Carpet beetles are small, brown, and black pests that usually attack the carpet and other upholstery around your home. They are quite small, but like other home pests, they can multiply fast, and within no tie, you will have a whole infestation. They start as small brown worms before maturing into small beetles. It isn’t easy to identify them, but there are ways to tell whether you have an infestation, as explained in this article.
What causes you to get carpet beetles?
These beetles feed primarily on carpet and upholstery fiber and animal products such as skin, fur, or wool. They thrive in dirty places with a steady supply of food to keep them alive and reproducing.
The carpet beetles can either fly into your home and set up in your carpet or clothes. You can also get them by sharing clothes with someone who has an infestation. You should be careful whenever you buy second-hand furniture or rugs since they could be infested.
You can also get carpet beetles from flowers. Adult pests can also feed on pollen, so some of the wildflowers you bring to your home are likely infested. Usually, they will lay eggs once they fall on fabric, which grows into larvae then adult beetles. This cycle continues quite fast, so if you suspect an infestation, you should take action quickly.
Are carpet beetles bad?
Yes, they are. The fact that they are so small that you can hardly see them with your bare eye is part of the reason they are so dangerous. The female lays eggs with a steady supply of food, and she can lay up to 100 eggs at once. So if most of the eggs mature fully, you already have a small infestation.
The beetles feed on all types of natural fabric and animal waste fast, so your carpet, couch, and clothes are in danger. They also like synthetic material soiled by food and oil, allowing them to continue reproducing and growing.
It’s a problem once the adults start to fly since they can move to different parts of your house. They become more visible, so you should take action once you see small beetle-like insects in your home. Luckily home remedies are effective if followed through.
Do carpet beetles live in the bed?
It is unlikely that you will get an infestation of carpet beetles in your bed, especially if you make it every day. However, it is not impossible if they can settle in a corner under your mattress. At such a position, without any light and disturbance, they can start laying eggs and growing. This is why it’s essential to make your bed and switch the sides of your mattress.
How to know you have carpet beetles
Since they are pretty small, it is not easy to see them, so you have to look for the following signs:
- Patches or holes on the carpet, upholstery, and clothes.
- Brown larvae on fabric. They are larger than adult beetles, so they are easier to identify.
- Brown skin on carpets and dark spots in your wardrobe. These are skins that they shed over time.
- Heaps of fecal matter around the size of salt grains.
- Small flying beetles in dark areas around the house.
How to get rid of carpet beetles naturally
While the beetles are relatively small, and you may not see them with your naked eye, they feed pretty fast, so you should see some patches soon. You will find areas without fiber on the carpets, clothes, and upholstery. You can use chemicals to get rid of them but naturally is the best; here are a few options you can try.
If you suspect that you have carpet beetles, it is safe to assume that they are in most places, depending on the visible damage. This is why washing your clothes and bedding is the first step. Besides using regular detergents to get rid of the beetles, you can clean them with hot water. This will not only kill the adults but larva and eggs. Also, dry them on the hot setting to get rid of any remaining eggs or larvae.
Vacuuming alone cannot eliminate all the carpet beetles, but it is an excellent first step. If your vacuum cleaner has steam and brush features, it should get you better results than dry vacuuming. The idea is to kill the larvae and adult pests to not stick to your vacuum.
You should be careful when emptying the vacuum since the pests may stick to it and continue growing there. Clean the canister/bag well to ensure that all the beetles are out.
Clean the carpets
You may need to use deep cleaning to ensure that you get rid of all carpet beetles. The best way to do this is by hiring a steam cleaner, even if you used steam vacuuming. The steamer should kill the beetles at any stage of the cycle.
Ensure you pay more attention to poorly lit parts of your home, around corners, and areas where your pets stay. Clean and allow your home to dry properly. Make sure that you vacuum more often after that to get rid of any remnants.
These are best for small infestations of carpet beetles. The trap has some hormones that attract the beetles to it and trap them with the glue. They are also a great way to ensure that there are no more beetles in your home. Place them in areas where there were infestations and wait if there will be any attracted to them. Be careful if you have pets since the glue could be toxic to them.
It’s a very effective natural insecticide that you can spread on the areas of infestation. It dehydrates the beetles hence killing them, after which you can vacuum them away. The insecticide is non-toxic, so you don’t need any special equipment to use it. However, it is best to wear a mask while applying it.
If you have a small infestation, you can use peppermint and clove oil to kill carpet beetles. The oils should be 100% uncorrupted oil so they can kill the pests. Refined oils can create a conducive environment for the beetles, so stay away from them. Instead, apply a few drops to the areas you suspect they are living in, and they should work immediately.
Does Baking Soda Kill Carpet Beetles?
Yes, it does. When carpet beetles come into contact with baking soda, it creates carbon dioxide bubbles in its body, killing it slowly. You can also mix the baking soda with some vinegar which kills eggs and larvae too.
Does Vinegar Kill Carpet Beetles?
White or apple cider vinegar can be used to kill carpet beetles. You can use it as it is or mix it with some water which makes them less potent. It is great to use not only on the known sites of infestation, but you can also spray on wardrobes, hangers, clothes, beds, and upholstery. The vinegar works best undiluted, but you can mix six parts water with two parts water if you don’t want it to stain.
Check this too: How to Get Rid of Whiteflies
Do carpet beetles travel with you?
Yes, this is one way that you get carpet beetles infestation. When you wear clothes with the beetles or their larvae and eggs, you can transfer them to other places. This is why you should wash your clothes and bedding before believing that the infestation is over.
A large infestation of carpet beetles can cause a lot of damage in your home if it goes undetected. So take time to clean your home keenly and ensure that there is enough light around the house. This article’s tips will help you identify and get rid of the beetles from your home.