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To ask you to tell me how to get rid of clothes moths (I'm loosing my mind!)

(40 Posts)
FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 18:31:11


for the last week they have been flying around our bedroom at night (3-5 each night, when the light is on) I googled it and read that clothes moths don't like light so it wouldn't be clothes moths. A few days later clearing stuff in the spare bedroom and moved a rolled up carpet - lots of moths, agh shock

I've been googling and can't work out what to do, go big guns with chemicals (bad for health etc?) or go natural (not effective, just repels, won't kill larvae?)

There are hundreds of options and I'm stumped, no sign of damage to any clothes yet but I want to nip it in the bud, I checked google images and they look like clothes moths......

I know as soon as I switch the light on they will start and I'm already paranoid and considering washing everything I own.... I suffer with anxiety and I know it's stupid but I've been crying about it

Any advice on what actually works? What should I do?

cauliflowercheese14 Fri 21-Apr-17 18:35:09

If you can find where they are breeding and throw that away, or deep freeze it for weeks then that should help. Vigorous hoovering to get eggs and larvae and empty the Hoover bag immediately. I found pheromone traps effective at keeping the numbers down. In my case I couldn't find where they were coming from and we eventually moved house and they didn't come with us so I think they were in the fabric of the building somewhere.

cauliflowercheese14 Fri 21-Apr-17 18:36:22

(Oh and washing things won't kill them so don't stress about that.)

JT05 Fri 21-Apr-17 18:38:17

I'm paranoid about them. I use a spray called Zero. You can get it on line. I spray wardrobes once a week and before I go away. I also hang the deterrents. I think flea spray for animals might also do the job.
If you have found a colony, remove all clothes or rugs and clean the surfaces thoroughly with something like Dettol. Our built in wardrobes were part of the house so we repainted the insides.
Clean all clothes, they live on human tissue in natural fibres. Things that can't be cleaned store, in bags, in the freezer for 24 hrs. This kills the eggs.
Be vigilant and have a handy paperback to swat the blighters.

Cammysmoma Fri 21-Apr-17 18:41:35

I'd cry. For hours. I'd get a professional in but I don't have any experience at all with this. Good luck tho

GreenRut Fri 21-Apr-17 18:46:12

Yes we used Zero too. Literally fumigated the bastards out.

You do need to try and find the nest and eggs. I seem to remember reading about them attaching themselves to the Base of wooden furniture and wicker furniture too. Ended up finding ours at the bottom of a wicker laundry basket and on numerous other similar things. It was fucking GRIM. We also had to take up the carpets as they were those hessian type ones and they loved it.

I feel sorry for you,op. My life was completely taken over by it and to make matters worse, my dh would waft into rooms with them literally flying in his face and insist he couldn't see the problem confused

DelphiniumBlue Fri 21-Apr-17 18:50:21

Almost definitely clothes moths - too early in the year for garden moths .Check the bedroom carefully - if there is a wool carpet, they could be in that. You can get sprays ( lakeland or a hardware shop) - you spray in a well-ventilated room, so windows open. Chuck out anything that has holes. Empty the wardrobes, hoover, spray, then put in pheremone traps - these need renewing every 3 months. The sprays are supposed to last for a year.
I wasted a couple of years using "natural" remedies that didn't fully work, then bought a spray and it worked really well.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 21-Apr-17 18:58:58

Bug bomb the fuck out of the room.
Throw away anything moth edible that has been munched or has their silky threads.
Wash and pack away anything made from animal fibres with anti-moth tabs or papers
Moth papers or capsuals in wardrobes and drawers
Woollens into freezer bags into freezer for a fortnight, then keep sealed in bags but add moth paper/tab before putting away
Hoover like a bastard every day and empty the thing outside into a bag, seal and dispose, then spray the inside of Hoover
Chemical spray the house
Use pheromone traps to monitor activity and repeat every one to two weeks until no more caught on traps for two months.

FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 18:59:07

Thank you for your replies, I feel slightly reassured that I'm not totally overreacting (my husband isn't bothered at all!) but also a bit panicked about the task ahead!

I think they are in the rolled up carpet but I haven't been brave enough (or strong enough by myself!) to get it out. Are the eggs obvious?

Our carpets are 100% synthetic, so in theory moth proof...

So..... I need to get myself some Zero and actually confront this in the morning......

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 21-Apr-17 19:00:16

No, the eggs aren't visible. You might see the remains of cocoons.

FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 19:00:38

Is bug bomb a brand or a thing?

user1469914265 Fri 21-Apr-17 19:01:22

Iron the carpet.

FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 19:01:37

So will these ones have come from eggs laid last year? I should be able to see the cocoons they have come out of on the rolled carpet?

QueenDork Fri 21-Apr-17 19:02:44

If they are breeding in the rolled up carpet you will need to chuck that out I think, sorry. Empty all wardrobes out and examine all fabric fittings and soft furnishings. There will be a nest somewhere with larvae in. Find that, destroy it, ideally chuck out the thing the nest was in, and expose all the places where you have seen them to air and light as far as possible.

Good luck, we have had them several times but no recurrence since we stopped storing clothes which had been worn and not washed in cupboards (eg a woolly jumper you've worn and forgotten to wash before putting it away) and cleared out an old rug and an old upholstered chair.

FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 19:07:37

The rug was going anyway so I'm not bothered about that, I just feel like everything is contaminated and I'm imagining eggs everywhere (I start to get obsessive about hygiene with pests, mice, beetles etc) I stop sleeping and clean and re clean everything,
I think it's partly because my dad was immunosuppressed when I was a child so my mum went nuts about hygiene.

MatildaTheCat Fri 21-Apr-17 19:14:47

The bastards ate through all my cashmere and left most other stuff behind. I'm not sure whether carpet moths are different but we've had those, too. Spray, freezing, hoovering, regular deterrents, lavender bags. I have the lot and fingers crossed they are zapped. However, I've seen a few flattering just recently.

I loathed the little bastards.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 21-Apr-17 19:15:41

Their life cycle is shorter than a year.

A bug bomb is a thing. Also known as a fogger. There are various brands available.

lucy101101 Fri 21-Apr-17 19:23:43

I am slightly obsessed with moths and here are my top tips:

- don't store dirty clothes
- throw away anything badly infested
- freeze clothes for 48 hours then wash
- wash with a few drops of lavender oil
- pack away CLEAN clothes that aren't being worn for a season in sealed bags or plastic boxes with bags of lavender and or cedar wood and moth killer sheets
- buy these: Exosect/The Moth Decoy
- and these: Trichogramma wasp larvae

I also use moth killer pheromone traps.. but not within 2 metres of the last two tips!


Rufus200 Fri 21-Apr-17 19:34:38

I have spent a lot of money trying to get rid of moths in my mum's house. It was when I lived with her and my clothes were being ruined. She kept on leaving windows open so they just kept on coming in from whichever neighbour had the infestation.

Don't get the foggers you have to light with a match, I nearly burnt the house down one day. The spray foggers are best, do every 2 wks, every room in the house. Throw out anything that is infested. Get the pheromone traps and put them in your wardrobe and above doorways.

FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 19:43:53

Right, have been on amazon and have lots arriving tomorrow (thank goodness for Prime - we live in the middle of nowhere) I have ordered aerosol spray, wardrobe hangers and sachets (for drawers).
Do I need pheromone traps as well? What's best to put in storage boxes, sachets, strips (paper?) or balls (cedar or otherwise?)

As soon as my husband finishes work tomorrow we will get the carpet out and hoover/spray everything and and put our most precious woolies in the freezer....

FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 19:44:33

Will they eat my spare sofa covers, which are cotton?

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 21-Apr-17 19:44:40

I did get rid of mine btw.

Took the opportunity to spray under carpets when they came up for replacing.

They live in birds nests in the wild so if you have nests nearby and windows open they can fly straight in.

FlusteredDuster Fri 21-Apr-17 19:48:21

just found this - is this a good idea or am I overreacting?

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 21-Apr-17 19:48:32

Forget cedar balls and lavender. They may work as a deterrent but won't get rid of an infestation.

The traps will attract the males and kill them but they are for monitoring your infestation.

They don't eat cotton or linen. They like the keratin in animal fibres like wool.

yellowfrog Fri 21-Apr-17 19:48:46

Being stressed about this is a natural reaction - they are little flying fuckers. However, be reassured that although they damage stuff, they're not contaminating it as such (it's not like having mice, which wee all over everything for example) so you don't need to worry about the hygiene aspect (I speak as a bit of an anxious germophobe).

They will however eat bloody anything, so start the war now.

Bin anything they have really got into. Keep everything woollen/cashmere/mohair/etc in sealed bags. Hoover bloody everything, especially around the base of furniture. Dry clean anything dry cleanable and then put in sealed bags. Lakeland sell moth sticky traps and moth repelling sachets. Stick them in the wardrobes, drawers, any where they have been seen - really go to town. Keep repeating this.

Also, what everyone else said. Basically this is gonna be a long one, but you can beat the flappy fuckers. Good luck!

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