There are many different kinds of beetles, and some of them are pests. Carpet beetles, for example, feed on natural fibers like wool, silk and cotton — which means that if you have one in your home, it could be damaging your carpet or upholstery.
Carpet beetles can also damage clothing, furniture, drapes and other household items that contain natural fibers. They’ll even eat synthetic fabrics if there’s nothing else around for them to eat!
The good news is that carpet beetles are pretty easy to spot and remedy. If you’re wondering are carpet beetles harmful, you’ve come to the right place. Today, we’re talking about carpet beetles, the damage they cause, and how you can get rid of them.
What Are Carpet Beetles
Carpet beetles are small beetles that feed on organic and natural fibers in the home.
Carpet beetles are small insects that feed on natural fibers, such as wool and silk. They are also known as “wool moths” or “wool worms.”
Carpet beetles are about 1/8 inch long and range in color from light brown to black. The larvae look like fat, curved grubs with six legs at the front end and four sensory hairs on the head. Adults lay eggs inside the carpeting and other types of fabric items that provide food for the developing larvae.
These indoor pests feed on natural fibers such as wool, and hair, and they also feed on synthetic fibers like polyester. They even eat animal products such as dried blood spots on the wallpaper, feathers, dried insects, skins of dead animals like snakes or lizards, horns and hooves of dead animals, horn shavings from taxidermy shops, bone meal used as fertilizer for plants, and dried animal hides used for clothing production.
Though these pests are small, they can be easily seen by the naked eye. They have a look that is similar to ladybugs, though they are much smaller. In fact, when asking are carpet beetles harmful, it helps to make sure you are identifying them properly.
Carpet beetles are about 1/8 inch long and have a reddish-brown or yellowish color with a faint pattern on the wings. They often infest fabrics made from natural fibers, such as wool, cotton, and silk, and finding them in these areas is one of their best-identifying factors.
Adult carpet beetles lay eggs on wool and fabric materials; the larvae feed on these materials as well as hair, feathers, pet fur, and lint found in clothing. The full life cycle takes about 10 months to complete, so these pests are slower to infiltrate homes. Still, they can also be tricky to identify, and this can make them prone to spreading and causing quite a bit of damage. This is especially true if they are infesting areas that are not often frequented by people like attics, crawl spaces, storage units, or unfinished basements.
If you’re wondering if you have carpet beetles, there are a few factors that can make them more common. Carpet beetles are more common in warm climates than in cold ones. They feed on all kinds of natural fibers, as we’ve mentioned, and the larvae also eat organic matter like dead insects and animal feces.
But are carpet beetles harmful? While carpet beetles are not dangerous to humans or pets, they do damage clothing and other fabrics due to their ravenous appetites. The larvae can also be destructive to books, carpets, and tapestries if left unchecked. Let’s talk more about are carpet beetles harmful.
Are Carpet Beetles Harmful?
Carpet beetle larvae are often more harmful than their adult counterparts.
As we now know, carpet beetles are small, physically harmless bugs that live in carpets, rugs and other fabrics. They are sometimes called fabric moths, because they produce silk webbing to support their cocoons.
These insects tend to attack materials made from natural fibers such as wool, silk or cotton, as we mentioned above. They also feed on synthetic fabrics like polyester, acrylic and even blends of these materials.
The damage caused by carpet beetles is not always easy to detect, especially in areas where they have been feeding for a long time. If you notice small holes in your clothing or other fabrics, this could be the work of these pests. It will take some time for you to see signs of damage from carpet beetle feeding because they leave behind debris in the form of tiny black specks called frass (fecal material). The frass can be found near damaged areas on your fabric or clothing when these pests are present.
Carpet beetles don’t bite people or pets but they do cause considerable damage to textiles and clothing if left unchecked. The silk webbing created by this pest can become quite noticeable over time if left untreated, so it’s important to keep an eye out for any signs that carpet beetles may be present in your home
Regardless of their species, they can be problematic in homes, especially if they are infesting specific areas around our homes, as we mentioned above.
In fact, carpet beetles eat natural fibers such as wool, silk, mohair, and cashmere, which can cost people hundreds of dollars in goods and valuables if they are not careful.
You should remember that carpet beetles eat synthetic fibers too, though they don’t digest them well.
Another thing you should remember is that the damage they cause can creep up slowly. For example, if you have a lot of carpets in your home, it’s likely that you won’t notice the damage until some time passes. Over time you’ll see some holes begin to appear in carpets and fabrics from these pests.
Carpet beetles like to hide in secluded places, making them hard to spot. They tend to congregate in closets and basements because these areas provide them with a source of food and shelter.
But are carpet beetles harmful to clothing? Actually, yes. Along with damaging carpets and furniture, carpet beetles can damage your clothing by feeding on it for several days. Once the larvae have grown large enough, they will make their way out of the fabric and pupate elsewhere. The damage from carpet beetles is not always visible but can be felt through the material. If you find holes or tears in your clothes or carpets, then you might have an infestation of carpet beetles.
The most common sign of carpet beetle infestation is damage to clothing or other items made from animal fibers such as wool, silk, or cashmere. The larvae feed on these materials until they grow large enough to spin cocoons where they will develop into adult insects. You may also notice larvae crawling around if you see small pinholes in your fabric or see them spinning cocoons near the places where they were feeding on food sources such as yarn or silk.
But why do you have carpet beetles, and what should you do if you discover them in your home? Let’s find out!
Why Do You Have Carpet Beetles?
Carpet beetles are a very common pest in US homes. Luckily, they are not known to infest in very large numbers.
Carpet beetles are a common pest that can be found in a variety of homes. So, if you have carpet beetles and are asking are carpet beetles harmful, you’re not alone.
These annoying pests can get into your home in a variety of ways, but one common way is that they come in at the seams of carpeting and rugs and lay eggs in the fibers. The larvae hatch and feed on the carpet, leaving behind white spots and holes in the fabric.
Carpet beetles are also often brought into the home on infested items such as luggage, backpacks, used clothing or furniture. The beetles can also be brought in on food that has been stored in cardboard boxes. Once they hatch, they will begin feeding on your carpet and other fabrics in your home.
Because carpet beetles are small, they can be difficult to spot until the damage has already been done. So, when asking are carpet beetles harmful, this makes the answer a yes when it comes to the damage they can cause.
And though carpet beetles are usually not a threat to humans or their homes, they can make you itch if they get on your skin or lead to heightened allergy issues in those with sensitivities.
So, what should you do if you notice carpet beetles or carpet beetle damage?
If you see one or two of these pests crawling around in your home, don’t panic right away. Are carpet beetles harmful? Somewhat, but they don’t damage fabrics very quickly by themselves. But if you notice a lot of them — say hundreds — then it’s time to take action immediately because there’s probably a bigger problem lurking behind the scenes that need to be addressed immediately before more damage is done and more insects become present in your home.
The best way to prevent carpet beetle infestations is by keeping your home free of clutter and storing food in sealed plastic containers. If you do have an infestation, it can be treated with insecticides and other products, which we have listed below.
How To Get Rid Of Carpet Beetles
Carpet beetles are also known to eat pages and glue from books and wallpaper.
If you’re asking are carpet beetles are harmful, the good news is that they are not dangerous to people or pets. However, they can be harmful to clothing, materials, upholstery, silks, bedding, and carpets.
If you have carpet beetles in your home, it’s important to address the problem immediately before they multiply and cause more serious damage over time. Below are some tips for getting rid of carpet beetles.
Remove Infested Items –
You should remove all infested items from your home if possible so that carpet beetles don’t spread throughout other parts of the house. While the answer to are carpet beetles harmful is mostly a no, remember that they can cause damage to your belongings. This includes furniture, clothing, food products and bedding that has been eaten by these insects such as comforters, pillows and blankets.
Vacuum Your Carpets And Flooring –
Vacuuming can also help prevent the spread of these pests once you determine to answer to are carpet beetles harmful. If you have a large infestation, vacuum all carpets, rugs, and furniture in the room where they were found. Next, vacuum other rooms throughout the home — especially those near the infested room.
Use A Steam Cleaner On Fabrics –
You can buy a steam cleaner from most hardware stores or online retailers. Steam cleaners use water heated to high temperatures to remove stains from fabrics by physically forcing them out through the fibers of the fabric itself. This kills any eggs or larvae inside the fabric as well as killing adult beetles that might be hiding there as well.
Wash Bedding Frequently –
Wash clothing, blankets, and other fabric items in hot water (130 degrees Fahrenheit) every few weeks to keep them free of food sources for the bugs.
Clean Closets Often – Vacuum closets often to remove any loose fibers left behind by moths, which carpet beetles feed upon as well.
Keep Food Away From Carpet Beetles – Store pantry items such as flour, rice, and pasta in tightly sealed cabinets or containers to prevent them from becoming infested with beetles.
Remove Deadwood From Your Home – If you have dead wood lying around your home that could be harboring larvae or pupae (cocoons), dispose of it immediately by placing it into bags or boxes lined with newspaper before disposing of it outdoors in a trash can away from your home or garage.
Remove Excess Debris In Storage Areas –
If you’re seeing more than one beetle per week, it may be time to do some spring cleaning with your belongings. Check storage areas like attics or basements for any excess debris that could be providing food for these pests, especially now that you know the answer to are carpet beetles are harmful. Remove anything that might be attracting these pests to your home and make sure you store items properly so they don’t come into contact with moisture or dust. That will help keep them away from your carpets in the future.
You can also use some of the top recommended products for carpet beetle control below.
Best Products For Getting Rid Of Carpet Beetles
Also known as DE, Diatomaceous Earth works to get rid of carpet beetles effectively.
While we know the answer to are carpet beetles harmful is a no, it’s still a good idea to get rid of them. Luckily, these pests are easy to get rid of when you use the right products.
You can use a variety of products to treat carpet beetles, including:
Insecticides are chemicals that kill insects. They can be sprayed on carpets, floors and other areas where carpet beetles live. These products include carbaryl (Sevin), pyrethrins (Pyganic), permethrin, bifenthrin, cyfluthrin and lambda-cyhalothrin. Insecticides must be applied directly to the infested area to be effective. They may also cause stains on some fabrics if they are not removed immediately after treatment.
Natural products are just as readily available for those asking are carpet beetles harmful as insecticides. Many of these products include sprays that use plant-based ingredients like essential oils and powders while others use ultrasonic sound waves or scents. There are pros and cons to using natural products when asking are carpet beetles harmful and how to get rid of carpet beetles. For example, natural products may be more costly. They may also not be as effective if you have a severe infestation of carpet beetles.
Home Remedies –
You also have the option of using home remedies to get rid of carpet beetles once you know the answer to are carpet beetles harmful. Some of the best home remedies include the use of baking soda, vinegar, citrus oils, essential oils, and simple good cleaning habits like vacuuming, washing, and cleaning.
But if you are looking for the best products to get rid of carpet beetles, we have listed some we suggest below.
Dr. Killigan’s Six Feet Under Non-Toxic Insect Spray
Dr. Killigan’s Six Feet Under Non-Toxic Insect Spray is a non-toxic, organic solution that effectively kills carpet beetles and their eggs. This product is also safe to use around people and animals, making it an excellent choice for both indoor and outdoor use.
The spray is a unique blend of essential oils that work together to kill carpet beetles at their source. This spray kills only adult insects and not eggs or larvae, so it leaves no toxic residue behind on your carpeting or furniture when it dries up after application. It also has no odor after drying up in the air so you won’t have to worry about your house smelling like chemicals afterward!
HARRIS Diatomaceous Earth Crawling Insect Killer
Harris Diatomaceous Earth Crawling Insect Killer is a natural, non-toxic product that kills crawling insects like carpet beetles by penetrating their exoskeletons and dehydrating them. This product is made from the fossilized remains of diatoms, a type of algae found in water. Once it comes into contact with insects, they become dehydrated and die within a few hours.
This product is best used as a removal and preventative measure against pests like carpet beetles, ants, termites, and other crawling insects. It can also be used as a treatment for fleas, ticks, and other insects that may hide in carpets or under rugs.
Mighty Mint Insect and Pest Control Peppermint Spray
Mighty Mint Insect and Pest Control Peppermint Spray is a very effective product. It is made with peppermint oil and clove oil, and it has a powerful effect on carpet beetles, which is helpful when you find yourself asking are carpet beetles harmful.
The active ingredients in Mighty Mint Insect and Pest Control Peppermint Spray are peppermint oil and clove oil. Both of these oils have been used for centuries to get rid of pests because they have a strong odor that insects don’t like. When you spray your carpets with this product, you’ll notice that they smell strongly like mint or cloves. The smell deters pests like carpet beetles, ants, roaches, fleas, ticks, spiders, and even bed bugs.
Eco Defense All-Natural Pest Control Pouches
Eco Defense All-Natural Pest Control Pouches are an innovative, simple and effective way to get rid of carpet beetles now that you know the answer to are carpet beetles are harmful.
The Eco Defense All-Natural Pest Control Pouches are made with all-natural ingredients that are safe for humans and pets. They work by releasing a slow-release formula of natural repellents that deters carpet beetles and prevents them from coming around.
We also like that these pouches are made with all-natural ingredients that are safe for humans and pets.
Reefer-Galler SLA Cedar Scented Insect Spray
Reefer-Galler SLA Cedar Scented Insect Spray is a nontoxic and biodegradable product that kills carpet beetles effectively. The spray is formulated with cedar oil and neem oil, which are both effective at eliminating these pests. This insecticide kills adults, larvae, and eggs of the carpet beetle, and their eggs.
The active ingredient in Reefer-Galler SLA Cedar Scented Insect Spray is cypermethrin, which is derived from chrysanthemum flowers. It works by attacking the nervous system of insects so that they cannot move or breathe properly. The spray also contains piperonyl butoxide as well as some other chemicals that help it penetrate the exoskeleton of pests easily.
Home Remedies For Carpet Beetle Control
Vinegar can be a useful tool when it comes to getting rid of carpet beetles.
Home remedies for carpet beetle control is a popular method of getting rid of the bugs and their larvae. It is an effective way to control the problem provided that you have the right mixture of ingredients and can follow the instructions properly. Though the answer to are carpet beetles harmful is a no, they can be problematic to goods and valuables in your home.
Here are some home remedies you can use to get rid of carpet beetles.
The most effective home remedy to get rid of carpet beetles is to vacuum your carpet regularly with a good quality vacuum cleaner and keeping your vacuum bag clean at all times. You could also use Diatomaceous Earth when vacuuming your carpets in order to kill any eggs or larvae that might be present inside your carpeting.
Essential oils are another product you can use to naturally get rid of carpet beetles inside your home. Cedar oil has been used for centuries as an insect repellent and works by interfering with the growth cycle of insects such as carpet beetles, fleas, and ticks. Peppermint oil can also be effective, as can citronella oil.
Vinegar is a natural disinfectant that kills bacteria, mold and fungus when used correctly in your home. It can also be used to deter pests like carpet beetles. You can mix vinegar with water and spray this solution on your carpets to kill any remaining larvae or eggs that might be hiding there after vacuuming up the grass left behind by adult beetles.
So, Are Carpet Beetles Harmful? Experts Weigh In
Carpet beetle and their lavea can be problematic, but they are not harmful to people and pets.
Are carpet beetles harmful? Well, the answer is not so black and white, although you rest assured that carpet beetles are relatively harmless to people, pets, and the environment. However, they are destructive to valuables.
In fact, carpet beetles eat animal fibers, including wool, silk and leather. They can also eat synthetic fabrics, but they prefer natural ones.
Carpet beetles do not bite or sting humans or pets and rarely infest homes in large numbers. However, if you have a large infestation of carpet beetles in your home, it could be an indication of other problems with your home such as moisture damage or an insect infestation in your attic or basement. You should call a professional pest control company for help with these types of issues.
The best way to prevent carpet beetle infestations is by keeping your carpets clean and vacuumed regularly and inspecting them for any signs of damage before purchasing them. If you find any damaged areas on your carpeting, remove them immediately so they don’t become breeding grounds for beetles later on. Clean up any pet hair that may be around too since this can attract beetles as well as other pests.
If you already have a carpet beetle problem in your home and you have tried our above methods, recommendations, and products to get rid of them but are finding yourself unsuccessful, it may be time to contact a professional.
A professional pest control expert can help get rid of a carpet beetle infestation and pinpoint the issue, further identifying if there is a more serious problem at the root.
Most importantly, though, remember that carpet beetles are relatively simple to get rid of with good habits and the use of proper products. So, are carpet beetles harmful? While carpet beetles can be destructive to fabrics, furniture, and other organic material, they are generally harmless to people and pets.
Best of luck and thanks for reading!
Jack founded our blog after two decades of working in the pest control industry. His vast experience dealing with a wide array of pests allows him to diagnose issues quickly and get to the heart of pest problems quickly and effectively. He has serviced more than 2,000 homes over his career and there is hardly any pest situation that he has not seen before.