One of the scariest and creepiest things that people imagine is having dozens or even hundreds of tiny little bugs crawling all over you while you sleep. For nearly 1 out of 10 people, this nightmare is a reality. That’s right, 1 out of 10 Americans have dealt with a bed bug infestation. If you ever encounter a bed bug problem, you’ll quickly be searching how to kill bed bugs.
Understanding Bed Bugs
Before you learn how to kill bed bugs, you first must understand how bed bugs spread and how an infestation can happen quickly.
So, what are bed bugs? Well, they are kind of like tiny vampires. They are normally only active at night and feed off of human blood. They are called bed bugs because they are most commonly found in/around beds. They are usually about the size of a pencil eraser and brownish in color.
Bed bugs are the world’s best hitchhikers because that’s primarily how they are spread. If a person visits a place that has a current infestation, the little critters hitch a ride on clothing, jackets, luggage, etc. Once the person gets home, the bed bugs then begin infesting the new home.
A bed bug infestation won’t happen overnight. Normally the infestation can take a few weeks to months to become evident. The reproductive cycle for bed bugs is slower compared to other insects. But, a single pregnant female can lay nearly 5,000 eggs within 6 months.
As we noted earlier, bed bugs are not only found in beds. They are commonly found on bed frames, along the base of walls, in dressers, couches, chairs, electrical sockets, etc. They also easily travel to other rooms in the house by going through walls.
You can visit our Bed Bug Control page to learn more about how bed bugs are spread.
How to Kill Bed Bugs in 24 Hours
When it comes to trying to figure out how to kill bed bugs, you have to make sure that you can kill bed bugs in all the life cycles. Meaning, you have to kill the eggs, the larva and the adults. This is a difficult process because many eggs and larva are in protected areas like walls, mattresses, etc. The most effective way to kill bed bugs is to use a system that is called “a heat treatment”. By using a heat treatment, you can easily expect to be bed bug free within 24 hours.
The idea behind a heat treatment is simple. Bed bugs can’t survive in extremely hot temperatures. By heating a room/apartment/home to over 120 degrees Fahrenheit for a prolonged time, all the eggs, larva and adult bed bugs will be killed. In fact, heat is one of the few elements that will kill them all in the first application. However, you cannot just crank up the furnace to high and expect that to work. There’s a more methodical approach to using heat to kill bed bugs.
A heat treatment is effective because it heats everything in the house. The prolonged heat will penetrate closets, bed frames, furniture and even the walls, thus killing the bed bugs. To speed up the heating process, airflow is needed in the house. This helps the air circulate and reach some of the more protected areas. The airflow also helps in continuously heating the air.
When heating an area, you must also strategically plan out how long it takes to heat the room up to the proper temperature. Meaning, if the air is heated too fast, the bed bugs will quickly leave the area and go somewhere cooler. However, if the temperature is slowly heated over several hours, the bed bugs will be unaware of the lethal temperatures. They will in essence, stay put and get cooked.
There is specialized equipment that is used to make heat treatment more effective. Most importantly, temperature monitoring is needed. You must know how warm an area is so you can ensure that the bed bugs are being killed. Once an area is heated to the desired temperatures, it must maintain that temperature for several hours. Even though most stages of bed bugs die in a short period of time, the hot air will take longer to penetrate the more protected areas like couches, carpets, and walls.
Also, certain safety measures must be taken to ensure that nothing dangerous happens. The heaters need to be equipped with a thermostat. This will allow for accurate temperatures. They also need to have safety features so they shut off at a certain temperature. This will eliminate the risk of fire hazards.
Less Effective Ways to Kill Bed Bugs
When determining how to kill bed bugs, there are some other, less effective methods. Many people try using bed bug repellents or sprays. These are normally chemical based. They do work at repelling bed bugs, but they don’t kill them. In fact, once the repellent has worn off or lost is potency, the bed bugs will come back and there will be more than before.
Bug bombs are another method to deal with these pesky creatures. But using a bug bomb often leaves a rather foul smell in all of your furniture and clothing. Plus, the bed bugs can easily escape the main area as they are aware of the chemicals.
Whereas with heat, the bed bugs are unaware of the rising temperature and don’t leave.
The Right Tools for the Job
When it comes to determining how to kill bed bugs, we at Erdye’s Pest Control have the right tools for the job. Our specialized heat treatment equipment is quickly and easily setup. It’s also amazingly versatile; it doesn’t even have to be used in a building. We have effectively heat treated semi trucks, luggage, cars, and other smaller areas. Just check out our YouTube or Facebook to see videos of items we have treated to kill bed bugs.
We understand that not everyone is sure if they even have bed bugs; and you shouldn’t have to pay to find out if you do. That’s why we offer a 100% free inspection. We will inspect your property for any signs of these little vampires and then offer you some advice on how to kill bed bugs.
We get it, just the thought of dealing with bed bugs can send chills down your spin. You don’t have to live with bed bugs very long. You can call us at (715) 587-0626 to schedule your free inspection. We’ll help you determine the extent of your issues and walk you through a heat treatment plan designed to help you get rid of bed bugs once and for all.