Bed Bug Bombs & Foggers: Do They Work

3 Do It Yourself (DIY) Bed Bugs Bombs

People commonly use bed bug bombs — commonly known as insecticide foggers- to fend off bed bugs and other pests in their home and other areas. But do they work? Like most DIY treatments, it depends. Factors like environmental conditions, intensity of infestation and method of treatment application can all play a role in determining control success. Read about the three DIY bed bug foggers below for a better understanding of their efficacy.

Bed Bug Bombs & Foggers: Do They Work

Essential Oils

Volatile essential oils are frequently used as a treatment option due to their less harmful effects on bed bugs and on humans. However, consumers tend to over-apply natural and other insecticide treatments due to a general lack of training on proper application techniques. Hence excess insecticides may wind up in areas like beds and couches where humans and pets may inhale them, potentially causing non-target effects.

In 2013, researchers conducted a study to determine the efficacy of a variety of essential oils to treat bed bugs. While findings indicated that essential oils could kill the bed bugs, researchers identified many other factors that may influence efficacy of control. By containing the bed bugs in a lab, the essential oil could be applied directly onto the bed bugs, allowing the bed bugs to completely absorb the oils. In a home or other natural environment, however, bed bugs hide in cracks and crevices, making direct contact impractical.

Additionally, essential oil products include other substances that may contribute to killing the bed bugs. Since “natural” products are exempt from the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, they do not have to disclose all ingredients on their packaging. Consumers using essential oils should consider that they may not know exactly which ingredients they are actually using.

Use of Bed Bug Nymphs

Researchers believe that the smell of bed bug nymphs (immature stage) may deter other bed bugs. Bed bugs emit one scent when they’re babies and a different scent when they’re adults. Researchers from Lund University discovered that the smell of nymphs was discouraging to other bed bugs, including both adults and nymphs. This method requires extensive knowledge of bed bug smells and is therefore not a recommended bed bug solution.

Store-Bought Foggers

Another home-treatment option often suggested involves store-bought bed bug foggers. Ohio State University researchers found that foggers were unable to infiltrate bed bug hiding spots. The ingredients in the foggers caused the bed bugs to divide and migrate to other areas. This can make treatment more difficult. Additionally, foggers often contain DDT, a chemical compound that bed bugs have built resistance to. It’s also dangerous to use multiple foggers in the same location, as the products may explode if too many are used in one area. Since there is no proof of the effectiveness of bed bug foggers, they shouldn’t be sought after as a reliable treatment.

Enlisting Help

So, do bed bug bombs work? DIY solutions may not be effective for areas with high infestation levels. The more bugs that are present, the longer it will take to see success with these solutions. To help get rid of bed bugs quicker, appropriate methods must be used to target the infestation and environment. This requires prior knowledge and experience of handling bed bugs and treatments.

Since DIY solutions cannot guarantee success, call Terminix® to help get rid of bed bugs. Our customized treatment plans can aid in tackling infestations around your home so you don’t have to worry about experimenting with your own solutions.

How Does an Ultrasonic Fogger Work and What are its Applications?

The ultrasonic technology finds application in both industry and household sectors. This article deals with the use of ultrasonics in foggers. What are the uses of an ultrasonic fogger? How does it work? Read on to find out.

The ultrasonic technology finds application in both industry and household sectors. This article deals with the use of ultrasonics in foggers. What are the uses of an ultrasonic fogger? How does it work? Read on to find out.

We use different types of appliances, devices and machines everyday. But we seldom think about the principles they work on. Right from light bulbs to laptops, there are so many scientific phenomena at work, but we don’t pay much attention to the engineering that goes into these machines. But there are some like us who are interested in knowing how things work.

Here we discuss the working of ultrasonic foggers. Fogger is a device found in many households; and those using ultrasonics are quite popular, owing to their advantages over foggers harnessing other technologies.

Ultrasonic Foggers – The Crux

  • Foggers create fog. A piezoelectric transducer (resonating frequency 1.6MHz) produces high-energy vibrations which cause the water to turn into fog.
  • The transducer creates oscillations of high frequency on the water surface. This causes the water to turn into vapor.
  • High pressure compression waves are created on the water surface, causing vapor molecules to be released into air.
  • Water particles in the fog are of a size less than 5 microns.
  • Ultrasonic foggers cannot be run dry; they need sufficient amount of water to function.
  • The water needs to be deionized or distilled.
  • A built-in sensor detects the presence of water and activates the transducer plate.
  • The transducer vibrates causing the water to turn into droplets, which vaporize to turn into fog particles.
  • Unlike thermal or heat-based foggers, the fog generated by an ultrasonic fogger is cold and wet.
  • These foggers are small devices. They have an external AC/DC adapter for power supply. They are cost-effective.

Uses of an Ultrasonic Fogger

Ultrasonic Foggers: How they Work and the Work they Do

A fogger is any device that creates fog. Usually, the fog it creates contains an insecticide for killing insects. Foggers are widely used as an alternative to pest control services. They contain pyrethroids, a kind of synthetic insecticides and pyrethrins that are insecticides derived from chrysanthemum flowers. The use of foggers is not limited to just pest control. Foggers are used to create low-hanging fog made from various chemicals, liquids or even dry ice.

An ultrasonic fogger or mister uses water to produce fog. Ultrasonic waves are focused on water, causing it to turn into a dry-feeling gas. Nowadays, these foggers are popularly used to create fog in dance clubs as also in home decoration and landscaping. Owing to their capacity to generate a high level of humidity, they can be used in germination rooms or greenhouses for promoting plant growth. You can always use a humidistat for controlling and monitoring humidity levels maintained by the ultrasonic fogger.

The fog units of the fogger use a piezoelectric transducer that has a resonating frequency of around 1.6MHz. These high-energy vibrations cause the water to turn into a fog-like cloud, thus generating fog. These foggers use ultrasonic waves to produce fog that consists of water particles of the size of less than 5 microns. This fog can penetrate to the tiniest of spaces, thus eliminating chances of any free water. The ultrasonic fogger circuit is not very difficult to design. These foggers have very few moving parts and require no special temperature and pressure conditions. This kind of design and working of ultrasonic foggers makes them a low-maintenance and economical appliance. Moreover, they are easy to install and use.

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When used for agricultural purposes, it is important that there are no free water particles that can damage the plants and that water does not condense on the plants or their growing mediums. Since ultrasonic foggers produce water particles of the size of 5 microns or less, there is no possibility of condensation on the plants’ surface or their growing medium. Also, the humidity levels are such that seedlings can grow healthily.

This was about creating fog of plain water. What if you add soluble chemicals to water? Will the fogger still create fog? Of course, it will! And that makes the ultrasonic fogger, a wonderful machine. The same principle of fog formation can be used in so many ways. Add insecticides to water in the fogger and its fog can be used to kill insects, add nutrient solutions to water and you will be able to give nutrient treatment to your plants.

Now, something about an ultrasonic hydroponic fogger. It is a device that produces nutrient fog and is used in a hydroponic system. What is a hydroponic system? Hydroponics is the method of cultivating plants using nutrient solutions. What’s the role of an ultrasonic fogger in hydroponic gardening? It is used to generate oxygenated fog mist in the root region of plants. The water particles it generates are about 5-15 micrometers in size and they are absorbed by the plants’ roots. Ultrasonic hydroponic foggers thus help in accelerating the plant growth process.

And now about the role of ultrasonic foggers in aeroponics. Aeroponics is a system wherein plants are cultivated in a mist environment without the use of soil or any aggregate medium. While a hydroponic system makes use of water as a growing medium, an aeroponic system is devoid of any growing medium. An aeroponic system can make use of ultrasonic foggers to create mist that provides plants with essential nutrients and minerals. One disadvantage of using this fogger in aeroponics is the size of water droplets it generates. The droplet size of a few microns can lead to excessive root hair growth in the plants and hamper the development of a lateral root system.

To cut the long story short, foggers work on the principle of generating vibrations that cause water to turn into tiny droplets which vaporize to turn into fog. And ultrasonic foggers use ultrasonic waves for that. So, tomorrow if someone asks you what is an ultrasonic fogger or how does it work, show them what you just read.

Freezing Bed Bugs: How Does It Work?

Using Cold to Kill Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are small bodied insects, but once they infest a home, apartment, hotel, hospital, or other structure, they can quickly become a big problem. If you’re researching you’ve probably heard by now that freezing bed bugs a highly effective means to exterminate these pests. Pest Management Professionals (PMPs) across the country are using Cryonite to eliminate these critters, and for good reason. Our patented carbon dioxide snow kills bedbugs and other pests on contact.

Even though we have a great solution to bed bug problems, we understand the curiosity people have over these annoying pests. At Cryonite, we wanted to provide you with answers to common questions people routinely ask us when their home or business becomes infested with bed bugs.

An adult bed bug. Where do they come from? Is freezing an effective solution?

Where do they come from?

People often wonder about the source of their infestation. In many situations, it’s nearly impossible to give the definitive source because these pests are notorious hitchhikers. Bed bugs can be found in any part of the world, and may harbor within luggage, handbags, clothes, and backpacks. If a child goes to school with bed bugs in their backpack or on their clothing, it can quickly spread to other homes within a couple days. Going to the movie theater could result in a few bed bugs crawling onto your clothes and hiding until you get home. Bed bugs have also been found in taxis, buses, retail establishments and restaurants.

What do bed bugs do once they get inside a home, hotel room, or apartment?

In a word, spread. Don’t let the name deceive you, bedbugs won’t just live in a mattress or box springs. Like most living things, bed bugs want to be close to food (humans) and shelter. Because of this, bed bugs may harbor in all kinds of places. In addition to beds, you may find bedbugs in:

  • Couches
  • Curtains
  • Wallpaper seams
  • Door hinges
  • Toy boxes
  • Bedding
  • Underneath rugs
  • Closets
  • Books
  • Pet beds
  • Window moldings
  • Behind posters and picture frames
  • And many other places

How do bedbugs survive?

It’s obvious, and it’s the most disturbing thing about bed bugs, but they survive by feeding on blood. But bedbugs don’t come out of hiding without reason.. They usually only come out to feed, and that happens about once a week. They like to hide near their source of food, so you can usually find them 5-10 feet away from where they are getting their meals. To make them even more of a threat, some bedbugs have lived up to a year without a meal, and only two bed bugs can be the beginning of a larger infestation.

How can they be killed?

Most conversations about bedbugs end up coming down to one idea: what is the best and most efficient way of killing them? Bed bugs are one of the most difficult pests to exterminate completely, so we highly suggest that anyone with a bed bug problem consult a professional. There are do-it-yourself methods that you can try (such as vacuuming routinely, encasing your mattresses, and placing glue monitors underneath every leg of a bedframe), and while these methods might help to contain an infestation, they are usually not enough to eliminate the problem.

Heat treatments have become popular over the years, but they are expensive and almost always should be used in conjunction with a residual treatment. When treating for bed bugs with heat the air where bedbugs are living must be heated up to at least 118 degrees, and this heat needs to penetrate far enough down into whatever hole or crevice they are hiding in for it to be effective. If not, the bedbugs won’t be killed. This is why most professionals that use heat treatments also include residual treatments.

Residual applications of insecticides are a primary way of killing bed bugs but these cannot be applied to some sites where bed bugs might be found, such as electronics, stuffed toys, backpacks, etc. Fumigation is effective in eliminating bed bugs but is expensive, and people need to vacate their home/business for 2-3 days. Bedbugs have also shown resistance to some pyrethroid insecticides.

The last alternative is freezing. Freezing with Cryonite is a quick, safe, and effective way to kill bed bugs. Cryonite is safe to use on electronics, books, toys, clothing, bedding and other sites where bed bugs may harbor but where residual treatments cannot be applied. Combined with vacuuming and residual treatments into bed bug harborages like wall voids and cracks, Cryonite can be the key component in a fully integrated bed bug control strategy.

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The Cryonite system, proven enemy of bed bugs.

How can Cryonite help?

We’re glad you asked! At Cryonite, we want to help people, and our equipment does exactly that. Our technology has been tried and tested, and the results are unanimous. What happens is this: carbon dioxide snow (or dry ice snow), which is about -110° F, comes out of the nozzle and is sprayed onto bed bugs or other insects. The bed bugs/insects are killed instantly by freezing with no residue remaining after application. It is non-staining and non-damaging to most any object or surface allowing it to be applied to most any site bed bugs or other insects may hide.

Hopefully we’ve answered your questions about bed bugs and the technique of freezing them as a pest control method. If you have any questions or would like to learn more about the Cryonite method, contact us—we’d love to help!

What Are Cold Foggers and How Do They Work?

What are cold foggers?

A cold fogger is a device you can use to fight pest problems both indoors and outdoors. You can also use them to disinfect indoor spaces, as well as get rid of mold and unpleasant odors.

A cold fogger is “cold” because it’s the opposite of a thermal fogger. Cold foggers don’t use heat to vaporize the fogging liquid and turn it into a mist. Instead, they use cold spraying methods, which, in most cases, use high air pressure to spray the fogging liquid out in tiny particles.

Cold foggers usually come either in a handheld fogger or a backpack fogger. The handheld versions are usually cheaper while the backpack cold foggers are easier to carry and therefore more practical.

The most popular type of cold fogger is the ultra-low volume (ULV) fogger. Most of the time, ULV foggers are considered the same as cold foggers.

How do they work?

Inside the casing of a cold fogger is an electric motor. This is the main part of a ULV fogger since it is responsible for turning the liquid into tiny droplets. The power of the airflow will depend on the power of the motor.

The motors of most handheld foggers are approximately 1-3 horsepower (HP) but vehicle-mounted foggers have much more powerful motors, up to 20 HP. Some cold foggers use oil-based fogging solutions while others use water-based solutions. There are foggers that can be used with both types of solutions. The fogging solution goes in the tank which is either in the body of the fogger or attached to the bottom of the machine.

Most cold foggers work using electricity. This means that you must have a power outlet near the area to be fogged or an extension cord that can reach the target area. Some, however, are battery-powered and others use gasoline to power the motor.

When you turn the fogger on, the motor will pump the fogging solution out of the tank. A blower then sprays the liquid out through a special nozzle located on the front of the fogger. This nozzle pressurizes the air (either by being small enough to confer high pressure or by having a vortex of high-speed air that the liquid is pumped through), turning the fogging solution into a fine mist.

Particle size

The advantage that ULV foggers have over thermal foggers is that they allow you to control the particle size. On standard ULV foggers, you’ll have the option of setting the particle size from 5–50 microns. You can adjust the droplet size a ULV fogger produces by changing the flow rate of the solution.

This is definitely useful if you need to fog in different areas.

You might want to use smaller particles indoors since they stay in the air longer and can reach smaller gaps and holes in the walls and floor as well as the spaces behind furniture and other tight spaces. Smaller particles are better when you want to kill mosquitoes since the most effective droplet size for this is from 10-15 microns.

For larger insects that live outdoors, you’ll want to use a droplet size at the higher end of the spectrum. Even a small breeze can blow smaller droplets away from the target area. Larger particles, on the other hand, will reach the target area even in slightly windy conditions.

Cold fogger use

Cold foggers are often set in automatic mode and left to fog an indoor area since there’s no need to have a person operating the fogger (unless they are gasoline-powered). Gasoline-powered cold foggers and thermal foggers should not be run unsupervised due to the fire risk.

It wouldn’t be effective to leave a fogger in a static place for a long time when fogging outdoors, though. Some ULV foggers come with a special flexible hose and a handle to allow you to use them as portable foggers, walking around and fogging hard to reach areas.

Fogging with a cold fogger

Cold fogger prices

When looking at cold fogger prices, the average price starts around $200. This can rise to $1000+, depending on the power, capacity, and functionality of the fogger.

In comparison, you can get a basic thermal fogger for just $50. Keep in mind that a professional thermal fogger can cost $1000+, too.

Thermal vs. Cold Foggers: Advantages and Disadvantages

Thermal and cold foggers are two different types of devices used for the same purpose: insect control.

In this article, we’re going to look at the advantages and disadvantages of both thermal and cold foggers. Let’s start with thermal foggers.

Thermal Foggers: Advantages

The thick, visible fog

One of the major advantages of thermal foggers is the fog itself. Since thermal foggers use heat to vaporize the fogging solution, it forms a thick cloud of fog that can be white or grey. ULV foggers that use cold fogging techniques, on the other hand, produce a practically invisible fog.

A highly visible fog has a few advantages, such as:

  • It’s easy to control and monitor the flow of the fog. For many applications, you’ll need to control and direct the fog to reach certain areas, such as the foliage of plants, treetops, and other areas. Since the fog produced by thermal foggers is highly visible, it’s very easy to aim the fog towards certain areas and see that it hits its target.
  • If you are an operator, the visible fog provides peace of mind to your clients who can actually see you doing something to combat their problem.
  • It’s easier for the fogger operator to avoid direct contact with the fog. This is also true for bystanders. Since the fog might contain substances that are not good for your health, being able to see it makes it easier to avoid.

Smaller droplets and a higher droplet density

The droplets produced by thermal foggers are very small and can even get as small as 0.5 micron in diameter. Because of the small droplet size, these foggers produce, they can spray a higher density of droplets. Both of these factors make thermal foggers perfect for insect control applications.

The particles produced by thermal foggers can penetrate very small areas. In outdoor applications, the smaller particles will stay in the air for a longer amount of time. This will increase the chances that fog will come in contact with flying insects such as mosquitoes.

Can use water- or oil-based solutions

Thermal foggers allow you to use both water and oil-based solutions. Water-based formulations are a lot more environmentally friendly, can be used to fog plants, and don’t pose a fire hazard. Furthermore, water-based solutions don’t cause equipment corrosion and are cheaper than oil-based solutions.

More efficient

Thermal foggers are more efficient than cold foggers in a few ways. They can:

  • Use a low concentration of the insecticide.
  • Spray more insecticide using less energy than ULV foggers.
  • Treat an area of the same size in a shorter amount of time than cold foggers can.
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Thermal Foggers: Disadvantages

Use a lot of fuel

Possibly the biggest disadvantage of thermal foggers is that they use a large amount of fuel. In most personal-use foggers, this is propane gas. Thermal foggers have to use some sort of fuel to heat the heater assembly and this has some drawbacks, such as:

  • The high cost of the fuel used in thermal foggers. You’ll have to refill or change these when they run out, which can happen pretty often if you need to fog larger areas. This can make the fogging more expensive.
  • The fuel can have a strong odor that may be unpleasant for the person operating the fogger and other people in close range.
  • These substances can leave oily stains that are hard to clean, which is a problem for indoor fogging.
  • Propane is flammable.

Traffic hazards

Because of the dense fog they produce, thermal fogging can cause traffic hazards. This is especially true when using high-capacity professional thermal foggers.

Fire risk

Thermal foggers work with very high temperatures. This means that the heater assembly part of the fogger can get very hot while in operation and so using the fogger can cause serious fire risks (as well as burn risks to operators if improperly handled).


A high-capacity, powerful, professional thermal fogger will be very loud when operating. This can limit the use of that fogger in urban areas.

Small droplet disadvantages

Small droplets have significant advantages over larger particles when it comes to mosquito control. But there are also some disadvantages to smaller particles.

The biggest disadvantage is that they can be easily moved in any direction by smaller wind gusts. This will make fogging in windy conditions more difficult.

Cold Foggers: Advantages

Use less fogging liquid and fuel

Ultra-low volume (ULV) foggers, as the name suggests, use a low amount of fogging liquid. This results in a lower cost of application. A ULV fogger uses air pressure to atomize the fogging solution into very small particles.

Cold foggers also use electricity or battery power instead of propane fuel. This means that the disadvantages of fuel use that apply to thermal foggers don’t apply to cold fogging devices. The advantages of this include:

  • They are cheaper to use since you won’t need to buy additional fuel.
  • They won’t produce any hard-to-clean oily residues.
  • Low fire risk and virtually no burn risk to operators.
  • ULV foggers are practically odorless on most occasions. This makes them much more pleasant to use, especially indoors.

Can use water- or oil-based solutions

Like thermal foggers, ULV foggers can be used with water or oil-based insecticide preparations.

No traffic hazards

Cold foggers produce a practically invisible cloud of fog. This won’t cause any traffic hazards, so you can use this type of fogger in cities and other crowded places not only for pest control but for disinfection or sanitization purposes as well.


Electric ULV foggers are generally quieter than thermal foggers, which is useful in urban areas where noise may be an issue.

Cold Foggers: Disadvantages

A practically invisible fog

The fog produced by a cold fogger is practically invisible. This has its advantages, such as avoiding traffic hazards but also has some disadvantages. First of all, it’s much more difficult to monitor and control the direction of an invisible fog, especially when fogging outdoors. This is a disadvantage for mosquito control applications.

For example, if you’re fogging outdoors with some wind, the fog will drift away from your target area. With the visible fog from thermal foggers, you can easily observe this and try to correct it by more precise application. With a cold fogger, on the other hand, you won’t be able to see where exactly the fog is drifting to, so it’ll be much more difficult to direct it to a certain area.

Also, bystanders won’t be able to see any signs of fog. This means they won’t be able to avoid it and might inhale insecticides or get them on their skin.

Difficult to maintain and repair

Cold foggers require greater technical skills and are more difficult to maintain and repair. They have an electric motor, air pressure pumps, and complex nozzles that will need to be both calibrated and repaired by a trained professional.

Larger droplets

ULV foggers produce larger particles than thermal foggers. These usually range from 10–50 microns in diameter. While you can adjust the size to fit different applications, a cold fogger simply can’t match the high-density, small droplet output of a thermal fogger. In indoor and outdoor applications, this means that the fog won’t be able to penetrate the smallest and most difficult to reach places. For mosquito control, larger particles will stay in the air for less time and won’t have as great of a chance of reaching all of the airborne mosquitoes in the area.


Cold foggers will need more time to fog a similar-sized area than a thermal fogger would due to the smaller volume of insecticide and fog itself.

Steve L. Wood

Conventional sprayes, reach insects less effectively than ULV technology. This is because conventional sprayers spray larger droplet sizes in between 100-200 microns, which don’t fully cover the whole area being sprayed. Apart from the droplet size they produce, manual sprayers can be very time consuming and labour intensive. Although motorized versions spray quicker, there are not suitable for indoor use, as they leave surfaces very wet and produce exhaust gases. Manual sprayers are ideal when you need to pray close up, in places such as patio areas and gardens.

Lloyd Pitts

I plan to use a pressure washer. The spray can reach high in trees. What do you think of that?


I wouldn’t advise you to do so, since pressure washers can be a lot for trees to handle. I also don’t think it’s a great idea to put an insecticide in one, considering coming in contact with an insecticide can be harmful, for example, to your own health. You can use a garden hose, since the pressure in those is a lot smaller, which makes it safer.

David M Rifenbark

We are certified organic, we use alot of botanical insecticides, which would be better for applying these botanical extracts hot or cold?


Cold fogger or garden sprayer would probably be a better option for you.

Mike Fa

Thank you for a very informative article . I hope you can help with more clarification on the 2 types of fogger so i can decide on whether i should invest in a thermal fogger or a cold fogger, to fog my 2,500 sf x 5 feet tall attic crawl space on an annual basis to eradicate and stop termite infestation?

Kristiana Kripena

Most termite-specific products are usually applied using a simple hand pump sprayer. But if you really want to get a fogger I’d go for a cold fogger if your intent is to treat a termite infestation. Additionally, cold foggers are also generally safer for indoor use.

Which one is better to disinfect an office where there are files, paper etc?


When it comes to indoors, we would generally suggest using cold foggers, considering the fire hazard that comes with thermal foggers, as well as you’ll be avoiding the staining. Still, keep in mind things might get wet, therefore, get damaged.

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