Clothes moths attack!

I have spent a lot of time in the past few weeks trying to get rid of an infestation of clothes moths. The species in question is known as the common clothes moth, the webbing clothes moth, or if you are really posh, as tineola bisselliella.

There have been clothes moths in this property for many years eating the carpets but it is only recently that damage to clothes was spotted. This initiated a massive operation in order to protect the remaining clothes and get rid of the moths. Here are some photos of the chewed up carpets and clothes. The carpets here are wool and they really like them!

carpet damaged by clothes moths

If you don’t know what a clothe moth look like here are some images. They are only about a centimetre long but are very destructive. They lay their eggs on cotton or wool clothes and carpets. The clothes moths themselves do not eat the clothes. It is what hatches from the eggs that causes the damage.

clothes moth in carpet
common clothes moth on wall

The larvae are a bit over a centimetre long. They are white with a brown / red head. When they hatch they start eating your clothes / carpet. Later they turn into moths.

clothes moth larvae in carpet

The clothes moths and larvae like dark undisturbed places such as under your bed, desk or in your wardrobe. When I closely inspected the carpets I spotted hundreds of eggs along the edges of the carpet under a desk. The eggs are tiny – much smaller than a pinhead.

When I lifted the carpet there were thousands more along under the skirting board. I tried to vacuum the eggs up but this required a lot of scraping with the hoover as the eggs were well stuck on. Even after a lot of vacuuming I still couldn’t remove all the visible eggs.

clothes moths eggs

clothes moths eggs under carpet

I tried getting rid of the eggs, moths and larvae by using moth sprays from Robert Dyas. They do kill the moths and larvae but not the eggs. You can kill all the moths and larvae but then the next day there will be a whole load of fresh larvae to take their place.

In order to protect the clothes I took them all to a laundrette in black bags. They were then hot-washed them to remove any eggs, the black bags were thrown away (in case they contained any moth eggs) and then the clean clothes were put in new black bags. I then took the clothes to my (non-moth infested) flat to keep them safe until the problem is sorted.

When it became clear that the home sprays weren’t able to get rid of them completely, the landlord was contacted who arranged for a professional to come into the flat. When the pest control guy visited he explained that the eggs are virtually indestructible. He said he would spray the carpet with a chemical that would kill any live clothes moths or larvae. The chemical would remain on the carpet for two weeks (no vacuuming in the mean time) killing any larvae which subsequently hatch. After two weeks the carpets would be sprayed again. He was very confident that this would get rid of the problem. We’ll have to wait and see.

Lessons learned

  1. Deal with any clothes moth problems right away before they cause real damage.
  2. Household moth killers may work against small numbers of moths but are unlikely to help if you have an established infestation.
  3. If you have clothes moths then consider replacing and wool carpets with synthetic ones.
  4. You can use lavender scented moth repellers in wardrobes to keep the moths away. However they are not fully effective – some moths don’t seem bothered about the scent!
  5. Vacuum regularly to increase the chances of removing eggs. However even vacuuming won’t get rid of all of them as the eggs are usually stuck to the carpet fibres.
  6. Try to avoid having dark undisturbed areas in your rooms. e.g. if you have lots of junk under your bed try to move it elsewhere or get rid of it. This will reduce the number of hiding spaces for them.
  7. If the infestation is established then you may have to get a professional in. This could cost many hundreds of pounds. Try to get a guarantee that if they don’t get rid of the infestation for a certain length of time they will come back for free.
  8. If you are not going to be wearing certain clothes for a long time – e.g. your winter wardrobe – consider putting them into storage in sealed vacuumed packed bags.

Moth Update – 2nd June 2008

The flat has now been sprayed twice with a two week interval. I have found out that the chemical is called Ficam W. After each spraying moths started re-appearing after 5-6 days. There will be a third spraying in a few days and maybe even a fourth!

Moth Update – 11th August 2008

The first two spraying failed to get rid of the moths so my friend decided to move out. I gather from the remaining flat mates that the moths are still there and the landlord didn’t bother to get a third spraying – even though it wouldn’t have cost him any more!

Unfortunately the problem is not over. It seems that the clothes moths have transferred to my friend’s sister and parents homes! Sometime in the next month or two I’ll probably try out one of those home fumigation kits that you can get at Robert Dyas to see if it will kill the moths. When I do try out the fumigation kit I’ll write a post about it.

Moth Update – 30th June 2009

I never did try the fumigation kit out. My friend’s sister moved to a new place – not because of the moths though. Occasionally moths are spotted at my friend’s parent’s house but as far as I can tell they haven’t taken hold there – yet.

If you want more information on what other people are doing about their clothes moths problem then I suggest you read the comments to this post. This has now become one of the most popular posts on this blog, and the post with the most comments. Clearly these creatures are causing misery for a lot of people!

Moth Update – 25th July 2009

I’ve uploaded a videos showing a carpet moth larvae, a carpet moth, moth eggs and carpet damage to YouTube – you’ll find it here – The quality of the video isn’t very good but it may help you to recognise them.

Reader’s clothes moths stories

If you want to know more then do read the reader stories in the comment section below. Loads of people have been writing in to share their battles with the common clothes moth. Please feel free to share you own moth stories by adding a comment to my new ‘How to get rid of clothes moths‘ post.

152 Comments on “Clothes moths attack!”

  1. Sadly no :( The pest control people have been round twice to spray and there are still new clothes and meal moths appearing. The flat certainly needs a third visit by them. A well embedded moth infestation isn’t easy to get rid of. I’ll update the posting with the results of the third spraying whenever that happens.

  2. Have you been successful now? I hope so!
    I had to get rid of a big oriental carpet, reduced to bare threads over at least 3 feet. I found hundreds of larvae, vacuumed numerous times. I continue to find 2 or 3 larvae a day, on adjacent leather couches. Do you think I might be able to avoid spraying if I continue my daily hunt- and- clean?

  3. That sounds horrible finding hundreds of larvae!

    My friend’s flat still has the moths. It has been sprayed twice but they reappear after 5-6 days. It needs spraying again but the landlord hasn’t arranged this yet. From what I understand you might be able to control them if you can kill all the larvae before they turn into moths and lay more eggs. But if you miss one single larvae and it gets though it could hide another 50 or so eggs in your home once it becomes a moth!

    I hope you have more luck with getting rid of your moths that we have.

  4. I’m having a problem too – these things really seem to take hold!

    A few years ago I dealt with an infestation of meal/flour moths very effectively using the pheromone-glue traps designed for that species, so I think I’m going to give the equivalent ones for clothes moths a try. (The pheromones that the species use are different, so you need to use the right one for your problem). In the meantime, thorough vacuuming has helped but as you know, you can’t clear it up completely that way. Good luck and please post updates!

  5. WELL I join the ranks of you all who are doing battle with moths! It is a humbling experience that something so small could be so powerful. I’m not sure I’ve found the nest yet though. The infestation went quite a while before I noticed there was a problem in a back room. I had cracked pecans in a paper bag and they were in heaven with such a treat! :-( I threw away the pecans but still see them. They are so active at night. Why? In the day I tried to move them towards the daylight and they wouldn’t budge and stayed on the walls and in the ceiling. They are trying to and have migrated to other rooms but just a few and I’m trying to keep it that way. How long has it taken anyone who has successfully dealt with the meal moths to eradicate the problem? The one sticky trap didn’t attract as many as I thought and will try another. Even when I but the trap up near they seemed to not want to have anything to do with it.
    Please share those of you who have conquered the problem.

  6. I’m having a big problem with them too.
    I had them on my last flat, couldn’t get rid of them…they were everywhere, since I had to move out I thought that at least this problem would be history.. how little did I know… because I must have brought them with me to the new flat because this spring they came back !!! I don’t know where they came but this is really frustrating… I have looked everywhere, I have taken out everything a number of times and I haven’t been able to find the source, I’ve never seen any eggs or any larvae, just the damn moths flying in the evening. At least on my old flat I found larvae but here absolutely nothing.. I’ve vacuumed everywhere, the wardrobe is full of lavender and cedar balls, I don’t see any damage to the clothes. I’m using pheromone traps that I bought from ebay, they do catch the moths but only the males, but at least is something. I got desperate and I called a pest controller. I was ready to fork out £450 and he told me that there was no guarantee that he would be able to get rid of them, he was very honest, if I wanted to go ahead with the treatment he would do it but no guarantee. He said I should take my clothes to the dry cleaners and keep the clothes in sealed boxes. So I decided not to do the treatment, at least for now, and I will take some stuff to the dry cleaners . I don’t know if I’ll be able to get rid of this problem, it’s really stressing me out.

  7. We have holes in two of our carpets just like yours, they are under our bed and my daughters cot. We were told that they sounded like carpet beetles, but we also have some sheets with holes in, so i’m thinkg not! My prob is that I have a lot of hand-wash only clothes and so can’t wash them at a hot temp. What did you do with clothes like this? Getting them all dry cleaned will be impossibly expensive (most of my wardrobe is hand wash only!)

    We have pest control people coming in to treat the place in two 14 days periods, I hope this sorts the blighters out!

  8. Hi SJ,

    It does sound like it could be moths. You could confirm this if you could spot the moths or the larvae. They are likely to be hiding in dark quiet places like under your bed.

    We did have to hand wash or dry clear some clothes, but fortunately most of them were machine washable. If you have a lot of hand wash and dry clean only clothes then it will be a big hassle / expense. I have heard of people freezing their clothes to kill the eggs rather than washing the clothes. I think to do this you need to seal the clothes in bags and then leave them in the freezer for 3 days or so. I don’t however know whether this will really kill the eggs or whether this is just a myth.

    As you have pest control people visiting in 14 days I’d suggest you get advise from them about what you should do with your clothes.

    Good luck,

  9. Hi, I’m just wondering if anyone can update me whether you managed to erradicate the carpet beetles and moths problem. I appear to have a carpet beetle infestation which showed up last june around the birth of my young son. I had to get pest control out who sprayed the whole house, had to stay out for couple of hours, but they are still around. Worried about getting the house sprayed again as heard that using certain sprays show a link to autism in young children, but im desperate to get rid of this carpet beetle problem. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  10. No, we never managed to get rid of the moths :( My friend moved out of the flat. I don’t know what has happened about the moths since.

  11. Have just gone on line and found this website. How depressing, I have joined the crowd with the problem of moths in my carpet. I don’t yet have a problem in my clothes but will have to actively start checking. Does anyone know if changing the fitted wool carpet to synthetic does the trick?
    I can’t move out of the flat as I own it!

  12. When storing rugs it is a good idea to put a few moth balls inside the rugs before you wrap them up. It is a shame when you open up your rugs and find them half gone.

  13. Fingers crossed- myself and my boyfriend have found the source we think.

    We have one of those beds that has storage under the matress, we found what looks like patches of eggs. We’ve vacumed the whole area, added Rentokil paper which according to the packaging kills moths, larvae and eggs. it’s a rather dusty flat but now we shall be keeping it spic and span at all times.
    We have been useing Mottlock natural traps for the last 6 months- which do seem to attract the males from the spirit of nature website.

    As from the above comments we are yet to see an improvement but will keep you updated.
    We are just off to the laundrette to boil everything. He’s very upset as they have eaten through an antique blanket.
    We are getting rather good a swatting though!

  14. I also have realised that I now have moths. I now have three jumpers ruined with holes. A fairly expensive cashmere jumper was the worst hit and today I see a hole in my boxer shorts!

    This is clearly going to be a nightmare to get rid off despite hoovering (wooden floor) and having a search about for the larvae. I have only seen a couple of moths flying about which have been squatted. I’ve put out the balls that you get from the dry cleaners….I do hope they bugger off though – I can’t afford to replace all my clothes!

  15. We’ve got the case bearing type, first noticed about 7 years ago. The larvae are relatively easy to spot, as long as they are on the surface, as they look like grains of rice.

    They don’t seem to be muching on clothes or even my cashmere overcoat but then they probably came with the wool carpet we bought 10 years ago; they find that delicious.

    We tried the phermone traps but that just confirmed we had a continuing infestation. They’ll even grow on the carpets in rooms with nylon or other man made fibres.

    I don’t think we’ll ever get rid of the problem as long as we have the carpets but have brought it under control by being thorough in doing a full dig them out and hoover, including lifting edges, which they love. This is to make sure they never get to be adults. The fewer adults there are the fewer new eggs get laid. A monthly ‘spring’ clean would stop them completely but I only do this quarterly and means moving out all furniture from the edges and getting down with torch and pointed tweezers to dig away at the fibres. At tleast the holes are only under furniture such as our beds.

    The reason I think we’ll never get rid of the moths is that there must be millions of eggs dormant within the pile waiting for their turn and you can’t kill the eggs except by soaking with chemicals that would be harmful to humans.


    I’ve just found this website when researching how to get rid of moths…
    We have no carpets in our house, except on the stairs, I’ll have a good look at the carpets soon to see if they’re the source of our problems!
    We’ve bought a sticky Moth catcher – that they attract to then they stick to it – for every room, and got ceder wood for the cloths cupboards…
    You say your friend actually MOVED OUT of his flat because of moths?! Are we going to have to do that too? We can’t afford a professonal at the moment and your professonal didn’t even do the job right…

    Please help! Fin

  17. Hi Fin,

    Hopefully you’ll be able to get rid of them yourselves. My friend’s infestation was so bad that even the professional couldn’t get rid of the moths after two visits. The carpets needed to be replaced and the landlord just wasn’t willing to do this. In the end there was no choice but to move out as the place was too horrible to stay in – largely due to the moths.

    Sounds like you are taking some of the correct steps. Make sure you are vacuuming regularly as well and try to find out where the eggs are being laid. That should give you a better chance of beating them!

    Good luck.

  18. I am battling them in my bedroom eating the carpets, in the drawers and wardrobe hoover, wash clothes but still there where are the traps from? does this reduce them? what else can I do

  19. Hi Veronique,

    Sorry to hear about your infestation – they aren’t easy to get rid of :(

    My friend actually managed to get compensation from the landlord for the damage that had been done to her clothes and for the stress that had been caused. He gave her a months rent in compensation. It wasn’t easy to get it though – she had to tell the landlord that she’d complained to the University housing office – he was one of their registered landlords which meant that he had signed up to a code of conduct. One of the rules is of course that the flats should be free from infestations.

    I have no idea what help you can seek in France (I’m assuming you are in France) but I would hope that every landlord would have a duty to keep your home free from infestations! Check to see if it is mentioned in your contract. You are then going to have to do more research to see what options you have in your country.

    Good luck.

  20. I’ve just found this website when researching how to get rid of moths…We have a moths infestation for 8 months now. We had already a professional treatment 3 times, all the cloths washed and sent to the dry cleaner twice. The carpet is eaten everywhere (we’ve got 95% of carpet in the house) and my children are still playing on an infested carpet. now my landlord is telling me that it is my responsibility and I should pay for the carpet.

    ADMIN could you please tell me what happen when your friend moved, did he has to pay for the damages caused by the moths? If you have any advice, that would be great, I am French and I don’t know what to do, where to ask for help.

    Thank you in advance

  21. Hi,

    For several weeks now I have been plagued by unseen ”MONSTERS” that left large patches on my carpets, curtains, bedding, wallpaper, clothes and even my poor dogs fur. I have been on the brink of a nervous breakdown trying to find the source as well as clean everything in the house and bag it all up. I used thick bin bags to store everything I had washed and with 4 small children there is an awful lot to wash, dry and store. I contacted my housing officer who inspected my house and told me it was all in my head and that I should consider visiting my doctor for stress. I then contacted enviromental health and explained that I could hear ”snap crackle & pop” type sounds coming from the bags I had stored the clean items in and told them about the carpets and furnishings that seems to be decaying and they sent round an inspecter. By the time they came I had collected what looked like flakes of paint or paper along with cotton looking pods and what I thought was chipboard flakes. I had been searching the internet to identify what I had found and the symptoms of my home and so many things were similar that it really made me paranoid and in my head I had everything from parasitic free living worms to stachybotrys ”dry mould spores” infesting my home and worrying it would cause illness to my children, I naturally brought every remedy for everything and after finding these ”chipboard flakes” in my food cupboards I had no choice but to throw away every item of food and refused to bring any food into the house until the problem was resolved, so I have been paying for meals. I have wrecked my home by taking up carpets and skirting boards and removing wallpaper so that the enviromental health officer could see the damage caused because even my kitchen is infested, under cupboards and along skirting boards and walls.

    When the officer came round she looked at the damage and said the decay was natural and it is an old house so I should expect some decay. she also said the stuff around the skirting boards was dust and grease. she told me I needed to calm down and start using my kitchen again and not to go looking for things that were not there and that I should pay more attention to cleaning!! I have always been a clean and tidy person, bourdering OCD so I was mortified to hear this and it made me worse for cleaning than I was already. The house was fumigated and all that was found after was more chipboard flakes lol.

    After finding this site yesterday ”many weeks after a constant battle” I went looking for evidence of moth’s and BINGO I found everything I needed to identify the cause. The chipbooard flakes were actually wings. The carpet damage, and the ”dry mould” is actually droppings from the moths. The whole house was wallpapered by L&Q using some kind of embosted paper that the moths obviously love so everything is half ruined. I have lost thousands of pounds already with damage and infestation and for so called experts to not identify this problem, I am totally disgusted! L&Q have classes clothes moths as ”PESTS” therefor I am responsible for all internal infestation and repair. I feel like setting light to the house and walking away. It’s amazing what tiny little creatures can do to your life. Now I have to deal with this problem and try and rebuild my home as well as my life. In my head indeed!!

    Thanks for all the info in here, you really have taken the world off my shoulders


  22. OMG- I cannot believe the above – Im compleately freaked out – 4 weeks ago I discovered a top (wool) with 12 tiny holes… i cleaned my wardrobe and found one dead moth. I trawled the internet – somehow missed this thread – and saw pictures of the moths…
    I cleaned every press / drawer in my room and threw out loads…. While i cleaned my room i put all the clothes in the bathroom and those that i washed in a black bag and brought to the kitchen where i emptied them onto the floor for washing… No other clothes appeared damaged – 2 days later i found one moth in the kitchen… last week i found another… i have been finding moths since in my bedroom and in the bathroom and hall – they (so far) are in no other room… I found 3 under my bed and a dead one in between the base and matress.I have a carpet in my room and am so worried now – like Joanne I am freaking out and people are telling me its in my head. I dont know how bad the problem is or have i an infestation. I have found maybe 20 approx over the last 4 weeks – On the ceiling / around the doors / inside curtains / in the evening (dusk). I never really open my window in my room except for recentlywhen the weather has been warm… I work away from Limerick and so am only at home at weekends which gives them loads of time without being disturbed. I dont know what to do or how bad it is and do not know how they got in in the first place. I have hung lavender bags in the wardrobes and hot press… I have the sheet things and I alos bought a trap thing which i have left at the end of my bed…. I alos got a spray … I will see next weekend how effective the products are….
    Can anyone help PLEASE!

  23. O and also – when I went to the chemist to buy the moth killers etc – the lady sadi that I was the 20th person to say that there is moths everywhere… she didnt know if they were clothes moths but that there seems to be an infestation of them at the moment and suggested that it is maybe due to the warm weather…. i dont know – I just want them gone.

  24. I’m battling them too! Last year I was sent down to London for 6 months with work and when I returned to my flat in Leeds I kep seeing a few moths in different rooms. After a couple of weeks of swatting them I realised there must be a bit of a problem and looked on the internet and realised it was more than likely the common clothes moth. I did a full search of the flat and found the main infestation was under a heavy wardrobe in the main spare room which is never moved – the moths had munched about 2 foot of wool carpet under the wardrobe! I found larvae here too, but nowhere else.

    I bought some spray off the internet and religiously vacuumed every room including in all nooks and crannies and moved all furniture and then applied the spray along the skirting of every room. I did this a couple of times over 2 weeks or so. Whilst not as many as before, after a week or so I’d still keep finding one or two live moths here or there in different rooms. After trying again for a couple more weeks I figured I needed the pros in, so called Rentokil.

    They’ve charged me £207 for 3 full sprays, although importantly I did make them amend their booking form so that it said “3 full sprays or more as required”. They spray the whole floor area in each room, rather than just at the edges near the skirting board as obviously if a moth lays any eggs not at the edges, the infestation will start over again. After the first 2 sprays (8 days apart) I again began to see a couple of moths (but literally only about 3 over the period) here and there. I had the third full spray last Friday (26th June 2009) and the chap absolutely soaked the place on my insructions, so watch this space. My gut feel is I’ll need more than one more treatment. At least now however they do seem to only be re-appearing in the main spare room where they’d munched that carpet. My worry is that they’ve somehow laid tons of eggs under the carpet which will continue to slowly hatch etc. Apparently the eggs are pretty hardy.

    Lots of luck everyone, I’ll keep you updated….

  25. Rich – What was the name of the spray that you bought on the internet?
    I havent seen any eggs or damage to the carpet yet but I am going to buy a magnifying glass and torch and check all the carpets this weekend.
    This is a nightmare.

  26. Hi,

    It was “Pro-Active C for Moths” from Pest Control Direct, but as I say, I spent over £100 on that stuff before I got Rentokil in and really the whole floor surface area needs spraying and not just the edges/skirting, so I’m very dubious of it. I’m beginning to think that where the main infestation was I’m going to have to pull the carpet up and get Rentokil to spray both the topside and underneath it. I saw somewhere on the internet that you need to spray 2 feet from the edges on both the top of the carpet and underneath it to make sure you zap it all. It’s SO annoying!

    You really should have a good look in your house. If you’ve found 20 in the last 4 weeks, then to be honest, that’s more than I’m finding (although I’ve obviously had 3 professional sprays) and you must have an infestation somewhere. My guess is it will be in the carpet somewhere that’s rarely disturbed – under a wardrobe, bedside cabinet, chest of drawers etc. Good luck and let us know how you get on…

  27. Ok Update – Week 5:
    Found No moths this week in my bedroom or bathroom and the moth trap was empty… I checked under bed – in wardrobe – shook curtains etc and no moths – I moved my desk and found no moths – However I did find a lot of the “white cotton like / cakey stuff on the carpet and around the skirting – not much …. but i hoovered it up – with the exception of one little spot that looks like as if a spot of paint was dropped on the carpet – (Its not paint as the cream carpet is only 5months old and all painting was done prior to carpet being laid.) I cannot see any damage to the carpet… So progress acheived upstairs for now.

    HOWEVER…. last night mother (Who believed I was exaggerating the problem and it was all in my head) decided to clean the kitchen cupboards…. and the results are not good.
    While any presses containing seasonings sauces – strong scented foodstuffs didnt contain any moths – also these cupboards are used every day…in a corner dark press rarely used which has rice and pasta’s…. & cups… she has found approx 15 moths – even inside in an opened lasagne pack – all moths were alive…. no dead (the dead ones are the females i assume?) also mother mentioned htat she has seen them previously in cups and took no notice… as it was just the odd one.
    And so basically i believe that we may have na infestation in 2 kithcen cupboards…
    Which also may be the reason that they got into my room as the laundry would be taken from the clothes line outside (somethimes at dusk) and left in kitchen for sorting in the kitchen…. and as i said previously the windows / door of my room is rarely open and i am there only at weekends…. so i think after that saga we have a big problem.

    I have bought 2 traps for the kitchen cupboards and lavender bags…. so I am off home on Thursday night so will investigate further.

    I have advised mother that we may need to get the professionals in if we cannot control them – she has said that as it is summer you can expect to see them… and once we control and wach them it will be ok….

    Will let you know how I get on…

  28. Limerick, are you sure yours are the common clothes moth? I believe there is a species of moth that goes for food instead rather than the protein found in wool/clothes etc. At least if you know they’re mainly in the kitchen then the outbreak should be fairly easily contained and you can treat it. Since I’ve found them in my flat I’ve kept all the doors to every room closed to try and prevent them spreading. If they’re only in your kitchen cupboards then with vacuuming and spraying I’m sure you’ll shift them pretty quickly if they are the clothes moth, as they won’t have much food to live on. Just make sure they don’t spread into other rooms where you have carpets and wools etc. Good luck.

  29. OMG OMG OMG :( :( :(
    I have a moth infestation… I moved into an apartment on the 25 April, I noticed the moths straight away but as I knew nothing of the HUGE problem they cause I just killed every one of them I saw…until… I went on holiday in June and when I returned the buggers had taken over!!!
    The damage to the carpets was apparent when I moved in but I presumed it was wear as the apartment is old.
    On Sunday I decided to check my clothes for damage, it’s now Thursday and I am feeling depressed the more damage I find :( :( :(
    The damage isn’t as obvious to the eye until the clothes are washed, and then only when between wet and dry.
    Dresses, jackets, jumpers, jeans, tops, almost everything is damaged! Mostly along where I had folded them… my clothes were clean.
    My agent had a guy over to spray on Tuesday. After reading your post and all the others I am now annoyed as well as on the verge of crying. I did ask the ‘spray guy’ about the larve etc and he laughed the problem off. He didn’t even spray under the TV press, the blinds etc.. Moths are still present, they are not as many but they are definately still here.
    My agent said he would cover the damage of my clothes, does he know that I am a girl who spends most of her money on clothes(I don’t really drink etc)???
    What will he say when I tell him I spent 220 on one dress, 179 on another, 100 on jeans??? and that is just the tip of the iceberg!! ALL my clothes are ruined apart from a couple of t shirts, even my trackie bottoms are threadbare after washing a few times!! The damage to my clothes becomes more obvious the more times they are washed:(
    I found an artice on a reputable website telling that they damage 12cm of clothing in a minute!!! :( :( I agree, they have made short work of my silks, wool jumpers, swimwear, EVERYTHING(except as I said my t shirts).

  30. Hi Marie,

    Sorry to hear about all your clothes moth problems – they are very destructive insects.

    My friend’s situation is a bit different. She spotted the moths soon after moving in and complained to the landlord. The landlord did nothing. She complained many other times about the carpet moths by email and in person. Each time the landlord did nothing.

    Her flat had signed up the her University’s code or practice which says that the accommodation should be pest free. As she had previously complained multiple times and as the landlord had signed up to this code of conduct she was able to lodge a complaint against the landlord with the University housing service.

    The landlord did finally give her a months rent as compensation. She moved out as soon as she got this.

    The damage only affected a small portion of her clothes so we were able to get them out of the flat, hot wash them, and move them to her new place in time.

    Unfortunately for you it probably is one of those ‘act of god’ situations. You haven’t previously complained to the landlord so he wouldn’t have been given a chance to fix the problem.

    I’m no lawyer but I doubt there is anything you can do to force him to compensate you for all your clothes. A goodwill gesture might be the best you can get.

    Moths are very hard to get rid of so you might have to consider moving unless they are completely eradicated. Certainly don’t go buying lots of new clothes just yet! They’ll just be eaten again. One thing you could get is a fully seal-able container to store any new clothes in. You’d just have to try very hard to make sure that the eggs don’t get laid on any of the new clothes.

    Good luck and hope you manage to become moth free!

  31. Oh now I am even more depressed..on closer inspection of the t shirts I mentioned, they too are damaged:( EVERYTHING both my daughter and I own are damaged..the moths truely went to town in the apartment!!!
    I contacted my agent to tell him of the cost to my clothes and he now wants proof of purchase etc.. I do have receipts and lazer card transactions. BUT, he also asked me did I not have contents cover and that there was no way the landlord would cover the cost… NO insurance company covers the cost of moth damage, it is an act of god or uninsurable:(!!!!! so, he is coming over to have a look but as I say it is not covered and all I can hope for is a goodwill jesture.
    Did your friend get any compensation? Is she now without any clothes to wear? After a couple of washes the real damage becomes apparent-things my daughter and I had worn most often (and of course our favourite items) are now showing very visible signs of large almost circular threadbare areas and can not be worn
    (…unless we try setting a new trend of ‘moth eaten clothing’ lol )
    I have to laugh or else I’d cry!
    The hardest thing I had to do last week was tell my little girl(10 yrs old) all her clothes are ruined:( I actually lied to her when she produced her build a bear teddy and it’s clothes to which there is also I said, everything we own is ruined.
    marie:( :(

  32. this is all horrible! We have just discovered alot of larvae in my dauther’s room.
    She had a dark corner with some toys and there was some uneaten food which must have attracted them.
    Don’t know how long they’ve been there as there must have been over 100 larvae attached to the toys. When we lifted the toys the carpet underneath was eaten away.
    I have now lifted the carpet and am going to replace it.
    I feel I need to also lift the underfelt as although i can’t see any more larvae, i don’t feel we should take the risk of them being in the underfelt and eating threough the new carpet.

  33. This really is horrible!!! I am really freaked out by what i have read! This week i have found at least 5 items of clothing with holes in (not the clothes i never wear, oh no, all my best items of course). I haven’t actually seen a moth in my flat, well not that i remember. The holes are really big though, i’d say about 4 by 4 cms. Can moths do this much damage or could it be something else. I’m pretty sure its not mice as i can’t find anything at the bottom of my wardrobe…and i have a cat! I sprayed some standard fly and moth spray in my wardrobe this evening, will that get rid of them???I also found a wool sock with a hole in earlier in a completely different draw! Please help….any advice would be gratefully received!!

  34. To all people in rented flats in the UK:

    Contact your local council who should have a private tenants advice line, or your local housing office if you are in a council property. They will tell you your rights.

    I am so fed up and stressed out by our moth problem, in a way it makes me feel better that other people are getting as stressed as me, it means I am not overreacting!

    We had a moth problem in our previous flat so I assume we brought them with us to this flat, which we own. We’ve done loads of cleaning and how found places with infestations. Today we found some under the iron door stop that we barely use. Since we’ve done lots of cleaning we seem to only be finding one eveyr few days instead of a couple a day, so I hope it is getting better.

  35. Hi Annie,
    Yes – moths can cause that amount of damage. I’d suggest you see if you can find where they are coming from. Carefully check the carpets and in other dark places for signs of moth eggs and larvae. If you can find where they are coming from then you can specifically target your moth killer.

  36. Thanks for the advice. I can’t believe how much damage they have done to my clothes. Is this likely to be a seasonal problem, if I’m unable to locate them will they die off in the winter?
    Emily this is just the beginning of my problem and i am pulling hair out already…i seriously sympathies!

  37. I have had a moth problem since moving into my new home nearly 2 years ago, though in the last 6 months its a whole lot worse. I have 3 children and almost all our clothes (and its quite a lot with 3 kids) have holes in them. I have only ever saw appx 5 moths in the last few months although our clothes have been eaten since i moved here. The previous tenant had carpets and the whole place was really dirty and smelled awful even after all her stuff was removed before i moved in. I am assuming that they were here before i got here as i have never had this problem before. I have had rentokil out who charged near £400 for 3 treatments which i could ill afford, but the moths are even worse than ever. Due to a problem with my debit card, Rentokil havent been able to take the money off me and have sent threatening letters. I expected Rentokil to be able to rid me of the moths so didnt think of getting any guarantees if the treatment didnt work and as it hasnt im certainly not paying up. I did ask my council first, before Rentokil, whether they could help but they said they didnt deal with moth infestations. Does anyone know if i have any rights with regard to this? Its so utterly depressing, i dont think i’ll ever get rid of them. I cant move out either as i cant afford to, but then as i read on this site, they even move with you! The main problem i have with them (apart from eating all our stuff) is that they are making me itch – so i presume that the things are eating the fabrics as i wear them. Should i just throw out all the moth eaten clothes? (wont have much left tho). Would this help? I dont have any carpets in my flat and i dont know where the root of the problem is. Even the bloke from Rentokil couldnt find the main cause! I feel like like walking out of this flat and making myself homeless its that bad. Maybe then the council will help. Any advice from anyone would be much appreciated.

  38. Lulu, is it your home or the council’s? If the latter then they will be under a duty of care to get rid of the moths. Having said that, I’d strongly recommend using Rentokil – they charged me £215 initially for 3 treatments (I’m in Leeds) but I made sure that on the form/paperwork they included the wording “3 treatments or as required”. In the end I had 4 treatments over 8 weeks and touch wood (fingers and everything else crossed) I haven’t seen one moth now in a good few weeks, but I’m keeping vigilant! So I’d go back to Rentokil, sort the payment problem and tell then you’re happy to pay so long as they will give you treatments until they are eradicated – at the end of the day if you’re paying hundreds of pounds they need to get rid of the problem for good, otherwise you’re paying good money for nothing.

    I’m surprised you’ve got a big problem if your home is not carpeted. Do you have a loft – have you checked up there? Or cupboards you rarely open with clothing in? My major infestation was in the carpet under a heavy wardrobe that was never moved. At one stage I also telephoned the British Pest Control Association, so they’re worth a go too if you’re tearing your hair out. Any clothes that are moth eaten need to be washed at temperature or stuck in freezer to kill any eggs/larvae. Good luck.

  39. Thanks for reply Rich, yes it is a council property. I called local CAB office yesterday and they told me that the council do not have to deal with problem as its not in their policy. They advised me to call Environmental Health which i did and am waitng for return call. However did this before and they said they didnt deal with moths but only gave advice, so unless their policy has changed they wont help. I also spoke to Rentokil again and their area manager is coming out Monday so i will def. get the form changed to say “until the pests are eradicated”, before i pay up. It would be impossible for me to freeze all the clothes (as 3 kids and myself) but can you let me know what temperature to wash them on. Previously man from Rentokil said a 60degree wash would do it, is this the advice you got? Thanks, Lulu

  40. Reading the comments on here has filled me with some form of comfort by knowing I’m not the only person suffering from such a dreadful situation and that it is normal to feel so traumatised and upset by it. I live in an old 3-floor house in London. Petrified of creepy crawlies at the best of times – I notice every single bug in the house and was quick to realise that there were too many moths flying around for it to be just to be Summer-time moths coming in through any windows. I do now believe that the whole house actually has an infestation.

    I work in fashion and as a result, have tons and tons of beautiful clothing in a variety of different fabrics. I see months flying around all the time recently and occasionally see them resting on bits of clothing (probably laying eggs though I now realise) – ew! I have consulted pest control who have advised that I wash all my clothes (this will probably take weeks) and bag them up until after he has fumigated. As I have been washing my clothes, I have first been inspecting them. I have not yet found any damage to clothing and I’ve looked extremely hard. Is this something that I would spot straight away if there was damage? Or is it something that take a while to spot, e.g. it becomes more apparent the more times you wash things?

    The moths I see are tiny little, almost cream-coloured things and when you kill them, they seem to just resort to dust/powder, rather than being particularly fleshy (if that makes sense). Presumably these are babies? In which case, there must be parents hanging around somewhere. Ew, yuck, I’ve got goose bumps just thinking about it! Does anybody know whether these typically sound like clothes moths?

    If anybody has answers to my questions, I’d be extremely grateful.

    Many thanks


  41. About a year and a half ago, moths began blossoming out of a bag of (avian-quality) peanuts we had purchased for our winter bluejays and kept in a kitchen crock. For a year we tried “green” methods of deterrence: lavender and orange sachets, sticky traps. About six months ago we began purchasing aerosols of P-I from an extermination company with some results, and then began bombing hard-to-manage spaces like the attic (filled with my late mother’s things) and the basement. About the same time, I found someone to clean my grandmother’s Persian rugs — luckily! — and this third-generation rug specialist, an Armenian, began turning over all the Persians as well as the Turkish and Greek rugs on walls and tables and showing me my infestation. Worms! Larvae! My stomach turned.
    Then the hunt began. Blankets, an antique linsy-woolsy, more rugs, sweaters, skirts, my late aunt’s mink hat (Yikes! Who even remembered I had it!), you name it — everything went into the dry-cleaners or the laundry or into the garbage. Aged prematurely with all the long cycles, the washing machine broke down. That’s good — I began to wash recklessly and shrank some lovely things. But now I have a new, larger machine.
    A good sleuth now, I even found pregnant females in the kitty litter. (Females crawl, mostly; the males fly hip-high.) I have spent my summer vacation vacuuming cracks, filling cracks, inspecting sticky traps, blocking the fireplace. (The nest might be in the bricks lining the chimney.)
    In the last month, I’ve called in the professionals, and things are a bit better, but they don’t seem to be using their imaginations. They spray the baseboards and any holes I haven’t yet plugged, but the moths keep coming. They’re giving me a third visit and will bomb the rooms that are still messy with moths. Sometimes I think the only way to get rid of the moths is to dynamite the house, but then I imagine the moths rising from the smoke, hundreds of them, and dispersing, not killed at all.

  42. Lulu,

    The common temperature wash to get rid of them seems to be 60 degrees, but i’m no expert (this is what’ve I’ve seen on the web time and time again). Get Rentokil in to sort as you suggest as (again touch wood!) I’ve not had any moths now in a good few weeks (I check every room daily!), which I’ve never had before since this whole thing started. Rentokil will need to spray literally the whole surface area of the floor AND if your clothing has been munched (it was only my woolen carpet they munched, not any of my clothes in my wardrobes thankfully) then ALL of your clothing needs to be washed or frozen and then placed in sealed containers or bags and then Rentokil should also spray your wardrobes or wherever your clothes were stored, otherwise there may well be eggs in there. During my treatments I literally had bags of stuff everywhere – in the bath, on beds etc, so that none were on the floor as the little blighters love laying under bags/boxes etc that are rarely disturbed. Good luck.

    The cream/gold moths are the common clothes moth which is what I had in my flat. As I said above, they only (I say only – but there was a 2 foot x 1 foot patch of carpet that was totally munched threadbare under a wardrobe that was never moved) munched my woolen carpet (all the rooms bar kitchen and bathroom had woolen carpet) so if you haven’t found holes in your clothes, they may well be munching your carpets/rugs. do you have carpets? The adult males are probably what you see on your walls etc as the adult females don’t often venture from floor level – they love being in dark undisturbed places where they can lay their eggs. The young larvae are actually the things that devour the fabrics, the adults don’t do any damage at all. Again, as I said above, mine took 4 whole sprays of the whole flat floors, over 8 weeks before seemingly they’ve gone. You definitely definitely need at least 3 or 4 treatments and make sure if you’re pying good money that you make sure you get them to agree that for your money they will do treatments for you until they are eradicated, no matter how many treatments it takes. Good luck.

  43. About 2 months ago, small light to dark brownish moths started buzzing around a plant in my house. Then, they spread all across the house. All we did was kill them; we didn’t think it was a big deal. Now, 2 months later on August 25th, another moth, of many, flew into my son’s room. He got fed up and searched every nook and cranny for that single moth. My daughter suggested cleaning the room(because it was very messy). So, my son started throwing all of his clothes in the hamper and sweeping the floor(because we have hardwood). He swept under his bed and found small, almost oval shaped worms squirming around. He also told me that he found some 2 or 3 hanging onto the corners where the walls meet. He started emptying out his entire room leaving all his stuff in the hallway. We washed some of the bed sheets and pillow cases in our washing machine using hot water in hopes to kill some of the worms, or larvae(I guess) that are most likely hiding there. I need help. My daughter considered an exterminator, but my son just wants to do it himself(using the sprays and what not). I don’t know what to do. We don’t have carpet and no one in my family has reported holes in their clothing or sheets.

    Please help. Thank you,


  44. I feared writing on here that mine had gone would be a case of “famous last words” and lo and behold, last night I found 1 live moth in the kitchen and 1 in the spare bedroom (where the previous main infestation was) – AAAGGHHH! Have just phone Rentokil and they’re coming back out for another spray. As I’ve said above, when you do initially get Rentokil in and pay your money, make sure you get them to agree to do treatments until the blighters are totally gone. It’s like Groundhog day…

  45. Aren’t they disgusting! I discovered we had moths about 2 months ago. I was ill in bed with flu and I noticed about 3 of them over a few days flying about at dusk, my husband killed them and I thought nothing more of it! When I was better I cleaned our bedroom and vacuumed under a chair in the corner of the room and noticed a thread bare patch about the size of a 2p. I then put 2 and 2 together and realised what had happened. I moved the bed out and there were quite a few more small patches of eaten carpet and lots of pieces of what looked like oat flakes behind the bed. I was horrified. I vacuumed up and then searching the net for info and found this site. We immediately ripped up the carpet and we threw out the bed and mattress, it was a divan with a base, I couldn’t bear the thought that it may be infested! We have since laid hard flooring, we had to rip off the skirtings. I washed all the clothes in our fitted wardrobe, it took days and days. Incidentally I tumble dried everything on low, even my delicate clothes and they were fine, I believe this would kill anything if it were in your clothes. I bought lots of those vacuum seal bags and all our seasonal clothes, spare duvets etc are now stored in those. Everything in my wardrobe is in plastic hanging bags to protect it. I even bought those clear plastic shoe boxes and all our shoes are in those. I put lavendar bags in our drawers and cedar rings. Thankfully nothing in those and no damage to our clothes. In our front spare bedroom we have the same wool carpet as was in our bedroom. I have only noticed 1 small patch about the size of a 5p and touch wood it has not got any worse. I am keeping all the bedroom doors shut to hopefully stop them spreading. We have noticed a few moths in the last weeks but hoping that we are on top of the problem. I found 2 tonight in our bedroom where they first occured. I don’t know where they can be from as there are no nooks and crannies and a new floor. I am hoping they will have nothing to live off now. We haven’t moved back in yet, still decorating, the gloss paint is very pungent maybe that bought them out the ones I saw.

    I am concerned that we have a sisal carpet on the stairs and landing, do they eat this? Apart from that we only have 1 carpet left. They freak me out the thought of crawling things in the house yuck! I will NEVER have carpets again after this experience. I bought a magnifying glass but have never seen any of the larvae people describe.

    Fingers crossed the worst is over?!

  46. I am only just 12… But when cleaning my room i came across alot of moths flying around… I just ignored it but as i cleaned futher i came across a corner of my room with a blanket i hadent lifted for months… So when i picked it up there were around 90 dead ( or alive…) moths… I am considering hovering them up… Will this help?

  47. Mmm i told my mum ( i was scared shed be angry )… But she threw out the sheet and i hoovered… She decided shes gonna replace the carpet with wood…

  48. ok… so i just had a large (maybe 2×2 inches) dark moth fly out of my wardrobe. Should i be worried? Being insured for $30 000 against flood, theft or fire i would seriously die if my beloved clothing collection became damaged… And i have had a moth prob in my kitchen in the past which was solved by though sealing and cleaning…. I am really scared and mortified by some of the experiences on this site, literlly brought to tears by a few, can anyone tell me what they think of my circumstances…. x

  49. Desperation is an understatement. We’ve been in our house for 33 years and the webbing close moths became apparent last September. Few flying adults were seen back then. Now In July I either caught or pheromone trapped 60. In August it was 83.

    The whole year I’ve spent going over every inch of this 7 room house. Every thing washable has been washed at least twice. Every thing else has been dry cleaned or frozen on the back porch last winter. (It gets cold in Wisconsin)

    I’ve used Ortho pyrithrin spray and vacuumed constantly. I even had an exterminator in, but they just send a kid with a tank. I presently have about 10 pheromone traps around.

    Here is the mystery. I can’t find the source or any damage. The state entomologist who identified the moths thinks the source might be outside our living quarters possible an animal in the attic or walls.

    It might have started that way, but I suspect the part wool berber carpet that we had installed about 10 years ago. Another idea is that, since this is and old house there might have been a low level of moths that were spurred on by getting wool carpet. Big mistake. I’ve seen them flying in every room except the kitchen and bath.

    The only two options that I can think of is either have all the carpets in 6 rooms, the hall and stairs steam cleaned or have them all removed and refinish the hardwood floors.

    This is getting to be an obsession. Besides it takes a lot of time.

  50. Annie – from what I have read they can live in the mild winters we have the in the UK, particularly as we keep our homes warm.

    Bethany – that does not sound like a clothes moth, they are small and beige and you would see several of them around.

    Connell – tell you mum to look at this website for advice on how to deal with them.

    Rachel – so far most of my clothes have been unscathed – touch wood. In my last flat they ate anything made of wool including my lovely cashmere coat. in the flat they seem to be more interested in our wool carpet.

    Some advice for everyone: they can live in wood furniture! I lifted up an old chest of draws and tipped it on it’s side, and there were literally hundreds of eggs living in the cracks of the legs. It is a very old piece of furniture, and the wood was quite cracked. I have thrown it away. There are holes in the carpet where the wood was in contact with the floor, they have eaten the carpet.

    I’ve spent ALL my spare time for the last week and a half cleaning and washing. We have wool carpet throughout the flat, and I have found them under every piece of furniture, seen lots of eggs by skirting boards. I’ve spent hours vacuuming, particularly along the floorboards, and laid down moth strips from Robert Dyas which seem to be working as I’ve found dead ones and a dead larvae next to them.

    I found loads under the bed, where we stored a lot of boxes. I’ve had a massive declutter so that we have the minimum on the floor. I washed blankets etc that were rarely used.

    I have been in tears with the amount of eggs I’ve found, I doubt I have managed to get rid of them all. Haven’t seen any moths today, but it is just a day. If my huge clean up hasn’t worked, then I will bring in pest control.

  51. Hi Rich

    Rentokil told me to store items in black bin bags. I did this after washing and lo and behold i noticed a little hole in the bin bag when i was transferring them to plastic box. Ive prob. contaminated all our clothes now by doing this as problem seems much worse. Everything i wear itches (and i havent got that much left). I went to visit a relative the other day and while there i was literally watching my top being eaten i.e. a separate hole appeared to rival the others! This was after washing, ironing and storing – i think im gonna go crazy. I had to leave straight away coz now im worried i will pass them on to everyone else. Rentokil not got back to me yet but it seems i signed the contract for just 3 treatments and i have no guarantee. If they think im paying them, they’ve got another thing coming. My rant over and i hope your latest hit finally sees the moths off. Regards, Lulu

  52. Joanne, i just read your post and i too could hear the same noises comimg from my ‘curtains’. You’ve just made my day, coz i had been on the internet seeking answers to ‘do moths make noise’ and couldnt find anything. So, no i dont think you are mad! Lulu

  53. Emma – We have taken up all our carpets, having inherited moth in our new house. We seem to have more than ever. I have heard that the eggs can live in the cracks in the floorboards, which makes sense as carpet fibres fall through them, and presumably there are all sorts of other possible habitats (birds nest in chimneys, old mouse nests etc) in a 120 year old house.

    I have heard of an insecticide dusting powder which can sit undisturbed for several weeks (as it is under the boards it won’t affect humans is the theory), Does anyone know anything about this? Any thoughts on whether it might work? Where might I buy some?

    Since the eggs are impervious to attack something that might kill newly hatched larvae before they breed would be ideal, wouldn’t it?

    I too am going slowly crazy with this

  54. Sheila, touch wood neither myself or hubby have seen any signs since I last posted on 27th August. I am hoping that I managed to catch it in the early stages and have sorted it, who knows I will keep you updated. We have a click loc floor over the boards now so there really are no holes left to come from. Do you plan to put new floors down or keep the floor boards? May be a good idea to use some sort of sealent if so, may help?

    Sorry I haven’t heard of the powders you talk about. I am still keeping my other bedroom door shut that has the last remaining wool carpet but touch wood looks fine in there too, but there are stories about eggs living 6 months etc aren’t there so I don’t suppose you really know for ages. I think it is a good sign not to see the moths flying about though or even find dead ones.

    Have people tried the thicker plastic hoover shrink bags, I got these off the internet and I think they’d be much more protective than the thinner dustbin bags. I am hoping if they don’t have anything to feed off they will get lost!

  55. Thanks, I will check it out at once!.

    We had the most awful experience today. My husband discovered last week that his mother had a moth infestation when he thought he spotted one in her carpet and she showed him pheromone traps in her wardrobe covered in trapped moths. She has no idea of the nightmare that awaits her. But husband thought it would be worth trying some of these traps to catch any lingering adults flying around and prevent further breeding. He brought them home today, opened the packet to show me, and instantly a cloud of 30, 40, 50 moths flew up out of nowhere. (We only see at most 5 a day on the walls, but recently have lost two kids coats to moth damage, and as I am expecting a baby v soon I am more stressy than usual . . . hence need for action).

    At first we thought he must have brought them from his mother’s flat, and he hurled his clothes and bags out into the yard, but as we leaped gracelessly around our bare floor boarded recently refurbished kitchen killing them, they just kept coming out of nowhere. Likewise upstairs – moths out of nowhere in our carpetless house. Just now I checked the newly laid trap on our bedroom floor to find to my horror perhaps 10. Thankfully there were none in the firmly closed wardrobe which I had just cleaned out and sprayed, and divested of our winter coats which are now in the freezer, shortly to be joined by my beloved pashmina.

    This means the moths are definitely in the cracks and crannies in the floors and skirting boards, in the door jambs, the window frames, and in the spaces between the joists. We can’t afford to put down new hardwood flooring – I imagine that well-sealed flooring would help to prevent them breeding or at least escaping, but clearly they are very hard to stop. I am ordering dusting powders as well to try and kill larvae, and we hope that the traps will collect adult moths before they breed – the effect was so instantaneous that I have hope that we can hope for the best.

    I don’t trust any of the products really, but what else is there? Cedar,lavender etc are all useless, it seems to me, except in that prevention is better than cure. I do have a lemon sachet in my sweater shelf which i credit with having spared my cashmere so far – that and the plastic bags they are wrapped in.
    We live in a big Victorian house with 5 bedrooms an attic and a cellar, long neglected before we moved in, and it takes me days to clean from top to bottom – not a complete spring clean even but just thorough hoovering and dusting and tidying cupboards. So I feel worn out already.

    But do you know, it occurs to me that I don’t even mind of no-one ever reads this – it makes me feel a whole lot less lunatic to know that other people need to write about their moths too. Thank you everyone!

    I’ll post again after the baby to let you know whether there has been any improvement in case anyone is in fact reading this apart from Emma . . .

  56. Hi Sheila, oh no, that is horrid, I feel so sorry for you, I bet that really freaked you out, it certainly isn’t the kind of stress you need before you are expecting too. I really hope the traps and powders work for you. Good luck with the baby! Emma

  57. Hi Sheilia can totally sympathise, i have 3 children and most of their clothes are moth eaten – they are even attacked when i leave them on the radiators to dry. I have no rugs carpets etc. which is why, i guess, the clothes are their main food, so i agree with you that they must be in all the nooks and crannies. A friend advised me to buy a mastic gun and tubes of decorators caulke and fill every hole possible, if only at least to elimate areas where the main source could be (as no-one can find it, even Rentokil). I was given some traps from my council and whereas before i very rarely saw the moths, since they were put down they seem to be flying everywhere. So obviously the traps do work although im disgusted to see so many of them. Ive got all my kids clothes in plastic boxes and i only take them out in the morning to iron them before school or going out. Its a bloody nightmare and takes over your life. Will let you know how i get on when ive filled in all the holes. Lulu

  58. What a great council Lulu! This has cost us a fortune that we never had! The moth traps do seem to mean that they fly around everywhere and it is vile. But after about 3 weeks of traps they are reducing in numbers. The traps filled up very quickly in the first week – now we only have a couple a day. We have tried everything now, and the traps are the most reliable. I bought the dusting powder and the entire house looked like Pompeii for a week, covered in heaps of brown dust – it did kill some moths but I have no way of knowing the effect on eggs and larvae.. I also have strips of Rentokil insecticide paper which is meant to kill moths larvae and eggs in the wardrobes. But we also decided to try the mini smoke bombs, which we set off in all the bedrooms and finally in the cellar. And though I hesitate to speak too soon, it seems to have swung the balance in our favour. I think ours are mainly in the cellar. We are planning to repeat the bombs this week and possibly again in a fortnight. I don’t know for sure whether they work, but the flutterings have decreased noticeably. Unless it’s the cooler weather. (What I do know is that Protector C spray is useless – a puddle of it will kill a moth, but it’s definitely not residual). So I will update in a month or so to let you know whether the intensive campaign of bombs works. What I haven’t figured out is whether the self-help products arevany different to the so-called professional products – in other words what can Rentokil do that we can’t do cheaper? Sile

  59. Hi..thank god for this blog. We have found an infestation at the weekend in our dinig room. I was hoovering every half hour. We are going to rip the carpet up to try and find the eggs and in the meantime Nippon spray have halted them crawling out and up the walls. Where do I get the smoke bombs and traps from. thanks.

  60. I went out to a concert tonight and was having a great time UNTIL I picked up my coat and found it’d been eaten away! My gorgeous Paul Costello coat that I only bought last year and cost me £200.00. My evening was ruined! At first I thought that maybe it was cigarette burns or someone in the restaurant had spilt something on it, but when I looked closely, there was no residue and it was all very neat and clean! I could hardly wait to get home and I checked on the sofa where my coat has been lying for a couple of months (it’s a winter coat and the sofa’s in the guest bedroom) and low and behold what did I find crawling around!!! I went straight onto the internet (what a blessing) and within minutes found a mugshot. That was 2 hours ago. Since then I’ve been back and forth between my computer and the guest bedroom. I’ve squished 5, but by the sounds of it there could be hundreds of eggs. I can’t see any eggs, but apparently they’re smaller than a pinhead. It’s too late for me to start hoovering (don’t want to annoy the neighbours) and I suppose I feel slightly better having read other people’s horror stories of the many items of clothing they’ve lost. I lost a cashmere sweater once to the blighters but that was years ago and the problem didn’t reoccur. Now I’m starting to panic slightly as the holes in my coat are dreadful. I suppose I should throw it out, but I feel just awful as it cost me so much money and until it had holes in, it was my all time favourite coat! I can’t see any holes in the sofa or any of the other fabrics left on it; some were cotton, others sythentic. The bugs just seem to’ve gone for the coat. Does this mean if I get rid of the coat the problem will go away? Or should I keep the coat and just squish the monsters when I find them???
    I’ve learnt my lesson and will NEVER leave clothes lying around on the sofa ever again. But here’s my question…
    does this mean we shouldn’t buy woollen carpets? Does this mean we shouldn’t buy woollen or cashmere clothes? I thought in an ideal world we were supposed to go for the ‘natural alternative’ where possible. Help..I’m confused…and under attack!

  61. Georgie I got moth papers, sprays etc from Robert Dyas.

    Well we seem to have made a break through, after doing sooo much cleaning under furniture and along skirting boards. We literally moved everything that was in contact with the floor several times over around a month to clean.

    Over the last 6 weeks I’ve kept up the regular moving of everything in contact with the floor, but less frequently. 2 weeks went by without seeing any, then saw 3 within a few days. Again around 2 weeks went by and then saw a couple. Around 2 weeks has gone by since then. Now when we move the furniture to clean underneath, we are only finding the odd cocoon or cluster or eggs, rather than lots.

    So the secret of our success seems to be not storing things under furniture, e.g. under the bed, which is where we saw the most, and cleaning under furniture and along skirting boards often, and using moth paper and the hanging moth repellant from Robert Dyas.

    We have been holding off switching on our heating, as the warmth makes it easier for them to breed. I am concerned that once we do we may see a resurgence. Fingers crossed we don’t.

  62. Hi everyone!
    It’s good to hear that you seem to be making a breakthrough Emily. I’ve never seen any eggs so I’m not sure what I should be looking for. My father stripped the covers off the sofa where my coat had been lying and it’s been to the dry cleaners. Sadly my cashmere coat had to go :-(
    I put a teddy made from mohair in the freezer for a week. I couldn’t see any damage on him, but he was on the sofa so he had to have a cold spell for a while. I’ve also thrown out a pair of woollen trousers that had holes in.
    I killed one moth that appeared, to my horror, in my bedroom, not the room where the damage had been done.
    I think Emily you’re absolutely right. The trick is to not store things in dark cosy places that are going to be undisturbed for long periods.
    I think I need to take out all my clothes from the wardrobe and cupboard and give everything the once over.
    Man does this take over your life!
    Apparently the larvae feed on animal products such as wool, cashmere, silk, fur, because they like to eat keratin, a form of protein. Yuk!

  63. Well it had been over a month without seeing any, and for the last couple of weeks I’ve been daring to believe we had got rid of them. But tonight we saw one. I know it is only one, but that means there is still something going on. Frustrating.

    It is definitely much better than it was though.

    HP in answer to your question about whether we should avoid buying woollen carpets etc – someone was saying on here that they have a moth problem despite having no carpets.

  64. The battle continues. In August I either saw or trapped 90 adults. I’ve been over every inch of this house and came close to having the carpet removed. I still haven’t found a source or any damage. I think it’s taking up my whole life….and mental health.

    We’ve pulled back the carpet and put down powdered boric acid and diatomaceous earth between the quarter rounds and tack strips. We found only a rare moth casing, but spooked up a few adults. With 6 carpeted rooms, stairs and a long hall it took some time.

    I use pheromone traps from Insects Limited. Since I have webbing clothes moths I use the traps that sit on the floor. I’ve found that the more adults in the trap, the more they catch so don’t toss out the old ones. The entomologist that I talked to said that they communicate in ways other than pheromones so that when they are trapped and still not dead they attract others.

    I can’t imagine where they are coming from, but the other entomologist thinks it might be a dead furry creature in the attic or walls. *tearing my hair out*

    Good luck to us all.

  65. I have also had the pleasure of moths eating my clothes and reading all your comments is a real help! So I’m trying my best to do everything I possibly can to kill them. But I have one question… do I have to throw out my clothes that have holes in them, or can I just get them dry cleaned? Does anyone know?


  66. Amy I would throw them out but maybe that is over the top. It is better to be safe than sorry. I had a bag that had loads of them in it, and I washed it at a very hot temperature, but after it had dried out more of them emerged.

    Well I haven’t seen any since that one over a month ago. Just before Christmas I had another big clean, moved all the furniture and found no evidence except for one dead moth. I think we have finally got rid of them. I would like to think that cleaning lots and lots under the furniture, having a big clear out and keeping as little as possible in contact with the floor (e.g. not storing things under the bed) seems to have done it, plus using anti moth paper. But I suspect that the particularly cold winter has helped. We have made an effort to keep out flat cool during the winter (wearing lots of clothes instead!) to try to keep the moths away.

    I wish you all a moth free 2010.

  67. Hi,

    we even bought a new washing machine but we still had the problem. We haven’t seen many moths in our house, the annoying thing is they only seem to eat my Husbands designer clothes. I bought him a Hugo Boss T Shirt to start replacing his clothes, it came out of the machine fine. I put it in the bathroom with my ironing ready to to the next day, as I started ironing it I found one hole. He wore it albeit complaining, I washed it again and started to iron it ( today ) only to find at least ten more holes! This is now driving us mad… Has anybody found that they only have the front and back of the bottom of their clothes eaten? We have tried everything, I may even more house, but will I bring them with me? Cie England.

  68. Hi everybody.
    I bought a new coat in the sales to replace the one eaten by ‘the enemy’. We’ll see how long it lasts. It was comforting to hear the tale of woe told by the shop assistant in John Lewis. She said that she’s battled against the blighters for years!

    I understand that it’s predominantly animal products they go for, cashmere, silk and fur, but what I don’t understand is how fast they work. If you check your clothes every day and shake them out would that work? But man…how time consuming!

    The shop assistant in John Lewis said that the only solution she’d found was to store her clothes in those vacuum packed plastic bags; you know the ones you have to use a hoover to suck out all the air. However, this only solves the problem of clothes you’re storing for a long period or season.

    Cie, I’d be interested to know what the t-shirt’s made out of. Where was it in between ironing and the next holes appearing?

    Amy-if you can either wash your clothes on a really hot wash or put them in the freezer for a while then they should be ok. I threw out my woollen trousers because I didn’t want to wear them with holes in. I’ve kept one of my jumpers. Stupid really because the hole’s in the back near the top in a really obvious place so I can’t wear it anywhere I’ll be taking my coat off!

    I’ve just put some horrible chemical hanging things in my wardrobes and balls in plastic that are supposed to smell of lavender but actually smell revolting. However I agree with Emily that the frightfully cold Winter we’re having must surely help to put them off.

    Good luck everybody and don’t despair!

  69. Cie-I’ve just been thinking. Are you sure it’s moths and not the washing machine that’s causing the holes? I had a similar problem years ago when a washing machine wrecked an item of clothing, I can’t remember what it was, but it was becasue the spin cycle was too viscious. Worth considering!

  70. my old friend Vera swears by conkers to get rid of these pests. It really really works

  71. HAS ANYONE ELSE MORE EXPERIENCE OF INSECTICIDAL SMOKE BOMBS? I’m very interested to read all these comments. My house is about 150 years old and was really badly treated before I moved here 10 years ago. I have been waging a war on destructive moths since I discovered several damaged pieces of clothing. I have been using moth balls, brought in Spain and impregnated cards in the wardrobes. Very frequent cleaning is difficult to undertake and I have trouble moving the furniture around on my own. I have a particularly badly damaged wool carpet in my study which I have cleared to lay a new synthetic carpet. After I take up the old floor covering I need to tackle the cracks between the floor boards. I’ve read that there is an organic spray product called Oa2ki or would FortefogF be better? What do people think?

  72. Seen lots of mid brown moths around and found a whole load of white tube types things about 1cm long under the sofa. I mostly seem to be getting holes in cotton t-shirts and the woollen clothes have been left alone. Admittedly the clothes have been sitting about in my ironing pile. I’ve also had big chunks of carpet eaten around the edge of the living room. Has anyone else had mainly cotton clothes eaten. What sort of moth does this sound like? Don’t think I could cope with washing everything (especailly as some things can’t be washed hotter than 40 degrees) and clearing and cleaning all wardrobes and cupboards. Anyone found a cheap & easy solution to the problem?

  73. I have recently found lots of tiny holes in my t-shirts. I have already got lavender sheets in my draws and closets, as lavender is supposed to repel moths. The sheets are not working and the holes are driving me crazy. My draw is made out of cedar as well, so I have no new ways of getting rid of the moths. Can anybody help?

  74. I have a serious infestation of carpet moths and have decided to take up all my carpet from the house and replace with laminate flooring, but am concerned that the moths might want to eat this too, can anyone advise me please

  75. Dear all,
    I was glad to find this blog and feel that I am not alone in this horror.
    I hope when I am writing this your troubles have gone already.
    But I feel I need to write about my experience and maybe someone will find this information useful.

    I have been dealing with moths for such a long time now that it looks like forever. First, when it happened I honestly thought I will just run away from it, which I tried by cleaning everything I could and moving into another apartment. Unfortunately, moths do not mind travelling too and if you have unnoticed eggs in your furniture, cloves or anywhere else they will sure come with you. As frustrating as it is I am now getting over this horror. Even though I am not entirely finished with it yet, I hope that Rentokil will get me there.

    Before I got to Rentokil I had a horrible experience with another pest control company named [company]

    I talked to them explaining that moths was a longstanding problem in my house. They somehow ignored it, so I ended up paying over 200 pounds for nothing, i.e., 2 treatments lasting 15 minutes each, mind you, I have two bedroom flat, it is not one room we are talking about. The results of their efforts were catastrophic for my wardrobe, since I relaxed thinking that miracles do happen and after two visits my moths would disappear, and of course it did not.

    When I rediscovered that the problem is in fact increasing I called [company], and it turned out they LIED about 3 months warranty they promised to provide. Instead of helping, they said that I brought it on myself again by buying new stuff, but they agreed to give me a discount for the nest two treatments, so now I was supposed to pay another 100+VAT. I panicked and agreed.

    However, at the same time I invited Rentokil to come in and inspect the flat. Not going into the details the conclusion I made is this:
    Rentokil is cheaper, since they do not charge you twice or thrice (I am going through my 4th treatment next week, and only paid once £200+VAT in total)
    Rentokil is much more professional, since they go to your flat and inspect it before the treatments are made ([company] never even suggested inspecting)
    And above all Rentokil stays with you through this painful process really trying to help you out, instead of adding charges and insults to the already devastating experience.

  76. Hi,
    I’ve just begun going through this horrible experience. Reading this has freaked me out all the more coz up until now i was just going by other websites that said Vacuuming did the trick. But it hasnt worked. I’m now arranging for Rentokil to come in and inspect my flat. Does anybody know if ripping out the carpets and changing the floor to laminate wood flooring might solve the problem for good or is the problem likely to recur even with laminate flooring through the underlay? Nicole, have u gone through with the change in flooring you mentioned above?

  77. Hi, Sue

    Have not yet changed the flooring due to the expense that is going to be involved, but will hopefully be doing so in a couple of weeks and will let you know the outcome asap. The moths I have only seem to be interested in my wool carpets and as yet touch wood have not made their way to my clothing, have put up some rentokil moth traps in my wardrobes however just in case. Can you believe it is National Moth Weekend this weekend and they want us to preserve moths habitat and lifestyle lol!!!! Good luck Sue, let me know how you get on.

  78. I must have picked up moths from my old rented flat where I discovered a woollen slipper had been eaten but was oblivious then to exactly what a problem these things are. I have now bought a house and my lovely antique carpet wall hanging is infested. They seem to have spread to another small rug which i just threw out because it wasn’t hugely precious, and I have just spotted one crawling around my clothes. Aaaaarrrgghh!!!! The rug where the main infestation is is too big to fit in a domestic freezer and although I could probably fit it in a launderette machine, I don’t know if washing it may damage it. Anyone know what the best way to treat it would be? Do these sprays really work if you use them enough?

  79. reading all these stories has made me hope to god i have got rid of these pests..i noticed loads of these clothes moths flying round my flat and sitting on walls bout 4 days ago.i turned the place upside down hoovering and cleaning but they always returned..yesterday i went mental and scrubbed the place top to bottom moving furniture was only when i went to empty the hoover that i found the nest!!thats where the little b…..ds had made there home…so i hope thats the last of them..i squished 2 or 3 this morning,and havent seen 1 since…so check the hoover folks and good luck.

  80. I am currently doing battle with these pests. I have never had such a problem before and it’s horrifying! Do they get in your mattresses? ewww!

    I have put everything into tubs, and all my clothese into clothing bags and vacuumed sealed bags, and all my stored items are sealed also. They got into our valuable turkish rugs, and so I have vacuumed and sealed these also with mothballs. I’m so depressed by all of this and quite overwhelmed. Everything is in sealed bags and I don’t feel comfortable in my own home any more.

    My neighbour (I live in a condo) had to rip all her shag rug out and put down laminate. I think they probably got into my unit via the hallway. People have complained about the smell in the hallway, but in my opinion they should be happy that I am so vigourously fighting these pests.

    What happens when the whole building becomes infested? It’s quite easy to unknowingly get these things in. Has anyone defeated them?!!?

    Please I need some hope here….what’s a conker?

  81. Hi, i have clothes moths and Rentokil identified that I have the common clothes moth (supposedly…I’m not quite convincedthey knew what they were doing). Rentokil have funigated my property at least ten times, we have used smoke bombs and various insecticides….we hoover daily, we cannot find a source.nests, have sealed crevices, bought a new mattress and we are currently at £2000 worth of damage to colthes only. I have been replacing clothes since last January and fighting this problem for a year and a half now….I today took everything with a whole in it from the house. I have laundered clothes to the point of ruin, tumble dried, frozen and steam ironed seams. I have emptied my entire house regularly and inspected clothes for evidence of larvae and never EVER seen one. My clothes get eaten when I am wearing then and my stomach itches all the time whereby I wonder if the larvae are actually on me. I have tried absolutley everything and I keep a very clean home…I have now resorted to double sided tape across my carpets, Shave & Vac sprinkled everywhere but no hoovered up…and my wardrobes and drawers filled to the brim with fragrance…still nothing works. I have had my loft fumigated and resorted to stroing the hoover outside the house (as very difficult to empty all of the time). I am relived to see others have suffered from itching and had their clothes eaten whilst wearing them because people I know think I’m completley nuts..which isnt helpful and their assistance to hoover and clean would be better. I have been told there isn’t any product on the market that will kill moth larvae and research tells me these things can remain in their larvae stage for over a year…and keep eating! So….any tips would be welcomed as an elderly person said to me when I was trying to deal with them…you will just have to live with them….I somehow think he knew that they do not go once you have them…well not for a while from what I can see on former posts. Good luck …I am considering dry ice now…but somehow i do not think these things are in cracks and crevices ans they seem to eat the same item of clothing on more than one occassion…I even think I have both types of moth (never found a case though…or seen any larvae at all) :((((((

  82. a tip…because we have children…we used to when we got undressed put our soiled clothing straight into soak…and set the washing machine to go on in the middle of the night (as they even seem to get in there)…this preserved clothes for a little while longer..but I have to be honest an say “they got the item in the end”. They never ever eat my gym clothing that I have worked out…??? So I just wore a new top that i didnt want to get eaten to the gym …however…it is now ruined :( Today I felt like selling my home….but i know this isnt the solution…we have purchased kittens though as we feel they will catch anything crawling around at night (even though my top eaten today whilst I was wearing it was during the day light hours??)…I feel better now but feel bad as I know anyone reading this will feel worse ….it’s a very bad problem to have :(

  83. Hi guys-just scrolling through, I work in an organistation which unfortunately has to deal with moths – the best way to get rid of them is if you can freeze the contaminated items at -40, this is not likely for many of us but even a freeze for a week or 2 in a domestic freezer might help. It does kill the eggs and larvae, but if you have something tasty the moths will find it again (anything tasty is anything animal based with proteins or even cellulose ie: fur,feathers, leather, wool, silk, sometimes cotton,and even synthetics with small amount of natural fibres). So I suggest also getting some pheromone traps, this attempts to catch them before they mate and the cycle starts again. check out for traps etc- thats who I use, also amazon does a whole load of stuff.

  84. I’ve got this problem too and will try to use Tick powder for dogs under the carpet to deal with this problem. I have no pets but will give it a try. Carpet under my sofa has got lots for patches because of them.

  85. I bought my first house in April but little did I know that it was infested with Moths. I fear that maybe why the owners left. I didn’t realise what it was at first but there was hundreds of lava on the carpet and cellings and I would see a handful of moths daily. Since I have moved in I have ripped out the carpets and bleached each corner of the house. I have also ripped of the skirting boards in the living room and I am going to get the cracks plastered up. I am still finding moths and lava! It is very depressing. I am finding the lava on the walls. Whilst the problem seem to quieten down once the carpets were ripped out it now seems, a couple of weeks later, to be going back to how it was when I first moved in. I am not sure what else I can do. Moving out isnt an option yet I don’t fancy having to live with this. I have a one year old boy too so I don’t really want to use toxic products but I also don’t want him to have to share his house with these pests. Please help, apart from ripping out the carpets I can’t think what else to do. I have so many clothes and blankets that the thought of lugging bags and bags full to the dry cleaners is a tall task! Any ideas?

  86. Hi,

    That sounds like a bad situation! Removing the carpets sounds like a good thing to have done if they were eating the carpets.

    Have you found where the eggs are? The moth eggs can stay active for a long time so if you don’t get rid of the eggs you’ll keep finding new larvae and then moths. Killing the moths and larvae will prevent them from laying new eggs, but if you still have hundreds or thousands of eggs somewhere in the house then they’ll keep appearing.

    The larvae don’t move too fast so the eggs are likely to be near to where you find most of the larvae. Kill the eggs, and if you kill the moths and larvae before they lay new ones then the problem may be curable.

    Feel free to add another comment with news of your progress.

    Good luck.

  87. Right, thanks for all the comments – to help our infestation I’m going to:

    1. buy a pheremone trap
    2. spray the entire affected carpeted area
    3. vacuum the area at least once a day
    4. keep it dust-free as far as possible

    Really want to avoid chemicals and getting in the pest control people.

  88. Hi, thanks for your reply. I have called rentokil and they are coming on Thursday so I shall see what they have to say. It is an odd situation because since ripping up the carpets I can’t say where the larvae (sorry previously wrote lava – no volcano problems just yet) is coming from. It was obvious before and there were so many eggs in the corners. Now there isn’t any, I just find the odd egg on the wall and moths randomly throughout the house on the walls. I am thinking that ripping up the skirting boards probably produced more moths to fly out. But today I haven’t (fingers crossed) seen any. I will keep you updated but since reading this blog I am fearing the worse. Had anyone out there had success in getting rid of these pests? I agree and think getting rid ot the carpet was the right thing to do it was infested with them – so gross. Ironically I have had a moth phobia and have done for about 20 years lol

  89. Hi I too have had problems with these moths, but only discovered them after they had decimated my son’s wool carpet and chewed holes in my clothes.
    I bought a Pheromone trap from my local shop for £4.49, this included a clear plastic trap and one Pheromone Pad. One month later and the pad is almost covered with male moths. Because this product works so well I decided to find out where these are manufactured. I am now selling them on ebay for £2.99 which included one clear plastic trap and two Pheromone Traps. I can also supply more Pheromone pads for 99p each or 10 for £7.50. My ebay user name is bug-busters look me up I can promise you if you have these moths you will be really pleased with these traps. On my listings I have included a photograph of the trap with the moths so that you can see for yourself how effective they are.

  90. Hi all fellow victims,
    Recently discovered we have a moth infestation in our 4 year old 80% wool carpet in the living area of our 5 year old centrally heated house. After about a week of daily cleaning (we are both retired!), heavy furniture moving, spraying and researching we have come to the following opinions:
    1) we probably brought the moth eggs with us from our previous 100 year old large house (no central heating) inside some old oak furniture.
    2) these moths hate light, so can’t be trapped that way.
    3) the only effective and persistent insecticides (lindane etc.)that would kill them were banned from sale in the EU several years ago.
    4) the insecticides currently available (pymethrin and its sound alike siblings) may give the sods a nasty headache for a while, but thats about all they will do. Natural smellies like cedar and lavender are only mildly effective, if that.
    5) persistent hoovering and cleaning will perhaps reduce the numbers of adults you see, but do not get at the root of the continuous re-infestation – which is the eggs.
    6) new thinking is required – has for example anyone out there experimented with steam cleaning? It seems to us that if it were possible to hard boil or poach the eggs in situ we might begin to get somewhere.
    Any new thoughts or comments gratefully received.
    Any friendly professional experts out there?

  91. Further thoughts:
    Information required;
    Wool insulation for houses – is it protected from moth attack? How/With what? Is this relevant to our predicament? Available OTC?
    Sheep dipping – Is this still done? What does it do and what chemicals are used? Can I/we get hold of some?
    Dry cleaning fluid – (CT4?) – Does it kill moth eggs? Is it available OTC?

    1) Eggs. Steam? CT4? Hand pick?
    2) Caterpillars. Spray or dust with what? Any effective new chemicals (eg. latest vine weevil killers) now in the marketplace?
    3) Pupae. Hoover or hand pick and squidge.
    4) Adults. Knock down spray, hand swat and/or pheromone traps.

    Asking for input please.

  92. Hi Bob

    This may be my imagination but I have noticed that clothes hung in my newish wardrobe tend to be chewed. I have an old wardrobe that came with the house that has a strong woody smell to it (possibly Cedar) and the moths have not touched the clothes hanging in there. I don’t ever remember when I was younger having problems with clothes being chewed so I do wonder if it is the changing climate. I feel that this is going to be an ongoing war with these creatures. Maybe a good hoover on a regular basis would help as I notice that the worst area for my sons carpet being chewed was under his bed. This was hoovered much less than the rest of the carpet. Regards Pauline

  93. Hello to everyone suffering the dreaded carpet moth:

    I’ve just found this site after discovering we’d got carpet moth. We’ve been living in this house (from brand new) since 1993, had house cats for ALL of that time (hence fur) and have NEVER had a problem before. We’ve had a local reliable pest control man in and fingers crossed for the present. HOWEVER, I can’t help making a connection between the moth discovery and the fact that we used a VAX carpet cleaner for the very first time only a month or so before all hell broke loose! Our pest man didn’t set too much store by my theory but it would be interesting to know if anyone else has made this connection. I’m wondering if the moisture the VAX created helped ‘activate’ the larvae …. Methinks the VAX has had its first and last outing here. Best of luck everyone – Nettie.

  94. The only way to get rid of carpet moths completely is to switch to synthetic carpets and get rid of anything made of wool/silk etc in your house. I have had this problem in my current house for over two years and have only just managed to get rid of them, they are a real problem. I ripped out the wool carpets and got synthetic ones fitted. I also sealed upI the cracks in the skirting boards with a foam gun as I found out that moths love to hide there. I now don’t buy any clothing containing wool.

  95. My flat is infested with clothes moths. I live in an old property and they are breeding under the floorboards. I’ve been gradually taping along every gap in the floorboards and this summer I have not seen nearly as many of the moths about. I’ve still got two rooms to do. I’ve been asking my neighbours and they also have them and other people along the street from me. All those who have similar infestations that I’ve spoken to also live in the same type of old flats as me with wooden slatted floor boards. I gave up spending money on sprays and pheromone traps as they didn’t seem to solve the problem for me. My local council does nothing to help people with moth infestations now.

  96. Dear All
    Sadly, I too seem to be the victim of moths :-( I have never seen any larvae or eggs (occasionally I find moths but they seem to be larger than is described above – sometimes even about 1″ long), but ever since I moved into this flat I have been noticing more and more holes in my clothes. Every time I put something on I find one or two new holes in it. At first I thought it was a coincidence – I’m a student and a lot of my stuff was old, but now even my newer clothes have holes in them. I entertained the idea that it was the washing machine here, but my boyfriend’s clothing, which is kept in a different room, seems unaffected. I don’t understand though – I keep all my clothes hanging up. How do the larvae get on there and why do I never see them? Is there anything else that could be causing the holes? Does home/contents insurance cover this kind of thing?

  97. Hi Izzi,

    The clothes moths can fly onto your clothes in your wardrobe, and lay eggs on them. When the eggs hatch the larvae eat your clothes! You should be able to spot some sign of them. Have you tried thoroughly going through your wardrobe and checking each item of clothing? Also check the rest of your wardrobe in case they are hiding in the corners.

    I doubt any insurance company would cover moth damage – but you’d have to read the small print.

    Good luck!

  98. Hi fellow sufferers!

    We have had Case bearing clothes moths now for the last few months. Came in on a second hand sofa that we were given from somebody on freecycle (who must have known and simply used Freecycle to dispose of an infested sofa rather than pay for it to be taken away grrrrrrrrrrrrr!)It has so far cost us over £400 with rentokil and they are still far from gone. We have nearly all of our clothing in big zip up laundry bags and are keeping all of our laundry outside in bags until washed.We have chucked away all of our rugs,both of our sofas 9as completely infested) taken down all of our curtains and had them cleaned but despite only having stairs and 2 bedrooms left with carpets (we have wood flooring everywhere else) we are still gettting them everywhere. It is an absolute nightmare. What amazes me most is that they are far from dumb creatures and are incredibly adept at escape when you lunge for them. I have seen some literally drop vertically to escape then fly horizontaly near floor level into the nearest crack! Best way to flatten them seems to be coming up from behind them and squashing them with a thumb (YUCK!) as if you try to swipe them with a swatter or shoe they use the gust of air created to escape. It is disgusting beyond belief!

    Rentokil have been continuing to come in and said that they won’t desert us until they are eradicated but not sure that they really know what to do either. they have started to set pheromene traps but from my research and expereince (I already have some)these do not attract this kind of moth so don’t think that this is going to work sadly.

    We have not found any eggs at all anywhere only cocoons and for the first time last week we finally found some larvae but under a completley synthetic laundry basket on the laminate kitchen floor??????? So not where expected at all! Needless to say that laundry basket is GONE!

    So those that are finally free of the little beggars please do keep posting to give the rest of us some hope!!! This is such a nightmare as we have 4 little children !


  99. I first found approx 100 rice grains under my sofa, felt sick.. Researched and realised that I had carpet moths.. Bought a kit on the Internet Inc c spay , talc, and smoke bombs. I hoovered non stop. Pulled the skirting board off and found hundreds more of eggs. Only recently I have noticed moths flying around so moved furniture again and found a few more. So am going to have to start again I can’t stand the thought of them lying around. I have big patches eaten of my carpet . We have cut the carpet back from the edges so they haven’t got anything to munch on which I will replace with a synthetic one as my carpet is 100% wool.

  100. I’m not sure where to start really I have just stumbled upon this site whilst trying to work out exactly how to get rid of my moths. I started noticing them earlier this year then they died down and as soon as we got to about May things really kicked off. I live in a 1920s house with lots of cracks and hiding places. Eventually after finding about 30 on the traps I had left out I called in rentokil. We searched the house and found an old rug full of them. I cleared out my attic bagged everything in the house up. Everything fabric is in the shed waiting for its turn in the freezer. I was told freezing for anything over 48 hours works. Anything I could find with eggs on was thrown away. I was charged £400 for three spray (although they say they will keep going until they are gone). I have had the house sprayed three times now, they used Aquapy as I have two small kids. There is no sign of damage on the carpet which we have very little of. They have bomb the attic three times now and there is nothing fabric up there. We are living out of plastic bags and all the kids clothes are in the boot of the car. There wasn’t too much clothing damage considering how many moths I have seen and how many clothes we have. They only seemed to attack things with wool in it even a small amount. There is now almost nothing fabric left in the house but I am still finding them, a few a day on the walls. Some of them look almost all black. They have taken over my whole life. I have even had dreams about them. Will they ever go away???? Its a nightmare especially with toddlers. Oh God just seen another one. I can’t work out where they are coming from???!!! Feel like moving although we’d have to sell the house. I am at my wits end!!

  101. Hi, I have not read the entire thread but I have read that a few people are having problems with their HAND WASH only CLOTHES, you can put these items and any other in plastic bags and put them in the freezer for 48 hours. This kills the eggs and the larvae. You need to clean as you move clothes about, if you are taking clothes out of the wardrobe or drawers you must clean them and I spray mine with poison before putting the de-frosted clothes away again. Do not put wet clothes in the freezer and do put them in a bag as this will stop them getting ice on them. You can often find larvae in the bottom of the bag when you take your clothes out. Many years ago people kept their fur coat’s in ‘cold storage’ for this reason.

  102. Thank you very much for replying to me. I have checked all my clothes and haven’t seen anything there, other than the holes. When my partner is back I will get him to help me pull everything out to look 100% everywhere in the room. I have to confess I have been reluctant to do so because I am worried I will find something completely disgusting (like 100s of caterpillars and eggs) and not know what to do about them. I am so happy that I found the online conversation – otherwise I would have had absolutely no idea at all!


  103. Oh my word, i can totally sympathise with those who have moths. I had them in my last property, which i had fumigated. I have moved back to my parents house and alas think ive bought them with me as ive spotted a few around but ive no idea where they have been hiding – i got everything of natural fibres dry cleaned. Gutting. It can really get to you, i worry about them! It can be so costly with dry cleaning, spraying etc. Oh what to do.

  104. Hi all,

    I’m having the same problem with moths. I live in a private rented flat and it has woollen carpet throughout. Since we moved in seven months ago we’ve had a moth problem and I’ve managed to locate where they are coming from. They have damaged the carpet really badly in one room and I’m afraid that my landlady is going to hold us responsible. I’ve contacted her about the problem and she in not so many words has implied that we have created this problem! We are very clean and I’ve lived in rented housing for eight years without ever having this problem. I’ve tried to find information regarding our rights with this matter but I’ve had no luck so far. Any help would be much appriciated.

  105. Further to comments 93 and 94;
    According to Second Nature (UK) Ltd and the CAT site, the wool used for house insulation is protected by a 10% solution of BORAX (which may still be available to the GBP at Tesco) (?). I have not yet tried this out as a carpet spray. Anybody else?
    On a more optimistic front:
    Hoover, hoover, steam and spray
    Suck, cook and F*cam – that’s the way
    To rid your home of carpet moths
    And save your precious tailored cloths.

    We seem at the moment to be winning – after a lot of effort and a fair bit of expense.

    Ficam is available on line for amateur use, but needs to be used with care. Follow the instructions to the letter!
    We used the brilliant and inexpensive Earlex 125 steam cleaner to cook the skirting board/carpet boundaries – no harm done to anything except, possibly and hopefully, moth eggs, (We feared the carpet would shrink but were prepared to ditch it as a last resort and if necessary.) We used the steam jet here and the carpet cleaning attachment where we didn’t fancy spraying Ficam. Use slowly and get the temperature well up!
    We sprayed with Ficam in places we could keep out of for a while.
    We dusted all areas of carpet usually covered with heavy and inconvenient to move furniture with insecticidal dust (ant powder) and hoovered up the surplus from around the edges once the furniture was put back, so the chemicals were excluded from our own accessible environment. NB It became clear to us that the moth caterpillars preferred compressed wool fibers as nearly all the damage we found was in the depressions under the furniture edges and supports.
    We had found pupae in rooms without carpets so we steam jetted all the skirting board boundaries everywhere, including bathrooms (which seem to contain enough “house dust” to attract the very mobile caterpillars from adjacent areas).
    NB They feed on keratin – hair ,skin flakes, wool fibers etc.

    Anyway enough of this for a while. We look forward to any useful input and will post further info as it comes available.

  106. I have recently seen lots of small moths about, even though I have cut my wool carpet about 10 inches away form the wall, I moved the chair and found lots of larve under there. I have re sprayed and put the dusting powder down.
    I think I might have to call someone out as they seem to of turned into moths now and the problem could just get worse.

  107. Further thoughts on post 108;
    1) If your carpet has been protected by the manufacturer with borax (disodium octaborate tetrahydrate – harmless to humans) and you shampoo it (as opposed to steam cleaning) you may reduce the concentration to less than say about 2%. This may leave you open to attack by carpet moths! A document “Risk of Insect Damage to Thermafleece.pdf” is available from Second Nature and contains relevant info.
    2) Don’t assume the “rice grains” you find are empty. We sealed some in an old screw top jar and discovered that many contained very alive, hungry (cannibalistic) and mobile caterpillars. Some have climbed up to the lid, hooked on, and now turned into adult moths!

  108. I’ve never had quite as bad a moth infestation as some posters, but I thought it might help if I explained how we’ve managed to keep the clothes moths ‘under bearable control’ in our Edwardian c.1900 London flat with it’s permanent low (but higher than acceptable) level of infestation.

    I have a LOT of fabric (both animal and plant derived – wool, silk, cotton, linen, sheepskins etc) in every room incl. wall hangings, although we do have synthetic carpets. We’ve only got the standard golden coloured moths and woolly bears type prevalent in S. England. The key is to be disciplined with the cleaning and the tidying up.

    The moths arrived in around 2001, and over the years we have developed the following routine, and stuff is very rarely eaten now (including woollen tapestries out on the wall all the time) – it only gets eaten if I get lazy…
    1. Hoover the synthetic carpets and skirting boards & edges ONCE EVERY week in every room, moving easy to move furniture at the time, and shake out all cushions etc. This disturbs the newly hatched insects of all sorts. We have a cat who likes socialising with the local foxes (well terrorising them) and it keeps ticks/ flea problems away also.
    2. ALWAYS have a Mottlock or similar Moth Pheromone Glue Trap in every room, and replace them at the recommended intervals (don’t be tempted to leave them longer). Yes it’s quite expensive, but not as expensive as replacing carpets/ cashmere jumpers etc. This removes the males from the equation as they get stuck on the traps – then any hatching females are less likely to get fertilised – eventually you end up with very few females getting fertilised and then they lay unfertilised eggs, then there isn’t much to actually hatch out. Then the problem becomes controllable by a decent cleaning routine. It’s also a good indicator of the scale of the issue.
    3. KEEP all clean folded clothes in plastic boxes – we’ve got an Argos shelving unit with 10 plastic boxes for tshirts/ trousers/ jumpers etc. ALWAYS keep lid on box unless actually using it AND NEVER EVER leave any animal fibre (woollen) clothes out & about in the house for more than a couple of hours. Yes, it’s boring being this tidy, but it works!
    4. Have cedar blocks and cedar balls and the Sandalwood powder sachets (sold by John Lewis & Lakeland Plastics) in the Wardrobe (it’s an open fronted wood/cotton one from Argos). Keep rubbing cedar balls with Cedar Oil (get from Health Food shops) as I can’t be doing with all that sanding down – about once very 8 weeks, but don’t put them back with clothes until oil has dried.
    5. EVERY MONTH take out all clothes from wardrobe and shake them onto a sheet on the bed, which is then itself shaken outside and put into the wash. Checking if there are any holes or obvious signs of larvae etc. ONCE a year, hang out clothes on washing line outside in strong sunlight. Also do the same for coats hanging on general coat rack.
    6. EVERY QUARTER move ALL furniture and hoover underneath & around it. (It was monthly until we got it under control).
    7. Every QUARTER (if no obvious infestation) or every MONTH (if there is, or more often if necessary), take down wool tapestry hangings from walls & other furnishings and gently hoover them (tie a duster around the vaccuum hose and put on lowest setting if it’s very delicate textile)and SHAKE THEM OUTSIDE (weather permitting).
    8. Keep dirty washing in a similar plastic box, don’t leave the ironing around not done for ages and keep moving and airing clothes. The moths hate light and movement.
    9. Use the cleaning routine as an opportunity to assess whether I really want the stuff I’m shifting around, or whether it can be given a good home elsewhere (once I’m sure it’s infestation free – by keeping it in sealed plastic bag for a month, if no sign of moths after that, it’s ok to go.
    10. Use the steam cleaner on Wardrobe clothes when there is an upsurge of infestation.
    11. Don’t panic and don’t get depressed. Accept minor losses occasionally as part of life.

    So, if I’ve got it sorted, why am I looking on the net for advice? Because we’re leaving the flat, the belongings are going into storage and our clothes & us are moving in with the parents. So how do we make sure that we’re not taking the infestation into storage/ parents’ house? This is the plan:
    1. Only pack stuff into boxes that has been cleaned OR which has been living in plastic boxes and is infestation free anyway. (It’s easier for me as I’ve got the problem under control and I’ve never had the experience of ‘nests’ of eggs – just one or two larvae every month now on the clothes).
    2. To clean – wash at high temperature OR dry clean OR freeze OR steam OR hoover OR iron (or any combination) – depending on the article. And if it’s a textile that has Keratin in it (wool/silk etc)put it into one of those plastic vaccuum bags (I don’t believe moths can live without oxygen!)
    3. Don’t mix newly cleaned and non-cleaned items, keep them separate to reduce cross-contamination.
    4. Aim to take over the empty chest freezer at parents for all clothes to reside in temporarily on arrival to minimise problem. Then, keep airing & moving clothes & checking them and use Mottlock glue traps to keep tabs.

    Sorry it’s so long, but this has worked for us to get it under control, it’s been relatively cheap and we’ve managed to avoid pesticides.

  109. Was on here a while ago with moth problems and have since moved. I took nothing with me, threw out wardrobes, beds, sofas, beds, curtains, all clothes, towels, coats, shoes – practically everything save for special items which i boxed up and sealed and left in my new home’s garage. After moving in, i removed everything i and my children were were wearing including shoes and coats, threw them out. I had bought us all a few bits to wear and ordered new furniture. Shouldnt have bothered, within two weeks the problem was back. Am I picking them up from somewhere else, or are my kids bringing them in. TBH I wash all our clothes immediately, have even plumbed the washing machine to the hot water tap as i thought perhaps the temperature on the washing machine was not working properly. I wash my clothes, dry them on the line, iron them and put them on. Within minutes, I see, around the bellybutton area starchy white marks, and soon after holes appear. This even happens when I buy a new top and put it on immediately – how can this be? And it happens no matter what the fabric is. Like Nance, I itch and like another person said, i too, have holes appear while i wear clothes even though im out in the daylight. Ive come to the conclusion that even at the hottest wash, the larvae stick on the clothes, and then when in contact with the body they feast in a frenzy, which is why the holes appear so quickly. I have noticed that when i remove the top, the frenzy dies down dramatically. I store underwear and nightwear in plastic lidded boxes, but i have just noticed a hole in my little girls nightwear. So if this is infested and i have put it in the box with everything else then i have contamined everything. My father has a problem with moths, and i am fairly sure that my ex does too. If my children or I have picked them up again from one of these places, surely by washing our clothes immediately on a hot wash should have prevented me from getting infested again. I cant bear the though that I have to live the rest of my life like this – i cannot afford it for one and it makes me feel so dirty when i am actually extremely OTT when it comes to cleanliness.

  110. Hi everyone, you’re post hearten me and horrify me at the same time! Its nice to know I’m not alone – in the problem and with the stress. I bought my first house almost a year ago, and little did I know! When I first figured it out (from the gaping holes in the carpet where the previous lady had had her furniture – and the hundreds of moths you could see hopping about), my father and I pulled out all the shag pile carpets from the bedrooms (to find polished floorboards – that was a gift from above). I still have carpet in the main room and hallway – they don’t seem to like it so much – no holes yet. Throughout the year I have not seen any moths or larvae. The pheromone traps have nothing in them. But, just now, as spring approaches – I’ve started to find the holes in the clothes. Sigh. Spent the weekend vacuuming everything, before letting go a couple of those flea bombs (with Permethrin and IGR). Note to anyone else who decides to do that – don’t use Permethrin if you have a cat (hopefully I haven’t poisoned mine). Much as I’d like to think I can eradicate these little buggers with time, I haven’t seen much hope. So I’d like to share some of the positive things I like to tell myself when I start to stress (I’ve been repeating it to myself to keep my sanity):
    1.they’re just clothes.
    2. At least the cat is not being alive.
    3. All the housework is great excerise and think how fit I’ll be?!.
    4. I’ll have the cleanest house (if you dicount the moths).
    Keep fighting everyone! I know I will be!

  111. I meant 2. Atleast the cat is not being EATEN alive. The cat is still alive, despite my almost poisoning him in ignorance.

  112. I have been fighting against clothes mothes for years but i think i had it under control until i became pregnant.
    I used to hoover every day and once a week used to move things in at least one room but when i became pregnant i slowed down a bit i did not clean because of the moths more because i’m a bit ocd.
    i had to take it easy during pregnancy then i had a C section then i got ill NOW OH My i finally moved the couch to hoover thats over 10 months( i know really bad but its so heavy) i know where they are coming from, huge holes and powdery surface on carpet.
    Before id see a moth maybe once and a while now i can squash probly over ten a day plus the ones my cat catches.
    I just kept buying traps in the last few months i recon thousands were caught.
    Ive not actually had too many clothes damaged they did go fo a expensive wool coat.
    tonight im moving everything whilst baby is asleep hoovering carpet and im actually using vanish that has so many chemicals surely they wont like it.
    im burning and making cedarwood oil patches. plus citronella which All insects are suposed to hate have the traps down anyways and im calling the landlord on monday.
    i wish i had been able to keep on with my useual cleaning but i couldn’t and even now im not supossed to do any excercise but i just cant bear the thought of the mess i found under my couch.
    My baby now plays on the floor just the thought of those horible nasty things makes me ill.
    Why cant we not get rid naturally….. maybe thats whey i kept getting spiders as its like a resturant in my flat.

  113. I thought I had got rid of the problem but no – they’re back. Two new very soft cotton designer tops have holes in the front = always in the same place. 3 years ago I had my bedroom (which is always where the clothes are damaged) sprayed on 3 occasions. I made sure to keep clothes in cupboard or wardrobe with cedar balls and lavendar bags and no problems. I became complacent and now a lovely sweater has been eatenas well as the tops. I am at my wit’s end cos I don’t know where they are. I will have to replace the wool carpet with synthetic but are they in my mattress which is top of the range. I have painted walls so no wall hangings at all and not a great deal of furniture. I feel so depressed reading these blogs as I have lost count of the clothes I have had to throw away. I rarely see a moth but probably one or two in the summer. Can my clothes be getting eaten by something else – beetles, or wood lice maybe? I have checked the mothholes with a magnifying glass but can see nothing. These clothes are in the freezer now.

  114. Has anyone heard of fumigating moths with dry ice? Supposedly it kills moths in all stages if you leave the dry ice in a bag of clothes for 3-5 days, by starving them of oxygen. see the link below (at the bottom).

    Or if dry cleaning kills them too… can one buy the dry cleaning agent and spray that on carpet, in closet, etc? (I discovered I’m highly allergic to all the sprays out there). Please advise as I have also been dealing with this for one year now. and ps I have NEVER seen any moths anywhere – I’ve been told this is normal – any insights?

    Thanks so much!

  115. OMG,
    I have major infestation, and do not have option of doing a geographical. I think it is Karma, as I have been unable to declutter my life (as in clothes) and now have clothes damage to a lot of my clothes, I have found the source which was an old motorcycle helmet stores on top of wardrobe, nice sweaty lining that they were feasting on.

    I am alarmed as I have read the thread from the beginning and it seems that the scoreboard is heavily slanted to Moths winning. I live in Australia, and it is hot and humid now (summer ) and we have the mildest winters so I do not know how i am going to be able to tackle the problem.

    Can ANYBODY give me a success story please?

  116. Hi all
    So on reading all the posts, (well almost), I am convinced we are in the same situation. I have them along the skirting boards where the carpet ends. Under beds, and in fact in areas which are well lit too. Not sure what can be done, but the damage is bad enough, and the wool carpet is old enough, for us to rip it out and live with awful looking floorboards will things settle again.

    Horror story.

    Anyone have any good news?
    Something that will work for a whole house infestation?

  117. Hi There,

    If you are based in the UK and need help. Please contact me on 0203 189 3412. We are making a new property programme for Channel 4 and have experts who may be able to help. Alternatively, email me on sukh.s [at] and leave a daytime contact number.

    Kind regards


  118. I want something that tells me about the lifecycle of the moth attached to relevant months if they are not reproducing all the time. So that I know when is the best time to search,to spray, clean etc. if that is relevant possible. Thanks a lot. I too have found this blog comforting. I am not alone.

  119. A cashmere jumper I got for Christmas was eaten – 2 holes appeared from nowhere. I froze it several days and washed at about 60 degrees (although this is not good for cashmere). I left it on sofa for days before getting round to stitching holes. All okay. Then took it to my bedroom (which I know is the contaminated area) got dressed, wore sweater and travelled to London. Upon arrival several hours later, took off jumper to find new hole and it had even eaten through into my thermal vest underneath! I refroze, rewashed, stitched hole and wore this yesterday. Today I took it ut of its plastic bag to find two huge holes again at the front, as always. Got magnifying glass and found a live larvae (first I have ever seen and I have had more than a dozen sweaters and tops eaten in this way and found nothing, no larvae or moths ever). Found trails of dead larvae in fibres. Should I just throw this expensive garment away? I am at my wits end as have found silk top, also peppered with tiny holes. This is so stressful, I am almost having a breakdown. Are they in my wool carpet, my mattress? A few months ago I did wash down skirting boards, wardrobes, drawers and replaced with new cedar balls, lavendar sachets etc. Nothing of my husband’s has EVER been eaten. Why?

  120. Weird, all our clothes get eaten around the tummy area. T-shirts & shirts; always little holes around the tummy.

    Maybe our tummy buttons are infested

  121. Hi, this is for Emma. It’s been awhile since you’ve posted on this site. I’d love to know if you’re still moth free. It sure would be encouraging for everyone to know that it might be possible.

  122. I have just found out 3 days ago we have a Case Bearing Moth infestation. We moved in the property at the end of December and we were finding what looked like bits of fluff hanging from the ceiling in the lounge, we just got rid of them as thought must be bits of dust or something and thought nothing of it. It was only when we started finding them frequently and when I found one MOVING up the wall that I looked up on the internet and found that they are Case Bearing Moths. Funnily enough I had a Pest Control man at the house yesterday as I had a Pigeon stuck in the vent where a fireplace used to be, so I took the opportunity to ask him what I could do about the problem, he said you MUST use a powder based insecticide as spraying is not effective to the eggs and doesn’t last long enough. He wouldn’t really help as I’d only called him out for he pigeon but when he left I looked up more about this type of moth and a lot of sites were saying hoovering with a brush nozel may help so I spent the whole day doing this yesterday and I found loads but only around the skirting of the carpet(edges), I then moved on to the hallway and have found that the carpet we thought was ‘worn’ when we moved in is actually patchy with clumps missing due to the moths. I pulled up the carpet and underneath is infested. They were also in all the gaps. I have hoovered all I can see but I doubt all of them. They are only eating the carpets nothing else. They are ONLY in the lounge and hallway. I have looked thoroughly upstairs and there are none and no clothes have holes in, it’s literally just downstairs. I’ve also not seen any flying moth, however I am PETRFIED that they will spread to upstairs. I’m also afraid of putting down any sort of insecticide as like many of you I have a toddler and I’m also pregnant. We are looking to move out and don’t want to take them with us. They are SUCH a pain and very upsetting as my family are funny about coming over incase they spread them to their houses. Anyone got any success stories on the Case Bearing Moth? Disgusting things and making me feel sick whenever I eat I think about them I am becoming obsessed with finding them and also found that they wrap themselves in their own silk, fabric they eat and wait for it.. feaces.. *puke*

  123. I, too, have recently discovered that I have case-bearing moths. I have a bed unit that is fixed to the wall with overhead cupboards, and it means that in order to clean under the bed I have to take the mattress off and lift the slats. Of course I don’t tend to do that very often as it kills my back. Last week I noticed what I thought were tiny pieces of shredded tissue on the floor – but on closer inspection I discovered that they were larvae cases. The larvae have eaten holes in the carpet. I have since spent days meticulously vacuuming all of the carpet edges and places where I know they are likely to be. I’ve been down on my hands and knees going through the carpet to find them – they really can bed themselves in deep. I was shocked at how many there were.
    I don’t know if I will ever be rid of them – I have pets so don’t want to use pesticide. I’m looking into pheromone traps, and in the meantime am being vigourous with my cleaning regime. So far it’s just the carpets that have been affected, no clothes, but I can’t wear wool, so for once that is to my advantage.

  124. hi there,
    i am in the same situation as a lot of you above.
    i bought a Persian carpet from seller god_isalmighty, on ebay. and found a year later that a large part of the carpet was eaten away. i would like to take legal action against the seller who is refusing to refund or replace the carpet.
    any advice or contacts regarding this matter would be very helpful.
    thank you in advance.

  125. Just a quick update. It seems I have killed them all off.
    I have hoovered thoroughly, especially around the edges of the carpets. I went out and bought some Rentokil insect killer spray and 2 large tubs of ant and insect powder. I have ripped the hall carpet up (not something we were keen on doing but it was that or not sorting the problem) What they seem to do is mostly live underneath the carpet and come up for a chew. I covered the whole area thick with powder and spray then pressed the carpet back down. In the lounge the infestation isn’t as bad as the hallway so I am just spraying the edges every night before going to bed (so that it is settled and dry by the morning – have a toddler running about) I have not found any live ones, all are completely suffocated and dead, the powder I highly recommend as it starves any eggs lying about aswell. I will say though if you are finding the Larvae around the skirtings there is a good chance you’ll hoover them up but then find more coming back, that’s because they are living underneath as I already mentioned. Also wouldn’t worry too much about the sprays or powder being dangerous, the powder I got was also for in the home use and the spray is only highly dangerous to aquatic life if the tanks are not covered while using them.
    @Charlie – I was told by pest control a lot of carpets that are from abroad carry the moth. Not sure the seller would have known this, even if he did I wouldn’t have thought there would be much you can do as it could be claimed they infested the carpet after you bought it and were from your home. Good luck.

  126. This website is very helpful and comforting, but I also found it worrying that people are getting this upset by these beasties.

    We have had a moth problem for 5 years and just when we think we’ve conquered them, they re-appear each spring like clockwork.

    I ripped up carpets and replaced with laminate downstairs, threw out sofas…STILL THEY CAME!

    I have old floorboards upstairs with big gaps in them, and in the summer we regularly find between three/five a night on the ceilings and walls. I can only assume that because my boyfriend is hairy, his ‘sheddings’ are falling down the gaps and driving the feeding moths crazy!

    I have used Protector C for the last year or so and found that it did reduce the amount of moths quite significantly. However, you mustn’t get lazy as they will reappear over time.

    Best advice: don’t get OCD, don’t get depressed and please, for the love of god, don’t chuck away all your belongings and buy new ones…just makes it even more upsetting when they come back. Old people I have spoken to say these were hugely problematic back in the day and moth balls were the norm. Maybe it was hotter back then? I don’t know.

    All you need to do is keep on minimising the growth of these pests and rest assured they will not live in the fabric where you mainly socialise, so who ultimately cares? Yes, they’re foul. Yes, they make me shudder, but you have to put it into perspective…they’re bloody tiny and they can’t actually harm us.
    I stopped freaking out about it years ago and now just calmly take them on as I find them.

    Stay sane moth slayers everywhere!

  127. Wow~
    I have been reading all of the posts here over the past couple days and am surprised that this conversation is still quite active 2 years later!

    I am off to buy large bins for all my clothing and I will be adding moth balls :( The smell is terrible but I am desperate.

    We can’t yet find the infestation but every time I see a little moth on the walls I envision hungry larvae chewing away somewhere! Most clothing, carpets, etc. seem to be unaffected. My husband and I have loads of clothing though and some of which I haven’t gotten to yet. I plan on packing up everything, treating it, and being vigilant about what we wear.

    My wool/silk blend curtains are shockingly spared so I will dry clean and pack them as well. YIKES~ what a mess of everything these little pests cause.

    Best of luck to everyone! Especially with warmer weather on the way~

  128. hi all. found this page and have read with much interest, especially as it’s been going on for so long! I started my moth problem over 7 years ago and have no idea where they came from, can only assume a flatmate brought them and kindly left them as a present. I have since moved 3 times and the damned things have come with me. At the moment all I feel I can do is squish the wee buggers when i see them, but I did find throwing out my massive stash of wool for knitting helped :) Only just got carpets fitted in my chilly old house (trying to keep the place cosy and lower bills) and I’m hoping I bought a synthetic
    I’d agree with the above post in that they are a total pain in the ass, and it is hard not to feel dirty and ashamed of this pest in your home (especially when your friends have moth phobias, which a few of mine have) but don’t throw your life away. After having my son I put on a ton of weight so I got rid of most of my ‘skinny’ clothes, so that’s kind of helped, but I hoard (who doesn’t?) so to try to get rid of these pestys would mean taking so much time out of my life to organise and clean, etc, it’s not worth it, there’s too much, it’d be like painting the Forth Rail Bridge.
    Squish em.and if you see a maggoty baby, squish it.
    Nuff said.

  129. Hi
    Like everyone else I too have an infestation of moths around two years now. We have the case bearing type which due to the red carpet made them easy to spot when they wriggled up onto the wall as the case is the colour of what they have been scoffing.
    We have replace two bedrooms with new carpet. I pulled up the old ones and hoovered the be jaysus out of the floor boards and we have not had them back since in those rooms. Although I must have another check around to be sure but no adults flying in the rooms. Then in my own bedroom I noticed a small bald patch on the carpet moved some furniture and the small patch was a drop in the ocean compared to the large area when I hoovered that was completely stipped of wool and then under my bed. I spotted hundreds of the buggers……creepy crawly yucky…I went bananas with the hoover and made moth repellents as per a home remedy website with lavender and natural herbs etc. That didnt work not only did it not work the little feckers were on them eating the cloth they were in…so I have now again today pulled up the carpet in my room and the underlay and the wood strips. I found lots and lots of eggs in and around the skirting board. They are hardy little things and not all getting sucked up however I got a paint scrapper and went under the skirting scraping them out and smushing all around. I think I must have nearly all of them after doing that. I wont put down anything on the floor for the next week or two and keep hoovering like a fanatic to ensure if any hatch they are caught but it means hoovering everyday but if it keeps them away then it worth it. I will lace lavender oil all over the floor and cedar wood and hope for the best.
    Worse thing is they are in my youngests room too now under the cot so tomorrow same again. It costs so much to keep replacing the carpets and from what ive heard you need to get the professionals out again and again.

    Anyway best of luck to all suffering out there with these flying eating machines….

  130. I just want to echo what xrayspecs said; don’t let it take over your life. They are bloody annoying but they do not present any health risks and having them is not a sign of uncleanliness, as evidenced by some of the people who’ve posted here who were/are extremely diligent in cleaning their properties. I see it as a war of attrition. At the moment it’s really bad because of the warm weather so I’m killing about 20-25 a day by squashing them. Come the autumn they will suddenly disappear again when the temperature drops. I think the next time I move I’m going to bin practically all my clothes and certainly all bedding cushions etc.

    They may take our clothes, but they’ll never take our freedom!!

  131. Hi Everyone,

    Like everyone here we have problems with moths. They are only in the carpet for the moment. I tried dusting with powder and spraying several times but they keep coming back.

    Can anyone please help me with some information Given that the moths are eating the carpet, does it mean that it has wool?

    I am thinking of replacing the carpets as they are rather worn out anyway but what carpet should I buy? I saw that there are carpets with fully manmade fibres, such as polypropylene ones but does it mean that they will be fully moth-proof?

    Thanks for your help.

  132. Thank you for this article!! The photos of the larvae are really helpful. It looks exactly like one I found crawling near the headboard of my bed.

    We rennovated our house over two years ago. We replaced the carpet with hardwood floors and we had new closet shelves and drawes installed. And that’s when we started noticing moths…after the reno. We have no idea where they came from but we have now filled our closest with cedar mothballs and it seems to help control them. We do see moths from time to time though but thank goodness no more larvae sightings! One was gross enough.

    Now that summer is here I’m planning on storing all my winter sweaters in vaccuum sealed bags. Washing, then storing.

    I’m also looking into throwing away my down duvet. It’s over 5 years old and I’m a little concerned it may becaome a place for the moths to lay eggs.

    Thanks again for this informative article!!

  133. hi, im so glad you posted this, atleast im not the only one :) i had the same problem last year and thought i got rid of it, but i keep finding more moths. i havent had a chance to check for larvae yet, need to do ver. soon :/ but im 13…. i cant afford any traps or sprays etc. ive told my mum but she blames it on my ‘pigsty of a bedroom’ my room is actually really tidy since the moths last year… i have a carpet ant loads of dark, undisturbed areas in my room, i cant afford to replace my clothes and my mum will go mental if theyre ruined :( any ideas?????

  134. Hi everyone – I’ve been dealing with moths since September when I moved into my current apartment. We did spot a threadbare patch on the carpet when we moved in but the landlord thought the previous tenants had done it when moving furniture! When I first saw a couple of moths I thought they were brown flies of some kind and had come in through the window – we saw very few of them during the winter but in the last few months they’ve infested not just one room but all five rooms! I did spray them lots with various killers and vigorously cleaned and vacuumed on a regular basis but the moths have finally got the better of me and I am moving into a new house this weekend. Thankfully the new house only has carpet on the stairs (our moths love the carpet, I can count at least ten holes!) so I’ve been concentrating on making sure the clothes are moth free despite only ever seeing two in my expansive collection of clothing! Everything is being washed at a high temperature at my mother’s house, and all of my shoes are being frozen and then everything is being double bagged in binliners and will be stored in plastic boxes in the new house – hopefully this will eradicate the problem! I do plan on getting some traps too so that if we do happen to bring the problem with us to the new house we’ll be able to spot them straight away and keep on top of it before they can establish themselves!

    When packing up my things ready for the move I found moths and eggs in the most unlikeliest of places which makes me think we’re not going to be able to get rid of them completely. I found eggs on a PVC belt and even lodged inside a bundle of nail files, yuck! I found four dead ones inside a melamine bowl in a picnic hamper, perhaps the liked the wicker? They are beyond disgusting! I’ve thrown out hundreds of pounds worth of stuff – clothes, rugs, my cat’s bed, towels, everything.

    I’m seriously hoping the house move will get rid of the horrible things! Good luck to everyone else dealing with these horrible pests!

  135. Hi Jackie, I just saw your post, I haven’t looked on here for ages. Thankfully touch wood yes the moths seem to have been cured, we haven’t had any more. I think getting rid of our wool carpet was the key, we have one wool carpet left in our front bedroom which I will get rid of soon, we are going to change the floor in there. Apart from sisal then on the stairs all our flooring is tile or wood. Our new bed also has a gap under which makes it easier to clean under. Personally after that experience I would never go back to carpets again. I think I got OCD with it lol! I think it is easier said than done to stay calm about it, I fully understand and sympathise with anyone who has this problem. I didn’t feel comfortable in bed with the thought things were flying and crawling about. I also still keep my clothes with covers on in the wardrobe. Thankfully I never had the experience of them eating clothes I wore. Good luck to you all getting rid of them.

  136. Reading these posts right from the beginning has been very helpful and has prevented me from taking panic action. In my case, I found one bald patch in my bedroom carpet last year, just before I set off on a round-the-world backpacking trip. Luckily I enjoyed my trip, leaving a house-sitter in charge; I was blisfully ignorant and truly believed that (a) all modern carpets are surely mothproofed nowadays and (b) my newly purchased Dyson is so powerful that it even sucked up some loose carpet fibres, leaving me with that bald spot!

    I returned home last December to find a few more bald spots in the bedroom carpet and still believed that the Dyson was responsible. I got down on my hands and knees with a magnifying glass but was unable to detect anything (the carpet is the same colour as the pests). Two weeks ago I spotted the first moth nonchalantly flitting about my house and since then things have reached crisis proportions.

    I wake up in the mornings now to find three or four “bed companions” on my pillow and in my bedclothes . . . the wriggly larvae, defiantly staring me in the face! Have they hatched from eggs in my expensive Kingcoil mattress? Are they in my duck down and feather duvet? Are they in my pillows and bed cusions? Or have they simply made the long upwards journey upwards from the carpet underneath my bed or from the skirting board?

    Thorough cleaning and pheronome traps have not deterred them. A close (but not too close!) look at the carpet underneath the bed revealed a skeleton floorcovering somewhat like lace.

    I’m quite prepared to throw out the carpets and the existing underlay, as they’re about thirteen years old. Will I have to remove the skirtings and throw out the mattress and bedding too?

    I reckon we’ve seen the advent of SUPERMOTH. Is this where horror stories begin?

  137. I also have this problem but it is not as bad as a lot of other peoples. I noticed about a week ago a small moth flying in my bedroom i got hold of it in a cup and took it outside. a few hours later i noticed another one but ignored it. then a few days later around 9 oclock at night i noticed 2 moths flying in my bedroom i again got hold of them and took them outside. as soon as i returned to my room i seen 3 more and started to worry. i got them out and then went to bed. the next day i researched moths and found out exactly what i have and i thought it was coming from my wardrobe. so i cleaned it out completely and found nothing. i then got loads of lavender air freshners and put them in my room and pulled my bed out and cleaned under it thats when i noticed in the corner of the room on the floor about 6 moths. i immiediatly hovered them up then hovered everywhere in the room. i searched the carpet then (which by the way is sysnthetic fibre)incase there where eggs or larvae on the carpet as well. it is the next day and there and there are no dark spaces in my room (i have been sleeping downstairs since) and i have only noticed one moth and got rid of it. i have just hoovered my room again and kept the door shut.

    I do not have this bad as i took action very quickly to stop the situation getting bad but i would not like it to continue or get worse. I want these pests gone before they damage any carpet of clothes ect. They are disgusting and i want my room back.

    A few moths have been seen in another room but no where else (that room is my sisters room so i dont really care as long as they dont spread from there haha).

    Where are the eggs that the moths have layed and the larvea? will they spread accross the house of just my bedroom? will they be gone now that i have completely cleaned my bedroom?

    I dont want to have this problem like some have you have. how can i stop it before it gets as bad as all of you?

  138. Hi. I live in a privately rented flat which now has a moth infestation. I’ve lived here for 4 years and the moths it seems have lived here for 2! Most of the damage has been to the carpet and i have now got Rentokil in and had the 1st of 3 sprays. My question is, am i responsible for the cost of Rentokil and/or for the cost of replacing the carpet when/if i move out? My landlord seems to think it’s my responsibility but any views would be appreciated. I rang Citizens advice bureau but they were worse than useless…Thanks

  139. All of the above gives me some comfort that my husband and I are not alone in our so-far 3 year fight against clothes moths. 3 years ago we moved into an old Victorian house in London with a loft extension that had cheaply been finished in plywood (the interior) which meant there was small slits between the ply pieces. From the moment we moved in, I knew there had to be an issue as I kept finding both live moths in the house and smudgy smears where the previous occupants had squashed them on the walls. After some investigation, we discovered that in the loft extension, rather than use traditional fibre glass insulation, the previous occupants, in their wisdom, had decided to use supposedly treated lambs wool insulation. BIG MISTAKE. Our builder helped us saw in half the plywood walls of our loft conversion and inside the walls we found what can only be described as the most disgusting sight ever -moth metropolis FULL of larvae, live and dead moths, millions and millions of eggs falling over the floor – obviously an ideal environment for them, all dark and warm with a ready food source, where they had been allowed to breed undisturbed for about 4 years. They were also in the insulation in properly plastered walls which meant we had to have builders and plasterers in to rip apart these walls, take the infested lambs insulation out, professionally insecticide the void, replace it with normal stuff, and replaster and redecorate. It has been an absolute and mega expensive nightmare and to everyone out there NEVER EVER EVER buy lambs wool insulation in a misguided attempt to be enviro-friendly (previous occupants’ efforts completely obliterated by our use of insecticides to get rid of the problem) – regardless of how much the manufacturer says its been treated against moths! 2 years later, after a relatively moth free period, we have seen a few more on the walls and therefore was straight on the phone to the pest controllers who duly resprayed the house. Unfortunately saw two more over the last few days, just above/next to the cupboard where all my husband’s clothes are – so am going to spend a fun weekend boiling his clothes in the washing machine before pest controllers come back next week. To cap it all, I am now pregnant so I have to be very careful around all the spraying etc. It is truly a nightmare and I feel very sorry for everyone here as it just seems to be an impossible problem to totally eradicate which also causes a lot of emotional distress.

  140. I’ve just read the postings from Jess and CC and I would like to pass on my sincere commiserations. It did occur to me that my roof area might be insulated and this might be the source of my own moth infestation problem (I’ve never gone up there but will send my “significant other” up the ladder next Saturday, as he only stays at weekends.)

    Insurance policies don’t provide cover for damage caused by pests, hence your landlord’s reluctance to pay for new carpets, CC. But it’s not fair that you should be held responsible for a problem which only becomes visible after significant damage has already been caused. Would your landlord be willing to go into arbitration on this matter? This is a fair process used by those who want to avoid the cost and hassle of the courtroom and an impartial judgement is usually arrived at. I would imagine that the cost of the remedial action (to include the fumigation treatments) would arrive at a fifty-fifty solution.

    In the meantime (between last week’s posting and today’s) I advertised my problem on my Facebook page and some nice person is sending me neem oil in the post. Sprayed in diluted form into all hatch-worthy crevices, and used in tandem with a thorough twice-weekly vacuuming and dusting regime, it is claimed to keep the moths under reasonable control. I think that we all should accept that once they decide to live with you, they’ll never, ever, completely go away. All you can hope at best to do is to become their master and not allow them to dominate your environment ever again.

    I’ll keep you posted, let you know how the neem oil works.

  141. I got an infestation of common clothes moths in my wool fitted carpet about a month ago. I found this site on day 1 or 2 and it was v v useful, especially all the latest posts, thank you all for sharing your experiences and advice. Knowing I wasn’t alone was a huge comfort and all the advice was brillliant.
    Thought I’d hoover them all up. Armed with a head torch, like a miner! magnifying glass, hoover schnozzle etc I began ripping the fitted carpet away from the walls and hoovering the ***** out of the carpet and floor edges. Became totally obsessed (OCD) hoovering 2 -4 hrs an evening. Then, having believed the attack was restricted to my ground floor 2 living rooms, they were found en masse on an old full length mink coat in the top floor bedroom. I had brought the coat down from my loft as I hadn’t worn it for about 20 years! I had decided to dispose of it somehow. Well, I did, immediately the moths were spotted on it. It went into a double bin bag and straight out into the garbage bin!! Thus I knew the moths were everywhere.
    So after a couple of weeks I decided to take control of my life again. Called in the professionals – Rentokil. Paid for 3 treatments + further if the pests reappear within a reasonable time frame after last treatment. This cost £550!! but I got my life back – and my friends. I was in danger of losing them all as they were so bored with my only topic of conversation. I’m glad I “bit the bullet” and stopped the solo fight. i have confidence that they will cure the problem.
    I think I was onto the moths soon after they arrived which was lucky. However I will have to get rid of the carpet as it has been well eaten around many of the edges. Rentokil say the only way to prevent further attacks is to get rid of wool carpets and either replace with synthetics or to go for polished wooden floors. This will cost mega bucks. Am going to approach my insurance company to see if they’ll cover any part of the whole exercise.
    I had never heard of moths that eat carpet! I am not a young thing! I have never had clothes moths in my clothes, tho I recall as I child my mother put moth balls in our winter clothes when she put them away for the summer. She also taught us to always ensure they were v clean as she said that it is the food on the clothes that the moths go for and then advance to eat the clothes themselves. Clearly that was erroneous…. anyway so far as my inspection has gone my clothes have been ignored, also my knitting wools. The latter were all in plastic bags already and I got them out on day 1 of my attack and double plastic bagged them.
    Heard on the radio yesterday(?) that the government are considering declaring clothes moths a national crisis. See Daily Mail on line of today!!
    I only further add to the advice given by several posters on this site: Don’t get obsessed like I did. Take charge of your life and call in the professionals. Once the moths are exterminated life will return to “normal”.
    PS the worst part of all this is that I’m a practising Buddhist and don’t kill anything – until I met the common clothes moth. Now I am doomed to many lives of hell to pay for the genocide I am wreaking on them….

  142. I live in Glasgow in a tenement flat and for about three years noticed more and more clothes moths flying about, larvae on my clothes etc. I tried lots of things like sprays, phermone traps etc. In the end I lifted the carpet and put hardboard over the floorboards right up under the skirting board and sealed it round with silicone. I put tape along the joins on the hardboard too. The moths seemed to be appearing on the walls low down and I figured they were breeding in the floor space under the boards. I’m so pleased as I haven’t seen any moths last summer or this year so far.

  143. Agh I’m back again cos the case bearer’s are back again!
    We are moving out this month and hoping they don’t come with us. Only seem to be on the carpet outskirts rather than on anything.
    As my post stated above I did kill them all off with the powder and spray, but after I did that and noticed for a few months I had not seen any I stopped any treatment and cleaned up the powder underneath the carpet etc but now they have come back so I am going to re-spray and re-powder everything again.
    I rent this house and it has just been sold to an elderly couple. Not sure if I will be mentioning the infestation to them or not.
    @***Iv*** – Yes your carpet has wool in it if they are eating it. Rip up the carpets and opt for something with NO wool in it.
    @***Jess*** – I have been buying the spray and powder for the moths here(rented house) and not told the landlord/agent about the infestation because we have been due to move out and someone is buying the house so no point in even reporting it as they won’t change the carpet as been sold. I have read up on rights as a tenent though and can confirm as quoted: ‘Landlords, including Housing Associations (RSLs) are responsible for dealing with pest problems (including rats, mice, cockroaches, bedbugs, textile moths, pigeons, tropical ant species and garden ants) in or on their property.’

  144. Pessi, where did your quote come from regarding landlords being responsible for pests?

  145. Oh lordy – kind of wish i hadn’t found this site!!! I have noticed little clothes moths in our bedrooms for a few years now. It was only when i noticed holes in clothes I thought i better start killling them. I hadn’t even thought about larvae and infestations. Am off now to start hoovering!! i have rooms I dontusem, need to start moving furniture and putting clothes away rather than leaving them all hanging form picture rails – ooppss. Will favourite this page and keep in tough!! All my carpet is the very expensive 80/20 wool, i saved for years to have the house carpetted the same all over. I will not let moths eat it!!!

  146. My moth problem started in the first spring after I moved in…5 years ago.

    The first thing I spotted was one or two moths on my one quality coat in the understairs cupboard. I bought the devices you hang in wardrobes which have been impregnated with chemicals and this seems to have protected the coats for the last 4 years or so and kept the daily moth count down.

    My house is quite cool and from observation I have concluded that the eggs can last a long time and usually start hatching in spring… They were in the only carpet in the house, the stair carpet. I tried spraying it but even after repeated sprays over the years I still had to do a moth check every day and pinch them off binning the dead body instantly. I finally decided the carpet had to go and ripped it up last week, chucking it straight out, using spray in the gaps between steps and hoovering, taking care to empty the hoover out (outside) immediately to avoid any sucked up eggs hatching or being released. I should have done it sooner, very theraputic and the stairs will look good and be so much easier to clean once I’ve filled the cracks and painted them. Moth GCHQ destroyed…though I’m sure that won’t be the end of it but it will certainly help!

    I entirely agree with the other people who have written that it’s important not to be driven crazy and just try to keep moth numbers down and adopt a liveable, damage limitation approach. To me this has been:
    – Use the chemically impregnated things in wardrobes and replace regularly.
    – Keep clothing such as woollen jumpers etc, tops, scarfs in clear plastic storage containers with fitting lids. Moths hate the light and depending upon how and where you put them they are not much different to drawers.
    – Never leave your best quality wool items lying around. Moths love top quality fabrics which I discovered when the larvae destroyed my fav skirt which ironically I’d only left out to repair!
    – If you own the place and are debating getting rid of the carpet, do it!
    – Keep an eye out for any live moths you see on the walls in the morning or evening. My ceiings are quite high and the sight of squashed moths is not particularly appealing (plus the concern that they may be carrying eggs). The thing I find handy is a self made tool – a long piece of wood with some masking tape wrapped, stcky side out, round the end. Only takes a second and gone with no marks, with the added bonus that you can dispose of the body and any more eggs it may be carrying.
    – I hate using chemicals but I do spray occasionally.
    – Quarantene – keep all internal doors shut to contain any new outbreaks.

    I have often wondered about the smoke fumigation approach but was a bit concerned that it might spark and set fire…probably a daft concern. Have many people used these and has anyone ever seen a spark from one as they retreat?

    The antpowder idea sounds good too for particular areas.

    Oh and one last thing, I saw a few messages which were asking if anything else could be eating carpets and/or clothing. The answer is yes, the carpet beetle. They are a bit smaller than a ladybird and a similar shape, but are dull black with some v dull slightly orangey spots. Like moths, their larva feed on wool or things with keratin, beetles hatching in the spring/early summer which only live a few weeks. All the more reason to ditch the carpet!

    At the end of the day it’s about making it managable. Even if you get rid of every single egg and larvae the world is a living place and it only takes one or two to fly through the window…or arrive with something you bring into the house, so don’t panic!

  147. can see I’m late to the party, however I will share my experiences anyway.. The first thing I want to mention is that the moths hibernate even though they have protection from the cold inside your home, as I discovered the other day I thought I had eliminated my moth infestation as around September I saw fewer and fewer on the walls, by November they had disappeared, unfortunately a few days ago (late February) they have re appeared :( the life cycle of these clothes moths, theory and tips/methods to get rid of them goes as follows :-

    1. Eggs – I’ve seen other people saying they can’t see the eggs? I see them quite clearly, as clothes moths lay clumps of many eggs. They don’t lay single eggs. The eggs are stuck together in some sort of grey hard paste that becomes very hard to remove from carpets (almost matted) with just a hoover you will literally have to scrape them off I have successfully used carpet shampoo to tackle this problem.

    2. Larvae – Many people particularly women seem disgusted most by this stage of the moth because they visualise it like a maggot, the good news is it’s really a caterpillar. Still though they definitely do damage.
    My advice is too remove the carpet ASAP, you will literally solve half the problem, because in my experience I really saw 90% of the larvae in the carpet. I believe the clothes moth prefers the carpet to clothes. Obviously, kill any you see; you can either squish them or pour boiling hot water from the kettle and will kill them instantly.
    Where you find one larvae search around that area thoroughly because there is very strong chance there will be a patch nearby with multiple eggs, larvae and adult moths.

    3. Pupae/cocoon – this is probably the most annoying stage because they are the hardest to spot and they do vary in appearance. I noticed two types, one looks like a small piece of white wool rolled up, the other same appearance but grey wool. Sometimes on your clothes you will see spider webish silky material, I believe this to be the pupae casing that the larvae emerged from. Another time I found a casing with a larvae not yet matured inside.

    4. Adult moth- I really hate these little c#nts more than the larvae because I used sit in my bedroom at night with the lamp on to read. In fact this is how I believe the infestation originated, i used to leave the window wide open in summer and a few must of flew in. Anyway I kill them with my hand or tissue on sight. Not a lot to say about these. Apart from to use traps to stop the breeding process.

    So I’ve just discovered my infestation simply hibernated and now it’s back! I will post back in a couple of months to say if with all the methods presented here I have successfully exterminated this threat. I am fairly confident just because I’ve done a lot of research and spoken to many experts on this matter.

    Extra info:

    Cedar balls/ lavender waste of money & will do virtually nothing for infestations. They may hate the smell but doesn’t stop them mating.

    Exterminator does work but you need to 110% make sure you’ve taken the necessary steps beforehand such as going through and washing all clothes/fabrics, hoovering everywhere; basically cleaning the house or affected room from top to bottom to make sure you have cleared all the eggs. If you call them in without doing the work beforehand you are wasting your money. Poison won’t get rid of eggs.

    The hormone traps I have not tried as of yet but in context they make a lot of sense & I suppose if you have multiple traps you might halt the breeding completely which over many months would completely shut down and end the life cycle of the moths. I will buy some and give them a shot.

    Also check for any leftover food sources especially if you have young children. The larvae prefer fabric bit will eat leftover/rotten food too.

    I’ve learnt from pest experts to hoover the carpet every other day for up to 4 months.

    While doing this process keep all clothes in separate room either in plastic tub box or vaccumm storage bags.

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