How to Get Rid of Moths Naturally

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Moths can be a big nuisance to your home as they damage your property, especially your clothes.  However, you don't have to resort to harsh chemicals or even keep moth traps on your shelf. You can simply get rid of moths naturally using simple steps. 

This article will help you understand what moths are and how to get rid of them. Read on.

What Are Moths?

Moths belong to the order called Lepidoptera, and there are more than 150,000 moth species in this group.  They are closely related to butterflies, and they share similar characteristics, such as having wings.

Moths can be found anywhere around the world, and you'd rarely see them during the daytime unless dining on flower nectar or seeking a mate. Moths are mostly nocturnal. In fact, they're considered pests because of this behavior and the damage they cause in just one night. Moths may be drawn to bright lights when they fly around your home at night. 

There are different types of moths that can attack your home. They include clothes moths and pantry moths. Here is more information about them.

Clothes Moths

Usually, the first sign of moth activity is that people look for holes in clothes. Clothes moths come in different sizes and colors. The most common type is the webbing clothes moth. They can be identified by their light yellowish-brown color with brown spots on their back. 

Clothes Moths
Image credit: https://images.squarespace-cdn.com/

Another type that's more common in greenhouses and commercial buildings is the casemaking clothes moth. It has wings with two black bands running across them and another band across its abdomen.

Inspecting your clothes for signs of moth infestations is critical in controlling moth problems. You have to check storage areas, especially those dark and inaccessible by humans as moths tend to hide there. Inspect your clothes regularly when they are being stored and when they are in use. If you find a hole, throw it away immediately, even if there are no signs of clothes moths.

Pantry Moths

Contrary to popular belief, the presence of moths in a pantry does not necessarily mean that they are eating your food. However, you should check food items for signs of infestation. These include trails on the surface of the foods and webbing on them. If you find these signs,  you should discard the food items.

Pantry Moths
Image credit: https://images.theconversation.com/

Unlike clothing moths, pantry moths usually hide in foods such as rice, grain, and nuts. These are foods that you usually store in the pantry. You can prevent moths by cleaning your pantry from top to bottom and throwing away any open and damaged food boxes.

How to Get Rid of Moths Naturally

1. Use Cedar

Since moth larvae will spend their entire life cycle inside fabrics, cedar is a natural moth killer. You can use it to keep moths away from your beautiful sweaters. Cedar chips are available at most pet shops and can be placed near areas where your clothes are kept.

In addition to cedar, lavender repels moths too. You can simply place lavender on your shelves or in drawers where you store your clothes. However, make sure it's real lavender and has no artificial scents. If possible, plant lavender around the house since it will repel adult moths too.

2. Get Rid of Food Sources

Since moths are drawn to food, you need to get rid of what's attracting them. If there are any open packages of food in your pantry, put them in airtight containers right away. Also, ensure that you don't leave any dirty dishes on the countertop or sink for too long since moths can smell leftover grub from a mile away.

3. Clean with Vinegar and Water Solution

There are many uses of vinegar, including getting rid of pests such as moths. Use  50% vinegar and 50% water solution to wipe down the cabinets, pantry shelves, countertops, etc. This natural cleaner will get rid of moths without using any harsh chemicals. It will also clear the nests and eggs to prevent new ones from hatching.

4. Get Rid of the Clutter

Another reason moths are drawn to your home is that they can hide in clutter easily. You need to learn how to declutter your home, so these pests have no breeding ground. 

Take some time to do some spring cleaning and get rid of anything taking up unnecessary space and seem to attract moths. Clean out the cabinets, drawers, pantry shelves or even clothing closets. Make sure you throw away any old clothes, fabrics, or rugs in poor condition because moths love eating stuff like that. Wash clothes often to stop moth problem from causing any more trouble.

5. Use Sticky Traps to Get Rid of Moths

Another method is to lay down a sticky trap around the house. These are yellow cards with an adhesive surface, which will help you catch moths or even other flying insects. Keep them in areas where you notice moths usually appear, like near your dresser or next to the sink.

6. Use Essential Oils

Many different essential oils, including cedar oil, help get rid of moths. Some of the best essential oils for this task include cedarwoods, eucalyptus, orange blossoms, peppermint oil, and lavender. You can mix them into a solution, add some water, and then spray it around the house. Essential oils are natural, and they're completely safe to use in your home. However, you should still try to keep your pets and kids away from them when possible.

7. Rebel Moths With Herbs

Aside from essential oils, many herbs help repel moths. These herbs include rosemary, lavender, marjoram, peppermint, and more. You can use these herbs in two ways. First, you can make a tea with them, then dilute it with some water before placing it into a spray bottle. 

The other option is to simply plant some fresh rosemary by your door or windows to keep moths away.

8. Store Clothes Properly

Apart from storing food items properly, clothes are also what you should look for.  Keep all your clothes that aren't used as often in a cedar chest or some other type of wooden chest. These insects hate the smell of cedar oil and will stay away from it. If you don't have any wood chests, then try placing mothballs inside those plastic containers where you store them to repel them. In your free time, learn how to organize your closet properly so moths have no breeding ground.

9. Vacuum Your House Regularly

Vacuuming your home is also important whether you want to get rid of moths or any other insects. You should vacuum both upholstery and carpets, as these are their favorite places to breed. Do this once every week without fail, and the problem will be solved in no time. A vacuum cleaner will work well for killing adult moths and their eggs and moth larvae. So, you need to make good use of this important tool.

10. Freeze Them

Freezing your clothing for at least 48 hours can also help keep away moths. Placing all clothes in the freezer cannot completely eliminate them, but it will surely kill all moth larvae and eggs, along with adult moths. So, this is a good way to wipe out the infestation before it starts growing again.

11. Get Help From a Pest Control Operator

If all the methods to repel moths still don't seem to work out, it's time to take the next. Call pest control service professionals to help you with this. However, you need to do some serious research about the company first before taking their service. Ensure they use eco-friendly methods to get rid of moths so that they won't harm your health and the environment.

FAQs on How to Get Rid of Moths Naturally

How do I kill moth eggs and larvae?

Killing moth larvae is the best way to prevent any new moth infestations from happening. There are a number of things that you can do to get rid of that pesky larva and moth eggs. First, vacuum your entire house from top to bottom as often as possible. This way, you're ridding the air of moth eggs casings and larvae, which means there will be fewer moths coming into your home in the future.

Do moths cause any health issues?

Moths do not cause any health issues. Sometimes you might be allergic to the larvae and their casings which causes skin irritation. This can also lead to respiratory allergy for those who suffer from allergies or asthma. Additionally, if moths eat through your wool sweaters or other woolen clothing, they can destroy clothing in a short period of time.

Do moths eat fabric, clothes, or wool?

Webbing clothes moths do not eat fabric, clothes, or wool – they are only attracted to the flakes of skin shed naturally by humans and animals. These doorways into your home are what attracts moths. They then lay their eggs in dark locations inside closets or dresser drawers. Once the larvae hatch, they crawl out to eat your wool sweaters and other fabrics.

Final Thoughts on How to Get Rid of Moths Naturally

The most important thing is that you have to get rid of moths naturally. By natural methods, it doesn't mean that you will use only organic products for it. Rather, it implies that you will not use any harsh chemicals or pesticides to kill moths.

The whole idea is to have the least impact on the environment possible, while still getting rid of these moths. Natural remedies are always best, so try natural plant extracts or even baking soda if you can't use essential oil. 

Kristina Perrin

Kristina Perrin

Kristina is a stay-at-home-mom and an expert chef. When she's not cooking or experimenting with new recipes, you can find her writing about her favorite kitchen appliances on Kitchen Infinity blog.

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