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Naphthalene is a white solid with a strong smell. More common names that are used are mothballs, moth flakes, white tar, and tar camphor. Naphthalene is a natural component of fossil fuels such as petroleum and coal it is also formed when natural products such as wood or tobacco are burned.

Naphthalene is used in the manufacture of resins, phthaleins, dyes, pharmaceuticals, insect repellents, and other materials. Other items around the home that are made from naphthalene are moth repellents, in the form of mothballs or crystals, and toilet and diaper pail deodorant blocks. Naphthalene is also used for making leather tanning agents, and the insecticide carbaryl.


It is not a very nice chemical to store around the home. I think that says it all really. See moth proofers in this section.

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