Differences between clothes moths and carpet beetles

Is the heat treatment for moths working if carpet beetle infestation is on

Clothes moths and carpet beetle infestations are rising in the UK, becoming more and more common. From destroying your valuable clothes, upholstery, carpets, and furniture, this is a short guide on preventing, monitoring, and treating clothes moths and carpet beetles should you find yourself with an infestation.



Differences between clothes moths and carpet beetles AccuRat

Clothes moth

There are two main offenders you will find munching on your clothing, upholstery, and carpets when it comes to moths.

Tineola bisselliella, also known as the common clothes moth, and the Tinea pellionella, also known as the case-making clothes moth. Both moths species have become a common problem in the UK in the last few years. Luckily, when it comes to moth infestations and moth extermination in London, you have a reactive pest control company you can count on.

These two moth species are similar in size and appearance. Both moths are around 58mm long. The common moth has a bit of a gold sheen to its body, whereas the case-making moth has a more silvery-grey sheen.

As of the life cycle, one generation of the case-bearing moth can take a whole year to develop. However, a webbing moth in the right environment can reproduce quickly, two plus a generation of the moths within a year. We always advise on proactive pest control for our London customers which monitors and prevents any further moth treatments.

Eggs and larvae? Both moth species can lay upward of a hundred eggs at a time. The adult moths avoid light and will lay eggs in darker areas such as your clothes, linens, and animal fabrics. The larvae cause damage with these moths, eating the fabric or material that they are laid on.

Materials that are soiled and not cleaned properly with food, sweat, or excrement are at risk of being infested with these moths. Clothing with lapels, pockets or many folds in the design are perfect dark areas for the moths to lay eggs; any carpets under furniture or on the edge of your carpet are another favorite spot to lay eggs.

Carpet beetles

The most common and most damaging carpet beetle species found in the British Isles are the Anthrenus verbasci, also known as the varied carpet beetle. These beetles can grow up to 2-3 mm in length and look like tiny ladybirds. The carpet beetles are covered in gold and grey scales, and you can identify the species you’re dealing with by the pattern and shape of the scales on their bodies. Our carpet beetle exterminators will be able to identify the type of adult carpet beetle and even the beetles’ larvae while thoroughly inspecting your property.

In the later spring and early summer, you can find the adult beetles enjoying a flight around flowers such as hogweed and spirea, and they also enjoy landing on windowsills. When it’s time to lay eggs, the beetles will head indoors to lay eggs in the cracks and crevices of your home. This is usually where the carpet beetle pest control steps in.

The eggs hatch into tiny, fat larvae about 1mm in size, making it easy for them to get into small cracks to gain access to your cupboards and pantries. The larvae grow to a whopping 5mm with huge appetites; you will start finding holes in any fabrics made from animals, book bindings, picture frames, and even couch cushions.

You can find carpet beetles in birds’ nests in London, wasps’ nests, and wildlife animals and burrows. If the nests are in your attic or chimneys, these beetles have direct access to your home. That’s why we always inspect those areas, no matter if it’s carpet beetle control or moth pest control ongoing in our clients’ London homes.

Another species of carpet beetle, The Guernsey carpet beetle, which is similar to the varied carpet beetle, is starting to gain traction and become a problem in London and Southeast England.

How to prevent future roach infestations


Keeping your home clean and tidy is a good defense against an infestation of moths and carpet beetles. Keeping rubbish cleaned up and often vacuuming go a long way to keeping your home from being infested. Don’t forget to vacuum and regularly clean any dark spots on your carpet and furniture. Those spots are prone to moths and carpet beetles.

It is also a good idea to remove any bird’s nest from outside your home, in your attic, or chimney. This is where many infestations originate, and stopping the source of the pests is another good defense against an infestation.


If you find one moth on the carpet in your home in the UK, you need to start monitoring what is happening and if you see anymore. Laying sticky traps and pheromone traps is a good way to monitor how badly the bugs are infesting your home. Pest fumigation is a good start-up option when beginning to suspect a flying insect infestation.

If you don’t catch any in these traps, preventative measures need to be taken to ensure no more moths or carpet beetles make their way into your home. However, if you are catching a lot of moths and carpet beetles in these traps, then it’s safe to say you have an infestation on your hands and need to call in pest control.

Signs of having clothes moth or beetle infestation

Holes in the carpet under the furniture

Cocoons under carpet or rugs

Adult beetle on our windowsills

Fecal pellets on or near your carpet

Holes in your carpet

Tufts of carpet coming up from the carpet

Finding holes in natural fiber clothing

Webbing on your carpet

Differences between clothes moths and carpet beetles AccuRat


If you find yourself with an infestation, the most effective treatment to use in your fight against moths and carpet beetles alike is heat treatment. Booking a heat treatment for moths or a portable heat treatment room will depend on your situation and assess a pest control specialist.

A pest control specialist will determine the best plan of action to eradicate the infestation with as few treatments as possible and how they got into your home in the first place. Using heat treatments is the safest route for pest control. You don’t have to worry about spraying your home and possessions with toxic chemicals. You can bring your family and pets back home after a heat treatment without any poisonous pesticide residue left behind.


Clothes moths and carpet beetles are becoming a bigger problem in the UK. With indoor heating and warmer winters, moths and beetles are flourishing and infesting homes rapidly. If you find yourself with an infestation, you don’t have to deal with it yourself and are encouraged not to. Call in the pros and have the infestation dealt with efficiently and quickly. 



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