A carpet beetle isn't much to look at. It is easy to see one and not even realize it was a carpet beetle. The four common carpet beetles in our Fort Worth service area are all about 1/16 of an inch long. If your eyesight isn't the best, you could have trouble detecting these insects, even if you're aware of what they look like. We often get calls long after carpet beetles have been allowed to damage property or cause irritating rashes. Our goal today is to prevent this from being your story. Here are a few ways you can keep carpet beetles out of your Fort Worth Home.
Address Old Nests
Carpet beetles are drawn to nests created by birds, squirrels, and other animals. They will also feed on wasp nests. An inspection of your attic space could reveal these nests and prevent a carpet beetle infestation from taking root in your home. It's well worth the effort because locating this ideal food source can prevent a big problem.
Carpet beetles are drawn to items that are made of natural fibers. When you store clothing, fabrics, and other items with these fibers in them, consider storing them in sealed plastic totes or plastic bags. You should also consider dry cleaning the items to eliminate any eggs or larvae that may already be on them. A good cleaning will also remove perspiration, which is an attractant.
Inspect Used Items
If you buy an item second-hand, you could purchase an infestation along with it. Carpet beetles can be found infesting furniture, carpets, clothing, the hides of mounted trophies, wool sweaters and scarfs, the bindings on leather books, and much more. When you inspect these items, remember to look for the larvae of carpet beetles. These are not beetles. They are small, hairy grubs.
Pantry Food Storage
Carpet beetles can feed on a wide selection of foods—well, to be more specific—their larvae feed on a wide selection of foods. Not only will they eat clothing, carpets, and furniture, they can invade your pantry. Since carpet beetles lay their eggs in these foods and the larvae hatch and consume the food, carpet beetles are proper pantry pests. You can protect your stored foods by putting them in sealed containers.
Entry Point Exclusions
One of the best ways to keep carpet beetles out of your home is to keep doors and windows closed. But, while carpet beetles can fly right into your home through an open door or window, they are more likely to get in through a gap, crack, or hole in your exterior—especially if you have an old wasp nest on the side of your home. The first step is to remove old nests and get rid of this attractant. The second step is to address some of the potential entry points carpet beetles might use to get into your home.
Damaged screens - Inspect your screens closely. It doesn't take much of a rip or a tear to allow these insects entry. There are many helpful videos on the internet for repairing damaged screens, on a budget.
Gaps in the framing around screens - Your screens need to fit snuggly to your window frames in order to keep tiny insects, like carpet beetles, out.
Damaged or missing door sweeps - A carpet beetle can crawl right under your exterior doors if there is even the slightest gap.
Old weatherstripping around doors - If you can see light coming in from any point around your exterior doors, carpet beetles will have no trouble getting inside. Replace old weatherstripping and make sure your doors are properly aligned to remove gaps.
Gaps around window frames - Over time, gaps can form around your window frames. A caulking gun can fix this issue.
Holes created by wood-destroying pests - If you have wood holes, it is possible that carpenter beetles can use the holes to enter your home. If you're not able to replace damaged wood, consider using a caulking gun to fill these holes in temporarily.
Holes around plumbing and wire conduits - Objects that penetrate your foundation wall can have gaps around them that give entry to carpet beetles and other pests. Apply an expanding foam or caulking material to address these gaps.
There is no better way to keep carpet beetles, and a very long list of other pests, out of your Fort Worth home than to invest in year-round pest control. A good pest control plan comes with routine treatments and pest maintenance that work to repel and knockdown pests before they find their way into your home. If you need assistance in selecting an appropriate pest plan for your Fort Worth property, we would love the opportunity to help you with that. The service team here at All-Safe Pest & Termite is one of the best in the industry.