Knowing you have a bed bug problem is only part of the solution, cleaning bed bugs is much more difficult as these little critters are evasive and only come out to feed.
Most of us in the United States have no memory of when bed bugs were a common occurrence. The introduction of the powerful pesticide DDT (now banned in the U.S.) all but cleared them out of this country. However, they were by no means eradicated worldwide. Bed bugs survived where DDT was sprayed heavily in other parts of the world and became DDT-resistant. Over the years, they have been able to make a comeback.
These hardier bed bugs have taken advantage of a huge surge in world travel. As airline ticket prices have gone down, travel has increased among people who live in places where bed bugs have remained persistent. Now, these people appear to be bringing these blood-sucking critters with them in luggage and on their clothes.
You’ve probably heard a horror story from someone you know who has encountered bed bugs in a hotel. Only to bring a nice infestation of these pesky creatures home to the family via their own luggage. You’ve probably also heard what they have gone through when cleaning bed bugs out of their homes.
So how do you go about cleaning bed bugs out of your life? Here are a few tips for cleaning bed bugs out of your clothing, luggage, and your home.
Cleaning Bed Bugs Out of Your Home, and Other Tips
- Confirm you have bed bugs on your person, in your car or on your property. The signs are reddish, itching bites, as well as skin casts and fecal matter from the insects. You may be able to see the reddish/brown, tick-like insects after they have fed. However, at about 1/16th-1/4th-inch long, they are often difficult to see; plus, they tend to shun light and hide in crevices. Unfed bugs are translucent.
- Bed bugs will also bite pets.
- For cleaning bed bugs from clothing, remove your clothes in an uncarpeted area, then mop up the floor with a wet rag. Put your clothing and luggage in sealed plastic bags till you’re ready to deal with them.
- Take your luggage outside. Scrub it with a stiff brush to dislodge eggs; vacuum it thoroughly; then either spray the bag with a pyrethroid pesticide or steam clean it.
- As soon as possible, wash all clothing in the hottest water the clothing will bear. Scrub seams and folds with a scrub brush.
- Items that can’t be washed may be heated for two hours at 120 degrees F, or frozen at least 23 degrees F for five days. If you’re not sure of your freezer’s temperature, keep the item in it for at least two weeks: that’s long enough to kill bed bug eggs.
- Although bed bugs generally invade a home after the host has been traveling, people also bring home bed bugs in second-hand furniture or even electronics.
- Staying in a high-quality hotel is no guarantee you won’t get bed bugs. Infestations can happen anywhere. Check your room as soon as you check in for bed bug signs.
Call Budget Brothers Termite & Pest for Treating Bed Bugs
The best way for cleaning bed bugs out of your home is to call Budget Brothers Termite & Pest. You can certainly conduct your own regimen of cleaning bed bugs and spraying, but we know where bed bugs are likely to hide, and what signs to look for. Further, we can assess the severity of the infestation, and determine which are the best tools to use, targeting the eggs, larvae, and bugs as we go about cleaning bed bugs up.