Are Carpet Beetles Dangerous?

Are you afraid of insects? Don’t worry, many people are. Among a great number of harmful insect species, one of the most dangerous ones is definitely carpet beetles.

So, why these little bugs are dangerous? These insects do not bite people or animals. However, they may cause serious damage to the housewares. Carpet beetles are fed by wool, feather, hair, silk, and leather. They gnaw those materials and make them unusable. Nibbling furnishings and clothes are not the only problem with carpet beetles though. As many insect species do, they also carry germs causing diseases to spread and bacteria to grow.

First of all, carpet beetles do not bite people or feed on blood. But when these insects infest houses, they carry the risk of spreading diseases to people. If carpet beetles get in contact with the foods left open, because of the saliva and feces they left on these foods, they pose a threat to human health as well as causing foods to go bad and infected with bacteria. When those bacteria enter the human body, they can cause infections and several serious diseases. These diseases include carpet beetle dermatitis, irritation of the respiratory tract and eyes, and allergic reactions.

Carpet beetles, which are small in size, easily reproduce and spread inside the house because they can hardly be noticed. They are dangerous for human health as they spread germs by contaminating foods as well as making them go bad. In this way, they can make healthy people infected and sick.

Another concern is whether carpet beetles are poisonous or not. Carpet beetles do not bite people and they are not poisonous. However, they contaminate the food you eat and cause excessive damage to the carpet and fabric type materials in your house. Because they are hard to spot, they can be mixed with many other insect species like larder beetles or mites. For those who want to be able to distinguish the carpet beetle from the others, firstly let us explain what color and what kind of a body structure they have. Carpet beetles can have three different colors. They can be black, brown or yellow. Their body structure is tiny and when closely examined they have long oval anatomy. There are rough hairs at their back, and they have an outer surface covered with chitin. The length generally changes between 5 and 20 mm.

On the other hand, the damage they cause on materials is way bigger. They can make nearly anything made of wool, silk, linen, leather, etc. unusable. They feed on carpets, upholstered furniture, blankets, quilts, wool, pillows, and clothing. Carpet beetles rarely attack synthetic fabrics. They feed on these substances only when synthetic fabrics are contaminated with sweat, oil or food. Infestations can spread rapidly.

Carpet beetles damage the animal-based products which they like to eat with their sharp and strong mouth structures. That’s why they are mostly seen in garment workshops, leather factories, and carpet shops.

Even though handling carpet beetles is quite difficult, there are plenty of useful ways to get rid of them completely. You can combat them alone. However, if infestation spreads to a certain extent, you need to get help from professionals. Don’t forget that, prevention is the best solution.

What Is The Cause of Carpet Beetles?

Do you ever wonder why carpet beetles choose your home instead of anyone else? Well, as for any other living being on the planet, carpet beetles also attracted to certain things. And wooly materials are at the top of the list for these little trouble-makers. As the name implies, they love carpets as well. 

These bugs are very harmful pest species that live in carpets, rugs, clothes and almost any fabric type. They generally hide inside wooly and hairy materials and fed by them. They love eating materials like wool, leather, silk, hair, and feather. So, if you have that kind of material in your home (actually everyone does), it means yes you are under risk as well.

Carpet beetles generally live outdoors but they can reach into your home via plants or flowers. Due to their tiny size, they can easily scuttle through cracks in windows and doors as well as openings around plumbing systems, electrical conduits, vents, and chimneys.

Another way for carpet beetles to get into your home is by animals. They can hide on furs and hairs. Some species can feed on dry dog or cat food, noodles, flour or even your meals. Dried flowers also provide a food source for carpet beetles.

How Do You Get Rid of Carpet Beetles?

Carpet beetles may have a black, yellow or brown color according to their climate. Their size and structure vary according to the nutrients they consume. These bugs may reach up to 15 mm in length. The nutritional needs also vary according to the area in which they live. Although some species are fed with herbal products, most feed on silk, wool, hair, leather, animal goods, and feathers.

They live in carpets, rugs, blankets, leather and feathered items, and feed on them. They can be found in carpets that are not used for a long time and kept in the house, and they lay their eggs in these materials. Carpet beetles that love humid environments are mostly found in leather workshops, garments, carpet-making factories and shops selling carpets. The black carpet beetle does not bite the living things, it only harms carpets and other similar housewares.

Combating carpet beetles is a work that requires patience and effort, but you may get rid of these insects without the need for professional pest control companies. There are some ways that you need to know in order to get rid of these harmful creatures.

You can start by sweeping all of the carpets in your home. You should focus on the source of the insect infestation, but sweep all of the carpets with a vacuum cleaner until you are sure that all insects are removed. At the same time, you can vacuum the furniture or non-washable fabric coated housewares. If carpet beetles have infested your house, you should do the cleaning at least once a day with a vacuum cleaner.

You should wash all the clothes that come into contact with the air with hot and soapy water. Linen, towels or other fabrics should be washed in the washing machine using hot water and soapy water. You may need to clean your carpets and furniture with steam, especially if the insects are seriously infested in your house. Carpet beetles are strong. Hot water is more effective than cold water against these insects, and the use of soap can help kill these pests because it has a lethal effect on them.

If a piece of cloth or carpet is eaten, it is best to throw it away. If you do not throw clothes that are contaminated with carpet beetles, it means probably you cannot stop the insect infestation. On the contrary, you would help them to spread. Even if you do not see any insect on any object in the house, this does not mean that you are totally free of carpet beetles.

If you suspect the presence of insects in cracks, crevices or other places, apply hormone-based glue to those areas. Glue traps kill bugs and also give insight about how bad the problem is to you.

In particular, you must use a liquid or spray insecticide that can be applied to carpet beetles, and you must strictly follow the instructions on the label during the application. Insecticides are used to eliminate carpet insects are chlorpyrifos, bendiocarb, and allethrin. Apart from the widespread method to kill carpet insects, spot treatments can be applied to the insects that hide in cracks and crevices. The insect growth regulators, which is IGR, which are found in insecticides, can control the reproduction of carpet insects. You can use boric acid in areas where beetles live and breed. It has no poisonous effect on humans. Almost every beetle approaching this dust will die. But it is important not to use it with heavy metals.

You should take the necessary precautions when applying insecticides. For example, you should wear gloves and protective clothing and stay away from the area for a while since the pesticide will be dispersed by air. Also, make sure to wash your hands after an application is done.

If you cannot handle carpet beetles alone, you need to consult pest control companies. Long term individual carpet beetle spraying can be dangerous. Spraying is the most effective way to destroy these pests and prevent property damage. Don’t forget, if the measures are not taken at the beginning, they can become more harmful by increasing numbers.

The use of the right pest control method is particularly important to get rid of the carpet beetles. Using wrong methods will not only cause the carpet beetle problem to be unsolved but also pose a threat to the health of the family members. Carpet beetles are among the pest types which are non-resistant to the chemical insecticides. Still, it is not possible to get rid of these creatures by using powder or gel spraying. You should use liquid insecticides to get rid of these bugs completely.

When dealing with pests, it is important to use the most appropriate spraying technique. Generally, liquid spraying methods are used for pests like carpet beetles. But in the areas where carpet beetles are really dense, the application of gel spraying may be involved. Application of the pesticides in the right places is of great importance in order to obtain lasting results.

Products for Protection for Carpet Beetles

Zap-A-Roach Boric Acid Roach and Ant Killer – Odorless and Non-Staining – 1 LB. – 2 Pack

It is one of Amazon’s choices. It is highly recommended and effective as a carpet beetle killer. This works better than calling a pest control center. This product appears quite effective against carpet beetles over a period of days. This product is definitely cheap for what it does, took some time learning how to apply dust from the bottle, a certain technique of tilt and squeeze pressure but once you get it this is the best way boric acid works, light dust.

This product is designed to easily eliminate some of the hardest pests to fight. Combat a roach, ant, water bug, flea, carpet beetles, and even silverfish infestation just by spreading the product through your home. Put it in all of the bug’s favorite places, and in no time, see the difference carpet beetles killer can make in your life.

You can protect your home in every way with this product. Don’t worry about ruining baseboards, flooring, carpet or appliances. It is a non-staining compound, safe to use on a variety of surfaces. Toxic to bugs, but not to your home, boric acid is the perfect option for maintaining the integrity of your house.

On the other hand, it is also designed to be odorless in your home, making it perfect to use throughout the house. Family and friends will never know that you are combatting a pest problem and the bugs will never smell it coming. You will never have to deal with the pungent chemical sprays again.

While using it, start to shake well and twist the cap until fully open. Holding the bottle at a 45-degree angle, the powder should flow freely when squeezed. Use a spoon to distribute powder in hard to reach places. Apply liberally, scatting under and behind large appliances, pipes, and drains, and in cracks and crevices along baseboards.


Green Bean Buddy, Residual Bug Killer, 3oz Treats Bed Bugs, Roaches, Fleas, Ticks, Ants, Beetles, Mites, Lice, and Other Pests

It is one of the 100% effective product for all in one pest control that you can find on Amazon. Its effectiveness is proven through American Academy Entomological (12)month Research Program. The easy to use formula works in just 5 – 10 minutes upon first application.

The naturally formulated bug killer eliminates all states of the pest’s life cycle. For example, bed bugs, lice, fleas, ticks, roaches, ants, millipedes, centipedes, gnats, silverfish, carpet beetles, spiders, spider mites, aphids and also it prevents future infestations for up to 30 days. It is a non-toxic, no odor, safe, and eco-friendly product. It means that it is child-friendly and pet-friendly.


DG Cedar Oil Indoor Pest Control Spray (16 oz)

It is one of the chemical-free insect control sprays that you can find on Amazon. It is mostly for indoor home, office and commercial use. It effectively treats for bed bugs, beetles, carpet beetles, ants, mites, flies, fleas, tick, mosquitoes, and more. It is a perfect product for use with fogging pest control protocols. There is a point that should be careful about, which is thermal foggers use heat thus creating an increased risk of fire. Even with a cold fogger do not fog near any open flame as this is an oil-based product.

As an ingredient, it has cedar oil in it. Cedar oil as an essential oil that is effective on carpet beetles. The formula will serve to de-hydrate moth offspring activity on contact. You can spray the Hydrated Silica / Cedar Oil formula directly on clothing or carpet without worry about a stain or oily residue. It is safe for everyone. It means it is safe for adults, children, and even pets.


Do Carpet Beetles Live In Beds?

Many people wonder if carpet beetles live in beds or not. Well, if you have bedspreads made of linen, silk or similar material, yes they can come to your bed. If your bed is infested, you need to throw away the bedspread or quilt cover immediately after you notice it. Otherwise, an infestation will spread really fast.

Since they can be very hard to spot, if you suspect your bed is infested, you need to perform a serious visual examination. Even if you see only 1 bug, it means there are others. In the case of an infestation, get rid of all of the infested bed clothing and clean (and disinfect with pesticides if necessary) the room.

Can Carpet Beetles Spread?

Can carpet beetles spread? Yes, they can. And they do it really fast. In the spring, the female carpet beetle lay between 25 to 100 eggs. It takes about 2 weeks for these eggs to hatch and become larvae. Carpet beetle larvae are brown and covered with coarse hairs. Although they do not like light environments, the carpet beetle larvae can develop at various temperature and humidity conditions. Depending on climatic conditions and food sources, it can be up to 1 year for larvae to reach adulthood. As carpet beetles develop, they cast their brown skin. They are really good flyers.

Adults gather at the window sills and enlighten areas. This shows that there is a potential carpet beetle invasion. They can breed and spread very quickly. Because of the fact that they need to be taken care of as fast as possible.

How Long Do Carpet Beetles Live?

So, how long do carpet beetles live? Let’s start with the egg-laying process to answer this question. Carpet beetles may lay eggs both indoors and outdoors. Females lay nearly 60 eggs over a period of 2-3 weeks and then die. These eggs are stored in accumulations of hair and wool, in ventilation ducts, underneath closets and other similar places. Eggs hatch in 6 – 11 days in warm weather. Carpet beetles may live between 9 months and 3 years depending on their diet characteristics and environmental conditions. Larvae pupate in the last larval skin, and the pupal stage lasts 6 – 24 days.

Does Vinegar Kill Carpet Beetles?

Does vinegar kill carpet beetles? Well, even if boric acid and strong pesticides are better, rubbing or spraying surfaces with vinegar may also work for killing carpet beetles. A mixture of water and white (or apple) cider vinegar can be applied to hangers, shelves, window ledges, drawers and closets to remove the dirt or food residues.

Savaş Ateş

I'm a software engineer. I like history and reading about carpets. I like to play soccer too :)

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