Getting Rid of Spiders with Moth Balls


I have a problem. I have had a new home built. I noticed spiders inside the home (bunches). I asked the contractor what to do? He told us to put moth balls inside the crawl space under the house and it will make the spiders and mice stay away. I sent the contractor's worker under with a whole box of them to spread around. He used the whole box. Now we are all about to gag from the fumes/odor. I guess I will go under and try to find all these moth balls. Any advise what to do about the smell. Will this hurt us or make us sick? I was going to call the pest control initially, but I listened to the contractor and used moth balls. Now I have a night mare of a problem Any suggestions?



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By Dean (Guest Post) 10/15/2007

Using moth balls to deter critters and spiders is a hoax. They remove the moth balls or just go around them. As you have found people and maybe moths are the only ones effected by moth balls. Spiders are here to stay. The way to combat them is to sweep them up and dispose of them or if you have an old vacuum cleaner vacuum them up. This will have to be done periodically as they will return over time.

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By kimhis (Guest Post) 10/15/2007

Hello - yes, spiders are ugly things. As to the health effects of mothballs, read the box. Maybe you can put them down now and then and wait a day and pick them back up, so the smell isn't constant. I would just get under the house and remove the mothballs, then spray a spray can of spider repellent/killer. Is there a black plastic barrier covering the dirt? is there a dehumidifier down there? spiders need water to drink. Go knock on your neighbors' doors and ask what they've found to work. As to removing the smell, remember the old slogan, 'Dilution is the solution to pollution' and ventilate it away, with a heater or blower down there and vents open. That's my best guess. God bless!

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By Grandma J 54 1,041 10/15/2007

Google toxicity of mothballs.
Good answer under the first one, children's heath.
I personally use HEDGE BALLS or HORSE APPLES, the same thing. Ask your produce manager to get them. I am from a tiny town and we get them, so don't take not available.
Clean up the area where spiders are, I used hot water with garden hose in the basement before moving in 1986. Not a problem since. Use the balls every year. They are natural, grow on a tree. My dog leaves them along. I put them on each floor, glass or foil dish. They will dry up eventually.
Children's health site:

Acute Toxicity of moth balls
By Mouth: Highly Toxic
Through Skin: Very Highly Toxic
By Inhaling: Highly Toxic

unclassified carcinogen. Get rid of the moth balls.

Grandma J

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By Jenna (Guest Post) 10/15/2007

Spiders don't like chlorine bleach. Periodically, I make a weak solution and spray or wipe down the children's toy shelves in the basement, and the space outside between the windows and screens. And I put a few drops in the dehumidifier bucket. You don't have to smell it for them to be repelled.

I also use plug-in pest controllers with both ultra-sonic and electro-magnetic. Sunbeam didn't work for me and Dual-Control "chirped" which wasn't acceptable. If I can hear it, I return it.

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By amanda (Guest Post) 11/09/2007

Get rid of those moth balls!

I was diagnosed with leukemia and later tried to trace the benzene that I might have been exposed to. I lived with a relative for a year who used moth balls in her closets to deter roaches? Come to figure that after each steamy shower, I grabbed a towel infused with the smell from the moth balls, rubbed it on my skin. Yikes, could have been my exposure to benzene? Best thing to do would be to give that same helper a flashlight and a 50 buck tip to go get them out.

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By higgy (Guest Post) 06/13/2008

An ancient way of getting rid of spiders is salt!. Just
buy a large economy size box and sprinkle away.
You will find dead spiders in a few days, as well as any small bugs you might have.

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By (Guest Post) 09/30/2008

I've used moth balls to get rid of spiders very effectively. A little bit is goes a long way. I lived in a large house, 3500 sq ft, and used 3-4 moth balls in the basement. My current house is 900 sq ft and 2-3 moth balls work. My family put just a couple in the attic to get rid of spiders. Either way you don't smell is and the spiders are gone.

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By Jen (Guest Post) 10/20/2008

OMG. We just did the exact same thing. Luckily my husband has a gas mask thingy!

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By lauriebucho 09/09/2015

We live in a wooded area, so spiders, ants, etc. are a big concern....I have used moth balls in all my rooms, and have never had a problem......I just use 1 to 3, depending on how big the area is......

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By Christopher C. 09/22/2015

Well the whole box is waaaaay too much. Its actually dangerous as mothballs outgas insecticide. If you have an overpowering smell you MUST get rid of them. That been said, mothballs are extremely effective in driving the spiders away.

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