The name, carpet beetles, can stir up feelings of dread. These tiny insects are notorious for damaging clothing, fabrics, carpets, and more. They're also famously difficult to control. If only there were a handy guide for effective carpet beetle control. Wait. Hold on a second. There is! You've stumbled on it. Here is your quick guide to Pittsburgh carpet beetle control.

Step 1: Know Your Enemy

There are two things you need to know about carpet beetles. First, carpet beetles are small. Really small. Some species can be as small as 3/16 of an inch long. They don't appear as much more than tiny little specks crawling around on your rugs, or on the clothing in your closets. Second, it is important to understand that carpet beetles don't damage your belongings. The beetle form, which is the adult form, feeds on pollen and nectar. They don't feed on natural fibers. The pests you need to be concerned about are their worm-like larvae. Adult carpet beetles are just a warning sign. If you suck up all the adults with a vacuum, you won't be getting rid of your infestation. You'll just be removing the warning signs.

Step 2: Identification

Carpet beetles come in three colors. You may find beetles that are entirely black. These are aptly named black carpet beetles. You may find beetles that are a mottled mix of black, white, tan, and yellow. These may be varied carpet beetles or furniture carpet beetles. You may find beetles that are black and white with a channel of fiery orange coloration down the center. These are common carpet beetles. You don't need to tell the difference between these beetles because they all present the same level of threat to your belongings. We mention the color variations so that you don't mistake a carpet beetle for a harmless beetle, due to it not being the color you expected it to be.

Step 3: Protect Your Fabrics

There is no way to protect all of the items in your home that these insects can feed on. But clothing may be protected. If you have clothing in storage, consider putting the items in a sealed plastic tote. Inspect the clothing in your closets and send items with natural fibers for dry cleaning. When you get them back, seal them in plastic totes or plastic bags.

Step 4: Remove Natural Food Sources

These pests will eat hair, lint, and dust. Clean areas, such as your laundry room and bathroom, to remove food options. Vacuum your rugs, draperies, and upholstered furniture, and clean your bedding. Be sure to vacuum closets. After vacuuming, dispose of the bag outside.

Carpet beetle larvae will also eat dead insects. If you have problems with overwintering pests, it can lead to a carpet beetle problem. Consider doing a detailed inspection of your exterior to seal entry points. Examine exterior doors, windows, pipes, and vent exhausts closely.

Step 5: Address Areas Of Infestation

If a location has lots of carpet beetles, it needs to be thoroughly vacuumed, and the items need to be laundered. If an item is infested, it should be thrown out or fully cleaned. Keep your clothing, sheets, and bedding clean. This will make them more resistant to carpet beetle larvae because these bugs are attracted to oils from human skin.

Step 6: Protect Your Pantry Food

If you're not aware, carpet beetles can become pantry pests. There are many items in your pantry that they can feed on. Protecting your foods from these insects is somewhat similar to protecting your clothing. Consider putting your stored food products in sealed plastic (or glass) containers. This will keep these insects out.

Step 7: Prevent An Infestation

If you've gotten rid of carpet beetles, and their larvae, inside your home, or you haven't gotten an infestation yet, there are a few things you can do to avoid an infestation.

  • Make sure all of your door and window screens are in good working condition.

  • Be careful when bringing potted flowers or cut flowers into your home. Do a close examination and look for the presence of adult beetles.

  • Properly dispose of potential food sources. Refrain from leaving items outside of your home where carpet beetles can lay their eggs.

  • Remove spider webs and stinging insect nests around your home. These are food for carpet beetle larvae.

The Best Control Tip Of All

If you're struggling with carpet beetles, remember that Witt Pest Management is available to assist you with your Pittsburgh pest problem. Contact us today for immediate assistance.