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Home Life Last Updated: Apr 10, 2016 - 1:15:29 PM

Moth problem under control
By Janette Kulterinski Leigh
Aug 25, 2009 - 10:36:59 PM

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About two years ago moths started to appear in our kitchen.  I thought that it was related to pantry moths in the food.  I did find moth webs in the flour and sugar which is rather gross, but easy enough to toss.

This was not the end of it however.  The moths started to appear upstairs in the bedroom and in other parts of the house.  I read and read about what to do and started to get a little depressed.

Anyways here is what I did so you don't have to hear the long version.

I cleaned up the bedroom.  I started to notice the moth eggs or larva on some sweaters, in some of the carpeting and other clothing.  Not much but enough to know I had a problem.

I founce larva in between the bed and the boxspring, in the rug in the bathroom and I am sure other places.  I vacuumed everything, steamed the bed crevices (not sure this did anything), sealed clothes in those huge ziploc bags.  Basically did a pretty decent cleaning job.

I bought mint tea bags and Moth Away Sachets and put them in my drawers closets.  I just tore open the packages and let them air in the drawers.  I also bought closet hanging cases and kept some clothes in there.

I also placed some traps in the house.  Moth sticky traps.  The moth problem seemed to decrease.

Other things I noticed was there were moths on the outside of the window screens (clue- were moths coming in from the outside?) I am not a believer in spontaneous generation so this was a clue.

I noticed when it cooled down and in the winter....no moths.

The next summer, the months returned but not with a vengeance.  I placed a lot more traps.  Sprayed cedar liquid in some areas like the bathroom closet.

I sealed off the bathroom vent.  Doing this I noticed a few dead moths on the inside of the seal which told me the moths may have been coming in through the vent.

I also used to spray flying moths and also in the bathroom to see if it would keep them away.  I think it helped.  The orange spray definitely knocked them down when I sprayed them.  I use this now as my inhouse bug and fly killer. 

I think what has been the best help has been the moth traps.  I read an article in which someone says they place two traps per room.  What I took from this is catch as many as you can.  ( I think the traps only attract the males.  I wonder if it is because they are stupider?) In any case this makes sense.  Dimishing the numbers can only help, just like cleaning helps eliminate the larva. 

I also placed 5 traps in the attic.  When I went into the attic after a couple months the traps were full.  What this tells me is the moths just might be coming from the outside and mainly through the attic where it is the warmest.

We still see the occasional moth flying around but knock on wood it is not like it used to be in which I would walk in the bedroom or in the bathroom and see a moth on the wall.  The traps throughout the house are catching moths regularly so I know we still have them but we are getting them.  Imagine if we did not have the traps.

My conclusion is the moths are coming in from the outside of the house mainly through the attic.  The best way for us to fight the battle is to keep the house as clean as possible and bring the battle to the moths using moth traps.

I highly recommend the orange spray.  It smells nice, and it is a great bug blaster.  I think it is made of natural oils so it is not as toxic as those chemical killers although be careful with staining the walls.  I have not had major issues with that though.

As for the traps, I have tried many brands.  This is now the only one we use Pantry Moth Traps - Set of Two .  I have two in my bedroom, one in each of the kids rooms, one in my daughters closet, two in the living rooms, 5 in the attic, one in the hallway, one in each bathroom, one in the basement, one in the hallway closet, two in the kitchen and I think you get the idea.

If you are having moth issues I can empathize with you.  It can be maddening.  My only advice from my experience is to go on the offensive.  Clean up, vacuum, wash clothes that look like they may be contaminated, put other clothes in those huge zip locs, try sprays like the orange spray or the cedar spray or mint tea bags or Moth Away Sachets - Nontoxic - 24 Pack (White) (24 Sachets)  to keep them out of certain enclosed areas, (I eve tried bars of soap - no clue if this works) and put out traps.  I do not use moth balls.

This is my strategy and it seems to be effective.  It is not perfect but atleast I have my sanity.  I really hope this helps. 

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