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Posted by Lox September 12, 02:33PM

Has anyone successfully used a non toxic treatment for moths (through a pest control company or DIY). We have a problem with pale backed clothes moths and it is driving us all mad. However, with young children Iím very concerned to use chemicals. I would be extremely grateful for any recommendations, tips etc. Thanks

Posted by Digbina September 12, 04:38PM

We have been plagued by moths for years. The most effective treatment is to freeze the affected clothes. This deals with the eggs. But you also need to deal with the adults. Sticky pheromone strips will deal with the males. You can also try cedar balls and discs but these need to Ďroughed upí every so often to release the moth-repelling scents.

Posted by Lox September 12, 09:53PM

Thank you!

Posted by singalto September 14, 03:06PM

Iíve had real problems with moths recently too so use the pheromone strips and either hoover up or squash the females! I do use a spray from time to time too. Nightmare..

Posted by Sue September 14, 10:36PM

I tried all the non toxic stuff and none of it worked. I spent a fortune. Lavender, cedar wood, you name it I tried it.

I regret having had a go at somebody on here who was selling sticky traps. I said they were cruel. Which obviously they are.

However. Having had some favourite items of clothing wrecked by moths - or rather, their vile larvae - I changed my mind.

I have them under control now (famous last words).

I use sticky traps in demi diamonds in every room (don't try and do without the demi diamonds. I had to cut a trap off my partner's hair big grin ).

I use papers among my clothes and cushions etc (the bastard moths ate most of my cushions) and also those hanging things for wardrobes.

I diarise to replace them when they need to be replaced.

All this also costs a fortune, but at least it works.

But don't get complacent. You think you have got rid of them, but they will come back!

The flying males can be squished if you're quick when they settle on a wall (or with one of those battery operated zappers) but the females are very elusive and slide into tiny places where you can't get at them, very quickly indeed.

I too hate using chemicals, but I honestly think nothing else works.

Same with slugs.

Good luck!

ETA: You probably know this, but although it is the larvae which cause the damage, you need to kill both the male and female moths which will otherwise mate and produce the eggs which hatch into the larvae.

Also (hard for me) they like dusty places. And also unwashed clothes.

I don't use the sprays any more. I stopped when my sister was staying here with her parrot, and never started again.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit was september 14, 10:47pm by Sue.

Posted by Lox September 14, 10:48PM

Thank you both very much!

Posted by Sue September 14, 10:55PM

Every time I get the sticky strips or papers or hanging cassettes I Google for the cheapest source.

I nearly always buy them online, but not necessarily the same place for each thing.

I buy in (reasonable) bulk but they do have a use by date.

You might want to consider consulting a pest control expert if your problem is really bad.

ETA: You can get these smoke bomb things. You could maybe use one and go away for a few days so it had worn off before the children came back.

But probably better to let an expert advise you?

I think I have one somewhere, I've never dared use it smiling smiley(

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was september 14, 11:00pm by Sue.

Posted by Peachpie September 15, 08:09AM

Wrong time of year. But at the end of winter launder, thoroughly dry and vacuum pack all wool clothing/items, particularly special clothes so they can't be used to lay eggs on. We replaced wool carpets with synthetic ones too. But now slightly regret that due them potentially going to landfil at end of life but non-wool flooring also cuts down egg laying places.

Posted by Sue September 15, 11:58PM

Clothes moths are different from carpet moths ...

Posted by Grodo September 19, 08:49PM

Have you heard of them? I am thinking about giving it a go. Same problem due to woolen carpet sad smiley



Posted by yeknomyeknom September 23, 07:01PM

We use peppermint essential oil on cotton wool balls. Works well

Posted by Sue September 23, 07:42PM

yeknomyeknom Wrote:
> We use peppermint essential oil on cotton wool
> balls. Works well

This has got rid of all your moths? Both male (flying) and female (creeping)?

How big a problem did you have?

Sorry to be cynical, but I'm amazed if that is a permanent solution (though if it is, I will deffo try it!)

Posted by yeknomyeknom September 24, 08:16PM

Lol. Well, I am not a moth expert Iím afraid. Iíve been in 3 properties in East Dulwich over 14yrs and always have the same moths (no I donít move house with them). So whatever those moths are, I do not know. All I know is the peppermint balls work for me without fail. They also deter spiders coming in and mice donít like them. Can I guarantee it will work for you? No. But whatís the harm? Holland and Barrett were the cheapest vendor of oil. Good luck.

Posted by Lula October 01, 03:24PM

Another vote for the sticky pheromone traps. Also remember to not leave windows open and lights on. You'll come back to find loads of moths flocking to the light.

Posted by Sue October 02, 08:00PM

Lula Wrote:
> Another vote for the sticky pheromone traps. Also
> remember to not leave windows open and lights on.
> You'll come back to find loads of moths flocking
> to the light.

Happy to be proved wrong, but I've never known clothes moths to be attracted to light?

Posted by mariajoyofcleaning October 04, 03:01PM

Plenty of ventilation, light and good general hygiene is the best preventative treatment particularly if you have lot of mature carpet and upholstery, wardrobes and cabinets full of clothes, duvets and rugs. Duvets, blankets, curtains, rugs and carpet must be cleaned regularly and the same is with clothes. Never ever going out for dinner and then put back the clothes you wore in the wardrobe.

On top of these safe habits, I use myself and recommend to all my clients to use drops of tea tree oil when the season changes. You can reuse those little balls and discs and leave them in drawers or wherever you have fabrics / carpets and wood stuff.

If you want to wipe surfaces tea tree oil can be also diluted with water that is another robust useful measure in case of infestation but avoid directly contact with skin or eyes as it can be toxic and irritating.

It seems the combination of regular cleanings / laundry and good hygiene and occasional tea tree oil treatment works very well for the absolute majority of people.


Maria Longo
Joy of Cleaning
Dulwich, London
Mobile 07887990108

Personal Motto: Get Rid of All The Clutter and Find Joy! :-)

Posted by Sesame October 05, 07:44AM

Iíve struggled with moths for years. Tried all of the above treatments but they are preventative and will have no effect if you have a serious infestation. Wanted to try those wasps but they cost a fortune. We had moths in the carpet so nothing worked. Recently tried Formula 'P' Carpet Moth Super Fumer Smoke Bomb (from Amazon). It says itís safe for humans but we did air the whole house for a couple of hours before going back in. We did two applications, two weeks apart. I think you need to smoke the whole house to get them all - we even put one in the cellar. Havenít seen any moths since. Really pleased with the result and feel stupid for not trying this earlier - could have saved so many jumpers!

Posted by Angelina October 07, 01:56PM

I steamed the carpets and then used insecticide so hopefully got the little so and so's.
they had eaten a big hole in the carpet under my daughter's bed.
And I actually saw the bugs crawling about, eugh.

Posted by Angelina October 07, 01:58PM


Heat treatment looks good

Posted by M and E October 15, 10:32PM

You can also get pantry moths. The larvae get into your cereal cupboards, grains, dried fruit etc.

It's taken a few goes but we've not seen one in ages now. Unfortunately we had to throw away a lot of food but a good clear out of the cupboards is needed from time to time.

This blog is great []

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