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Carpet beetles and borax
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# 1
Suzey
Old 17-04-2006, 9:11 PM
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Default Carpet beetles and borax

Hello all

Having just been made redundant I now have plenty of time on my hands! I have been spring cleaning this past week and have found some bugs in my wardrobes which I think are carpet beetle larvae. I feel quite sick and upset about it and am now frantically washing all my clothes at the highest possible temperatures!

I have done some research and have seen that some people are recommending the use of borax to get rid of the beetles. Firstly, has anyone tried this and had success? Secondly, is borax harmful? I have two cats and will obviously keep them out of the bedroom when the borax is down but may not be able to hoover every little trace of it up again so they might breathe some in or get some on their feet and swallow it when they wash themselves.

Thirdly, I am now paranoid that these beetles are everywhere and am thinking of treating my mattress with borax powder and hoovering it up afterwards. Is this likely to harm me? I've read conflicting stories as to its toxicity.

Any information would be greatly appreciated. Indeed, if anyone has any ideas about getting rid of carpet beetles using other methods I'd love to hear them! I have built-in wardrobes and the floor inside is carpeted, but I don't have carpet anywhere else in the house. I'm going to rip this up and put some vinyl flooring down instead. Should I treat the inside walls of the wardrobe? If so, what with? I was going to spread the powdered borax around the floor after I'd taken the carpet up and then hoover it up the next day.

cheers

Suze

Last edited by Suzey; 17-04-2006 at 9:12 PM. Reason: Changed the title of the thread
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# 2
Greenwellies
Old 17-04-2006, 9:27 PM
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Hi Suze,

I have tried to search the net for information for you, but I haven't found anything useful.

Sorry

Greenwellies
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# 3
Suzey
Old 17-04-2006, 9:44 PM
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No probs - thanks for looking. I think the borax should work, but as I've read conflicting opinions on its toxicity I am worried about using it with cats around!

Maybe someone else will know - I know some people still swear by it as a household cleaner.

cheers!

Suze


Quote:
Originally Posted by Greenwellies
Hi Suze,

I have tried to search the net for information for you, but I haven't found anything useful.

Sorry

Greenwellies
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# 4
Rachel021967
Old 17-04-2006, 10:48 PM
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I don't know if borax works but there was a recent eposide of "How clean is your house" where this house was infested with carpet beetles and flesh eating beetles. They had to get pest control in to get rid of them. Mind you it was a bad infestation.
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# 5
Suzey
Old 17-04-2006, 10:52 PM
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I feel really dirty and itchy now even though I know I'm not!

The beetles are localised to the wardrobe so hopefully I should be OK with a local treatment - I don't fancy having to pay the council £80 to come round. of course if I were on benefits it would be a lot cheaper

Suze


Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachel021967
I don't know if borax works but there was a recent eposide of "How clean is your house" where this house was infested with carpet beetles and flesh eating beetles. They had to get pest control in to get rid of them. Mind you it was a bad infestation.
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# 6
Rachel021967
Old 17-04-2006, 11:43 PM
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Sorry Suzey. Didn't mean to make you feel dirty as I said it was a bad infestation - they were all over the house. I should of kept my mouth shut.
Sorry again.
Rachel.
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# 7
Suzey
Old 17-04-2006, 11:45 PM
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No probs. You know when you just know there are nasty things lurking and they make your skin crawl though?? It's not your fault, it's these pesky beetles!

I hope someone knows about borax and can put me out of my misery!!!

Suze


Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachel021967
Sorry Suzey. Didn't mean to make you feel dirty as I said it was a bad infestation - they were all over the house. I should of kept my mouth shut.
Sorry again.
Rachel.
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# 8
Pink.
Old 18-04-2006, 12:14 AM
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Susey,

I know nothing about carpet beetles, but on the box of borax I have it says it will not harm anything that is not damaged by water. I use it once a week on my hair (mixed with shampoo it removes build up of hair products) and have used it on delicate clothing (to remove persistant stains), so it shouldn't do any harm to you, your mattress, or your cats. Good luck with getting rid of the beetles.

Pink
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# 9
Suzey
Old 18-04-2006, 12:19 AM
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Thanks Pink! The box doesn't say that it's an irritant then? That's interesting!

Next question (sorry about this): where did you buy it? I was thinking of looking in Wilkinson's...

Suze


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pink-winged
Susey,

I know nothing about carpet beetles, but on the box of borax I have it says it will not harm anything that is not damaged by water. I use it once a week on my hair (mixed with shampoo it removes build up of hair products) and have used it on delicate clothing (to remove persistant stains), so it shouldn't do any harm to you, your mattress, or your cats. Good luck with getting rid of the beetles.

Pink
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# 10
Rachel021967
Old 18-04-2006, 12:20 AM
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Try www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7436.html

Rachel
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# 11
Pink.
Old 18-04-2006, 12:31 AM
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The box I am talking about is discontinued now, but I can still buy it in boots for £2.70 for 250g. I know some people on this board have had trouble getting it, but it's available in my local boots in a plainish own brand box, usually beside their other own brand washing powder, starch, fabric conditioner and caustic soda.

This LINK might help you with uses for borax.

Pink
Hi. I'm a Board Guide on the In My Home (Includes DIY), I wanna buy-it or do-it, Greenfingered MoneySaving and Old Style MoneySaving boards, which means I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly and can move and merge posts there. However, do remember that Board Guides don't read every post. If you spot an inappropriate or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. It is not part of my role to deal with reportable posts. Any views are mine and are not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.
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# 12
Rachel021967
Old 18-04-2006, 12:33 AM
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Wilkinsons sell borax. It was 89p a box last time I got some.
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# 13
Suzey
Old 18-04-2006, 10:55 AM
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Thanks! I had a feeling I'd find it cheap in there! I'll have a look next time I'm in town.

What kind of things did you use it for? I'm still trying to get a feel for how safe it is.

Suze


Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachel021967
Wilkinsons sell borax. It was 89p a box last time I got some.
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# 14
Suzey
Old 18-04-2006, 11:59 AM
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Thanks for the reassurance!

Where do you buy your sticky traps and pheromone traps from?

And when you turn out your cupboards etc do you just take everything out, give it a shake and put it back again? Do you find any beetles/larvae in there when you are doing this?

Do you see many beetles about the house? I rarely see them. It's the shedded larvae skins I see more than anything else. I'm almost scared to clear out the bottom of the wardrobe now!

cheers

Suze (just about to put another boil wash on)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hester
Condolences, carpet beetles are nasty bast**ds and I loathe them. Nothing to do with your cleaniless, if you live in a flat, they can be coming up through the floor boards from someone else's porperty, or they just live in dark dead spaces in old buildings, the way it goes. i use sticky traps placed in dark corners (they congregate where they think they won't be disturbed) and also at this time of year, pheromone traps which attract and catch the adult male beetle, before he can go on to breed (ha! ha!) The beetle is not what does the damage, it's the larvae, but it's good to break the cycle. Also, i have found the ONLY way to keep on top of the problem is to turn out cupboards and drawers every six weeks (one aa week so you're not stuck forever doing it, who has the time) and check for the pests - if you see one, squish it. It's oh so tedious and i hate them but don't take it personally. As our climate gets warmer, and our houses don't really cool down in the winter because we use heating, they are encouraged to multiply as never before. Good luck.
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# 15
£Ronnie
Old 18-04-2006, 1:46 PM
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Kimmy and Aggie also recommend getting yourself down to the timber merchants for a sample of cedarwood, this apparantly repels carpet/textile beetle, moths etc etc, and is much cheaper than buying a specially made one. They used a shoelace to tie it on the hanging rail and recommended sanding it every month or so to revive the smell!
HTH
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# 16
Suzey
Old 18-04-2006, 2:14 PM
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Thanks. I haven't seen any live larvae actually. Not sure if this is cos there aren't any or cos they're moving too quickly!

I just plucked up the courage to go through the bottom of one half of my wardrobe (it's a fitted wardrobe with two sliding mirrored doors, split down the middle inside with a piece of veneer-covered chipboard). Got rid of loads of clothes - stuff that's survived earlier culls! Didn't find many shed skins which was a bit of a relief. There also aren't many skins on the stuff hanging up, so maybe the problem isn't as bad as I thought it was. Does this sound similar to your situation?

I think I'm going to wash all my clothes anyway just in case!

Suze


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hester
Forgot to reply to your question about what i find - usually not the beetle, unless it's this time of year when the males fly to the light (such as your window sill). It's the wooly bear - the grub which, as it grows, casts its skin. They can be seen by the naked eye, and they can move damn fast. Before you hunt, have kitchen paper to hand, and then pounce and squish. As you squish, they often squirt the colour of the dye stuff that they've just been feasting on, so try not to squish onto something that you're fond off.

Last edited by Suzey; 18-04-2006 at 3:22 PM.
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# 17
Uncle_Cuddles
Old 19-04-2006, 10:36 AM
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Sorry to hijack your thread but we have what I think are carpet beatles, but funnily enough we keep finding the beetles and not the larvae. And they are in an unusual place - we keep finding the beetles in mugs, cups and bowls, etc. in a couple of kitchen cupboards. At least I think they are carpet beetles - they are round, about 3-4mm in diameter, and are stripey brown/yellow. I can't find anything else that looks like them on the internet. We don't have any carpets downstairs, and we can't find any evidence of them upstairs, so it appears that they are just isolated in a couple of cupboards in the kitchen.

I guess from reading this thread, the only solution is regular cleaning out of the cupboard, and sticky traps.
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# 18
sandieb
Old 07-08-2006, 3:02 PM
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Default Carpet Beetles

Inspired by the maggots thread, I wondered whether anyone knows the best way to get rid of some carpet chompers? They look like woodlice. I have Googled carpet beetles, but the little varmints don't look like the ones illustrated there.

ALSO, what is the best way to get rid of those little insects which sometimes embed themselves in framed pictures?
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# 19
Pink.
Old 07-08-2006, 4:39 PM
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Hi sandieb,

The replies on these older threads might help you:

Carpet beetles and borax

tiny beetle type things

Pink
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# 20
Kazonline
Old 01-03-2007, 8:00 AM
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Yuck - I have found two tiny beetles which I think are these and now feel the need to scrub EVERYTHING.
Any idea where I can get the traps from please, and does anyone have any additional tips on getting rid of these pests please?
Kaz
January '06 Grocery Challenge (4th - 31st) £320.
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Someone burst my bubble and I lost the plot so no idea what I spent now... I will try to work it out.
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