Carpet beetle larvae can cause tremendous damage to carpets, rugs, furniture, and other household fabrics.
They tend to hide so you may know you have them until the damage starts showing up. Then you need to act quickly before it gets any worse.
We’re going to walk you through the top four chemical sprays you can use to kill carpet beetles and keep them from coming back.
We’ll show you how to use them and why you need to add a fifth chemical, an IGR, to all four for long-term carpet beetle control.
At the end, we’ll briefly mention a couple of dry pesticides you can use in hunting cabins or vacation homes while you’re away from them for extended periods.
Our Overall #1 Rated Pick
- Made by Bayer
- A broad-spectrum insecticide
- The active ingredient is Deltamethrin
We picked Suspend Polyzone for a number of reasons.
It’s a professional-strength insecticide with a long history of effective pest control, it’s odorless (important when you’re spraying inside), it has very low toxicity, and it doesn’t leave a visible residue.
Suspend Polyzoneis a broad-spectrum insecticide labeled for use against more than 50 different pests.
Because it’s a concentrate, one 16-ounce bottle can be mixed with water to make up to 64 gallons of the finished product for spraying.
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!
What is a Spray For Carpet Beetles?
It is a chemical, either concentrated or premixed, that will kill Black carpet beetles, Common carpet beetles, Furniture carpet beetles, or Varied carpet beetles, any one of which can cause all sorts of damage to your carpets, rugs, and furniture.
Due to the similarities between beetles (family: Dermestidae) and other insects, a spray for carpet beetles will often prove effective against many other pests as well.
If the chemicals are concentrated, they’ll have to be diluted with water prior to spraying. If they are premixed, you use them as soon as you get them.
How Do Sprays For Carpet Beetles Work?
That depends on the active ingredient. Most of the products reviewed here are Pyrethroids, synthetic versions of Pyrethrins, naturally-occurring pesticides found in chrysanthemum flowers.
After being ingested, Pyrethrins attack the central nervous system in insects, leading to paralysis and death.
Other pesticides, called Insect growth regulators (IGRs), interfere with an insect’s normal growth patterns so they mature too early or too late to be able to reproduce. This cuts the breeding cycle, preventing any new eggs from being laid.
Are Sprays For Carpet Beetles Effective For Killing Them?
Yes, but it is subject to some conditions. The main condition is that you can’t “spot-treat” just the area where you found the damage.
You have to treat your entire house, spraying all the carpets, area rugs, bath mats, fabric furniture, and drapes.
Carpet beetle larvae are the ones that do all the damage, not the adult beetles. By the time you see the damage they’ve caused, they’ve already matured, mated, and begun laying eggs somewhere else in the house.
Female adult carpet beetles can lay up to 100 eggs at a time, eggs that will hatch in about a week. In the larval stage they will begin eating the carpeting, lint, upholstery, and any other food sources they can find.
If you don’t spray the whole house, it’s guaranteed some of them will survive to continue the infestation. So, yes, carpet beetle sprays are effective but only if you use them correctly.
How To Use a Spray For Carpet Beetles
Most liquid pesticides require the use of a 1-gallon pump-up sprayer. You can spend extra to get a heavy-duty sprayer that will last for decades or a less expensive one that will last for several years.
Once you’ve got a sprayer, fill it halfway with water, then add the recommended amount of pesticide concentrate, usually an ounce or less. Swirl it around a bit then finish filling the sprayer.
Cap it and shake vigorously for 2-3 minutes. Pump up the pressure and you’re ready to begin. If you’re using an IGR (highly recommended), add it to the sprayer before you cap it and begin shaking it.
Spend several minutes vacuuming the house. The bristles will loosen the grip the larvae have on the fibers they’re attacking and pull them up to the top where the spray can reach them.
Spray the cracks and crevices around the baseboards, doors, windowsills, plumbing intrusions, and electrical outlets. Spray all the carpets and rugs with a steady back-and-forth motion until you’ve sprayed all of it.
Are Sprays For Carpet Beetles Safe Around My Pets and Children?
Yes and no.
Modern pesticides have a very low level of toxicity for adults, but children and small pets are more susceptible than adults are, so you should keep them out of the area while you’re treating it and for up to an hour afterward.
How Do You Find the Best Spray For Carpet Beetles?
Look for a pesticide that lists beetles on the label. It doesn’t matter what kind of beetle is listed. If any kind of beetle is on the label, the product will kill carpet beetles.
Also, look for pesticides that have any one of the following ingredients listed on the label as the active ingredient:
Any of these active ingredients, either alone or together, will kill carpet beetles.