Carpet beetles, often confused with bed bugs, are small pests that can cause a large amount of damage if left untreated. Attracted to natural fibers, carpet beetles can damage carpets, furniture, and clothing. Carpet beetles will also feed off the felt under furniture and lamps, and inside musical instrument cases.
As their mouths are made to chew plants and other fibrous material, carpet beetles do not bite, but if you contact carpet beetle larvae you may feel as if you were bitten thanks to their long, hard hairs.
There are several types of carpet beetles including the varied carpet beetle, black carpet beetle, furniture carpet beetle, and common carpet beetle. Carpet beetles of all species cause the most damage when they are in the larvae stage. Luckily, the treatment for carpet beetles is the same no matter which species you have.
Read our guide below to learn what carpet beetles look like. If our guide indicates you have carpet beetles in your home or office, continue reading our 4-part guide to find out where carpet beetles hide and how to get rid of carpet beetles.
Color - Adult Carpet Beetles
Adult carpet beetles range in color.
Varied carpet beetles and furniture carpet beetles have multi-colored scales as adults. Varied carpet beetles are black with white, brown, and yellow scales while furniture carpet beetles are black with white, brown, yellow, and orange scales. Varied carpet beetles have small scales in an irregular pattern while furniture carpet beetles have larger scales. The scales for both can wear off over time.
Common carpet beetles have black, white, and red scales. And black carpet beetles are black without scales.
Color - Carpet Beetle Larvae
Furniture carpet beetle larvae are white and then mature to a red or chestnut color with brown bands across the body.
The larvae of varied carpet beetles have light and dark stripes on their bodies and are covered with dark hairs.
Black carpet beetle larvae are smooth with no hair and are either brown or black. Common carpet beetles have larvae that is a red-brown color and covered in dark hair.