Laisser-faire attitude to moths?

(94 Posts)
Marthanoooo Sun 05-May-13 21:06:18

We've had clothes moths since last summer (every few days I come across one or two and they gather in the moths traps over time). In autumn we did the thorough hoover, clean out, dry clean, and spray with moth toxin boot camp of the whole flat. We clean, hoover, dust a lot but did the spraying only once (because of our kids) And we still have moths... We never found where they are hiding either. Flat only five years old... But would it be good idea to fill any cracks between skirting board and wall with silicone etc?

Can we just ignore? or Is it time for a professional exterminator? (We have three small kids including a baby just starting to crawl confused. Best to do the exterminator and move out for a few days?

Any advice would be highly appreciated.

jkklpu Sun 05-May-13 22:13:28

Have you been through absolutely everything in every cupboard that could be the source? We had them over years in our last house and we kept finding what we thought was the mother ship, eg a set of long-lost towels at the back of a cupboard, the lining of a winter coat, until we found a woollen blanket in the loft that was absolutely heaving. I hate them so much and still remember the sinking feeling of spotting one flop around on the floor or the horrible wriggling grubs in a favourite jumper.

VivaLeBeaver Sun 05-May-13 22:16:20

I had this, only a few moths every otehr day, etc. Then I found the source - at the back of the understairs cupboard. Jesus, It was like something from I'm A Celeb.

Hundreds of moth pupae and crawling, hatching moths. I was retching as I had to crawl in and pull the contents of the cupboard out.

You need to find them. Have you looked under your sofa and bed?

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 09:11:44

Thanks for the replies... I need to find them? of course not what I wanted to hear... I have a vague idea of where they originated from (hallway), because they have been spotted there most. But the only place they could nest is under the carpet, nothing much in the hallway apart from a couple of coats we use regularly, a bench (maybe inside?), two boxes with shoes we use all the time.. We are renting btw, so not really a chance of ripping the carpet everything out..

Could they be under the carpet?
Could they be in the airing cupboards outside our flat? Or from the neighbours? I guess slim chance because they are in every room.

Haven't looked under sofa. The thing is we have little in the way of clothes and generally decluttered on the verge of empty place. Not really a chance of a hidden item somewhere, although I haven't turned our sofa upside down yet. Well I checked under beds.

So basically you are saying without locating the nest the fuming by exterminator would be wasted? No point in sealing all cracks?

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 09:13:55

And rereading your posts, yes, it really is a sinking feeling! And finding the source teeming with moths would be gross but must be satisfying to be able to rid like that!

Gotta find them. I have 12 inch bare holes in my CARPET under the sofa.

They like wool. But they also need human food, skin flakes etc. so behind beds, sofas laundry baskets.

They have eaten carpet in every room in my house before I realised what was happening. Now the weather has warmed up they little bastards will start hatching. The eggs can survive dormant across the winter month.

Start turning the entire house upside down, check carpets and ask neighbours to do same if in a flat.

ZZZenagain Mon 06-May-13 09:18:36

my neighbour found they had infested a spare mattress (!) she had in storage under one of the beds. There were so many of them, it was just vile. We lugged it outside and she burnt it.

I think you really do have to find them and get rid of them, otherwise the problem never goes away.

Check the back of all your cupboards

In order to keep on top, get ant powder. Once kids are in bed, squirt powder along the skirting boards. Then Hoover up a couple of hours later. Change Hoover bag.

Hoover like a demon every day! Get moth traps to see if problem is solved, they are sticky pads and attract the males, who can fly. The females crawl along skirting boards hence ant powder.

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 10:02:46

Ok! More responses about finding them. Am convinced ;-) Hallway first. Well, that bench is on the balcony basking in the sunshine. Now, the carpet has no entry point for me to rip out... Not keen to talk to landlord about our issue. Would be good to know if carpet has wool in it, but I think remembering being happy about a carpet with wool... Pre-moths...

Ok, haven't turned everything upside down. This really sucks.

But Again, am encouraged about stories where you found the nest.. Yuk.

Shattered dreams have you found the source yet. Sounds like you haven't?

RooneyMara Mon 06-May-13 10:09:06

I don't think there is always a 'source' as has been mentioned - well, we've never had one, we just have a lot of wool rugs and there are a few moths under all of them, and between gaps in the floorboards.

There were moths eating half the carpet when we moved in - carpets were all ripped out and binned, but still, we have moths. Just a few really.

I spray with moth killer stuff under things from time to time and periodically take up the carpets at the edges and hoover thoroughly.

I don't think we'll ever get rid altogether. But there is no 'nest' as it were.

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 11:07:12

Rooney what do you think of getting an exterminator?

What Rooney says - not a nest as such but several clusters

Tip the sofas over now.......

Oh and it's not covered on insurance. So if you rent not sure if that's good or bad

There is a website with lots of info. DH exterminated himself and we stayed away overnight

VerySmallSqueak Mon 06-May-13 11:40:49

I think I have them - have had about half a dozen small moths in one particular area each day for about the last 4 days.
So this is the time of year they hatch?

I am intending to spray round all the carpet edges treating that one particular place intensively.

And hoover a bit more generally.

I can see no damage though and they are near the log box,so I was kind of just hoping they were a different type of small moth that has come in on the kindling and just started to hatch out.

Martha if the problem is extensive it has to be worth at least arming yourself with the info as to the expense and upheaval of having them treated professionally,and then make a decision.

It may be cheaper and easier than you're imagining.

They like human skin so Hoover under beds sofas and laundry baskets especially well
Get your pointy nozzle into skirting boards

Very small, you could try a fogger spray if just one room, it only kills males so has to be repeated for newly hatched eggs

mirry2 Mon 06-May-13 11:49:41

We had them last year in the bedrooms. I went through each room systematically, cleaning out cupboards and drawers, hoovering and spraying everything, especially under the divan bed, where they seemed to be lurking the most. I also washed and put in plastic bags every item of clothing we had and became an obsessive moth spotter.

so far they haven't come back but I will be on the case if they do. I didn't realise the damage they caused and was too lax in dealing with them before, but no longer!

VerySmallSqueak Mon 06-May-13 11:50:40

Thanks Shattered!

What should I look for?Is that just like a normal 'fly spray?

At the moment I have set to with getting the DD's to kill 'em when they see 'em.

SavoyCabbage Mon 06-May-13 11:54:53

I had moths. I innocently opened a tin and.............out flew hundreds of moths. Like those snakes in a tin from a cartoon.

I dropped the tin and there on the floor was a solid cube of web. It was hideous.

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 12:00:48

Thanks for the link shattered. Your husband must be the action man! Looks daunting all those canisters full of powders and sprays.

Our sofa is too heavy to lift for me alone, waiting for DH to come home.

1. Taking living room carpet outside
2. Turn over sofas tonight
3. Rentokil guy is coming by tomorrow for a free consultation.
4. Need to check with DH but am ready to rip out hallway carpet for a start

Does anyone know how often pest control has to spray? As you said shattered... I think too you cannot destroy the eggs so need several rounds of fumigating, like every two weeks for a while.

Is anyone using toxins not concerned about (small) kids?

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 12:04:38

Very small - we used Zero clothes moth killer spray. We used it only once all over the flat after blitzing it but it didn't get rid. I think also here the idea is to do several treatments to kill off new larvae... Because you cannot destroy the eggs (correct me if I'm wrong on this but seem to remember from my research last year)

VerySmallSqueak Mon 06-May-13 12:16:41

Thank you Martha

I am worried about the kids.I am planning to spray in the evening or when they are on a sleepover to give it a chance to dry/disperse.

I generally will not use fly killer sprays at all because I can't think they are healthy.

But in this case it's a bit more of an issue than the odd fly buzzing around and I expect anything truly harmful wouldn't be sold to the public at large if used minimally.Or at least I'm hoping so!

ZZZenagain Mon 06-May-13 12:24:26

are you sure they are not in the food? I know it is an unpleasant thought - things like flour, cereals, etc you need to check.

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 13:34:45

No. Ours are definitely the clothes moths... Food containers also changed / used frequently. But I remember finding food moths at my parents once in a pack of cornflour. nasty!

RooneyMara Mon 06-May-13 14:30:17

I wouldn't use a professional service simply because 1. we have a baby and several pets, and 2. we have masses of clutter.

No one would be able to do an effective job in this house - too much stuff to move.

What works best is having man made carpets in areas you can't keep an eye on (under beds for example) and moving out furniture every 6 months or so to hoover and spray - they hate being disturbed.

Keep everything precious in a glass cabinet - I have some very old antique dolls that moths love - they live in a glass doored dresser so I can see if anything is there, and moths can't easily get in.

Hoovering and selective spraying and getting rid of piles of stuff they can hide under is the way forward imo. Talking of which I need to ebay about a zillion things.

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 14:51:41

Rooney, but if you spray with moth killer type stuff that is also a hardcore chemical? Just trying to figure out which type of toxin would be best - if any. We have a baby too.. (Crap situation)

RooneyMara Mon 06-May-13 14:55:53

Yes yes sorry of course it is, just, if I do it I do a little bit at a time - you know, like I move some boxes, find the rug has some moths in it under them, then I hoover thoroughly and spray that rug, keeping kids out of the room for a while. iyswim?

If I got someone in they would want to do the entire house at once, and that would be impossible,.

We did whole house last year. Bought all from the website I linked up thread. Was about £70-80 for 3 bed house. Compare to the rentokil quote, which I would expect to be in hundreds.

It came with protective clothing. We got rid of kids 2 and 5 so small kids grin to Grandmas and sprayed top to bottom, used the powder and room fogger. All instructions came with the pack

We stayed in house though, but the lounge which was the worst infected we stayed out of for 24 hours.

I left the powder down in the lounge under the sofa all winter grin will get round to putting more down now weather has warmed up.

You can do this!

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 22:16:51

Shattered. Sounds like a plan! Am usually very DIY...

Did you fog & spray only the one time?
And: did you get rid?

DH is on board now btw. Was worried that he would be all for letting the moths get on with it. But a moth just landed on his hand!

Marthanoooo Mon 06-May-13 22:19:46

Actually, have to take that back. It's not great that a moth landed on his hand...

And am still in awe of the idea of protective clothing .

flamingtoaster Mon 06-May-13 22:26:40

We've been fighting the little pests for ages and, we hope, are winning. We couldn't use the chemicals so have been using great vigilance, lots of hoovering and checking likely areas every few nights. We also have the Lakeland felt gadgets for dusting which are magic for "sweeping" the top of the underside of furniture. We found when the pupae are ready to turn into moths they made cocoons hanging on the underside of some of the furniture so it's easy to sweep them off and dispose of them if you can find where they are doing it. We relentlessly hunted any moth which hatched - time consuming but worth it. Good luck!

roisin Mon 06-May-13 22:31:26

Any tips for preventing moths? We are moving and the new house has had moth damaged carpets.

House is empty, has been redecorated top to bottom, and recarpeting in non-wool carpets. Presumably there can be no nests there now.

But what should we do to prevent them coming in again?

Grrrr I just saw a moth in the kitchen. Little fuckers are back..... Clearly hibernated over the winter.

One warm day and POW

I have some spray left over from last year, have re read and am now on the attack with powder. Will Hoover it up tonight and spray before bed time. Fogger on order.

Roisin it's hard to know, just Hoover lots, around beds, pull furniture out weekly and Hoover under. I don't store anything under beds anymore so I can move and Hoover a lot.

Having read up again since last summer,
The powder kills the eggs but its hard to get powder everywhere so it's not fool proof

The c formula spray kills the larvea as they eat through all your wool and the females who can't fly and scuttle along the cracks in dark places - under beds and sofas

The fogger kills the males who fly about sniffing for females.

So the process requires all three and needs repeating because of the ridiculously long life cycle of the eggs. Join me in calling them little fuckers grin and if you see them flying at early dusk you have a problem.
I'm putting out traps to attract males, who stick to the traps but this isn't a cure, it's just to tell whether there are any in the house hatching.

Martha did you turn over the sofa yet?

I re read your first post, when you said they are in every room, I think you have them in every room. We have carpet damage thought the house. In all the nooks of skirting boards and carpet, especially door frame edges and corners of rooms. Very small hardly noticeable nibbles of carpet gone.

If it is a wool mix carpet, get on your hands and knees and look along every wall. They can be small trail like gaps of carpet missing.

Marthanoooo Tue 07-May-13 14:44:52


Sorry to hear about the little fucker in your kitchen, shattered.

Well, the rentokil guy was here and the first thing he said was: if there are eggs here I will find them.

He had a little torch (i know now that you actually need to point a torch to see them) and 5 mins later he pointed me to some eggs in the corner between door frame and carpet (like shattered said) all nicely there in a nest of dust and hairs and our wool carpet. Basically we have them all along the edges of skirting board and carpet.

He suggested:
1. three treatments with water based insecticide which they will spray all along the edges, behind all furniture, under all furniture (special nozzles). This will sink into the carpet and destroy any larvae and will be repeated three times every two weeks (the logic is that every two weeks or so new larvae will hatch and he says you cannot destroy the eggs, so need to wait for hatching).
2. Moth traps in all rooms to monitor the moths. Apparently it takes 3 treatments. When I asked him what'd happen if still moths left, they would come back... Better get that written down if I go for them.
Cost 500 quid though. And surely hidden cost of dry cleaning / steaming everything and stuff like that.

His approach sounds watertight for me, it's just the cost...

What do you think?

VerySmallSqueak Tue 07-May-13 15:59:21

Jeepers Martha I'd expect them to catch a mountain lion for that. grin

That's a scarily big amount of money,but at least it'll give you peace of mind that they will be got rid of,so long as it's all in writing like you say!

I just don't have that sort of money so it's a DIY approach here (DD's will just have to be very busy squishing them!)

mirry2 Tue 07-May-13 17:12:43

now you know where they are I would try a diy remedy

Marthanoooo Tue 07-May-13 20:16:19

I know! LOL at mountain lion.

I thought the same.... To just focus on that nest and DIY. I. Looked on a pest control website and the kit will cost about £80... So basically rentokil charges £100 per hour for this. blush but in the end: fair enough... It is a crap job and I would charge that too.

Marthanoooo Tue 07-May-13 20:27:05
RayofSun Tue 07-May-13 20:28:41

We moved into our house 2 years ago and had severe case of carpet moths (little fuckers!). We used the DIY kit recommended with brilliant results. Moved the kids out overnight and went to town with the diggers and powder. Problem completely solved. I would definitely recommend trying it!

Marthanoooo Tue 07-May-13 20:35:30

Ray - which kit did you use? formula c?

Yes formula c from

Came with all instructions and protective gear. YOU your other half CAN DO THIS

RayofSun Tue 07-May-13 23:13:49

It was from mothcontroldirect. They do these ready made packs of proactive C. And we bought the fumers from there too. We had specific case making clothes moths. I remember seeing a couple o cases when we moved in but not realising what they were. If only I knew then…

Marthanoooo Wed 08-May-13 05:41:26

Whoa.. Case making clothes moth? Just had a search on google. Yuk. Can't believe I am turning into a moth specialist..

Will get another quote from a different pest control and am considering telling the landlord (it's a property developer firm rather than a private landlord... Surely for them it won't be such an emotional issue.....) usually I prefer to stay under the radar though with the landlord. What do think?

I would def get landlord involved, I would hope they pay or at least do the dirty work! Might be worth a separate quick q on mumsnet tho grin as to whether they are responsible to get rid.

Marthanoooo Wed 08-May-13 20:54:52

I asked the Rentokil man and he said that landlords are responsible for communal areas (hallways, etc) and tenants responsible for their flats.

I also got a second pest control quote: £295, they would do two treatments and if moths still present as many as required. Again, kind of guaranteed. I am always sceptical of these "guarantees" though.

Anyway, looks like proactive c is the way to go whether DIY or pest control. Well, I assume rentokil and other pest control guy use proactive c, should've asked.

Marthanoooo Wed 08-May-13 20:55:55

Well, hope everyone is doing ok! Btw our moths are multiplying. Today. I had about 6. Or 7..

They are breeding like crazy! To help halt your little fuckers from fucking multiplying, Hoover all the edges daily as often as you can.

I haven't seen anymore, DH assures me he is on moth watch.

Oh and much better 2nd quote! I guess if you are responsible, then you ought to deal with as can you imagine being given the bill for a new carpet? We cannot afford to replace at all, so the bare patches are hidden under furniture.

VerySmallSqueak Wed 08-May-13 22:00:48

My numbers have decreased dramatically what with a good hoover and DD's establishing a kill zone.

That is a much improved 2nd quote (maybe not a mountain lion this time but certainly a wild boar or two).

Shattered you must be gutted that you have them back sad

I think they must be in local area. I mean how on earth do they get in in the first place??? Chicken and egg scenario. Once they are there, they must never leave. I wonder if they were dormant in the woodwork for years?

VerySmallSqueak Wed 08-May-13 22:51:28

I'm assuming that if mine aren't random little moths come in on the kindling,I've brought something into the house from a jumble/charity shop/ebay that has moth eggs.

Just hope it won't be bed bugs next.

Marthanoooo Thu 09-May-13 19:50:35

Shattered, i wish i had an answer for you!!
Very small. Yes charity shops to blame and MIL!

The below is what we are meant to follow. What do you think?

Moths can hide in most cracks and crevices and eat most of the fibres and fabrics around your home. They lay their eggs on their food so for this reason you need to wash or dry clean all of your clothes, bed sheets, towels etc before you spray.

They will only attack things in dark undisturbed places like cupboards, draws, wardrobes and underneath furniture.

A normal 40 degree wash is sufficient enough to kill the eggs.
· Any fibre or fabric that is too big to wash, you should spray i.e. curtains, carpets, rugs etc.
· Once dry you need to place them into black bin bags and tie them up so they are air tight. This prevents moths laying eggs on the fabrics and hiding back in with the stuff.
· The fibres and fabrics must be left in air tight bags for four weeks in total. You can take stuff out of the bags, but the bags must be tied up again, air tight. Any clothes that are put back into the air tight bags must be washed first.
· carry out 2 treatments 2 weeks apart using a residual spray. You must spray inside cupboards, wardrobes, draws, around furniture, walls and floors. You must not vacuum or wipe the spray away for 2 weeks after each of the sprays.
· In the 4 weeks that you have the spray down for, you may still see Moths. They will be coming out of places you cannot spray into and be walking over the residual spray.
· If possible turn the heating above 27°C to make the eggs hatch faster to speed up the treatment process.
· You would need to vacate the property after the fumigation for 5 hours.
· If they still appear 2 weeks after the 2nd visit please call back.

This comes from bypest the name of the other pest control. Might go with them. The above is full on though.

Marthanoooo Thu 09-May-13 20:16:21

Do you know if I can deep freeze clothes for a few days to kill moth eggs (instead of bringing everything to the drycleaner)...
or hang in the sun for a while instead of drycleaning? I guess the sun thing would work better in hotter countries?

VerySmallSqueak Thu 09-May-13 21:58:07

My goodness that rigamarole sounds like a right faff around.
It'd be interesting to see if all the companies say roughly the same.

I have heard from several sources that putting stuff in the freezer is effective at killing the eggs.

Fuck me! Personally I think that is overkill. But link that back to my chicken and egg scenario. Which came first? The male moth flew into my house. There were no females here. The female crawled into my house and up the fucking stairs (as she can't fly) to lay her eggs. Hence I just don't understand how they multiply in the way they did.

How did they get in my house to begin with? I didn't have them for 6 years. Then last summer I did have them.

So DH reckons I imagined the moth the other day. That when we sprayed last year we eliminated the problem. I guess it's impossible to tell.

I think spend the £60-70 DIY version, spray the carpets. Spread the powder and fog the room. We have none in our clothes, wardrobes or blankets. Last summer I did wash and freeze my Wool blanket and fleece blankets. (No airing cupboard here)

I think they are in your carpet only. All that black bag stuff is extreme and I think is for when they have taken hold of your cashmere and wool in wardrobes.

Oh and I think that by pest have said all that so they have a contractual get out Clause if all the moths are not eliminated. Did you fully heed every single piece of advice? No? Tough then live with the fuckers.

dreams "DH exterminated himself" !!!!!! shock
A bid drastic surely!

Natasha1 Fri 10-May-13 21:15:45

Have you tried your local council? Ours deal with moths and the charge is a lot less than any of the quotes you have been given.

Natasha1 Fri 10-May-13 21:19:08

Just checked our local council website, it seems it is £56 for the first visit and £28 for further visits. They were also helpful with providing advice.


Marthanoooo Fri 10-May-13 21:47:04

Whoa! Thanks Natasha :-)

Actually my local council
only does
Pharaoh Ants (WTF???)

And they give "Advice and information on how to deal with pests such as pigeons, squirrels, garden ants, textile moths and carpet beetles."

I will surely phone them for a chat on Monday. However the borough across the road does moths pest control for residents. I will phone those too. But I guess we don't qualify..

Minimammoth Fri 10-May-13 21:57:46

I have found the Lakeland spray the best one. And powder to brush into carpets too.

Our council don't give a crap either. Lucky Natasha

Natasha1 Sat 11-May-13 07:46:43

Maybe ring them just to check, our council don't list moths on their website and when I rang the call centre said they didn't think they dealt with them. When I got to speak to one of the pest controllers they confirmed that they did.

In the end we dealt with ours ourselves but did end up ripping up all our carpets and not replacing them for over 6 months to try to be sure they had all gone. We have now got non wool carpets. It was a complete nightmare and cost us £1000's which for now is on interest free credit cards!!!

We think ours started a few years ago when we got a really cheap wool mix carpet put through most of the house, it was cheap as chips but was the leftovers of a roll- we think it had been left lying around for ages in a dark warehouse.

Sleepyfergus Sat 11-May-13 14:58:43

Excuse me for barging in the thread, but how do you know what type of moth you have? I've seen about 8 over the last couple of weeks. They're light-mid brown and about 8mm long. Mostly in our bathroom and up high at mirror height iykwim. I've looked at images on google but not really sure. Am freaking out reading this thread!

Sounds most feasible this is carpet moth Sleepy. Welcome aboard btw.

I have them and no google search has provided me an image that looks like mine. Sort of silvery brown. Slow flying unless you try to swat them.

Get spring cleaning, Hoover under everything and all the nooks and cracks really well. Keep doing this daily or as much as you can, see if they keep coming.

Marthanoooo Sun 12-May-13 16:15:27

Sleepy - don't panic!

Have a look at both food and clothes moths and compare. I think the food ones are much darker. And if. I had those I'd just be chucking out my packs of cereals and cornflour etc.

Well, we are decluttering. And washing clothes that we store. And repackaging in airtight bin bags. Double packed. And then see. Someone is going to spray the flat next week!!

Shattered how's your moth count?

I haven't seen them in a couple of days. Actually am off now to check on the nest.. Oh yeah, we haven't removed that yet :-)

Marthanoooo Sun 12-May-13 16:16:52

There's also the case spinning moth mentioned upthread.... But I guess. If you have them you'll see the cases..

Well, for us it was easy to identify the moths. Definitely common clothes moth.

Sleepyfergus Sun 12-May-13 18:20:45

Ill need to do some more google image surfing later on after kids are in bed. The ironic thing is we are selling our house at the moment, so I have never hoovered so much in my life. More so in the last few weeks then in the whole time I've been here. <slattern>

Marthanoo love your name btw. Although didn't love it so much when it was the book of choice for weeks on end. It nearly ended up being frisbee-ing out the window!

Marthanoooo Sun 12-May-13 19:32:59

Haha, yes! Weeks on end..
( and Lazy choice of username)

Good luck with finding your type of moth..

Not seen any - long may it last

unlucky83 Sun 12-May-13 21:33:29

I had carpet beetles - very similar rid of clutter and vac bagged everything ...tumble drying apparently kills the eggs etc dry tumbled and into a vac bags anything that isn't used on a weekly basis or stored in underbed plastic containers with lids...
I found some in a spare bit of rolled up off cut carpet - (I'd always assumed was man made fibre)-problem is they could be anywhere...under floors in workmen debris, in loft etc etc
I found clothes moths larva when I broke up our old (inherited with the house) sofa to pieces to get rid of...they were in the bottom seam -couldn't have seen them unless you ripped the bottom off ...
I see the odd moth and kill it when I do (haven't seen a carpet beetle or larva for a year or so now -touch wood finally got rid of them -took years)
I steam my carpets at least every year now (more often when we had a real problem) ...paying particular attention to the skirting board join...don't know if it works - logic tells me it should...and it makes me feel better...
If you steam your carpets and all your clothes are stored safely away- they can't do any damage can they????

Gingefringe Mon 13-May-13 14:41:50

We've had moths for years and found they were in the hall carpet which we replaced last year and their numbers have reduced dramatically this year.

We've also been using these sticky moth boxes which trap the males and stops them breeding. We have a sticky box in each room and replace twice a year. You need to keep vigilant with the little buggers.

Rockinhippy Mon 13-May-13 22:16:05

After a few years of problems, our "source" was a beautiful vintage nursing chair that DH had had for years & I had designs on recovering to bring it back to life - it was heaving in there [green] - it had to go & a clean, spray & news cedar wood oil, we've not seen any since smile

A friend found the source of her problem was the edge of her pride & joy antique Oriental rug, part of it sat under her wardrobe - they had eaten holes right through most of what was under there.

Another friend also found egyptian cotton sheets that had fallen down the back of his cupboard was the nest area - not before they had lunched on large areas of his Vivienne Westwood suits sad

imip Tue 14-May-13 05:56:17

Like many others here, I have not yet found the source of the multitudes of moths we have. I suspect now, after a little more digging last week, that it is heavy Edwardian wardrobe we have. Carpets and skirting boards around there. W have had them for two or three years now, and n that time have only discovered one source in that time, dds woollen coat.

Quick question though. We use the sticky traps and they FAIL to catch the fuckers. WHY! Does anyone else have this problem? They are clearly flying around, of about five traps we've used in the past, only one managed to catch any. This is an expensive issue!

Rockinhippy Tue 14-May-13 08:09:17

I lost some text aboveconfused - they hate the print in newspaper, something in the ink, so lining drawers with old newspapers definitely helps to protect clothes -

I also bought & used a steam cleaner, which again definitely helped - we used to see loads of the little *** but thankfully bar minor holes in some of DDs tee shirts & a couple of jersey dresses I had made myself, we were very lucky, no major damage to wool suits or silk dresses etc etc

I do know they also like fur, another friend had them come into her work studio after she took in a load of vintage fur coats to reline for a customer - she had a lot of damage to fabrics, but the news print on her shelves & drawers helped there too

CinemaNoir Tue 14-May-13 21:02:46

Wow. Lots of moths action going on.

Going to DIY spray on Thursday after all this. Tomorrow steam cleaning everything, then formula c in the two affected cupboards. Hoping they haven't spread around the flat.

Have heard that you need to empty the Hoover bag after the big hovers removing... Sounds expensive.

We are also washing everything (baby clothes in storage) and repackaging sealing everything. Flat is shaken upside down. About to move the sofa. Oh, this is Martha btw...

CinemaNoir Tue 14-May-13 21:03:35

Will try newsprint too.

Like the new name!

Has the sofa not moved yet? Keeping everything crossed you only have hallway moths. I fear not though, they love munching our dead skin cells alongside a spot of wool.

I think Hoover bag is another preventative measure because of eggs, though figure the eggs can't get out the Hoover bag even if they hatch in there. imagines horror movie with thousands of moths exploding from my miele

CinemaNoir Wed 15-May-13 15:14:57

I only now saw a question above about the sticky traps... could it be a quality issue with the trap? Or the wrong kind if moth? And do those only catch the males, so maybe you had females shunning the trap?

Shattered - you are spot on. (unfortunately)

The sofa has been turned upside down and: LARVAE ! CATERPILLARS! eggs ! under the rug! gross! Then I found the same in a box under our bed in our bedroom angry they are ALL OVER the place.

So I am now back to Plan A: getting pest control in. Friday. I have my 1 litre of formula c here now but feel I can treat a couple of storage cupboards, but not the whole flat... the bypest person said he is betting his mortgage that they will be able to remove the moths. even though the sofa is infiltrated :-( this sucks.

And I think I have my answer also: If you just let the moths get on with it then you'll have these caterpillars etc all over the place.

CinemaNoir Wed 15-May-13 15:20:21

A few Questions:

The larvae, caterpillars and moths under our bed were in a nice paperchase cardboard storage box. (cost about £15 - 6 years ago)
Chuck the box or spray?

Leather and silk gloves also in that box (heirloom from gran) and one glove had a little caterpillar between the fingers... Chuck or freeze the gloves?

And lastly two acryllic hair wigs also in that box, they seemed uninfested.. they are currently in the freezer. Or chuck?

Freeze contents. Defrost. Refreeze. Then all should be ok. The box? Chuck it, not worth the risk. If they are not precious, chuck the lot.

I may be spot on but only because I have experienced what you just went through. It's gut wrenching and puke inducing. And makes you itchy, nervous and feel incredibly stupid that you didn't realise.

So a large wine for you cinemanoir.

Go with the pest control and get back in control. It's a good job you got it early in the summer. By August, you'd have nothing left!

Lavenderandlimes Thu 16-May-13 12:30:18

Apparently there has been a massive rise in the problem. It's believed to be related to an increase in buying secondhand and vintage clothes.

imip Fri 17-May-13 06:48:39

The traps I use were recommended by a neighbour. I have seen hers work sad we seem to have the same moths as her also.... AND, if the females do not fly, we have lots of very fertile males!

I must be doing something wrong <shakes head>

AnneEyhtMeyer Fri 17-May-13 07:22:21

We had this problem last year, they are so disgusting when you find huge swathes of them. I had huge areas of carpet under the sofas where all the wool had been eaten, just leaving the backing weave.

We were about to replace all our carpets anyway, so I went for hard flooring throughout downstairs and man-made fibre carpets upstairs.

Never thought I would actively want man-made rather than wool, but after seeing what they had done to wool carpets I never wanted to see that again.

CinemaNoir Fri 17-May-13 21:20:15

Imip did you place the traps on the floor? That's where they are meant to go.

Anne good. You got rid! Did you also spray or just replace carpets? I am with you. About suddenly not appreciating wool carpets anymore.

We got the flat sprayed today. Everything is packed in plastic bags stored outside. I wonder when we can unpack. I feel like I am travelling (the inconvenient way). This better work.

CinemaNoir Fri 17-May-13 21:22:40

Shattered how long have you had moths? I think to remember that you were going to DIY soon?

Lavender - yes.. I blame a secondhand cashmere cardie. :-(

AnneEyhtMeyer Fri 17-May-13 21:35:37

Cinema - no, we didn't spray, just replaced all the carpets with hard flooring and synthetic carpets. Our sofas are leather and hadn't been affected.

Haven't seen one since, and I have been extra-vigilant!

We had them two years running, summer only. Didn't realise 1st year. Last year, 2nd year, they were everywhere. I left DH to google and he totally missed it, said they were food moths.

We DIY sprayed whole house. No more after that but was about sept time. So far this year, I have perhaps hallucinated one moth (DH swears I imagined it)

I have had same carpet down over 6 years. No moths. Then one year, bald patch appears behind my bed. Didn't notice moths. Couldn't fathom it. Following year fuckers are everywhere in house. All rooms.

Hence my chicken and egg pondering. Can't have one without the other. So how did a male AND a female get in my house???

imip Wed 22-May-13 09:27:12

Traps on the floor? No... I'll give it a go and try not to trap the one year old!

Polyethyl Wed 22-May-13 10:08:33

This winter I completely emptied every room in my flat (except my bedroom) and washed my carpets using a rug doctor.
I also binned all the spare blankets and upholstery in my airing cupboard. Having a complete declutter.
I sealed my vintage clothing into vacuum bags.
I have put multiple moth traps in every room.

I still have moth.

sad poly
You need the formula c spray not a rug doctor.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now