I definitely wanted to know how to kill bed bugs asap, so that’s a first for this blog post! The fight against bed bug infestation has become a challenging endeavor for homeowners who have suffered from the pesky, on-going intrusions of these parasitic insects. Some people have no idea how to handle the infestation and ending up seeking professional help. However, there are home remedies that you can try on your own. Effectiveness of these methods will depend on the degree of infestation, but they are still worth the try.
Listed below are the items you need to have in order to get rid of bed bugs. These things are easily accessible and can be purchased anywhere.
- a) Rubbing Alcohol
Spraying adequate amount of rubbing alcohol to the bed bugs hiding places may kill some of them on contact. While rubbing alcohol alone does not entirely wipe out the total population of bed bugs, it can weaken the pests and lessen their number.
- b) Fruit and Vegetable Pesticides
If you are after organic insecticides that are safe and environment-friendly, there are some insecticides composed of pyrethrins and canola oil. These are great alternatives if you have children and pets in your household.
- c) Steam Treatments
It has been proven that bed bugs cannot tolerate steam. One of the benefits of steam is that it penetrates deep into the infested objects, reaching areas that are hard to reach such as small crevices and corners. There are portable handheld steam cleaners that give off powerful vapor flow that can reach even the most unreachable parts.
- d) Dry Heat
High temperatures are able to kill bed bugs and even bacteria. You can use your dryer for this technique. Put infested fabrics, footwear, carpets, stuffed toys, bags and other items in the dryer. Set the dyer to run for five minutes generating temperatures about 140, 150 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit respectively. To ensure no bed bugs survive, it is advisable to run the dryer for another 20 minutes.
- e) Duct Tape
Set a duct tape trap to catch the bed bugs. Position the duct tape to areas where bed bugs would crawl to get to you such as the legs and rails of your bed. Bed bugs attempting to come near you will get stuck on the tape before they can reach you.
- f) Scented Dryer Sheets
Strong odor can repel bed bugs, so this must give you an idea on how to get rid of them. Make them stay away from your sleeping area by placing 8 to 10 layers of scented fabric softener between the mattress and box spring. Do the same between the mattress and the bed sheet. Put one or two scented dryer sheets under your pillow as well. You can also use the scented sheets in your linen closets.
- g) Baking Soda
Baking soda is widely known for its desiccation property. Because of its dying-out characteristic, it is also used to eliminate bed bugs. Use a paintbrush dipped in baking soda and spread a thin layer of it in the gaps and crevices where bed bugs are hiding. You can also spread a layer of baking soda between the box spring and mattress. After a couple of days, vacuum the baking soda and do the same procedure over again.
- h) Lavender
The relaxing aroma of lavender can repel bed bugs; hence applying fresh lavender or concentrated lavender oil around your bed or other places where they dwell can help you get rid these pests.
- i) Rosemary and Eucalyptus
Just like lavender, other essential oils such as rosemary and eucalyptus oils are also effective against bed bugs. You can use any of these essential oils or you can mix them altogether in a single solution. Mix the solution into a cup of water, put it in a bottle spray and then spray directly on the bugs and around your bed.
- j) Mint Leaves
The scent of mint leaves also repels bed bugs. You can just simply place the leaves around the house; it will serve as a bed bug repellent. To get the best out of it, crush the leaves and sprinkle around the bed. You can also tuck mint leaves between bed sheets and mattress. Some people also find it effective to rub crushed mint leaves on their skin.
- k) Cayenne Pepper
Some people claim that bed bugs are not fond of cayenne pepper, it fends them away. Just sprinkle a light layer of the spice in areas where bed bugs hide.
- l) Hair Dryer
Aside from your dryer, you can also use your hair dryer to kill bed bugs. It is an accepted fact that bed bugs cannot survive temperatures exceeding 113 degree Fahrenheit. Set your hair dryer to the highest heat setting, point the hot blower towards infested places starting with around your sleeping area, mattress seams and cracks that may accommodate eggs. Keep on blowing the areas for just about 60 minutes to guarantee no pests have survived. Use the vacuum to suck all remains of the bugs. Clean the vacuum filter right away to get rid of surviving pests or eggs.
- m) Vacuum Cleaner
Bed bugs can live anywhere, in your bed, sofas, curtains, furniture, absolutely everywhere. Make it a habit to vacuum everything inside the room. This can help remove bed bugs and their eggs. Give special attention to the box spring and mattresses because these are the areas where they usually reside. Regular vacuum cleaning is highly recommended to make sure all bugs and eggs are removed.
- n) Commercial Pesticides
If applied precisely and directly to the insects, most commercial insecticides will kill bed bugs and their eggs almost immediately. Some pesticides are more potent and can only be administered by professionals. These pesticides cannot be obtained easily. However, there are commercial pesticides that you can use if you opt to do it yourself, these includes:
- Diatomaceous earth (DE) dust for bug control is different from diatomaceous earth used in swimming pool filters. DE dust has desiccation property that dries out bed bugs when they get in contact with it. It is widely used by several pest control companies in bed bug control. This fairly economical powder can be purchased online or can be bought from garden stores. Sprinkle the dust around voids and crevices where bed bugs potentially hide.
- Low toxicity contact sprays like Bedlam or SteriFab are expected to eliminate bed bugs only on contact.
- Stronger and longer-lasting insecticides like Pyrethroid sprays can be used against bed bugs and are deemed effective in eliminating pesky bugs in the past few years, but there have been recent cases that confirm the resistance of bed bugs to this pesticide. Precautionary measures should be taken when using pyrethroid sprays, strictly follow the instructions indicated on the label. The place should be vacated prior to the spraying due to its harmful effects.
We are going to disregard “bug bombs”, otherwise known as aerosol foggers, because they are typically ineffective in eradicating bed bugs. These products fail to penetrate deep places such as gaps and crevices that contain bed bugs. The use of foggers is not recommended.