Clothing and Bed Bugs

by Roberto Gallardo
(San Diego,CA)

Removing bed bugs from clothing involves either washing/drying or using a portable bed bug heater.

Removing bed bugs from clothing involves either washing/drying or using a portable bed bug heater.

Reader Question: If clothing is found and has bed bugs how long can they survive and how do you get rid of them?


Editor Response

Hi Roberto,

Thanks for your question and sorry to hear about your bed bug problem.

If you wash your clothes in hot water followed by 20 to 30 minutes on the highest heat setting in the dryer, you will kill all bed bugs. Do not remove your clothes in the house, but do it outdoors and bag clothes to avoid dropping any bed bugs on your way to the washing machine.

Bed bugs can survive up to a year on clothes assuming they have access to a human host for a blood meal. Washing the clothes will immediately remove any threat.

If this is a constant problem and washing is difficult, you can heat treat clothes in a ThermalStrike Portable Bed Bug Heater. This is an expensive option (around $200) but perfect for anyone that travels since you can heat an entire suitcase or other items such as sneakers and hats and make them bed bug-free.

Write back if you have any other questions.

Regards,

Jeff

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