Mosquitoes flying around

What are the Tiny White Bugs in Your Home?

May 03, 2023

By Daniel Baldwin, BCE, CCFS, CP-FS

Finding pests in your home is always stressful, and it’s even worse when you don’t know what type of pest you’re dealing with. If you see tiny white bugs in your house, there are several types of insects you could be dealing with. This guide will help you determine what they are based on location, appearance, and habits. 

What are those little white bugs in your house?

Several common household pests are small and white. That number increases when you add any household pest that begins as small and white before reaching its adult stage. Below are some of the most common household pests that are small and white, along with their habits and where you’ll typically find them.


Termites are a common household pest that causes the most structural harm, creating around $5 billion in damage and repair costs each year in the U.S. Some castes of subterranean termites are white. These small, clear-white bugs typically live underground near the perimeter of your home, so it’s extremely uncommon to see subterranean termites gathered inside. Unless they’re swarming during mating season, when they are no longer white, or you have an extreme infestation on your hands, you probably won’t know subterranean termites are nearby. Worker subterranean termites are small white bugs, while soldiers have white bodies with orange-brown heads and large jaws.

Termites crawl on wood.

Clothes moths

Webbing clothes moths are about 1/2 of an inch long and white-cream in color. They’re a common household pest with worm-like larvae which feed on natural fibers, such as wool and cashmere. You’ll typically find these little white bugs in closets, built-in storage drawers, and trunks. They easily and quickly damage clothing by making small holes, usually in little groupings.

A clothes moth rests on dark blue fabric.
Clothes Moth


Nicknamed bark lice or booklice, psocids are commonly found under the outer layer of tree bark but can live indoors as well. These super tiny white bugs can be incredibly difficult to spot with the naked eye, measuring about 1/32 to 1/4 of an inch in length. Psocids like a dark, moist place with mold and mildew, meaning you’ll usually find them in bathrooms or kitchens when they make their way into homes. They’re also often discovered near books stored in damp conditions and have been known to eat the glue used to bind books.

Two psocids crawl along a green leaf.

Grain mites

You’ll typically find grain mites in your kitchen, where you store dry goods and grains. These small white bugs have a pearly-white tone. Grain mites love high moisture and humidity and feed on processed grains, wheat germ, yeast, cheese, flour, and cereal. These tiny white bugs often enter your kitchen in packaged foods. White kitchen mites reproduce rapidly, especially if your pantry is warm and humid. Females are capable of laying up to 800 eggs in a lifetime. Grain mites leave a brownish tinge called mite dust on contaminated food, which is typically the easiest way to spot if you have an infestation since they’re usually too small to see.

Grain mites swarm among pieces of grains.
Grain Mites


Most of the time, mealybugs infest perennial plants like fuchsias, gardenias, and hibiscus, along with citrus trees or grape vines. But if you have a lot of houseplants, they can also make a comfortable home in your indoor garden. These small white bugs are oval-shaped, leaving a sticky, wax-like substance in their wake.

Mealybugs cluster on a green plant.

Dust mites

Dust mites are very tiny white bugs that look like dust when gathered on a surface. These tiny white mites are microscopic and nearly impossible to spot in low numbers. They enter homes through thin gaps and cracks in the walls, windows, and doors. Dust mites are attracted to damp conditions and typically gather on moist surfaces like walls, floors, and furniture inside the house. If you see a group of white bugs in your bedroom that look like a layer of dust, they’re probably mites.

Close-up photo of dust mites.
Dust Mites

White flies

These small white flying bugs are related to aphids and mealybugs. The exact size depends on the specific species, but like mealybugs, these tiny white flies in your house are known for damaging plants. They excrete sticky honeydew and are extremely difficult to control once they establish a base. Similar in behavior and look to tiny white aphids, white flies are often found outside but can be transported indoors on infested houseplants. Before bringing new plants into your home, check under the leaves for insects that look like little white gnats to avoid an infestation.

A person shows the underside of a green leaf where white flies rest.
White Flies

Pest control services 

No matter what the tiny white bugs in the bedroom, kitchen, or basement are, the best way to make sure you handle them properly is by hiring a professional pest control company like Hawx Pest Control. We address your issue safely and affordably and offer preventative treatments that address potential threats before they happen. Our teams focus on ensuring high-quality results, leading to a safe and more reliable outcome to restore peace to your home.

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