bug treatment can be done by either a professional or as a do
it yourself project. Bed bugs can hide in spaces the width of a credit
card, making the insects difficult to find and kill. Advice is provided
below on both hiring a bed bugs pest control expert and on how to kill
bed bugs yourself. Don't be surprised if it takes 2 to 3 bed bugs
treatments before the problem is eliminated."
Bed bug infestations are becoming more common across the
United States and most of the world. If your home or apartment has a
bed bug infestation treat the problem as soon as possible, since bed
bugs can rapidly multiply causing a more difficult and costly problem
On this page you will find bed bugs information on:
Using a bed bug pest control professional is the preferred bed
bug treatment method. These bed bug exterminators are licensed
to use the multiple chemical and non-chemical methods used to kill bed
If you live in an apartment or rent a home, check with your landlord or
building management company. Most localities require prompt
action on the part of the building owner. This is
particularly important in an apartment since there is a chance that a
bed bug infestation spread from an adjoining apartment that is above,
below or next to yours.
for Finding a Low Cost Bed Bug Exterminator:
Find a company with bed bug treatment experience. We
resources below that will quickly connect you with a list of
local experienced bed
bug professionals. We suggest you try all three since each
referral source is free to use. Also, getting rid of bed bugs
is expensive and with the many approaches it is important to get
several bids and information from several companies.
Service Magic (phone 1.877.233.1145): This is a national
network of local
control companies where each company is pre-screened by the network
before being allowed to join. The network will provide up to 4 free quotes.
Connect to Service Magic Here or call via the 877
phone number toll free.
Between these three bed bug treatment resources, you can
quickly connect to
experienced bed bug treatment professionals and get a good idea of cost
each firm approaches the problem. It's a fast way to get
educated on a bed bug problem.
a Professional Bed Bug Exterminators
Here are some tips for choosing a professional bed bug
Find a company that has experience and that can provide
referrals. Makes sure that the bed bug exterminator being
sent to your home has experience specifically.
Interview a few companies. Ask how they were
trained to kill bed bugs and how they go about killing bedbugs.
For example, some firms use freezing, some use
while others rely on bed bug insecticides or organic products or a
combination of approaches.
Get a bed bug inspection plan and pricing in writing.
Make sure they provide a guarantee. Also ask about
the implications for pets, children etc. (do they need to be out of the
Approach Bed Bug Treatment
Hiring a professional bed bug exterminator can be expensive.
For this reason, many home owners and apartment renters
decide to treat the problem themselves (note renters should contact
their landlord/management company first). If you catch a bed
bug problem early, this can be a viable approach to bed bugs treatment.
For a DIY bed bug treatment approach to be effective, multiple products
used. What follows are step by step instructions for bed bug
treatment and the bed bug control products that are required to do a
Bug Control Products Needed:
Purchasing the right products for bed bug treatment can be confusing.
Our recommendations of the best bed bug products are as
Bed Bug Sprays:
for the Mattress (safe to treat mattress and furniture)
Spray for Cracks and Crevices (lasting effect, apply every 10 days for
Here's a complete list and more detail on each type of bed bug
treatment product and why it is needed for bedbug control..
Bed bugs can be vacuumed up via the crevice tool that comes with most
vacuum cleaners. Use a brushless attachment to avoid getting
bed bugs caught in the brush, which could then be dropped off in other
areas of the room or home. Note that this form of bed bug
treatment does not vacuum up bed bug eggs, only bed bugs that have
Spray: A mattress safe bed bug spray is essential for
killing any bed bugs that are hiding in and around the mattress.
These sprays come in insecticide and organic formulations.
Both types kill bed bugs on contact with the difference being
that insecticide sprays kill bed bugs and their eggs. Organic methods
require one spray to kill bed bugs on contact, and another disinfectant
spray to kill the eggs.
Mattress Safe Bed bug spray suggestions:
Insecticide Based: Sterifab .
Sterfab is a disinfectant that kills bed bugs and bed bug eggs. It
dries in 15 minute and leaves behind no residual. It is recommended for
mattresses, box springs and furniture, cracks and crevices etc.
Patrol (purchase Bed Bug Fossil Dust and Benzarid from same
company). Use in combination with a disinfectant that kills bed bugs
to provide a 1-2 punch.
Crack and Crevice Spray: We suggest purchasing 2 types of
bed bug sprays to treat a room. The first is a spray that will kill bed
bugs on contact such as Sterifab,
plus the use of a bed bug spray that has a residual or lasting effect
such as Phantom.
It is important to treat
the box spiring, cracks along the perimeter of the room etc.
Again, organic products will kill bed bugs on contact, but
not necessarily provide the lasting effect needed without the use of
bed bug dust or disinfectant spray. Bed bug control products
Insecticide based sprays will kill bed bugs and their eggs.
Bed Bug Crack and Crevice Spray Suggestions:
Insecticide Based: Phantom,
Phantom is quickly becoming one of the best selling products since it
can't be detected by the bed bugs (doesn't repel them), and will kill
bed bugs for 7 to 14 days. Recommendation is to apply every 10 days. It
does not kill bedbugs on contact, so use in combination with a spray
such as Sterifab.
Bed Bug Dust:
to kill bed bugs is a natural product also called
diatomaceous earth. or fossil dust. It is very easy to miss
the small white pin head sized bed bug eggs when treating a room.
The eggs are attached to each surface with a cement type
substance which prevents them from being vacuumed up. When
these nymphs hatch from the eggs, the dust attaches to their body,
which kills them. As a last step it is always a good idea to
place a very thin layer of dust in cracks and in the box
Only a thin layer of dust should be applied with an applicator brush.
Consider wearing a dust
mask to keep from inhaling dust. Also, if you have
pets or children, dust products may be ingested and therefore not a
Bed bugs and their eggs are killed at 114F. A multi hole hand
steamer can provide the heat needed to kill bed
bugs and bed bug eggs.
Covers for Bed Bugs (and Box Spring): It is helpful to put
treated mattresses and box springs into mattress
covers for bed bugs. The reason for this is that if
any eggs are missed during treatment, late hatching nymphs (baby bed
bugs) will be trapped and die. It is important to buy covers
for both the mattress and box spring. You can purchase
with Cover or Double Zipper Bags: When items are removed
from the room, such as clothes, it will be helpful to have a bed bug
proof container to move them in. One low cost option is to
purchase double zipper Ziploc
Interceptors (optional): These are inexpensive bowls that
are placed under each bed leg. Climbup
bowls. When the bed bugs move toward the bed, they are trapped in the
bowls. It is helpful to see how large an infestation you have
and if the bowls are empty after treatment, it confirms that you are in
Cleaner for Carpets: Carpeted surfaces should at a minimum
be steam cleaned. For added protection, add a disinfectant
such as PuraCleenRx
to the cleaning solution to ensure that all bed bugs and eggs are
killed. Test the disinfectant on the carpet to avoid staining.
Heater (optional): A PackTite
heater is designed to heat any object to the point where bed
bugs and their eggs can no longer survive. It is large enough
to treat luggage after a trip. It is the only way to treat
electronics such as clock radios etc. that may have bed bugs hiding
inside. Check the owners manual of the item to make sure it
can withstand the heat before treating. You can even put
clothes in the packtite to ensure that they are bed bug free.
Saving Money on
Bed Bug Control Products
Several companies sell bed
bug kits that combine many of the products
listed above. While you don't have to buy a bed bug kit, it
can be a helpful way to save money on bed bugs. Some
Bug Kit: Dermisil
sells a bed bug kit that contains a mattress safe spray, fossil dust, a
stronger spray for cracks/crevices, mattress covers and steamer.
These are the steps for killing bed bugs at home or in an apartment.
Note that if you live in an apartment, it is possible that
bed bugs are spreading from adjoining apartments. That said,
these steps will help provide some level of protection against an
infestation in addition to the larger bed bug extermination plan being
put in place by your building landlord or management.
Be sure to view this diagram so that you know all of the locations where
bed bugs can hide and in turn, the areas that need to included when you apply your bed bug treatment.
Bed Bug Inspection Diagram
Where to Find Bed Bugs
for Eliminating Bed Bugs from Your Home
1. Define a Safe Area:
Once certain items are treated, they should be moved to an area outside
the room. This can be a hallway or another area that can
accommodate the mattress.
The idea is to limit the areas where bed but treatment takes place as a
way of avoiding the spread of the bed bug infestation. Then clear the
bed bug treatment area by moving items to the safe zone so
that additional items can be brought into the area.
recommend that the bed bug treatment area be the bed, as studies show
that most bed bugs
in a room will be in and around the bed.
2. Remove and Wash
Blankets and Linens: Fold any sheets, blankets, mattress
covers and other washable items on the top of the bed. Place
folded items into either a bed bug proof container such as a plastic
bin with a lid or Ziploc
Double Zipper Big Bags.
Transport these items to the washing machine for bed bug
treatment. Wash in hot
water followed by at least 20 minutes in the dryer on high heat.
This will kill all bed bugs and bed bug eggs.
3. Treat the
Mattress: As long as a mattress is in good
condition and is not torn, it is not necessary to throw out a mattress
as part of your bed bug treatment plan.
Steps for how to kill bed bugs in mattress include treating all seams
of the mattress. Use a mattress safe spray such as the Sterifab
(insecticide) or Bug
mattress: To start, use your crevice tool on the vacuum
cleaner to vacuum any bed bugs that you may spot.
Seams: For added protection follow this with the use of
the hand steamer around all seams, buttons and labels.
Mattress Safe Bed Bug Spray: Be sure to follow the
manufacturers directions. In general, only apply a thin layer
of spray. Treat all sides of the mattress with extra
attention to crevices such as around and under the mattress label.
Once mattress bed bug treatment is complete, move the mattress
to your safe area.
Be sure to allow to dry. Keeping the windows open
will help the drying process and ventilate the room during treatment.
When dry, use a zippered
bed bug mattress cover.
the Box Spring: Often, more bed bugs are hiding in the box
spring, since there are more places to hide. Treat the sides
and top of the box spring as indicated above for the
mattress. Then turn the box spring over and either remove or
peel back the fabric that covers the bottom. Treat
the fabric and the inside. Only use a spray product approved
for this purpose such as Sterifab
Once treated, for extra protection steam all seams and areas of the box
spring. After treatment, move to the safe area and when dry,
enclose in a zippered
box spring cover.
Every bed bug treatment plan includes the use of a vacuum. Be sure to
vacuum the entire room including use of a brushless crevice tool around
the perimeter of the room. Vacuum around windows, pictures
etc. Empty the vacuum bag in the mattress area, place is
plastic bag and dispose of the bag outside of the home.
Don't leave it inside the vacuum when the bed bug treatment
6. Treat the
Furniture and Bed Frame: Remove contents of any drawers
near the bed and move contents into a bed bug proof container.
Inspect contents for bed bugs. Dispose of anything
you don't need. Wash any clothes as indicated in step 1.
Remove drawers and inspect in the area where the box spring used to be.
Treat seams of drawers and around any furniture.
Test sprays to ensure that they don't stain surfaces.
Use the Sterifab, Phantom or Bedlam.
Bed bugs can hide in the thinnest crack. Either disassemble
frame and treat, or be sure to thoroughly inspect and treat all bed
frame joints. Use steam as an added level of protection.
Don't use steam if it will stain wood surfaces.
If you can afford a PackTite
container, use it to safely kill any bed bug eggs and items hiding in
items you would like to keep (see above video
on bed bug treatment with packtite).
Move items that have been treated to the safe area.
7. Treat the
Carpet: If you have carpet, this should be treated in case
any bed bugs or bed bugs eggs are hiding in the fabric. To
treat carpet, use a steamer or carpet steam cleaner. Add a
bed bug disinfectant such as PuraCleenRx
to the cleaner to ensure a thorough job. Use a spray product
along the edges of the room. Pay extra attention to areas
where the carpet meets the walls, as this is a convenient hiding place
for the bed bugs.
8. Treat Around
any Outlets: Unscrew any electrical plate covers or cable
covers and inspect. Use a bed
bug dust product around electrical outlets (liquid or sprays
can be dangerous).
9. Apply bed
bug dust: Apply a light coating of dust
to kill bed bugs. Apply the dust with an
applicator. If you have a dust mask, use it as an added level
of protection. Dust kills any late hatching bed bugs from any
eggs that you might have missed.
At this point, make sure that zippered covers are on your
mattress and box spring and return them to the room. It is
very easy to miss bed
bug eggs, so don't be surprised if you have to treat the room
2 to 3 times.
As you can see, removing bed bugs from a home or apartment is
not easy, but can be done. If you have the money, call a bed
bug exterminator such as one of the members from the Service Magic network.
Bed bug treatment is all about being thorough. Whatever
approach you take, be sure to treat every inch of the room having the
Ask a Question or Share Your Bed Bug Experience With Others
Do you have a question or great story about bed bugs? Share it!