of it to prove my point, but trust me, this is the stuff you want to use if you don’t like chemicals. Boric acid is a naturally occurring compound mined in primarily in the Southwest of the U.S.A. The only thing you want to watch out for is the possibility that you might end up bleaching the fabrics you’re treating with boric acid. Boric acid makes whites whiter, you know what I’m saying?
Preventing Carpet Beetle Infestations
Store clothing and starches in plastic to reduce the chances of attracting carpet beetles. I don’t mean store all of your clothes in plastic bags. If you keep your wardrobe in an open closet that gets at least a little sunlight, those garments should stay relatively untouched. Carpet Beetles eat in the dark.
Choose synthetics when shopping for furniture, carpets, and interior fabrics. This is a fairly obvious answer to the Carpet Beetle problem. Since they eat organic products exclusively, it might do you good to choose something that is made from synthetic materials rather than organic materials. This is particularly true of carpets, rugs, and furniture.
Cleaning regularly goes a long way to preventing a carpet beetle infestation. Carpet beetles love to feed on animal and human hair and other particles that can collect as dust bunnies on floors. Vacuuming and steam cleaning carpets and furniture regularly will go a long way toward preventing not only carpet beetles but other pests with similar feeding proclivities as well.
Controlling other pests is another way to keep carpet beetles from infesting your house. You might be doing all of the above and still notice adult carpet beetles wandering around your house. This might be caused by the fact that you have other pests like rodents living in your home. Set up live or snap traps to rid your home of the problem. Never use poisons because it’s very difficult for you to find a mouse that has died from poisoning—not so hard for carpet beetles.
Image Credits: Do My Own Pest Control