Keeping Bugs Where They Belong

Keeping Bugs Where They Belong

How To Get Rid Of Bedbugs With Heat

Judy Lute

Bedbugs are difficult to get rid of once you have an infestation, but if you work with a pest control company, you can eventually get the problem under control using a variety of methods. One thing that kills bedbugs is heat. Bedbugs die at 113 degrees Fahrenheit if the temperature is sustained for about an hour, and they can die quicker at higher temperatures. Here's what you need to know about killing bedbugs with heat.

Buy An Infrared Thermometer

No matter which method you use to kill the bugs, you have to verify that you're reaching the killing temperature, or you may be wasting your time. The easiest way to do that is to purchase an inexpensive infrared thermometer. This device uses a laser to test the temperature, so you can point it inside your dryer, inside a black bag, or on an area you've steamed, to make sure the temperature you've used is high enough to wipe out a bedbug.

Use A Clothes Dryer

You can wash your clothes in hot water or put them in a hot dryer to kill the bed bugs. Since they may not be dirty, it's quicker to get the job done if you just skip washing, and cycle all your clothes and linens through the dryer. If you have a dryer with a shelf attachment that allows you to dry things without tumbling, then you can even put leather purses, shoes, books, toys, and other small items inside the dryer. Just make sure what you put in there can withstand heat.

Some things, such as clothing that's to be dry cleaned only, can withstand the heat of a dryer even if they cannot be washed in hot water. Adjust drying time according to the temperature setting. If you need to use moderate heat, keep the items in longer than if you use high heat. Keep in mind, it takes a while for your dryer to reach the maximum temperature. Check the temperature with your thermometer, and at a minimum, keep the dryer at 113 degrees for an hour.

Place Items In A Hot Box

A hot box is a good substitute for a dryer. You can buy or rent one, or have one supplied by a pest control company. It's a large container that has heat blown inside it for the required amount of time. It's useful for treating small items too fragile for a dryer. You can make your own hot box of sorts if it's hot and sunny outside. Place the items to be treated inside of a black plastic trash bag, and set them in the sun all day. The black color absorbs heat, so the inside of the bag gets hot enough to kill the bedbugs. If you live in an apartment, you may not be able to leave your things outdoors. In that case, you can place them inside your car. Park your car in full sun and leave the windows closed so it heats up inside.

Rent A Steam Cleaner

Steam is hot enough to kill bugs, but you may need a commercial machine to do the job. You are able to adjust the temperature and pressure much better on these machines, and the spray heads are large enough to cover a wide area with each pass. But steam only kills the bugs it contacts. If the steam comes out too forcefully, it may blast the bugs out of the crevice and not kill them. Use slow movement with the wand so the steam can get to the desired killing temperature.

You can adjust how quickly you move the wand by pointing the thermal thermometer at the area you've steamed. You want the temperature to be at least 160 degrees. If it is lower than that, you need to move the wand more slowly. But you don't want the temperature to be much higher than 160, or you might damage your carpet or upholstery. A problem with steam cleaning is it only penetrates a couple of inches, and this can cause the bugs to burrow deeper behind baseboards and in cracks. It might be best to leave steam eradication of bedbugs to a professional exterminator.

Heat Up Your Whole House

One of the most effective ways to get rid of bedbugs is to hire a pest control company, especially ones that get rid of bed bugs in Victoria BC, to give your home a heat treatment. You won't be able to get rid of the bugs by turning your thermostat on high or keeping your windows closed in summer, because your home won't get hot enough. Instead, an exterminator will bring in huge heaters and circulation fans. If the bugs are throughout your entire house, your whole home may need to be heated, but if they are confined to your bedroom, the exterminator may decide to treat only that area. The temperature is raised to 120 degrees for 90 minutes, which is long enough to kill the bugs and their eggs.

While killing bugs with heat may be time consuming and labor intensive, it is all-natural. You won't have the concern of toxic chemicals in your home that may not even be all that effective. The best thing about using heat is it's a sure way to kill bedbugs, and you'll finally be free from their annoying and itchy bites.


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About Me
Keeping Bugs Where They Belong

Nothing is more frustrating than dealing with pests inside your house. In addition to giving you the creepy-crawlies, it might also make friends and family members think twice before they lounge on your sofa or stay the night. However, you don't have to let bugs ruin your lifestyle. By paying a professional who handles pest control, you can add an invisible barrier inside your home to ward off harmful insects. My blog discusses all different types of pest control methods, so that you understand the options you have available. After treating your home, you can sit back, relax, and enjoy a clean and relaxing space.

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