Home Improvement

How To Stop Moths From Getting Into Your Pantry

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There are some moths who are not too bad, simply loving your lamp. However, closet lurking moths have a cruel cousin who is extra destructive. They eat through your stored food and lay eggs on it.

Even if it has not blossomed into a full-blown problem just yet, there is every chance it is about to, and you need to act fast to prevent them from ever coming back.

Make sure they know, they are not welcome here!

Whether you want to use essential oils, effective food moth traps, or some other way of trapping them, and keeping them permanently at bay, there will be a way for you to get rid of them for good… so, how do you do it?

Let’s take a look!

Top Ways To Get Rid Of Pantry Moths

We have looked at 3 top ways to get rid of a pantry moth infestation if you already have one. While essential oils and traps are a good way to go. These three tips are a great way to get rid of an infestation and be sure it is gone!

Check For Infestation

When we say ‘check for infestation’ we mean it in the hardcore sense. We mean you want to empty out the entire affected area. Take out every can, every bag, bottle, and box. As you do this keep your eyes peeled for larval sacs or webs and so on.

Also, be aware of holes in the packaging, you are not just looking for the moths, you are looking for their larvae too.

Check under jar lids as well, as pantry moths are notorious for laying their eggs under jar lids.

If you are certain you wish to keep any jars that have been in an area that is infected, be sure to wash the jars under soapy, hot water and give them a good thorough scrubbing.

Then dispose of any containers that are not airtight. You should dispose of things that have open packaging, and throw away boxes and bags with any holes in them.

Look through these items, even one pantry moth hidden away near a certain area may compromise an entire area. Be thorough to be certain!

Now you will want to vacuum the area, every part of it. Take down shelves and vacuum the walls if you want! Empty the bag, put it in the trash, tie up the trash and throw it outside.

Then wash the WHOLE area with a water-vinegar solution at a 50/50 ratio. It can also be good to add some essential oil peppermint scent into the mix. Then mop the area with this mixture and wash everything with it.

You can also sprinkle peppermint oil inside or hang up fresh peppermint for safe measure.

And DO NOT re-stock straight away, give it time. Keep an eye on the area and only restock when you are dead certain nothing is in there!

Deep Clean

Deep cleaning, like above, is the best way to get rid of pantry moths. Vacuum the shelves, and pay attention to corners, undersides of shelves, walls, brackets, and mountain equipment.

Vacuum the ceiling too. Then wipe down everything. Use that vinegar-water mix with some peppermint oil mixed in for extra measure.

Any time you deep clean, be certain to empty the vacuum bag right away and that whatever trash bag you dispose of goes outside! You don’t want any escapees finding their way back inside. And you certainly don’t want moth larvae taking up residence in your vacuum.

Change Storage

Sometimes the best thing you can do is simply change your storage methods. Although this is not ideal for everyone. If you have some spare space, try storing things like nuts or grains in your freezer or refrigerator.

You should also store any new products away from the pantry.

This can be a good long-term solution if you have the space.

However, you could also transfer your products into airtight containers such as mason jars. This way if you have any products that contain pantry moth larvae, they won’t be able to get out of jars when they hatch, so you will only have one problem area.

And a problem area that is easily dealt with.

The Cause Of Pantry Moths

Pantry moths always manage to gain entry to your panty through an item that you have purchased. Dry food items can be easily contaminated in packaging processes or food processes.

However, for you, this means that when you purchase this item, they can spread in your home if they are stored in a large space, allowing the larvae to eat through other containers and spread to other food.

Pantry moths are known for eating grains and such, dry foods, in areas that are warm allowing them to thrive and continue to breed.

Even if you store items in a freezer temporarily after purchase, you can kill off anything that may be in them.


A great way to get rid of any potential pantry moth infestations is to freeze items in the freezer a week before you transfer them into your pantry.

The cold will kill off any larvae inside the packaging, and you won’t be introducing them into your pantry.

If you simply want to repel them, using peppermint as well as cedar, bay leaves, and lavender will keep them at bay, as months loathe these smells.

Replace these items from time to time to keep the odor fresh and the moths away. You can use fresh herbs or essential oils.

You should also be cautious as to clean up any food messes that occur as soon as they do occur, and always scrub your pantry down a few times per year. This will avoid infestations, and keep you aware of any potential problems before things get too bad.

A good healthy grocery stockpile should be inspected on a regular basis too.

Always do all of the above, and you will never see another pantry month again!

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