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Infestation of moths - advice on how to tackle please.

(19 Posts)
AbbieLexie Wed 05-Oct-16 09:32:24

Daughter's boyfriend has been working away and left friend in flat to look after it. Friend has moved out now he's back. The flat is infested with moths. What is the best way to deal with this? I have looked online but would appreciate mumsnet's advice.

johnd2 Wed 05-Oct-16 13:40:46

Shake all clothes/bedding/anything with natural fibres outside, air it and put it in those vacuum plastic storage bags.
Then at least your stuff won't be ruined.
After that just vacuum/clean/disturb anywhere they might lay eggs regularly for the next few months.
I think they take a few weeks to hatch but they always stay near material ie food. So if you disturb them they won't survive.
Good luck!

TwatbadgingCuntfuckery Wed 05-Oct-16 13:44:41

For the carpet/clothes moths (small, silvery grey/beige and wings fold back on their body) Get sticky moth traps. A couple in each room. Hot wash all fabrics that can be. Stick fragile fabrics in a bag in the freezer for 24-48hrs.

Thoughtfully Hoover all carpets, upholstery and if poss a good steam clean on the sturdier fabrics to kill the Larve.

Any other moths just clean as normal and deposit any live ones outside.

AntiHop Wed 05-Oct-16 13:52:21

Assuming you're in the UK, they'll be dying out as winter approaches but if you don't get rid they'll turn up again around March or April.

What I did was throw away clothing that has been infested. I washed everything else at 60. Every weekend I hoovered the carpets wall to wall and sprayed proactive c (which you can buy online) over all carpets. I kept this up for a few months. We found holes in the skirting boards and suspected they were coming in from the wall cavities so we filled the holes up. Thank goodness this was before we has dd as I'd never have time for that now.

Cherylene Wed 05-Oct-16 13:57:20

As above. I use this: or the sachets in places that cannot easily be cleaned regularly (like under the sideboard filled with vinyl records, and the cupboard under the stairs.

ChishandFips33 Thu 06-Oct-16 22:01:13

I have seen these little buggers this year in various rooms in the house but can't find the source. Would the maggotty area be obvious or are they sly and cunningly hide?
All floors but 1 are floorboards, no cavity walls, only have 2 wardrobes and no clothes have been munched so far but do have issues with damp
DH is tasked with investigating under the stairs (hard floor, tiny cubby space) this weekend
Sorry to hijack!

PikachuSayBoo Thu 06-Oct-16 22:06:05

When I had a moth infestation the source was under the stairs. They were a heaving maggoty mass in an old hessian bag. They like dark corners so under beds/sofas are worth checking. Emptying wardrobes.

I emptied out the stair cupboard completely. Anything fabricyish was ruined and binned. I ripped the carpet out. Then got sticky traps for downstairs and also moth spray for the cupboard. Worked well.

ChishandFips33 Fri 07-Oct-16 00:08:59

They were a heaving maggoty mass in an old hessian bag
Oh joy - I am so please I'm not my DH at the weekend!

I'm a little bit fascinated on how they were brought in by the lodger? How does this work?

I really want to google the questions going through my head right now...but I'm a tad scared of what I'll see!!

JT05 Fri 07-Oct-16 08:10:51

My DS brought us moths from his University halls, in a wool jacket! He left it in the back of his wardrobe for several months. One day on a clearing out mission due to seeing moths, I found it! I could not believe that one sleeve was demolished down to the lining!
The wardrobe ( built in) was cleared, hoovered, washed with dettol and painted inside! I then hung moth deterrents, put in the sticky traps and sprayed with Zero moth killer. Seemed to do the trick!

PigletJohn Fri 07-Oct-16 11:30:28

Once you have an infestation, or even a few eggs, they will multiply.

So you have to kill every one.

Tranfluthrin is the chemical used in the sachets and wardrobe hangers, it emits a tiny amount of vapour that. in an enclosed space such as a closed box or wardrobe, will kill adults, grubs and eggs over a couple if weeks (I guess the sachets are made so weak that the vapour will not accumulate in the room. It breaks down from sunlight or rain, and dissipates in fresh air).

To get faster results, you can put everything through a tumble drier (it does not need to be wet) and the heat will kill grubs and eggs, then put it all into containers, boxes or plastic bags, sealed with the sachets in (because your house has moths, you can't be sure that eggs will not be laid while you are sorting and folding the clothes), then hoover out and spray your drawers and wardrobes. It takes a few months to be sure you have killed them all. If you leave a few they will multiply again.

They like to live underneath and behind furniture and skirtings, a where they will be undisturbed, and eat wool carpets, so you have to clean all the most difficult places.

Frequent and thorough hoovering is the best way to keep the numbers down, but you need chemicals to kill them all.

You can get non-chemical treatments such as lavender and cedarwood. These do not kill moths but will make your holey clothes smell nice when you throw them in the bin.

An infestation can cause hundreds or thousands of pounds worth of damage, so however nature-friendly you are, you will, in the end, use the chemical, because nothing else works. Once under control you will be OK with hangers in your wardrobes and cupboards, and change them every few months. Put a sachet in the pocket of your best cashmere jacket and tape it into a large, clear plastic bag (you can get them as "recycling bags" on the bin-liner shelf).

The sticky traps are good for showing if you have moths, but they only catch the adults after they have hatched from grubs that have already eaten holes in your clothes. Killing the eggs and grubs is better.

There are various sachets, hangers and strips but check the label to see they contain Transfluthrin

Cherylene Fri 07-Oct-16 11:40:19

Would the maggotty area be obvious or are they sly and cunningly hide?

If you have ever rubbed damp paper and ended up with little papery rolls - they look like this in the tufts of the carpet. When they emerge you can see the rolls near the surface. Unfortunately, in my house, it never becomes apparent until I vacuum and some patches of carpet are missing angry. This is why I use spray/sachets after thorough vacuuming of the awkward areas.

I have also had an angora cardigan given the paper doll treatment. angry

Overthinker2016 Fri 07-Oct-16 12:26:00

Yes a lot of the sachets don't work. Lavender etc ok as preventative but once you have them lavender and other natural remedies do not work one jot.

I bought a smoke bomb thing on line.

Cherylene Fri 07-Oct-16 15:35:47

I had some naice herbal moth sachets (from sandringham) in the cupboard under the stairs for a while. I found them when I cleaned it out the moths had eaten them, and the little patch of carpet underneath them. To be fair, they were a bit old by then. However, not impressed.

applesandpears33 Fri 07-Oct-16 15:54:40

If you have a piano consider putting one of the sachets inside the lid - a friend's piano required a lot of work after moths ate all the felt from the mechanism.

TheQuestingVole Fri 07-Oct-16 16:10:20

How I dealt with it: I moved house <helpful>.

ChishandFips33 Mon 17-Oct-16 18:49:32

If you have ever rubbed damp paper and ended up with little papery rolls - they look like this in the tufts of the carpet. When they emerge you can see the rolls near the surface.
^I found the buggers (just casings though) and some bald carpet
Also found casings attached underneath and inside a drawer unit nearby.

Drawers were given so not sure if they infested the carpet or vice versa - they are now on the fire!

Carpet and underlay has been removed - as has the skirting. Thorough Hoover but not seen any maggots/grubs...will they be under the floorboards?? There's a gap between the end of the boards and the stone wall - they're lurking aren't they??

New wool mix carpets go down next month - what can I do to stop them from being a snack?

ChishandFips33 Mon 17-Oct-16 18:50:33

How I dealt with it: I moved house <helpful>.

Not an option, we've not long moved in!! should have lifted the left carpet - lesson learned

Cherylene Tue 18-Oct-16 10:51:41

I would just keep it clean and then, when you have your new carpet, put some of the transfluthin sachet things in all the hidden places, and under the furniture, where they are likely to appear, and clean and replace them every year, as much as is possible.

I expect that was what spring cleaning was all about really.

I am sure the previous owners of our house dealt with them by moving wink

Now - Where do Woolly Bears come from hmm?

ChishandFips33 Tue 18-Oct-16 19:47:00

Thanks - I might leave all but the bed out for a while until my confidence grows that they are not reappearing

Will get some some lots of the sachets to throw down under the floorboards - no-one will be sleeping in there for a long time

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