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Protecting Clothes From Moths

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When spring finally arrives after a long winter, many people are eager to toss their wool sweaters into storage and not have to think about them for two gloriously warm seasons. A few steps taken in the spring, however, will protect your wardrobe investment so that when fall rolls around again, your clothes won't be riddled with holes thanks to some hungry moth larvae. Read on for tips on how to protect your clothes.

Proper Cleaning

Moths are attracted to food spills or perspiration left on unwashed clothing. Then they lay their eggs on clothing and hungry larvae hatch and go to work on your favorite wool sweater. Before packing wool, silk, or fur clothing away for a season, be sure to clean these items according to their care instructions. If you haven't worn an item all season, you could donate it to free up space in your closet, but if you just can't part with it, cleaning it is unnecessary. Preparing it for storage is crucial, however. Take your unworn clothing outside and brush it with a soft brush, paying particular attention to seams and the undersides of collars. This will remove possible moth larvae and eggs before the item goes back into storage. 

Proper Storage

Moths can sneak through surprisingly small openings to get to your delicious sweaters, so be sure to store them properly. Resealable plastic storage bags or plastic bins are an excellent storage solution for a season. Keep in mind, however, that plastic can damage fabric over the long term, so if you're storing a valuable item you're not likely ever to wear — like your grandmother's fur coat or a silk wedding dress — contact a professional for storage help.

Moth Deterrents

There are multiple ways to deter and kill moths if you discover you have a problem. A pest control company can treat an infested closet or home with moth larvae and egg killing chemicals. Mothballs also are a chemical moth combatant. They work by fumigating clothes, so they're most effective in small spaces. Put them in a tight-fitting storage bin that contains vulnerable clothing. To remove the scent when you're ready to wear the clothes again, air the clothing out outside.

Dry-cleaning won't necessarily remove the scent of mothballs. Lavender sachets will repel moths, but they won't kill eggs and larvae. Tuck lavender sachets in with stored clothes, but be sure to look for the signs of larvae damage when you take clothes out of storage again. Cedar oil will kill young larvae, but it won't kill eggs or older larvae. If you have a cedar block that you store with your off-season clothes, be sure to sand it lightly every season to expose new oils to the air. 

For more information, contact local professionals like Ace Walco & Sons Termite & Pest Control.