How to Get Rid of Carpet Beetles & Caterpillars

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Get rid of destructive carpet beetles and their caterpillarlike larvae.
Get rid of destructive carpet beetles and their caterpillarlike larvae. (Image: T-shirt image by Antonio Oquias from Fotolia.com)

Carpet beetles can eat you out of house and home. Not only do they eat carpets, they also eat furniture, hair, leather, lint, clothing, blankets and food. They have also been linked to the spread of some harmful diseases. If you have seen some small black or brown beetles, or small hairy caterpillarlike worms in your house, you may have a carpet beetle infestation. If they are in your house, they are likely already eating away at your things.

Things You'll Need

  • Vacuum
  • Steam cleaner
  • Carpet beetle killing agents

Remove carpet beetles and their larvae with a vacuum. Vacuum every corner of the carpet and use a vacuum extension to suck up any beetles and larvae on your furniture. Remember to vacuum inside the cracks of the furniture, as carpet beetles like to feed in dark places.

Wash all of your clothes, blankets and sheets in hot, soapy water. Make sure to wash the fabric thoroughly to get ride of the insects and their eggs.

Steam clean your carpet after you vacuum. The high temperature of steam cleaning will ensure that you get rid of any adults that were left behind as well as their eggs.

Spray or dust your carpet and furniture with carpet beetle killing agents. Boric acid, as well as treatments containing chlorpyrifos, allethrin or bendiocrabs, are effective at eliminating carpet beetles.

Tips & Warnings

  • Call a carpet beetle exterminator if you are unable to eliminate the infestation on your own.

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