Carpet beetles can appear in any home, whether you have carpets, tiles or hardwood floors. While keeping your property clean is the simplest way to keep most household pests at bay, these pesky critters can often go unnoticed in even the tidiest of rooms. Spotting these destructive bugs is easy to do when you know what to look for, and there is just one key ingredient you need to banish them for good if you find them around your house.
How to tell if you have carpet beetles
Carpet beetles can be very hard to spot, though they are most commonly known to hide in cracks and crevices in floorboards, carpets, furniture, clothing, and other textiles.
According to Safeguard Pest Control, adult beetles can lay up to 100 eggs at a time, meaning an infestation can take hold in a relatively short time frame.
While it is hard to spot a carpet beetle itself, you are more likely to see the evidence of their presence – and there are three key signs to look for.
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Damage to Fabric
Carpet beetle larvae will eat the nap from the fabric’s surface, exposing carpets, rugs and furniture to the bare threads in some parts.
In some cases, the beetles will bore holes right through, causing visible and irreparable damage, which will continue to spread if ignored.
Shed skins and faecal pellets
Safeguard Pest Control said: “As carpet beetle larvae grow, they moult or shed their skins, leaving a litter of light brown, empty skin cases in their wake, which will typically accumulate around the areas where they are feeding.”
The larvae will also produce tiny faecal pellets – about the size of a grain of salt which will also be concentrated around areas where the bugs are rife.
Live or dead adult insects
Though they are still small, adult carpet beetles can grow up to 4mm which is large enough to be visible to the naked eye.
As the adult beetles emerge indoors, their instincts will encourage them to move outside in order to mate, leaving many of them on the move around your home.
You may see the tiny beetles which look like small, dark dots slowly climbing walls towards windows or dead beetles around window sills.
How to get rid of carpet beetles
If you spot carpet beetles or the signs of them around your property, you should start by thoroughly cleaning the room where you found them.
- Vacuum your home
- Wash nearby fabrics, furnishings, bedding or clothing
- Clean dark, hard to reach areas
- Check for infested clothing in nearby areas and throw items away if they are visible damaged
How to use baking soda to kill carpet beetles
Baking soda is an effective and cheap way to get rid of these nasty bugs, and it can be done as soon as you spot them in your home.
This simple powder not only dehydrates carpet beetles on contact but also prevents them from coming back by killing them almost instantly.
There are a number of ways to banish carpet beetles with baking soda, though some methods work better in certain areas of the home.
Pile baking soda to protect mattresses
These creepy crawlies are particularly fond of soft furnishings like mattresses, but using the piling method can help to stop them from travelling from the carpet to your bed.
Pour undiluted baking soda around the feet or base of your bed, piling thick amounts at the corners.
As the beetles and their larvae begin to crawl up the leg, the baking soda will kill them as soon as they make contact.
Baking soda paste
A simple paste of baking soda and water can be mixed together to block hiding beetles around your home.
Mix the two ingredients into a thick, honey-like consistency and paste it wherever you suspect the beetles are hiding or entering your home.
Use baking soda as bait
Carpet beetles thrive amongst fabrics, so hiding a pile of baking soda under a mound of enticing rags is perhaps the easiest way to attract lingering bugs
Put some old fabric near a window or door, with a generous lump of baking soda sitting underneath.
This piece of cloth will work as bait to attract these beetles so you can get rid of them for good.
Spritz baking soda around cracks and crevices
Carpet beetles found small cracks and corners for hiding where they are not easily noticeable, but laying small traps near their entry point is the easiest way to seek them out.
Mix baking soda with water to make a liquid solution and pour it into a spray bottle.
Spritz the powdery water onto every crack and corner of your furniture to draw out hidden bugs.