Beware! You could be harboring moths in your rugs right now! Even if you don't see them flying around. One day you may call to have your rugs picked up to be cleaned only to find out they are full of moth larvae and in desperate need of extensive and expensive repairs.
How could this happen? You vacuum regularly, pick up food bits and sop up spills as quickly as possible. The answer is...There is a dark side to moth infestations (and carpet beetle destruction as well.)
These insects love those dark areas we don't get to often enough such as:
This problem of moths living and eating undetected in the dark places of your home is more widespread than you may realize. As many as 1 in 5 homes across the US are affected. They can do their damage very quickly. If left too long, the damage often cannot be repaired.
With the advent of synthetic fibers, the composition of furniture, rugs and carpets, as well as clothing has significantly changed from wool to synthetic. This fact can lead homeowners to believe 'no wool means no moths.' This is unfortunately not true. If synthetic fibers are soiled and allowed to sit undisturbed, such as under furniture, they too will become a food source that will attract moths.
Adult moths themselves cause no damage. It is the larvae they produce that actually do the feeding. The adults look for wool, silk, soiled cotton, feathers, some leathers, and areas of collected pet fur to lay their eggs.
Each adult moth can lay between 100 to 150 microscopic eggs, which hatch in about 5 days. Eggs laid in rugs can remain dormant for years, just waiting for the right conditions to hatch.
The larval stage itself can last from 2 to 30 months. This great variance in the life cycle is due to the availability of food and a rug can provide a huge source of food. If gone unnoticed, the larvae can feed for almost 2 and 1/2 years.
This means if the food source is in areas left undisturbed for long periods of time, the larvae produced from the eggs can eat their food source and stay in the same area for a very long time, causing significant damage before they become flying moths. When a homeowner sees moths, the infestation has already begun somewhere in the home.
Look for these signs:
The best you can do to protect your rugs as well as your furniture and clothing items, is to be aware of what to look for, vacuum regularly, and have your rugs cleaned and treated every 1 to 3 years.
If you find evidence of moths in any of your rugs, such as loose pile, bare patches, spidery webs, cocoons, or live larvae, check all of your rugs since larvae can move from rug to rug.
Please call our office at 607-272-1566 to service your rugs as soon as you can. For a severe infestation, please call a pest control specialist to rid your home of these pests as soon as possible.
For more in-depth information on moths, please our article on Moths.