The Top Five Signs of Moth Damage on an Oriental Rug


We regularly write about the need to follow a good routine inspection schedule of all your Oriental rugs, including those that are hand knotted and handwoven.  This is mostly because it is very important to catch signs of moth damage as early as possible - the earlier, the better.  But what exactly are you looking for?  What does moth damage look like on a rug?  Here are the top 5 signs of moth damage:

1.  Carved out holes on your Persian rug.  Moths are picky eaters.  They crave the wool that makes up the pile of many Oriental and Persian rugs.  Note how moths ate out a hole in this Persian rug pictured below, but left behind the warp and weft which is constructed of cotton.

2.  Another sign of moth damage, also shown in the same photo above, are loose tufts of wool that have been separated from the Oriental rug.  It is normal for a rug to shed some of its wool, but regular large chunks of wool that separate from your rug seemingly randomly could be a sign of moth damage.

3.  Another sign of moth damage is a white glue-like substance, as shown in the photo below.  These are moth larvae, and furthermore, a likely sign of a current moth infestation.

4.  Yet another sign of moth damage are blackened areas where moths are active.  The photo below is an example.

5.  Another example of moth damage are carved out sections of rugs that aren't holes yet but look more like indentations.  This is a sign of an early infestation where moths haven't fully eaten their whole way through any part of the rug... yet.  

If you spot any of these five signs of moth damage, it is important to isolate the rug from your other wool rugs.  It is almost imperative to have the rug professionally washed as soon as possible.  Moths are slow, but steady, eaters.  Time is of the essence once any sign of damage is noticed.