There are over 160,000 species of moths worldwide. But they shouldn’t be confused with butterflies, which are grouped into a separate suborder.
While moths are important nighttime pollinators, they can become pests by chewing through clothing and contaminating food. For those reasons, their immediate control is often required.
The average price nationally to get rid of moths in your home is $225.
In this helpful cost guide to moth control costs, you’ll discover:
- The basic factors that influence pest control pricing
- The signs and causes of moth infestations
- The health risks of moths
- The difference between DIY moth control and hiring an exterminator
- Top secret moth elimination strategies used by the pros
If trying to exterminate moths on your own becomes too challenging, we recommend Orkin, Terminix, and Aptive. These exterminators have some of the best-trained professionals that are able to use traps, baits, and other chemically treated solutions that are often more effective than standard DIY methods.
For quotes from Orkin, call 866-701-4556, or fill out this form.
For Terminix quotes, you can reach them at 866-577-5051 or with this form.
|National Average Cost||Cost Range||Minimum Cost||Maximum Cost|
|$225||$150 – $300||$100||$500|
Ed has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management. He manages Pest Strategies now helping homeowners around the world!
Table Of Contents
How Are Moth Control Costs Determined?
Pest control prices aren’t typically set in stone. That’s because each case is so varied, which means the technician is faced with many factors. So, for that reason, it’s important to know exactly what those variables are.
Type of Moth
The species of moth you’re trying to eliminate around your home makes a difference, in most cases. Here we list the various types and their associated cost to get rid of them.
Lawn moths are outdoor pests that attack live grass and leaves to use as a food source. Expect to pay an average of $175 to control them.
House moths are also called brown moths. They are an invasive species from Asia that creates damage to fabrics and will also contaminate certain foods. The median cost to control house moths is around $200.
Winter moth larvae (caterpillars) feed on expanding leaf buds of:
- Maple trees
- Willow trees
- Elm trees
- Cherry trees
- Pear trees
Both the adults and caterpillars can withstand freezing temperatures in the fall and winter. The cost to remove this extremely damaging pest is $250, on average.
The gypsy moth is a non-native species to the U.S. It typically damages a wide range of trees outdoors. Chemical spray applications usually range from $200 to $300 per treatment.
Codling moths damage hanging fruits still on the tree, including:
Fogging with a non-residual insecticide such as pyrethrin works well to control them. The average price for getting rid of codling moths is $225 per visit.
Indian Meal Moths
Pantry moths, including Indian meal moths, feed on several plant-based foods, including:
- Dried fruits and nuts
Blue to violet light traps along with sanitation measures appear to be the best ways to control pantry moths. The cost for the service typically averages around $250.
Clothing moth caterpillars are a serious pest because they derive most of their nourishment from natural fabrics such as cashmere. This constant feeding eventually causes irreparable damage to clothing, furniture, and even some types of carpeting. The average cost to control this widespread pest is around $275.
The size of the infestation matters also. While it has to be a significant increase in activity before you’re charged extra, it’s still a factor. So, plan on paying at least $50 more for high infestation levels.
Location Within the Home
Accessibility is important to the technician. If they can’t find their way into an infested room without moving furniture, you could end up paying more for the service. However, there isn’t usually a room-by-room difference in cost.
One-time service is the most common interval for moth extermination services, but there are other options available.
We’ve listed most of them here, but keep in mind that you will normally have to pay an initial visit fee of between $100 and $200 for each service offering.
Monthly plans are typically tied in with a company’s general pest control agreement for 12 months. The good news is that it covers other pests as well as moths. The average monthly payment for this option is between $40 and $70.
Bi-monthly pest control is an every other month service that the majority of pest control companies provide. It covers the same as a monthly plan, only with fewer payments. The cost per visit is usually $60 to $90 on average.
Seasonal plans. Pest control providers now offer seasonal contracts for certain flying insects such as mosquitoes, but more of them are getting on board with providing moth control as well. The price is usually between $100 to $200 per visit for a contract term of three to six months.
Quarterly service plans cover the same pests as monthly plans, except you only get four scheduled treatment visits per year. Also, this agreement is beneficial for busy people. The cost per visit for this plan is between $190 and $280 per visit.
Signs and Causes of Moth Infestation
The cause of a moth infestation is the combination of perfect environmental conditions along with abundant food sources. The evidence for a moth takeover usually lies in the extent of the damage caused by them.
The following are some common examples of those two essential elements at work.
Clothing moths are fabric pests that tend to be solitary in the presence of humans, and the only way you can identify them is by the damage they create.
Females lay an average of 40-50 eggs at one time. Various sites include clothing items as well as furniture, blankets, and linens.
The life cycle begins about six to ten days afterward when the eggs hatch. Then, adults finally emerge about eight to ten days after that.
Indian Meal Moths
You can tell Indian meal moths by the white wormlike appearance of instar moltings. Particles of droppings and other waste products around grains, nuts, and other foods are another sign of infestation.
Flour moths are slightly larger than Indian meal moths. Look for tiny cocoons within flour, grains, and other dry goods. The larvae appear whitish-pink to yellow in color.
Find A Local Exterminator
Health Risks of Moths
Allergies Caused by Moths
Scientists do not classify moths as disease carriers, but some people can get severe allergic reactions from coming into contact with the larval stage (caterpillars).
Here are a few of the most common symptoms:
- Body aches
- Shortness of breath
- Anaphylaxis in extreme cases
Adult moth droppings contaminate certain foods such as nuts, grains, and flour. Also, larvae feeding on seed germ decreases the dry weight. At the same time, it can cause the food to absorb more water, resulting in mold buildup and spoilage.
DIY vs. Hiring a Professional
There are differences in cost between DIY pest control and hiring someone to do it for you. Below, we discuss the contrast between the two options in detail.
Going at It Alone
Many homeowners are willing to go at it alone when eliminating moths from their homes to save on pest control costs. To accomplish a sound level of control, you will need the following items:
- Bright flashlight
- Magnifying glass for pest identification
- Contact aerosol labeled for clothes moths or meal moths
- Pheromone moth traps for closets and other enclosed areas
- Insect growth regulator to disrupt the moth’s life cycle
The cost to get all this together is around $100 to $150. That’s not including extra storage containers, vacuum bags, and cleaning supplies.
Hiring a Professional
Controlling moths on your own can be a frustrating endeavor. That’s why so many homeowners turn to pest control professionals for help. Here are a few of the top ones we recommend.
- Terminix solves your moth problem with a combination of chemical treatments and exclusion measures. The result is long-lasting control over one of the most serious pests in your home.
- Aptive applies a residual, earth-based material into cracks and crevices, ensuring no unwanted pests are allowed to resurface.
- Orkin starts its moth service with a complete inspection and free quote. That way, you have the peace of mind knowing there’s a true professional on your side.
To uncover the most qualified exterminator in your area, start by finding out who your neighbors use for pest control. Then, look them up online to see what they offer.
Next, contact the Better Business Bureau to find out if they have any outstanding complaints against them. Finally, make sure the pest control companies you consider are licensed, bonded, and insured in your state.
Find A Local Exterminator
What is the Standard Moth Extermination Process?
Moth pest control includes sanitation, trapping, and chemical measures combined to form an integrated strategy. We’ve highlighted those methods here to provide you with the best chance for success.
It’s best to start by getting rid of any contaminated food, which will ensure that a large portion of your infestation is removed. Also, launder clothing you suspect to be infested.
Vacuuming is also an important task when eliminating moths from your home. Be sure to get inside cabinet spaces and pantry areas — also, vacuum closets and inside dresser drawers.
It’s good to wipe down all storage shelves using a solution of bleach and water. In addition, thoroughly wash all infested food storage containers with hot, soapy water.
You generally find pantry moths at the grocery store. Then, they are carried into your home with infested products. As a result, other foods in your home become contaminated as well.
Moth traps typically consist of a flat cardboard piece you can fold into a tent. One side is covered with an adhesive material to trap the flying insects. Also, they contain a pheromone attractant for maximum effectiveness.
Place the traps in your kitchen and storage areas where you see the most activity. During heavy infestations, you may have to replace the traps after only a few hours. So, it’s best to have another set on hand.
For clothing moths, it’s generally the same idea. First, you want to employ your traps where you notice the most damage. Then, when you start to gain control, try widening the perimeter by setting them further out to draw any months away from your clothing areas.
Just like targeted heat treatments for bed bugs, you can utilize high temperatures to kill moth larvae. However, you will need a bed bug heater for this procedure, and you will only be able to treat a few clothing items at a time.
When clothing moth larvae infest the inside of furniture, it’s almost impossible to treat it with aerosol sprays. So, the best way to eliminate the infestation is with freezing temperatures.
To fumigate an object using dry ice, follow these steps:
- Place the object in a 4 mil plastic bag
- Use one pound of dry ice per 30 gallons
- Loosely tie the bag at one end until the dry ice evaporates
- Once the dry ice is gone, tightly seal the bag
- Let the object set for three to four days
You can also take a larger item such as a couch to a storage facility to have it vault-fumigated with lethal gas. While there are pest control companies that still perform this service, they are often hard to find.
Aerosol fumigation is generally short-lived. It only kills the adult moths, and it doesn’t get into the cracks where they hide. So, it’s best not to use aerosol pesticides as a stand-alone solution.
Instead, remove any infected clothing from the area and launder it. While doing that, you can set off a fogger in the room to kill any live activity remaining.
After that, be sure to wipe everything down to remove any remaining insecticide. Then, you can confidently store your clothing items, knowing they’re protected from moths.
Many simple prevention measures are available to the homeowner. For example, pheromone traps are ideal for placing in closets where moths typically eat away at your clothing.
Natural moth repellents are also available for closet spaces. They are often in the form of cloth soaked in peppermint or other essential oils. Additionally, they are almost always chemical-free and take the place of ordinary mothballs.
Following up is part of the moth treatment process. This includes a thorough inspection and replacing traps as necessary.
You can also apply residual insecticide sprays in areas where you’ve seen activity. This method works well for the long-term control of all kinds of unwanted pests, and it becomes even more effective when adding an insect growth regulator.
When shopping for a qualified professional to help you get rid of moths, be sure to obtain at least three quotes. This will ensure that you get the greatest value for your money.
However, it’s best not to simply settle for the lowest price. Instead, look at the overall quality offered by the pest control provider.
Also, don’t let exterminator costs hold you back from taking care of your worst pest problems. After all, there are many ways to save money, including doing it yourself.
While easy remedies like using mothballs might help, you may need a complete approach that only a professional can offer.