Share on ThriftyFunThis guide contains the following solutions. Have something to add? Please share your solution!
I know this is a creepy subject, but bed bugs are becoming rampant. There is a very save chemical called diatamaceous earth you put under all the legs of every bed and couch in your house so they call in it and die. Also, wrap your beds in strong plastic wrap - the box springs as well. Dust your couches everywhere (including underneath and under the cushions). Diatomaceous earth will not hurt you or your pets. I hope this is helpful for some of you that are having the same problem we are having.
By Janet from Houston, TX
I live in an apartment for senior citizens and we had a few bedbug incidences. They called in an exterminator and they use heat to get rid of them. I was really scared and went and got plastic covers for my box spring and mattress. The exterminator came and gave us tips on what to look for, etc. He was really helpful. Heat seemed to work for the folks who had the problem. I don't know much the treatment costs.
If you have a bed bug problem, put down cat litter where the bugs are. Cat litter will kill bed bugs.
By Rai W. from Toronto, Ontario
Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.
I've known all my neighbors for 20 years. We live in a "luxury" apartment building. I don't know how to go about bringing up the subject and telling them. I feel I won't be invited or they will not come close to me.
I also have to let the management know. They know there is a problem in the building and have had a dog in my apartment, but everything was good. A month later they started. I'm trying to keep it under control. I vacuum everyday. There a only a few, but a few is to many.
It's also the preparation for an exterminator that freaks me out. I have a disability and from what I have read, everything has to taking out away from the wall and closets emptied.
By Bruno S.
We recently stayed at a hotel and now I've got bites all over me. Only, I am being bitten out of the house as well. Does this make sense to anyone? Thanks!
Here is some information on these types of things:
They may have gotten in your traveling bags, pockets, or shoes. I had them once and have since gotten rid of them. I had a very old pair of boots that I only wore around the house; they moved into the old cracked boots and seams and under the inside padding. Try shining your shoes with a professional grade oil based shoe polish from an old fashioned shoe repair store. I threw out my favorite old boots, but now polish my new shoes the old fashioned way. I found this link today as I was looking up baking soda, if I ever get them back.
A month ago we found bed bugs in our new sofa. We continued to search and found a couple more in our bedroom. Needless to say we threw everything out of our house that was not nailed down. We bought all new bedding and furniture and had an exterminator come in twice just to be safe. Since the first extermination we have seen a total of five bugs. I'm pretty sure I saw an adult bed bug the other day while vacuuming our new sofa, but I smashed it so fast with a bobby pin it wasn't recognizable anymore and the only parts left of it were black. We have placed double sided tape around our bedroom and new matress. I keep getting little red hive looking things on me, but usually only one at a time. My two year old gets them around his outer diaper region. My husband is trying to convinve me I'm crazy because I am always searching for these god awful bugs. I don't sleep lol. Since I'm not able to find any proof of any more bugs do I still have these things? The exterminator is not of much help either since we can't find any alive bugs. I'm constantly itching like crazy. Is this all in my head?
How do I get rid of bed bugs?
By poem300 from NYC
My question is how to rid my home of bed bugs. Bugs in the chairs, carpet and outside home.
From what I have been reading lately, the only sure way is to hire a qualified exterminator. There are a lot of scam exterminators popping up who are after your cash and and use ineffective products. Also there are a lot of ineffective products being offered that do not work. I would go to Google.com and type in your request to rid the house of bedbugs.
Instead of wasting money on an exterminator, invest your money in a steam cleaner. There no such thing of a magical chemical that will kill bed bugs in one shot. It takes hard work. Vacuum everyday and try to vacuum when bed bugs are awake, that's any time after 3am. If you have a steamer, steam bed, chair, couch and so on. Don't have a steamer use a steam iron or like some people said a hair dryer. Rubbing alcohol and spray like crazy. Thyme is a repellent to keep them in one area. Ground Silica gel cat litter with blender, processes or coffee grinder and sprinkle that on cracks, between bed, under couch and chairs..etc. Or even sprinkle carpet at night and vacuum it in morning.
Remember you can test any of these by catching a bed bug put in container(they don't climb) and test silica cat litter, the powder will stick to the bedbugs and will dehydrate them. They will be dead in a couple of hours. Do your research on bed bugs. Bed bugs are bugs not super villains. It will take time and hard work but it's worth it.
How can I rid a large upholstered chair (chaise) of unseen biting insects (bedbugs, mites)?
Raid kills bed bugs to a certain degree, however we had an exterminator several times and ended up tossing all furniture at the end because it was getting to difficult to keep up. If you know for a fact its only in that chair raid also apparently if you live ina very cold winter climate leaving it outside in at least minus 13 celius can kill them.
This is how I did a chair one time.
You will have to find a bag or plastic large enuff to contain it. Its a hassle but it works. I bought a chair at the thrift store and I wanted to make sure i didnt bring any unwanted visitors into the house. So I used a plastic tarp I got from Walmart and put the chair in the middle. I placed a fogger in there under the chair.(Do this outside) I made sure the top was sealed really well and can set the fogger off thru the plastic. It worked. I did later the next day give it a good cleaning with upholstery cleaner and let it air dry for a few days outside in the garage in an open ventilated area. There were dead fleas and a few other mysterious bugs all over inside the bag, so I am so glad i did this before i took it inside my house.
Burn it! This is a health hazard.
I would give it a good soaking spray with vinegar, probably more than once
I had the same problem/infestation (BAD!) and was told foggers nor cold/hot temperatures kill the Mites because they can endure extreme temps (both hot and cold)...(I tried the fogger first, only to come down the next morning to seeing Mites in the living room looking like they were having a picnic!). I got rid of the furniture & mattresses; vacuumed very thoroughly, very regularly. That was in November '07 and since then, slowly the problem has subsided. About a month ago, we saw ONE Mite on a wall, but nothing since then. It used to be we'd see them a lot, and even wake up with break outs from them.
How do you get rid of bedbugs from your home? How do you make something like a recipe from household products? What do you put together to kill them? Does anyone know? If so, let me know asap please.
By Whittany from Muncie, IN
There are home bedbug extermination kits. Look for bedbug extermination in a net search. The are really hard to get id of, so use these kits or call in a professional. They do not go away easily!
I know of only two ways that will get rid of them. 1. Heat the room super hot to kill them or 2. Freeze the room to kill them. Either one usally requires Professional extermination.
Diatomaceous earth, garden grade, not pool grade. Available at garden depts, feed stores, etc. It is even fed to livestock to help keep them well. Dust anywhere in the house or yard, even on pets. The only caution is to not breathe it in, as it is a fine dust. It is good for all kinds of bugs, it cracks their skin and they dehydrate.
Has anybody ever heard of Bed Bug Chasers? Has anybody had any success treating an entire house with heat to get rid of bed bugs? Rather than chemicals I would like to treat the whole house rather a room or two just to be safe.
By Mike from Huntington, NY
I don't know if there is a remedy that you can do yourself for bed bugs. From every thing I have heard it takes an exerminator and more than one treatment.
I read that tea tree oil will get rid of them. Maybe spraying it on the floors will help.
Bed bugs can survive for up to a year without feeding on a blood source, so figuring out how to kill bed bugs is a real challenge. These parasites are able to hide in small cracks and crevices, are difficult to find, and even harder to eradicate. Females can lay up to 300 eggs, which hatch within ten days, thus creating an ever-growing population.
Once an infestation has occurred, patience and persistence is the key to ridding the area of bed bugs.
When choosing a professional bed bug exterminator, be careful! Many companies that only specialize in how to kill bedbugs aren't as qualified as full-service pest control companies. Your best bet is to find an established pest control service company that has been in service for at least five years, and you might also ask around and see if anybody you know or look at review sites (like yelp.com) to see if there are recommendations for any specific pest control services.
Make sure the pest control company you choose is certified in your state. Exterminators can be pretty expensive; expect to pay between $250 to $1,000 per room. You'll also want to make sure you choose a pest control company that will make follow-up visits, these are usually necessary for bed bug elimination. Bed bugs are nasty critters and can cause serious illness. There is an apartment complex near me that had to have the tenants throw out ALL of their furniture and rip up the carpeting before the exterminator began his work because they are so difficult to kill.
I would urge you to beg, borrow or steal (well, not steal) the money to hire an experienced exterminator. It will be well worth it.
Do a search on Diatomacous Food Grade. According to the reviews it will get rid of about anything and will not harm people or pets. It's sold on the internet or at Home Depot, or Garden shops and is reasonably priced.
We have bedbugs in the apartments where I live. They haven't reached my apt yet. How do I get rid of bedbugs or prevent them?
By Dollie from Tucson, AZ
We don't know were they came from, but they have invaded my leather couch and the store bought sprays are not working very well. Does anyone have a better idea?
Are there any natural remedies for getting rid of bed bugs, that really work?
By IsadoraD from Boston, MA
Bedbugs are difficult to get rid of on your own.Best to hire an exterminator to do it correctly. No natual remedies or cheap way to get rid of them.
you can keep bed bugs at bay using tansy. Its an herb with many uses, one of which is repelling bugs. I have used it on mission trips various places to keep various creepy crawlys at bay, including bed bugs. I would suggest filling socks with tansy and putting them in your bed.
Sprinkle tansy leaves around the perimeters of all the rooms in your house, under all the cushions on couches and chairs, on your mattress etc. Then you must seal all the cracks, corners etc. This is how people dealt with them a hundred years ago before the discovery of DDT, bad as that was it did get rid of them. Then wash all your bedding, clothes in Hot water, I would boil anything that you could like sheets etc.
You can find a recipe for vinegar of the four thieves (an extremely effective all natural herbal insect repellent) at www.bulkherbstore.com, you can purchase tansy there as well. I am not affiliated with them in any way they are just a source for herbs for me. Spray this everywhere, including a diluted version on you, spray on bed posts, mattresses etc! Doing this will help, but you might still want to consider an exterminator as bed bugs are extremely hard to get rid of but it can be done.
Try this first and see what happens replacing tansy as often as necessary. I also recommend putting diatemaceous earth around all perimeters this kills all insects good and bad by cutting into their bodies bed bugs hide in walls and mattresses anywhere it is dark so using a mixture of tansy and the diatemaceous earth might be best in all the places named above. You can buy it for the the bulk herb store too. It is completely non toxic and harmless to humans. Hope this helps and good luck.
How do I get rid of bed bugs?
By Mary M.
What are the steps to kill bedbugs? How do you clean the sheets with splattered blood and feces from bedbugs?
By Millie W.
When traveling how do you prevent bed bugs from coming home with you?
By audrey from Bedford, PA
Use the luggage rack or the desk to put your luggage on. Hang up your clothes. Don't put your clothes on the floor or on the bed for bedbugs to hide in and for you to accidentally pack them home with you.
Are bed bugs red? What should I do about it?
By Deborah from Westland
I'm trying to find out if baking soda kills off bed bugs. Does anyone know? I want to get them before they infest my apartment, I detected them early. They are here due to a neighbor who brought in road side furniture.
How do I get rid of bed bugs?
What do bed bug bites look like and how to I get rid of bedbugs?
By Kay B.
How do I get rid of bed bugs myself? I'm not infested yet, I think my neighbor down stairs brought them here. I saw him bring in used furniture and now I'm suffering for it.
By Chris S
ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.
How does one get rid of bed bugs apart from the wet soap trick?
By Adrian from Beograd, Serbia
I've heard (through the ThriftyFun site) there is an organic product called diatomaceous earth. I don't know if it's available in your area, but I hear gardening centers in the US have it. From what I've heard, it's quite effective. It apparently works by "drying out" the bugs, sucking away their moisture until only a dry husk remains.
Logic tells me you could sprinkle this all over your bed first thing in the morning and vacuum it away in the evening. I wish I had better information to offer. However, if you search the internet for this phrase, "diatomaceous earth", you should be able to locate the product.
One caution: Others who recommend the product advise to get only "garden grade", not "pool grade". (07/20/2010)
There are tons of entries on this, and I don't think that anything easy is the answer. My mother, who is 80, said that everyone had bedbugs until DDT was introduced. If thyme or soap or other home remedies worked, I am sure that they would not be the problem that they are. Of course, one cannot use DDT anymore, but I think a professional exterminator with experience with bedbugs is the best solution. (07/28/2010)
The main problem with bedbugs is they are persistent blood suckers causing serious itching and sleeplessness. No sleep for several days makes one tired and scared to go to sleep. The only way to deal with them is by being persistent and kill them.
I was infested for the past six weeks and got the apartment sprayed by an exterminator two days ago. I got infected by my neighbor who moved from Ohio with bugs, 4months ago. I was with less sleep for more than a week and last night I slept like a baby. One spraying doesn't eliminate the problem, if heavily infested. It requires two more visits, 2 and 3 weeks later on. The exterminator may not have killed all the eggs, as he does the spraying with sight and intuition, and it's difficult to spot all possible hidings and egg laying.
The mentally draining part is preparing the house for exterminator visit. Believe me it's tiring. Strip beds and wash all sheets, pillow cases, mattress pads, blankets, comforters, and bed skirts. Remove everything from bedroom closets and dresser drawers and place in plastic bags. Remove headboard and bed frame; remove all curtains and wash. Vacuum all floors in infected rooms; vacuum couches, chairs, closets, and closet shelves, shoes, and dresser drawers. After vacuuming throw away the vacuum bag sealed in a plastic bag. After doing all this, I felt like I should end my life.
Discard all clutter: cardboard boxes, newspapers, stacks of magazines, shopping bags, plastic bags, and stacks of old clothes.
Now the physically tiring part. Access is needed to baseboards around every room. Move all things touching the walls to 2 feet from the baseboards in all rooms. All rooms should be vacuumed thoroughly. I was so tired and with no sleep, I wanted to die or walkaway from it all.
Bed bugs are a serious problem. They attack you, not when you're moving, but when you're quiet and asleep. In your sofa they attack you when you're engrossed in the movie plot and are not moving. On the computer table at the keyboard they wait for you and if your hand or legs are not moving, they attack you. They are very persistent. Once infested, they know exactly where all the places you'll be: sofa, computer table and chair, dining table, etc. and wait for you. They colonize all over. You can't outsmart them. If you're infested in bed, and move to the couch, you may sleep OK for a day or two, but very soon they'll be there in large numbers. If you move to the spare 3rd room, you may sleep OK for 2-3days; but on day 4 they are there, too. These little blood-thirsty Draculas are looking for food, and they chase you all over. They are usually not found in kitchen or bathroom. Why because in kitchen one is cooking and fidgeting and to the bathroom it's a quick visit.
The important thing is the diagnosis and how soon you do it to contain the problem. It took me 6 weeks to diagnose the itching problem as bed bug related. 6 weeks ago, the first week I noticed itching on feet and hands, real serious itching to the point of peeling off the skin. I thought it was poison ivy and treated it. Second week, I thought it was a food allergy itching and was contemplating Benadryl. 3rd week, I went for a stomach purge with a purgative; 4th week I was on vacation in the mountains. This is when I noticed no itching and sound sleep. Wow. I came back home, and the 5th week the itching started again. This is when I have decided to go see a doctor. In sixth week, one night I was tremendously itchy at 4AM and got up and noticed bedbugs crawling into the crevices on the bed. I immediately went to the living room and slept on the floor and got up well rested and was very happy. I reported the problem to the landlord and slept on the floor for the 2nd night also, peacefully. The 3rd night was when I noticed that they are on the floor carpet, too. I even slept in the bathroom.
How to find if you're infested: Did you notice serious urge to itch on the exposed parts of the body like feet and hands. If you sleep without a shirt then on your back, too. Is this itching and urge to scratch more active between 2AM and 4AM. They are very active at this time of the day, because you're in deep sleep in those hours. If itching urge wakes you up, switch the light on or use a flash light and look for bugs running to their hiding place. They usually hide under the fitted mattress case, seams, and crevices.
How to deal with them? I used isopropyl alcohol (91%) in a spray bottle and sprayed on bedding and other cloth items. Instant death. For hard surfaces, computer table chair, coffee table, dining table and chairs I used Clorox spray with bleach, it's strong and kills them. The bed is the main place where 90% of the bugs live. Why because you spend 8 hours sleeping there, quietly. Of course you also spend 8 hours near the computer and TV, but you're moving on the swivel chair or changing the channels on TV or going to the restroom, dining, etc. Orange Guard also works.
Bed bugs are persistent and you can get rid of them by being persistent. When you notice one switch off the TV and cell phone, and start spraying. Follow them to their hiding place and kill eggs and babies. Even after professional services, if you notice one, search and destroy. The only way to get rid off them is by killing them, their eggs, and extended families. Rubbing alcohol and Clorox cleaner with bleach was recommended by other people on the internet. The exterminator has access to stronger sprays, which he used on: the bed, bed seams, box spring and all corners, all baseboards in all rooms, computer table and chair, couch and sofa and also on cushion seams, and carpet. I feel OK now, until the survivors regroup and attack. This will be dealt in 2 weeks and the final spray is in another 3 weeks. I've noticed that my computer chair made me itch and it has lots of crevices, so I threw it away. I threw my pillows and fitted sheets away. As per the recommendation of pest control guy I've purchased from Walmart, Allerease Bed Bug Allergy Protection, which is a zippered microfiber mattress protector. (see attached picture) My bed and box spring are now encapsulated in a zippered bag. This is precaution against the eggs which might hatch in the mattress and boxspring and might reinfest. Make sure it says bed bug protection on the zippered case.
All this physical and mental strain makes one depressed, tired, and angry and this coupled with sleeplessness creates a phobia. I'm getting over it and slept the past 2 days, happily.
If you don't want to hire an exterminator, you could do the following: Get spray bottles of alcohol and Clorox (see pic below) and also Orange Guard. See my other below long post on how to prepare for extermination. Get rid of all the clutter.
The first place to clean is the bed, where 90% of the bugs are found. Slowly lift fitted sheets and notice bugs and little bugs and eggs. Spray isopropyl 91% or use Orange Guard. (Don't use Clorox on cloth items and sofas; it bleaches them.) Cover all 4 sides of the bed and top and bottom seams. Spray thoroughly even if you don't see bugs, because it's difficult to see eggs. Do the same for boxspring. Put all sheets, fitted sheets, pillow cases, and all blankets in a big trash bag. Wash these at a Washeteria washing machine and not in home machines. The washeteria has professional, industrial strength machines and your machine can't match it. Wash and dry at hot. Spray on baseboards. Spray on computer chair and table. Spray on sofa and cushions, seams, and all over. Wash all clothes you think are infested in hot. That's it.
Encase the bed and boxspring in bedbug cases (see picture of my bed and boxspring, enclosed in bedbug case, from Walmart). See pic in my other long post for Bedbug case pic. I also applied Vaseline to the 4 legs, to discourage bugs from crawling up. Any questions, please ask. (08/30/2010)
Here's the picture of isopropyl alcohol 91% and Clorox with bleach. These sprays kill them instantly. (08/30/2010)
What are some ways I can get rid of bedbugs?
I need information on fighting bed bugs in my apartment in Los Angeles.
I had a mild bed bug infestation that I thought was over a couple of months ago, but I found one on my comforter this morning.