Carpet beetles can be a real nightmare, damaging fabrics and causing allergies. Find out how to fight them effectively and protect your home.
When small beetles invade your home
Carpet beetles (Anthrenus scrophulariae) are tiny insects, often difficult to spot because of their size. Yet they can spread rapidly through our homes, causing damage not only to carpets, as their name implies, but also to clothing, sheets, curtains, upholstery and other leather or hide surfaces. They feed mainly on dead skin and hair.
These tiny insects, usually less than 5 millimeters long, can lay between 42 and 110 eggs. Although they are practically harmless to humans, their presence is harmful to the materials mentioned above. In addition, an infestation of carpet beetles can cause allergic reactions, skin rashes and itching.
Preventing the invasion: tips and advice
Beetle weaknesses to exploit
Carpet beetles have several weak points that we can exploit to prevent their spread. One is their sensitivity to heat and moisture. Using a steam cleaner to clean carpets and other areas of the home is extremely helpful in getting rid of these unwanted insects.
Heat and humidity are the enemies of these small insects
Regular vacuuming of all floors in the house is also essential. As mentioned earlier, these insects feed on dead skin and hair that tend to accumulate on floors and in corners. If you vacuum often, and even better, if you use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter, you will make life difficult for these bugs and other germs. Similarly, to prevent these and other pests from entering your home, it is very helpful to seal any cracks and gaps you detect in doors and windows.
Using the washing machine to eliminate beetles
Finally, it is important to know the best way to use the washing machine to disinfect clothes, sheets and other materials that could be infested with carpet beetles. It is recommended to use a long wash cycle, at a temperature of 60ºC. Also, if you are treating delicate fabrics, it is advisable to take them to a professional laundry to avoid any type of deterioration. This way, you will be sure to protect your belongings and get rid of these little invaders efficiently.
By following these tips and being vigilant, you can prevent and control a possible carpet beetle invasion. Remember, the key is prevention and cleanliness, so don't hesitate to clean your home regularly to avoid future problems.