Using steam to kill bed bugs and vacuuming is one of the most effective and safe ways to get rid of them. Steam is generated when water gets heated up to 212 degrees F (100 C) and the water turns into a gas. Bed bugs are known to die when exposed to temperatures from 120 degrees F (around 50 C) so steam is more than hot enough to kill both bed bugs and their eggs.
Steam is a contact killer which means that as soon as it comes in contact with a bed bug or it’s eggs, it will kill immediately. When I had bed bug problems I steamed my mattress at least once a week and brought the sheets and covers to the laundromat to use the dryer. Using the dryer on it’s hottest setting for at least 20 mins also kills bed bugs and it’s eggs but make sure you don’t stuff the dryer full. It needs to have enough room to circulate air and heat all corners of the sheets. I usually left mine in for 40 mins just in case because it actually takes some time before the dryer heats up so it’s not always at it’s peak heat during the entire time.
Anyway, back to steaming. Most steamers you see are clunky and not meant for your mattress or sofa. You wouldn’t want to use a big carpet steamer and run that on your bed. Using a clothing steamer may work but the nozzle may not allow you reach the hard-to-reach places. Professional steamers can cost hundreds of dollars so you don’t want to waste your money on that. My recommendation is to get portable steamer that allows you to have the flexibility to maneuver around while the multiple nozzles allow you to switch to one that suits the situation to make your life easier. They aren’t that expensive and I found that they’re actually quite handy.
When dealing with bed bugs the most common thing people will do is vacuum. Most people already own a vacuum so it makes sense that they try to suck the bed bugs away. Although this does work to some extent (if you’re lucky to physically spot them and suck them up) it doesn’t completely eliminate them. Bed bugs are expert hiders. They can squeeze into the tiniest of places where a vacuum may not reach.
After bed bugs feed they go back into hiding. They leave traces of feces in the form of little black dots and their molten skin after they molt to grow bigger as they enter their next phase of their life cycle. This is pretty disgusting and you definitely should vacuum this away as soon as possible. They cement the eggs down so you may need to use a toothbrush or some other scrubbing tool to loosen them before vacuuming them up.
Remember, as soon as you finish vacuuming, ALWAYS dispose of the contents RIGHT AWAY and throw it outside in the garbage. Bed bugs are tiny so if you just leave your vacuum cleaner there without emptying it, the bed bugs can easily crawl back out.
Other Ways to Get Rid of Bed Bugs
|Sprays & Powders||Kill with Heat||Hire a Professional|