How to Get Rid of Moths and Prevent their Damage: 3 Steps
So you noticed a hole in one of your sweaters, or maybe just a single moth flying around your home. These might not seem like a big deal, but they’re a sign you have a moth problem, and if you don’t act quickly things could get expensive and fast.
Don’t panic, moths aren’t fun but with the right knowhow you can save your clothing and other valuables from damage and get rid of your moths in no time. Old school methods like mothballs—which are notoriously harmful to our pets and families—simply aren’t the way to go. In fact, you're usually better off living with moths than filling your home with naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene, the active ingredients in mothballs, which have been linked to countless scary side effects. So skip the poisonous stuff, and let’s solve your moth problem without harmful chemicals.
Taking a few simple precautions can help ensure you never deal with moths or their damaging habits again. Here’s what you’ll want to do:
- Basic housekeeping is essential to moth prevention. Regularly dust, clean, and vacuum flooring, rugs, moldings, furniture, etc to help keep your home free of moth attractants like dirt, dust, and food debris.
- Like any other pest, moths sometimes enter our homes simply by flying or crawling inside. Ensure all doorways, windows, and screens are in good working order and firmly sealed. Address cracks, holes and other potential entry points both inside and outside your home by using caulk or another appropriate sealant.
- Moths often hitch a ride into our homes by hiding out in used clothing, antique furniture, old rugs and stuffed animals, even your weekly groceries. Carefully inspect these items for eggs, webbing, caterpillars, damage, and other signs of moths before purchasing and bringing them into your house.
- Moths are much more likely to enter your closet or storage space if the items inside are dirty. Moths are strongly drawn to sweat, hair, skin oils, and food and drink stains. If you launder or dry clean items before storing or hanging them in your closet, you’ll enjoy far fewer moth problems in the long run.
- Additionally, when storing items away for longer periods of time, always use airtight plastic containers. Moth caterpillars can easily chew through other options like cardboard.
- Moths love dark, humid environments, so do your best to keep your closet on the cool side and well ventilated.
- Cedar and cedarwood oil are known to kill and repel moths, moth caterpillars, and eggs. Switching your clothes hangers to cedar and hanging Cedar Granules in your closet using a sock or stocking can do wonders for preventing costly moth issues.
2. STOP THE DAMAGE
So you have a moth problem on your hand. What now? First thing’s first: let’s protect your clothing and other valuables from damage.
First, you’ll need to remove any moth caterpillars, adults, and eggs that might currently be on or in your clothing, rugs, or other textiles. Don’t worry, it’s quite straight forward. All you need to do is take all the items suspected of infestation and wash & dry them on warm settings. Dry cleaning will do the trick, too. Freezing these items for 24-48 hours is also effective, although usually less convenient.
Next, thoroughly vacuum all potentially moth-infested areas like closets and storage spaces. Make sure to target carpets, rugs, drapery, and other fabrics, as well as any walls or baseboards that display signs of moths, such as webbing or caterpillars. After you’re done, make sure to throw the vacuum bag outside immediately to prevent possible re-infestation.
Lastly, wash and scrub all hard surfaces within potentially infested spaces with a family-safe cleaner to remove any hard to see eggs or grime (moths often leave a dusty, musty film throughout storage areas).
3. KILL AND REPEL
Now that you know how to prevent moth problems and how to save your clothing and other valuables from damage, it’s time to finally kill and repel those pesky moths.
As mentioned above, using Cedar Granules by hanging them in a sock or stocking can be very effective at repelling and removing moths from unwanted areas. Just remember to replenish the Cedar Granules about every 6-8 weeks. For best results, spritz walls, baseboards, and clothing racks within storage spaces with our non-toxic repellent Cedarcide All-Purpose Bug Spray. Repeat this process every 2-3 weeks, or more often as needed for ongoing moth problems.
Our pet and family-safe insecticide, Cedarcide All-Purpose Bug Spray, is excellent for solving moth problems quickly, killing not just adults but also moth caterpillars and eggs. Simply spray any adults, caterpillars, or eggs you see with Cedarcide All-Purpose Bug Spray and that’s all there is to it. Thoroughly spritz the walls, baseboards, ceiling, and flooring of infested spaces like closets to take care of any hidden caterpillars, eggs, and adults, too.