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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.

Shattereddreams Wed 22-May-13 20:21:32

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

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.

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!

Shattereddreams Fri 17-May-13 21:38:03

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???

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!

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. :-(

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.

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.

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>

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.

Shattereddreams Wed 15-May-13 20:40:44

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!

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?

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.

Shattereddreams Tue 14-May-13 22:02:31

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 Tue 14-May-13 21:03:35

Will try newsprint 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...

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

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 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

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.

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????

Shattereddreams Sun 12-May-13 21:08:47

Not seen any - long may it last

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..

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 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.

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