Have you spotted one or more small flat, wingless insects that are reddish-brown on your bed? Do you wake up with red itchy welts on your face, shoulders, neck, or limbs? Have you seen rust-colored spots on your mattress or bedding? If so, you have a bed bug problem to deal with.
Bed bugs are one of the most resilient pests. They’re experts at hitching a ride on your personal belongings. They can spread quickly once they arrive at their new destination.
You need to learn about how to kill bed bugs to prevent a full-blown infestation. Read our guide to learn about different ways to eliminate these pests as well as the best methods to use.
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How to Exterminate Bed Bugs
If you search for bed bug treatments on the internet, you’re sure to find numerous options. It goes without saying that not all of these options work. In fact, some treatments can end up spreading out the bugs in your home even more.
You should know the treatment options that work to avoid wasting your time and hard-earned money on useless products and strategies. Read on to learn more.
Nobody wants to share a bed with an unwanted guest, especially if that guest can turn against you once you’re asleep. Well, that’s precisely what bedbugs do. They emerge from their hiding spots at night to feed on sleeping hosts.
Mattresses and bed frames are among the bed bug’s favorite hiding spots. When treating beds in infested rooms, you’ll need to dismantle the frames to expose the hiding sites of the bugs.
You can utilize several methods to get rid of bedbugs in your bed and bedroom.
But you should prepare an infested room before treating it.
Follow the tips below:
- Strip beds of all bedding. Only the bare sleeping surface should be visible.
- Wash the bedding, linens, stuffed animals, and any clothing that may be affected by the bugs in very hot water (above 115 degrees).
- Vacuum all the surfaces in the affected room. Use a crack and crevice tool attachment to vacuum deep bed bug harborage sites such as floor cracks, below carpet edges, around switch plates, and under baseboards. Make sure you vacuum the box springs and mattresses, especially around the folds and seams. Also vacuum upholstered furniture, the floor, and behind drapes.
- Once you’re done, remove the vacuum bag, seal it tightly, and then throw it away.
After you’ve done the above, you can go ahead and apply your preferred treatment.
Not all pesticides can kill bedbugs. Make sure the pesticide you purchase lists bed bugs on its label. It should also meet EPA guidelines and approval.
Pesticides can be in the form of a liquid, aerosol spray, or dust.
If you’re using a liquid pesticide or aerosol, make sure you spray on the following areas:
- under and around beds;
- along baseboards close to beds;
- behind headboards and bed frames;
- inside cabinetry and closets;
- on doors and door frames;
- at the top and bottom of molding;
- drawer seams;
- dressers from below;
- where dressers and beds touch the floor;
- where the floor and beds meet;
- beneath furniture and beds;
- around windows;
- loose plaster and baseboards.
If you’re using a dust or powder, make sure you first put it into a hand duster.
Apply the dust:
- behind electrical outlet covers or faceplates;
- on hanging items like pictures;
- in the joints of bed frames;
- where the carpet and wall meet the baseboard;
- where a box spring and mattress meet;
- the inside corners, edges, and underside of drawers and other furniture;
- behind wall fixtures and beneath lamps;
- into any other cracks and crevices.
Never mix a pesticide with another pesticide or chemical. That can create an extremely hazardous situation.
Avoid overexposing yourself to pesticides by wearing a mask and gloves during application and staying away from the treated room for some time.
It’s not safe to apply pesticides to mattresses or furniture surfaces where people will be sitting or lying on. So does that mean you’ll have to throw away your mattress once it infested? No really. Find out how to get rid of bed bugs in a mattress here.
Heat treatment eliminates the various life stages of bed bugs fast. It’s 100% green.
Before applying heat treatment, anything that’s sensitive to heat such as flammable liquids, aerosol cans, live plants, pets, and people have to be removed. You then use an electric heater to raise the temperature of the air in the affected room to 130-140 degrees.
The room has to remain at this temperature for a few hours to allow items such as the box spring, mattress, furniture, and clothes to exceed 122 degrees. At that point, all the bed bugs will die.
This is a chemical-free way to kill bedbugs and their eggs. A steam cleaner delivers lethal temperatures to the areas where these insects may be hiding. For it to work properly, you must make sure its head is moving in close contact with the surfaces you’re treating. That ensures the bugs receive the highest possible temperatures and die instantly.
Here are the steps you should take to apply your steam cleaning treatment effectively:
- Read all the instructions included with your steamer.
- Open the steamer’s receptacle and fill it with the right amount of water.
- Steam the bed, floor, wall, trim, cracks, crevices, dressers, and any other places you suspect the pesky adversaries may be hiding. Try to start at one corner of an item, slowly working your way to the opposite corner. For example, you can steam your drapes from top to bottom. Don’t steam any electrical outlet.
- Give the surfaces you’ve treated ample time to dry.
- If you spot any bugs after a few days, repeat the process.
For more info about a steamer for bed bugs check out this article.
Bed Bug Poison
Some substances are inherently poisonous to bed bugs. As a result, they’re a critical component of the treatment plans used by many professional exterminators.
Are you tired of fighting bed bugs on your own and considering hiring a licensed professional? Here’s what you should know about a bed bug exterminator.
If you don’t want to spend a fortune on bed bug extermination, you may decide to apply these bed bug poisons on your own. So what are the best options to consider? Let’s take a look at them.
What’s the best chemical?
Chemical treatments are effective in dealing with bed bugs especially if you have a heavy infestation or want to treat a high-clutter environment. They can be dangerous to the bugs as well as pets and humans. So it’s important to apply the chemicals as directed on their labels.
Here are the chemicals you should consider when shopping for bed bug control products:
- Neonicotinoids. These are man-made versions of nicotine. They damage the nervous system of the bugs. Due to their mode of action, they’re effective on the pests that are resistant to other types of chemicals.
- Cold pressed neem oil. This biochemical is derived from the Neem tree. It has been proven to kill eggs, nymphs, and adult bed bugs.
- Desiccants. These chemicals destroy the outer coating on bed bugs. As a result, the insects dehydrate gradually and die.
- Pyrethrins and pyrethroids. Pyrethrins occur naturally in chrysanthemum flowers. On the other hand, pyrethroids are synthetic chemicals that mimic pyrethrins. Both of these compounds remove bed bugs from their hiding spots and kill them. They’re the most commonly used chemicals to kill these small nighttime pests. However, the bugs can gain resistance to them, making it necessary to use a combination of products.
Have bed bugs infested your home? This can degrade you both physically and mentally. Learn more about dealing with a bed bug infestation here.
Commercial Grade Bed Bug Killers
Commercial grade pesticides are used in larger applications such as bed bug extermination in hotels and apartments. They should be used by licensed professionals to ensure the safety and quality of the application process. If they’re misused, they can worsen the infestation as the bugs can become resistant to them.
Here are some excellent options you can consider:
- Transport Mikron Insecticide
The product contains two powerful insecticides: acetamiprid and bifenthrin. It knocks down bed bugs quickly and provides a long-lasting residual.
- Demand EZ Insecticide
Thanks to its microencapsulated active ingredient, it continuously kills bed bugs for extended periods, even after the treatment dries.
You can find detailed Demand EZ Instructions here.
Lowe’s is one of the best places to look for genuine products. The store has a variety of products from different manufacturers.
Let’s look at some of the top commercial grade bed bug products that Lowe’s has to offer:
Harris Bed Bug Kit
This kit contains:
- 4 detection traps. These help you monitor bedbugs after application of the other included products.
- Aerosol spray. You can use it on many items including furniture and luggage.
- Ready-to-use trigger sprayer. It kills the pests quickly and leaves a residue that continues killing them several weeks after application.
- Silica powder with an applicator brush. This powder kills bed bugs by drying them out.
This product kills bugs that are resistant to pyrethroids.
- Hot Shot Ready-to-Use Bed Bug Killer
The product eliminates bed bugs as well as their eggs by contact. You can use it to spot treat mattress tufts, seams, folds, and vent holes.
It doesn’t cause stains.
Home Depot also offers a range of control products from the top manufacturers.
Here are some of the options you’ll find:
- Ortho Home Defense Bed Bug Killer
This product kills bed bugs in their hiding places. It also kills their eggs before they hatch. It even gets rid of the pyrethroid-resistant bugs. It comes with a continuous spray wand that saves your time while letting you control the pests on carpeted surfaces for up to 2 weeks.
Its formula is unscented, non-staining, and dries quickly.
- EcoRaider Bed Bug Killer
EcoRaider kills the eggs, nymphs, and adult bed bugs fast on contact. The active ingredients penetrate the exoskeleton of the insects and attack a neuron receptor, causing instant paralysis and death. It’s not harmful to humans, pets, fish, and birds. It provides residual protection for up to 2 weeks.
This green product has a pleasant woody scent.
Windex is an excellent window cleaner. But do you know that it can kill bedbugs?
Spraying a bit of the cleaning solution on these dreaded pests causes them to curl up and die in a few minutes. It’s most useful when sprayed at close range.
Bayer Advanced bed bug killer products offer protection from the bloodsuckers for up to 1 month. You can use them on luggage, upholstered furniture, and mattresses.
Most reviewers of the products have given them a 5-star rating, showing their effectiveness.
With an oil-based formula, EcoSmart penetrates cracks and crevices to kill pesky bugs in their hiding spots. It kills bedbug eggs, all larval stages, and the adult bugs. It’s safe to use around pets and kids.
It has been found to work on the bed bugs resistant to other pesticides. It has also received many positive reviews due to its results as well as pleasant fragrance.
The Best Way to Kill Bed Bugs
You can use several techniques to exterminate bedbugs. Each technique has its pros and cons. For example, steam won’t penetrate all the places where bed bugs hide, so you may need to use chemicals too. Aerosol sprays will kill bed bugs quickly on contact. However, they won’t last long. On the contrary, dusts work well as residual insecticides.
Using just one form of treatment may not eliminate your pest problem. Instead, use multiple treatments, for example, aerosol sprays and desiccant dusts.
If you find bedbugs in your home, take them to be a serious problem and act quickly. You’ll need to be diligent and persistent with the treatment process to get rid of these tiny, domestic vampires permanently. You may have to repeat the treatment procedure three or more times to eliminate the insects together with their eggs and larvae.
You can find further details of Bed Bugs Control here.