Everything you need to know about carpet beetles and how to prevent them
Carpet Beetles. For such a small little critter they really can do a great amount of damage within the home, particularly as they can be hard to detect in the first place! So what are Carpet Beetles, what do we do if we have them and what are ways to ensure they don’t make themselves at home in the first place?
What Are Carpet Beetles?
Carpet Beetles can be found across Australia and look very unassuming if you can spot them at all! The adult beetle is less than .5mm long, making it easy to overlook them on your carpet at home. They often come inside on fresh flowers or sneak in open doors or windows. Once inside they really can create a lot of harm. The larvae are the real culprit here. They eat and survive on any animal fibre such as animal hair and wool, silk etc which is devastating to carpet and rugs. Adults tend to feed on pollen and not cause any household damage- but where there’s adults, larvae will follow! Because they love animal hair so much, there’s an additional risk of carpet beetles coming inside if there’s pets in the house. Cute and harmless in nature of course, but if the carpet beetle is in your home it can be a disaster.
Flooring Xtra Wool Carpet Treatment
It’s comforting to note that all Flooring Xtra wool branded carpets are treated with a chemical that works to deter insects from damaging carpet. While nothing will keep bugs away completely, this safe and quality controlled treatment (Woolmark Quality Standard CP-4:2013) will certainly help. It’s worth noting each carpet and its manufacturer are different and they will all offer different warranties in regards to this. It’s very worthwhile checking this information before purchasing carpet in-store with your helpful Flooring Xtra consultant.
Steps to Prevent Carpet Beetles Causing Damage
The good news is there are some steps to take to minimise these pesky beetles from getting too comfortable and ruining your beautiful carpet or rug.
- Check fresh flowers for beetles before bringing them inside the house.
- Regularly vacuum carpet and rugs, particularly darker places such as under furniture where pet hairs are less likely to be picked up in a quick vacuum around the house. Vacuum thoroughly under carpet, at skiting boards and in robes and cupboards.
- Invest in professional carpet cleaning. There are many reasons why this is good for your carpets (read more here) and this is one of them!
- Act promptly if you think there’s a carpet beetle problem in your home. The quicker the situation is dealt with; the less damage will occur.
- If there’s any damp carpet in the home for whatever reason, don’t let it stay damp for too long as this is where the adult beetles also like to lay eggs.
How to spot the Carpet beetle at home
Carpet beetles are only interested in carpets that are made from natural fibres such as wool or silk, so be mindful if you have these products at home. They are found throughout Australia. You may physically spot an adult beetle flying around or on surfaces such as window sills. Larvae are trickier to find, they’re small, furry and you may not know they’re there until they have eaten through the carpet. If they have started to eat at the carpet, you may find “shedding” of their skins or their droppings. You might also see damaged areas or loose fibres of the carpet in the same spot. They may also chew their way through woollen blankets.
What to do if carpet beetles are causing damage
While preventative care is best, sometimes these things still happen. If you’re worried you have a carpet beetle infestation at home, it’s important to call for a pest inspection straight away. They will be able to help guide you in the right direction.