How to get rid of bedbugs in an apartment at home

Do-it-yourself Bed Bug Control

Can you treat and eliminate the bed bugs on your own? Bed bugs are challenging pests to get rid of, since they hide so well and reproduce so quickly. In addition, the egg stage is resistant to many forms of treatment, so a single attempt may not be sufficient to complete the job.

Treating bed bugs is complex. Your likelihood of success depends on many factors, including:

  • Extent of the infestation.
  • Site-specific challenges.
    • Clutter.
    • Neighbors with infestations.
    • Ability of all of the residents to participate.

Achieving complete control can take weeks to months, depending on the nature and extent of the infestation, and everyone will need to cooperate and do their part.

Before starting, you should lay out all of the steps on a calendar. The following steps will help you begin:

Keep the Infestation from Spreading

  • Anything removed from the room should be placed in a sealed plastic bag and treated.
    • Items that cannot be treated should be placed in a sealed plastic bag and left for an extended period of time to ensure any active bugs are dead (research shows variation in the length of time needed, but it can be as long as a year).
  • Empty the vacuum after each use.
    • Seal the bag and throw it out in an outdoor trash container.
  • Don’t discard furniture if you can eliminate the bed bugs from it.
  • If furniture cannot be salvaged, discard it responsibly. Destroy it so someone else won’t be tempted to bring it into their home. For example:
    • Rip covers and remove stuffing from furniture items.
    • Use spray paint to mark furniture with “Bed Bugs.”
  • Take steps to have infested items picked up as soon as possible by the trash collection agency.

Prepare for Treatment

Jumping straight into control is tempting, but won’t work. Preparing for treatment is essential to getting successful control. It will also help by making it easier for you to monitor for bed bugs that haven’t been completely eliminated. This preparation should be conducted whether you are doing the treatment yourself or hiring a professional.

Kill the Bed Bugs

  • Make sure the methods you select are safe, effective and legal. See What’s Legal, What’s Not for more information.
  • Consider non-chemical methods of killing bed bugs. Some will be more useful than others.
    • Heat treatment using a clothes dryer on high heat, black plastic bags in the sun or a hot, closed car (pest management professionals have other methods that are not suitable for non-trained individuals to use).
    • Cold treatment can be successful in the home environment if the freezer is set to 0 o F. You must leave the items in the freezer at that temperature for four days. Always use a thermometer to check the temperature, since home freezers are not always set to 0 o .
    • Steam cleaners (wet or dry) can penetrate into cracks and fabrics to treat carpets, baseboards, bed frames, and other furniture. Steam temperature must be at least 130 o F, but should not have a forceful airflow (use diffuser) or it may cause bed bugs to scatter.
    • Reducing the numbers of bugs with these and other non-chemical methods is helpful, but is unlikely to entirely eliminate the infestation.
  • If needed, use pestic >Top of Page

    Evaluate and Prevent

    • Continue to inspect for presence of bed bugs, at least every 7 days, in case any eggs remained.
      • Interceptors (placed under the legs of furniture to catch bed bugs and keep them from climbing the legs; commercial and do-it-yourself versions available), traps or other methods of monitoring can be used.
    • Continue to implement preventive measures.

    For additional information, please see:

    Contact Us to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem.

    www.epa.gov

    Do-it-yourself Bed Bug Control

    Can you treat and eliminate the bed bugs on your own? Bed bugs are challenging pests to get rid of, since they hide so well and reproduce so quickly. In addition, the egg stage is resistant to many forms of treatment, so a single attempt may not be sufficient to complete the job.

    Treating bed bugs is complex. Your likelihood of success depends on many factors, including:

    • Extent of the infestation.
    • Site-specific challenges.
      • Clutter.
      • Neighbors with infestations.
      • Ability of all of the residents to participate.

    Achieving complete control can take weeks to months, depending on the nature and extent of the infestation, and everyone will need to cooperate and do their part.

    Before starting, you should lay out all of the steps on a calendar. The following steps will help you begin:

    Keep the Infestation from Spreading

    • Anything removed from the room should be placed in a sealed plastic bag and treated.
      • Items that cannot be treated should be placed in a sealed plastic bag and left for an extended period of time to ensure any active bugs are dead (research shows variation in the length of time needed, but it can be as long as a year).
    • Empty the vacuum after each use.
      • Seal the bag and throw it out in an outdoor trash container.
    • Don’t discard furniture if you can eliminate the bed bugs from it.
    • If furniture cannot be salvaged, discard it responsibly. Destroy it so someone else won’t be tempted to bring it into their home. For example:
      • Rip covers and remove stuffing from furniture items.
      • Use spray paint to mark furniture with “Bed Bugs.”
    • Take steps to have infested items picked up as soon as possible by the trash collection agency.

    Prepare for Treatment

    Jumping straight into control is tempting, but won’t work. Preparing for treatment is essential to getting successful control. It will also help by making it easier for you to monitor for bed bugs that haven’t been completely eliminated. This preparation should be conducted whether you are doing the treatment yourself or hiring a professional.

    Kill the Bed Bugs

    • Make sure the methods you select are safe, effective and legal. See What’s Legal, What’s Not for more information.
    • Consider non-chemical methods of killing bed bugs. Some will be more useful than others.
      • Heat treatment using a clothes dryer on high heat, black plastic bags in the sun or a hot, closed car (pest management professionals have other methods that are not suitable for non-trained individuals to use).
      • Cold treatment can be successful in the home environment if the freezer is set to 0 o F. You must leave the items in the freezer at that temperature for four days. Always use a thermometer to check the temperature, since home freezers are not always set to 0 o .
      • Steam cleaners (wet or dry) can penetrate into cracks and fabrics to treat carpets, baseboards, bed frames, and other furniture. Steam temperature must be at least 130 o F, but should not have a forceful airflow (use diffuser) or it may cause bed bugs to scatter.
      • Reducing the numbers of bugs with these and other non-chemical methods is helpful, but is unlikely to entirely eliminate the infestation.
    • If needed, use pestic >Top of Page

      Evaluate and Prevent

      • Continue to inspect for presence of bed bugs, at least every 7 days, in case any eggs remained.
        • Interceptors (placed under the legs of furniture to catch bed bugs and keep them from climbing the legs; commercial and do-it-yourself versions available), traps or other methods of monitoring can be used.
      • Continue to implement preventive measures.

      For additional information, please see:

      Contact Us to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem.

      www.epa.gov

      Do-it-yourself Bed Bug Control

      Can you treat and eliminate the bed bugs on your own? Bed bugs are challenging pests to get rid of, since they hide so well and reproduce so quickly. In addition, the egg stage is resistant to many forms of treatment, so a single attempt may not be sufficient to complete the job.

      Treating bed bugs is complex. Your likelihood of success depends on many factors, including:

      • Extent of the infestation.
      • Site-specific challenges.
        • Clutter.
        • Neighbors with infestations.
        • Ability of all of the residents to participate.

      Achieving complete control can take weeks to months, depending on the nature and extent of the infestation, and everyone will need to cooperate and do their part.

      Before starting, you should lay out all of the steps on a calendar. The following steps will help you begin:

      Keep the Infestation from Spreading

      • Anything removed from the room should be placed in a sealed plastic bag and treated.
        • Items that cannot be treated should be placed in a sealed plastic bag and left for an extended period of time to ensure any active bugs are dead (research shows variation in the length of time needed, but it can be as long as a year).
      • Empty the vacuum after each use.
        • Seal the bag and throw it out in an outdoor trash container.
      • Don’t discard furniture if you can eliminate the bed bugs from it.
      • If furniture cannot be salvaged, discard it responsibly. Destroy it so someone else won’t be tempted to bring it into their home. For example:
        • Rip covers and remove stuffing from furniture items.
        • Use spray paint to mark furniture with “Bed Bugs.”
      • Take steps to have infested items picked up as soon as possible by the trash collection agency.

      Prepare for Treatment

      Jumping straight into control is tempting, but won’t work. Preparing for treatment is essential to getting successful control. It will also help by making it easier for you to monitor for bed bugs that haven’t been completely eliminated. This preparation should be conducted whether you are doing the treatment yourself or hiring a professional.

      Kill the Bed Bugs

      • Make sure the methods you select are safe, effective and legal. See What’s Legal, What’s Not for more information.
      • Consider non-chemical methods of killing bed bugs. Some will be more useful than others.
        • Heat treatment using a clothes dryer on high heat, black plastic bags in the sun or a hot, closed car (pest management professionals have other methods that are not suitable for non-trained individuals to use).
        • Cold treatment can be successful in the home environment if the freezer is set to 0 o F. You must leave the items in the freezer at that temperature for four days. Always use a thermometer to check the temperature, since home freezers are not always set to 0 o .
        • Steam cleaners (wet or dry) can penetrate into cracks and fabrics to treat carpets, baseboards, bed frames, and other furniture. Steam temperature must be at least 130 o F, but should not have a forceful airflow (use diffuser) or it may cause bed bugs to scatter.
        • Reducing the numbers of bugs with these and other non-chemical methods is helpful, but is unlikely to entirely eliminate the infestation.
      • If needed, use pestic >Top of Page

        Evaluate and Prevent

        • Continue to inspect for presence of bed bugs, at least every 7 days, in case any eggs remained.
          • Interceptors (placed under the legs of furniture to catch bed bugs and keep them from climbing the legs; commercial and do-it-yourself versions available), traps or other methods of monitoring can be used.
        • Continue to implement preventive measures.

        For additional information, please see:

        Contact Us to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem.

        www.epa.gov

        How Can I Get Rid of Bed Bugs in My Apartment?

        As the old nursery rhymes go, “Sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite” but what happens when you do actually find a bed bug bite after sleeping in your own bed? Bed bugs are tricky pests to deal with from a pest control perspective because of their size and unique behaviors. Although they haven’t been linked to transmitting diseases to their human host, they are definitely not the pest you want to find in your home.

        What are Bed Bugs: Bites, Appearance and Behaviors

        Bed bugs are small, from as little to one millimeter during their early immature stages and reaching no more than ¼ of an inch as adults. These creepy insects feed exclusively on blood, requiring it for both development and reproduction. While they feed primarily on the blood of humans, they can feed on the blood from a wide variety of animals. Their bite can cause itchy red welts, however some people have little to no reaction at all after being bitten.

        Since bed bugs are nocturnal, they will appear during the dark, nighttime hours when they leave their secretive hiding places to feed off of their host. Their bites are typically painless, so the sleeping victim is usually unaware the tiny insects are feeding on them as they sleep. Once they are fully engorged with blood, they will once again return to their hiding places where they often remain undetected. They typically reside within close range to the sleeping areas but have been shown in research to travel several feet to locate a host.

        Bed bugs go through five stages before becoming an adult and during most of those stages the bugs are often very difficult to see due to their small size. Also, an adult female can lay up to 500 eggs in her lifetime, so bed bug infestations can quickly become very problematic if not properly addressed.

        Evidence of Bed Bugs in Your Home

        The most reliable source for confirming a bed bug infestation within your apartment is by contacting a pest control professional but there are a few key signs of their activity within your home.

        • Going to bed and waking with bites, welts or rashes. Bite marks may appear in a rows and clusters.
        • Dark spotting or blood droplets on mattresses, pillows or bedding. These are waste products bed bugs excrete while digesting a blood-meal.
        • Visible observation of eggs, molted insect skin, or the insect. The failure to locate an insect does not indicate they are not present. Adult bed bugs are difficult to locate, and immature bed bugs can be difficult to see due to their size.

        What Should I Do If I Have Bed Bugs?

        Bed bugs are not a pest that you should try to control on your own. Attempting to resolves the issue yourself as improper treatment could spread the problem throughout and increase costs to eliminate the problem. If you live in an apartment complex and suspect you have bed bugs you should immediately contact your landlord so they can notify the pest control company in charge of the complex.

        You should AVOID discarding bedding and mattresses. This is not a solution and can spread the infestation throughout the house, and any new furniture can quickly become infested.

        According to Cooper Pest Solutions’ Bed Bug Manger, Laura Dykes, homeowners can take a few steps on their own to remove bed bugs although it isn’t recommended.

        “They can use a vacuum but that has a crack and crevice attachment to remove bugs from the mattress, box spring and bed frame. As soon as they are done, the vacuum bag should be sealed in a plastic garbage bag and disposed of in an outdoor trash receptacle,” Dykes said.

        Residents can also purchase bed bug proof encasements that can be used to encase both the mattress and box spring in order to salvage beds that are infested. Once encased, any bed bugs that were not removed by the vacuum will become trapped inside where they will starve and eventually die.

        Bed bug researcher Dr. Richard Cooper suggests isolated the bed, making it difficult for bed bugs to feed on people while they sleep. Isolating the bed can be done easily. Interceptor traps, like BlackOut® bed bug interceptors, can be purchased and installed under the legs of the bed as well as under the legs of upholstered furniture. The traps will capture bed bugs attempting to climb the legs of the bedframe. Next, pull the bed away from the wall several inches and tuck in the bed sheets.

        “Laundering bed linens in a hot water cycle or placing bed linens in the dryer on medium to high heat for at least 20 minutes is also very important,” Dykes added.

        Why Can’t Cooper Pest Solutions Treat My Apartment?

        Apartments and multi-family housings can present a very difficult situation when it comes to treating for bed bugs as opposed to single-family homes.

        With many apartment complexes, there is a contracted pest control company who is in charge of all pest related problems, including bed bugs. Unfortunately, if the apartment complex does not already have a contract with Cooper Pest Solutions, Cooper cannot provide service for individual tenants without authorization to do so from the property’s owner.

        While a property owner may grant permission to have an individual resident contract directly with an outside pest control firm, like Cooper Pest Solutions, they are unlikely to grant access to all of the neighboring units as well, which is an important part of an effective bed bug management program. Research has shown that bed bugs can spread to neighboring and adjacent units.

        Since the independent pest control company that you contacted is not likely to be granted access to inspect neighboring units, the bed bug problem you are facing may never be completely eliminated if it isn’t the source of the problem.

        If your apartment currently has a bed bug problem, you’ll need to contact your landlord or property manager to request a bed bug treatment service from the contracted pest control company.

        What if My Landlord Won’t Pay For My Bed Bug Treatments?

        If a landlord is unresponsive to request for treatments, you can reach out to your local Department of Health to get a response for treatment.

        What Makes Cooper Pest Solutions’ Bed Bug Services More Effective?

        When you’re searching for bed bug treatment options, you want to have a pest control company that truly understands the behavior and biology of bed bugs to effectively control the situation. Cooper Pest Solutions is the recognized national leader on the subject of bed bugs and the treatment of bed bugs. Cooper Pest Solutions’ technicians regularly participate as the field-training experts for BedBug Central’s Bed Bug Boot Camp sessions where they train other pest management companies from all across the country on their unique, “NO PREP” approach.

        Cooper is equipped to carry out every step of the bed bug elimination process from proactive measures to reactive treatments. Cooper′s highly skilled representatives and technicians will inspect your home for signs of a bed bug infestation and determine the severity of the infestation. Treatment will then be carried out according to the needs of your particular situation. Unlike other companies, Cooper′s treatments DO NOT require prep on your part.

        “What makes us standout from the competition is our no prep,” Dykes said. “Most companies require the client to do massive preparations in order for them to treat but we don’t. We don’t want the environment disturbed before we get there. Secondly, is that we have dedicated technicians that provide our bed bug services and that is solely what they do. They are highly-trained on our protocols and encouraged to think out of the box. We realize that every situation is unique and treat it as such. Our protocols and processes are proven to eliminate bed bugs and we offer the client multiple call-back services if the problem has not been resolved. We stand behind what we do.”

        For more information on Cooper Pest Solutions’ bed bug services or to schedule a consolation with one of our representatives, call 1-800-949-2667 or fill out our free estimate form.

        www.cooperpest.com

        How to Deal with Bed Bugs at Your Rental Property

        Written on April 28, 2015 by Laura Agadoni, updated on November 3, 2016

        Should the landlord or the tenant deal with bed bugs found on the property?

        I’d like to apologize in advance if reading this makes you itchy, but this topic is one that frequently comes up for landlords.

        There’s been a bed bug renaissance of sorts across the country because these disgusting critters have become resistant to pesticides.

        Most Infested Cities

        The cities with the worst bed bug infestations in 2014, according to the number of Terminix service calls (source), were the following:

        1. Philadelphia, PA
        2. Cincinnati, OH
        3. New York City, NY
        4. Detroit, MI
        5. Chicago, IL
        1. Boston, MA
        2. Dallas, TX
        3. Columbus, OH
        4. Baltimore, MD
        5. Washington, D.C.
        1. Houston, TX
        2. Denver, CO
        3. Indianapolis, IN
        4. Los Angeles, CA
        5. Cleveland, OH

        Even if you don’t own property in one of the top 15 cities, your rental property could still get bed bugs in various ways. One common way is your tenant bringing them in after traveling. (Note: travelers can check the Bed Bug Registry before choosing a hotel.)

        Bed bugs can attach to your tenant’s clothing, luggage and backpacks and can be transported back to your rental property that way. Because it can be difficult to determine how the bed bugs arrived, especially in an apartment building, you shouldn’t concern yourself too much with that question.

        Top 5 Questions About Rentals & Bed Bugs

        Ring Ring… I think we have bed bugs!

        1. What’s the First Step?

        If your tenant calls you in a panic, stating that there are bed bugs, keep calm. The problem might not be bed bugs; it could be fleas or roaches.

        Call an exterminator to diagnose the problem. The exterminator should look at all mattresses and bedding in the rental property. He should also look in couches, drawers, closets and shelves.

        The first step is to treat the problem before it gets worse. You can always figure out the responsibility later.

        2. Who is Responsible to Remove the Bed Bugs?

        Responsibility should fall on whomever brought them in the house.

        An exterminator might be able to tell you how the bed bugs arrived. For example, if a swarm of bed bugs is found in the tenants luggage and he just got back from a business trip, then you certainly could hold the tenant responsible.

        But generally speaking, fault is difficult to prove, particularly in an apartment building. In this case, a resident of another unit could have brought in the bed bugs, and those bed bugs could have then traveled from the infested apartment to your rental through floorboards or small cracks in the walls.

        The question of who brought in the bed bugs is easier to determine if the rental in question is a single-family house. But even then, a maintenance person, not the tenant, could have brought in the bed bugs.

        3. Who Should Pay for the Exterminator?

        If the bed bugs were present before your tenant moved in, you need to pay for an exterminator.

        If you do nothing about the bed bug infestation, your tenant can take actions against you, such as paying for an exterminator and deducting that amount from the rent or even breaking the lease or suing you for not providing a livable dwelling under the implied warranty of habitability doctrine.

        If the tenant brought in the bed bugs, the question of who pays for an exterminator might depend on the state in which you live. As of April 2014, 22 states and one territory have laws addressing bed bugs, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

        If your state has no regulations and you can prove the tenant brought in the bed bugs, you can charge your tenant for the cost to remove them.

        4. What are the Best Ways to Get Rid of Bed Bugs?

        Getting rid of bed bugs is a time-consuming process that your tenant must be on board with. Once your tenant notifies you of the bed bug problem, you need to act immediately. The longer you wait, the worse the problem becomes.

        Here are steps to have your tenant take:

        1. Declutter
          Tenant needs to clean up any clutter. Clutter provides a perfect place for bed bugs to hide, and it makes the treatment process more difficult.
        2. Encase or Trash the Mattress
          If bed bugs are in the mattress, enclosing the mattress and box springs in a special bed bug encasement product prevents the bed bugs from coming out. The encasement needs to stay on for a year.
        3. Wash Everything
          Tenant needs to wash all bedding (blankets, sheets, bedspreads) and all clothing that’s been on the floor in a washing machine under hot water and then put the laundry in the dryer under a medium or high setting for at least 20 minutes and up to 45 minutes.
        4. Vacuum Everything (twice)
          Tenant should vacuum the rugs, floors, furniture, bed and all cracks found in rooms and then dispose of the vacuum cleaner bag in an outdoor garbage bin.

        Here’s what the exterminator should do:

        1. Move/Disassemble Furniture
        2. Use High Heat/Steam Treatments
          Exterminators have special equipment that raises the temperature in the bed bug area to 118 F and then maintains that temperature for 70 minutes.
        3. Use Professional-Strength Insecticide
          General over-the-counter insecticides probably won’t work on bed bugs
        4. Seal Furniture
          Infested furniture might need to be sealed in a container until the bed bugs die.

        Once the bed bugs are gone, your property can become infested again. Make sure your tenant knows not to bring in mattresses and other furniture found on the street.

        You might also wish to share with your tenant some best practices when traveling:

        1. Check the headboard and around the bed.
        2. Inspect luggage stands.
        3. Look at the sheets for fecal spots.
        4. Inspect luggage before bringing it back into the home.

        This useful video shows you how professionals get rid of bed bugs.

        5. Can my Tenant Terminate the Lease?

        Your tenant might be able to break the lease if he or she told you about the bed bug problem and you did nothing about it.

        Your tenant needs to give you proper notice (which varies by state) of his or her intention to break the lease and time to fix the problem.

        You should never knowingly rent property infested with bed bugs. You could be sued for doing that. If your tenant can prove you knew, you might be ordered to pay damages.

        www.landlordology.com

Share:
No Comments

Leave a Reply

Your e-mail will not be published. All fields are required.