One way to rid your life of the scourge of bed bugs is to use a bed bug bomb. But before you set off fogger gas bombs in your bed room and all over your house, you need to know how these products fit into to an overall bed bug eradication strategy. Then you need to know about some of your specific product options.
When used correctly (and sometimes repeatedly) a bed bug bombing can accomplish a great deal. And while nothing is guaranteed when engaging in The Battle of the Bed Bugs, bed bug bombs can potentially end your nightmare and reconquer your mattress.
For help in understanding what a bed bug bomb can and cannot do and which one you might want to use, read on.
Table of Contents
Can I Bomb My House for Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs curl up and die just like any other insect pest when brought into contact with the right combination of chemicals. The difficulty is finding them and contacting them with a pesticide that will get the job done. Does Lysol kill bed bugs? Find out by clicking on the link.
You can definitely bomb your house for bed bugs, but you will have to buy a bug bomb that is specifically designed to kill bed bugs. You can’t just go with a general bug bomb and think that will somehow be good enough.
Does an Effective Bomb Exist?
There are indeed some truly effective bed bug bombs on the market, but a good deal of the effectiveness depends on how you use it.
Any fogger bomb is likely to fail if you don’t seal the house when you bomb (sure, you’ll kill some bugs but not all of them and probably not enough of them.)
And you have to remove clutter, blankets, sheets, clothes, and other likely “bomb shelters” where bed bugs can hide out till the danger has passed.
And that brings up another point. Bed bugs will often manage to hide in some crevice, which is why a bombing alone is not usually enough. Sometimes it is. And it certainly helps, especially in conjunction with other methods (like sprays and traps), but you should be aware you normally need to do more than just bomb once and think it’s over.
What Do Reviewers Say?
You will find a large number of negative reviews online about any bed bug bomb you can name. And the same is true of flea bombs or even bug bombs in general. Why is this so?
Here are some reasons:
- Manufacturer’s instructions were not followed, if even read.
- The instructions were unclear or incomplete.
- The user gave up after a single bombing.
- No other methods of bed bug control were used in conjunction with the bomb.
- Some products really are sub-par.
Available at Home Depot
Home Depot seems to be the place most people think of running to when faced with a bed bug problem. Perhaps that’s because you find so many options on the shelf.
There are non-bomb options galore, such as the comprehensive Harris Bed Bug Kit, which seems to include everything but a bomb.
- Diatomaceous earth by Safer Brand.
- EcoLogic aerosol bed bug killer.
- Ortho Home Defense bed bug, flea, and tick killer powder.
- EcoRaider one-gallon Natural Bed Bug Killer.
But as to bug bombs that can potentially work on bed bugs, Home Depot carries these three:
- Hot Shot Bed Bug and Flea Killer (3-pack of 2-ounce aerosol foggers).
- Real-Kill Indoor Fogger (6-pack).
- Raid Max Concentrated Deep Reach Fogger (1.5 ounce cans, 3-pack). It also comes in 2.1 ounce cans under a slightly variant name.
Only Hot Shot specifically mentions bed bugs on the front label, but the other two mention that they penetrate into cracks and crevices.
Read on to learn more about two of these products: Raid and Hot Shot.
The Raid Bed Bug Bomb
The Raid bed bug bomb we mentioned above uses a technically non-insecticide active chemical that works better as a “growth inhibitor” that will kill off larvae and permanently stunt the growth of juvenile bed bugs.
Thus, Raid is good for three things:
- A long-term eradication strategy.
- Preventing an existing infestation from getting worse.
- As a second bombing after another bed bug bomb, like Hot Shot (see below) that focuses more on killing off the adults.
Also note that Raid sells a different fogger (labeled as a flea killer but has chemicals that should work well on bed bugs as well, besides other pests) which contains both the pesticides and the growth inhibitors.
This means you can do a one-punch instead of a one-two punch, but the concentrations of each chemical are less than if you bought separate foggers for each phase. That means it might only be the best option for smaller infestations, but the double-bug-bombing would still be superior for bigger problems.
And a final reason to use two foggers back to back: some fogger chemicals break down easily in sunlight while others do not. If you are fogging a sunny room, you may need that second punch.
We have been talking about bed bug gas bombs, although we have called them foggers or just bombs up till now.
But let us highlight the fact that these fogger bombs emit “noxious gases” that are harmful for humans to breathe. If you bomb, bomb safely.
Place the gas bombs one in each room before setting any of them off. Don’t put them on top of furniture since they might fall down. Don’t put them under furniture since they might get knocked down by the backblow, or you could trap all your bed bug poison in just one spot.
Close all exterior windows and doors. Unplug electronics. Don’t run your washer or dryer while bombing! (Don’t forget to turn off the stove and unplug the microwave.) You should even unplug the refrigerator, but don’t stay away so long that all your food spoils.
Point the can away from your face when activating it. These bombs shoot the gas straight up into the air. You should even wear a mask while setting them off to be extra safe. Set them flat on the floor and move quickly to the next room. And never put two foggers near each other.
Next, set off bomb after bomb, moving ever closer to your “escape route” (this takes a little thoughtful planning). Most cans are set off just by pressing down on a simple button.
Then leave the house for at least the amount of time recommended on the bug bomb’s label.
Hot Shot bed bug bombs work, but you have to know how to use them. They are designed to focus on killing off adult bed bugs, their active chemical insecticide being the neurotoxin known as “cypermethrin, ” which is derived from chrysanthemums. Go flower power!
With Hot Shot, the key is to use the Hot Shot spray along with the bomb. The spray will get into crevices where the fog may not reach. That will force the bugs out into the open where the gas bomb will kill them.
Note the following:
- Raid bed bug bombs are less potent than the spray, but that is for your own safety.
- Don’t steam-clean fabrics soon after a Raid bed bug was set off since it can vaporize the toxins, which you might then accidentally inhale.
- Raid bombs are less stable in light than their Hot Shot counterparts.
- If a house has been bed bug bombed for a long time, say, 10 years, your bed bugs could be immune to the Raid gas (or another brand’s gas.)
So What Is the Best?
Which is the best bed bug bomb. Well, that depends. I know, that wasn’t the answer you wanted to hear, but it’s true.
- The Hot Shot bomb is the best for wiping out the future generation of bed bugs and working even in well-lit rooms.
- The Raid bed bug bomb is the best for wiping out the adult population. They are best used together to achieve both immediate and long-term results.
But understand that bed bugs aren’t going to just roll over and play dead. You have to get aggressive with them and be persistent until the problem is finally solved.
Bed bug bombs can be a key component of an overall bed bug eradication plan, but they only rarely finish the whole job themselves in a single shot.
Even within the bed bug fogger bomb category, there are two basic types of bombs: one kills the adults, the other kills the larvae and inhibits the growth of juvenile bed bugs so that they’ll never reproduce.
Use both types of bed bug bombs for the best possible results, but be sure to use sprays, traps, mattress covers, and other strategies alongside. And be sure to always put safety first when using any anti-bed-bug product.
You can find further details of Bed Bugs Control here.