How to Get Rid of Stink Bugs In 8 Easy Ways That — ll Work Every Year

How to Get Rid of Stink Bugs In 8 Easy Ways That’ll Work Every Year

Jennifer is a full-time homesteader who started her journey in the foothills of North Carolina in 2010. Currently, she spends her days gardening, caring for her orchard and vineyard, raising chickens, ducks, goats, and bees. Jennifer is an avid canner who provides almost all food for her family needs. She enjoys working on DIY remodeling projects to bring beauty to her homestead in her spare times.

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Eeew! What is that smell?

Well, if it is fall, then you probably have stink bugs lingering around your home. I live in the south where we have a terrible problem with them. They were brought in because our area once had too many ladybugs.

So someone in a place of authority thought it would be a great idea to get rid of them by adding a predator. Guess who the predator was?

Yep, stink bugs. Now they are everywhere, and we are left to deal with their annoying smells and boldness when they move into our home each fall and winter.

But do you have to just put up with them or can you do something about it?

Well, I have a few solutions that you might want to try. It might not wipe them out completely, but you will hopefully have a little peace.

How to Get Rid of Stink Bugs

Here are the suggestions:

1. The Trap

The first time we had a terrible problem with stink bugs was about 5 years ago when we had just moved to our very first homestead. We lived in the woods, and I guess the bugs just thought we’d share our home.

So we lived with them at first, but finally, my mother-in-law was over one night and had seen an abundance of them. She said, “We’ve got to do something about these stink bugs!” Which led her into researching how to get rid of them.

Well, she and my husband concocted this trap. They used an empty 2-liter bottle. Then they cut it in half.

Next, they attached an LED light to the outside bottom of the bottom part of the 2-liter. Then put a small amount of water in that section of the bottle with some Dawn dish liquid.

Then they took the top part of the bottle and pointed the spout downward so it was inverted when attached to the other half of the 2-liter. The bottle was then taped together.

So you ended up with a funnel of sorts that the stink bugs would fall in (or be knocked into). Then they would drown in the soapy water because they couldn’t crawl back up the tiny nozzle of the bottle.

In my opinion, this works well, but it is also rather tedious because you have to go around knocking them into the trap, or make a bunch of traps to catch them all.

But it did work so there is hope to rid your home of these pests. Here is a great tutorial with pictures to help you along with the process of building this trap.

2. Dryer Sheets

If you have screens on your windows, then you might want to invest in some of the strongest smelling dryer sheets that you can find. For whatever reason, stink bugs do not like strong smells. Isn’t that odd considering they produce a strong smell?

But I digress. You’ll want to rub the dryer sheets all over the outside of your window and door screens. The stink bugs won’t like the smell and stay away from those areas.

So you know the more you can deter them from your home’s entrances, then the less likely they are to actually make it inside your home.

Again, this may not be an end-all solution, but it will definitely keep some of them at bay and hopefully lessen their impact within your home.

3. Squishy, Squishy

Like many animals and pests, if they smell their own scent, stink bugs will stay away because they know that it is either someone else’s territory or that a predator has squooshed them to where their odor has been released.

So if you have a lot of stink bugs outdoors, you can catch a lot of them and then squoosh them. You can catch them by hanging a wet or damp towel outdoors over a lawn chair at night.

Then the next morning you should have quite a few that were attracted to it.

Next, you’ll squoosh the stink bugs and drop them in a bucket that you leave outside of your door. This will produce an odor that warns others to stay away.

4. Insecticides

You can purchase store bought insecticides to use in an effort to deter stink bugs from the perimeter of your home.

However, you should not use these insecticides inside your home. This will only leave dead stink bugs everywhere within your home and actually attract other pests that will then feed on their carcasses.

So if you use insecticides be sure to spray your perimeter outside of your home to kill them outdoors and spread the odor that tells the others to stay away from your home.

5. Seal It Up Tight

If you have bugs or pests within your home the first thing any pesticide company tells you to do is to seal and waterproof your home.

If pests have a way in, they’ll come in. If there is a water source, they’ll be able to live so they’ll stay.

So you need to be sure that all of your doors and windows are sealed up tight. Make sure everything is caulked as it should be. You’ll also want to check under your sinks to make sure there are no leaks and no cracks to the outside world that would be a potential entrance for any pests…including stink bugs.

Once you have secured your doors, windows, and sinks you’ll need to check the rest of your home. Do you have any cracks where your house has settled and now you can see light coming in? If you see light, then you see a potential entrance.

See also:  What Are The Different Types of Mosquitoes?

Also, if you have a basement, is it sealed? If not, then you have a definite entrance point for stink bugs and other pests.

Finally, check your baseboards. Make sure they are cleaned and sealed. Animals will find one little crevice and use your baseboards as a highway system into your home. If they can’t come up through the floor, then they are trapped and will eventually die.

Though this sounds terrible because you have stinking carcasses, you can clean really thoroughly and seal your home so you hopefully won’t have other problems. Definitely use the sealing method along with some other methods listed here such as the insecticides outdoors.

So that way once your home is sealed off, if you have dead stink bugs within your home, the outdoor insecticides will kill anything that tries to enter your home in order to feed on them.

Then you can just do a deep clean and get the dead stink bugs out of your home to have a pretty thorough solution.

6. What Works for a Roach

This is one I found on my own, but I think it really works. In our old house, prior to ripping out our kitchen, we had a bug problem. The house we bought had basically been condemned, and we worked tirelessly at first to make it livable.

Then we worked tirelessly again (for years!) to completely remodel it debt free. It was a journey.

However, during this journey, we fixed the kitchen enough to where it was functional and sanitary (or so we thought.)

Then one day I went into the kitchen and saw a roach. The kitchen became the next project on the list very quickly. We found the cabinets were completely rotten on the backside which unfortunately had drawn bugs…even roaches.

So after we ripped out our kitchen, remodeled it, and sealed it up tight I was so afraid bugs would still somehow infiltrate my new kitchen. Which led me to set out roach traps on our counters, under the counters, and anywhere else I thought they might be.

Thankfully, remodeling seemed to fix the roach problem, but I found the roach traps also fixed my stink bug problem. The stink bugs were drawn to the traps, and they died. Which in turn alarmed the other stink bugs in the area, and they left. That was actually our best year for stink bugs.

So if you feel overwhelmed by stink bugs, get a few of those subtle roach traps, set them out where you usually see the stink bugs, and see if it doesn’t draw a few. It worked very well in our situation.

7. Swat Them!

Now, we are going to fast forward a little over a year from our kitchen remodel, and we have now sold that homestead and moved to a larger one.

But as great as this place is, the stink bug situation still haunts us. So much so, that I was sitting at my kitchen table one Saturday just working away on the blog, and I had stink bugs flying over my head, crawling on my leg, and I could hear them hitting the windows behind me.

Needless to say, I lost it! I got my trusty fly swatter and went on a hunt. I killed every stink bug I could find that day. I literally had a pile when I was finished. I swept them up, put them in the trash, and then I had to do some serious deodorizing of my house. If you’ve ever smelled them, then you know why.

But I will say, I haven’t had hardly any stink bugs since that day. Spreading their odor around must have sent a strong message to their buddies that this house was not the place to be.

So if you are just at your max with stink bugs and totally fed up, I say you just go stink bug ninja on them all and show them whose house this really is! Hey, it worked for me, and I felt better after I got some aggression out too!

8. Stink Bug Vacuum

There are some people that will actually purchase a shop-vac with the sole purpose of vacuuming stink bugs with it.

So when they see a stink bug, they suck it up. The bugs go into the bag of the shop-vac, and when it is full, they seal the bag and take it out to the trash. If you have a shop-vac on hand that you aren’t using, then you might want to try this.

Or if you have a regular vacuum cleaner you don’t mind using to suck up bugs, then do the same. Just be sure to empty it into a garbage bag, seal it, and dispose of it or your house will stink like stink bugs.

Well, it is my hope that out of these 8 ideas, you may have come up with some sort of action plan to defeat stink bugs in your home.

But now I want to hear from you. Do you live in an area that is plagued by stink bugs? If so, what do you do to evict them from your home every year? If you don’t live in an area where they are a problem, where do you live so we can all come visit you over the fall and winter months while our homes are being invaded? (Just kidding!)

It is always great to hear from you guys so please leave us your thoughts below.

What are bed bugs in the apartment afraid of and how to get rid of them?

Below are ten general recommendations to help prevent and control bed bugs in apartment buildings. Other actions may be required depending on conditions at the property and the extent of the infestation.

  1. Use pest control companies that are experienced with bed bug control in apartments. Get references for specific bed bug jobs and check those references. The cost will be higher than you expect (anywhere from $100 up to $750 for the initial service of a single infested unit and from $75-$300 for follow-ups). Effective companies will be charging enough to do the extensive work necessary to control bed bugs. If a company offers to control bed bugs for $50/unit, get another company.
  2. Be proactive. As soon as the first bed bug problem is reported and verified, assume that there are more and act aggressively. We can’t emphasize this point enough: bed bug control can become extremely expensive once bed bugs become widespread. (It is not unheard-of for a property to spend $50,000 to finally «eliminate» a widespread bed bug infestation in a medium-sized apartment complex.)
  3. Whenever a new bed bug infestation is identified, the apartments on either side next door, and above and below need to be inspected for bed bugs. A new infestation may be overflow from a severe infestation in a nearby apartment with a resident who does not want to report their infestation for some reason.
  4. Every apartment that has been serviced for bed bugs should be rescheduled for inspection and treatment as necessary within 2-4 weeks.
  5. If a property experiences bed bug infestations scattered in different parts of a building or in multiple buildings, the infestation is likely widespread. Have the pest control contractor inspect all apartments for bed bug problems during regular rotary service.
  6. If a property has widespread bed bug problems, every apartment will have to be inspected and treated as necessary.
  7. Residents must completely prepare for treatment for the treatment to be effective
    Photo © Pinto & Associates

    Residents scheduled for an initial or major bed bug service need to prepare by stripping their beds, completely emptying all closets, dressers, and nightstands, washing all clothing and linens and placing them inside plastic bags or bins in the living room, and then vacuuming before service. This sounds excessive but it must be done to eliminate bed bugs in clothes and possessions, and to provide access for treatment. (See Preparation for Bed Bug Service.)

  8. Provide pest control service in all vacants as soon as tenants leave.
  9. When a new resident is scheduled to move in, provide guidance on how to make sure they don’t bring pests with them to their new home. Inspect the apartment for bed bug (and cockroach) problems 30 days after they move in and provide pest control service as necessary.
  10. Residents of infested apartments should be asked to buy special bed bug proof mattress covers and put them on mattresses and box springs after treatment. The covers trap any bed bugs hidden inside the mattress and box spring so that they can’t come out and bite. They will eventually die. The covers also prevent any new bugs from finding hiding places in mattresses and box springs.

Properly designed encasements completely cover and seal the mattress and the box spring and trap bed bugs inside.
Photo by Richard Cooper, Cooper Pest Solutions

Properly designed encasements completely cover and seal the mattress and the box spring and trap bed bugs inside. The bed bugs are then unable to feed and will eventually starve. In addition, once the beds are protected, other bed bugs cannot get into the mattress or box spring. They can only get on the surface of the encasement where they are easy to spot and remove. Not all encasements will protect against bed bugs. The encasements must be both bed bug “bite proof” and “escape proof.” Low-cost encasements may be ineffective.

Choose an encasement specifically designed for bed bugs, or a quality encasement designed for people with allergies to dust mites, and expect to pay significantly more. Some encasements claim to be “bite proof’ and “escape proof” based on laboratory testing with bed bugs. Some of these were designed specifically for bed bug protection with special seams and zippers. Other encasements touted for bed bugs were designed for allergy protection, but subsequent testing has shown them to be effective against bed bugs.

Be sure to check out the following pages that provide bed bug information for apartment residents:

What do I do if my apartment has bed bugs?

Northeast Ohio and many places across the country are experiencing a significant increase in bed bug complaints. Bed bugs were once thought to be pests found only on bedding in homes, apartments, and rooming houses. Now bed bugs are found in office buildings, retail stores, hospitals, dormitories, nursing homes, office buildings, libraries, movie theaters, buses, and any other place where people gather. Bed bugs are excellent hitchhikers and are easily spread by moving beds, furniture, luggage, or clothing from one location to another.

Identifying Bed Bugs

• Bed bugs are small, flat, oval, reddish-brown, wingless insects that feed primarily on the blood of humans.

• Adult bed bugs are approximately ¼ inch long, about the size of an apple seed. Young bed bugs (nymphs) are quite small and when unfed they appear lighter and almost clear in color.

• Bed bugs do not fly or jump. However, they can crawl very fast.

Bed Bug Bites

• Bed bugs bites often occur on the arms, shoulders, neck and legs.

• The bite can usually be seen as a red bump, up to a centimeter in size and without a red puncture mark in the middle.

• The bites may occur in lines or as a cluster of three or four.

• The bite may appear within hours or delayed up to a week.

• Bed bugs are primarily a nuisance to humans and are not known to transmit disease. Some people have no reaction to bites while other people may experience itchiness and irritation. Try to avoid scratching bites. Questions about bite marks should be directed to a medical provider.

Signs of a Bed Bug Infestation

Usually the first sign of a bed bug infestation is the appearance of red itchy welts on any bare skin that is exposed while sleeping. Next, look for small black or rusty-colored spots on bed linens, pillows, or mattress. These are blood spots and bed bug droppings. Also, look for live bed bugs, eggs, and cast skins.

Inspecting for Bed Bugs

Bed bugs hide close to where people sleep. They prefer fabric, wood, and paper surfaces over metal or plastic. Look for live bed bugs, eggs, cast skins, and blood or fecal spots in these locations: mattresses, box springs, head boards, bed frames, upholstered furniture, recliners, baseboards, behind pictures, under loose wallpaper, draperies, electrical outlets, telephones, radios, televisions, stacks of books, piles of papers, back packs, luggage, futons, gym bags, draperies & curtains, stuffed animals, hollow furniture legs, door frames & hinges, wall / ceiling junction.

Treating Bed Bug Infestations

Complete elimination of a bed bug infestation can be a difficult process and may require the services of a knowledgeable and licensed pest control operator. It may take several treatments to gain control over an infestation. If a «do-it-yourself» method is chosen, only use pesticide products that are labeled to kill bed bugs. Remember to always read and follow the label directions before applying any pesticide product. Here are some additional tips to help eliminate bed bugs.

• Reduce and eliminate clutter. Don’t keep piles of clothes, boxes, toys, shoes, etc. on the floor, under the bed, or in closets. They are prime hiding places for bed bugs.

• Wash infested bedding and clothing in hot water and then dry on a hot setting for at least 30 minutes.

• Encase an infested mattress and box spring in a zippered cover that is labeled and certified «bed bug proof». Leave the covers on for at least one full year.

• Vacuum bedrooms thoroughly and often. Pay particular attention to the area around the bed and the bed itself. Place the vacuum cleaner bag or contents in a zip-lock plastic bag and discard it in the trash outside.

• Getting rid of bed bugs is a cooperative effort. Follow all recommended preparation guidelines provided by the pest control company prior to each treatment.

• Pesticides labeled to kill bed bugs are available over the counter and may provide effective control. However, if the problem persists or is heavily entrenched, contact a knowledgeable, experienced, and licensed pest management professional for assistance.

• Since bed bugs are difficult to control, plan on several extensive treatments to eliminate an infestation.

• DO NOT USE «Bug Bombs». These products may kill on contact but they are ineffective against hidden bed bugs. They may make the infestation worse by scattering the bugs throughout the home or apartment.

• If an infestation is suspected in a rental unit, contact the building manager or landlord about the problem. Property owners should contact a professional pest control company for advice and assistance. The Cuyahoga County Board of Health (at (216) 201-2000) is also available to assist.

Preventing Future Infestations of Bed Bugs

• Do not bring discarded bed frames, mattresses, box springs, or upholstered furniture into the home.

• Carefully inspect used or rented furniture prior to bringing it into the home.

• When traveling, inspect the bed, headboard, and furniture upon arrival. Keep suitcases off the floor and bed and inspect them before leaving. Wash and dry all clothing thoroughly after returning home.

• Caulk and seal any cracks and crevices throughout the home, especially in rooms where people sleep.

• Be careful of who stays overnight or sleeps at the house.

Bed Bugs in Nursing Homes

Although no residence is safe, certain populations are particularly prone to bed bug infestations. A troublingly high incidence of bed bug infestations has been reported in nursing homes throughout the country.

Bed bug infestations are a concern for many seniors living in senior housing. Seniors living in a nursing home may be exposed to bed bugs through shared laundry facilities or common sitting areas, or by staying in a room near someone who may have bed bugs.

Bed bugs are attracted to heat and chemicals emitted by humans and survive on human blood. Therefore, nursing homes act as a breeding ground for bed bugs due to the high rate of residents, staff and family members moving about the facility. Furthermore, residents stay in bed for prolonged periods of time and live in close proximity, making it easy for bed bugs to survive.

Recommendations for Residents in Senior Housing

• Keep any living space clutter-free. Clutter provides great hiding spots for bed bugs.

• Bites that appear after sleeping may be an indication that bed bugs are present, even if they do not itch.

• Report a bed bug infestation to the property manager or facility administrator within 24 hours of the pest sighting.

• Do not attempt to control a bed bug infestation alone. Never self treat with pesticides, especially «bug bombs», which drive bed bugs into adjacent rooms or units.

• Do not remove anything from an infested room until after the room is treated by a pest management professional (PMP).

• Cooperate fully with the recommendations provided by the PMP to prepare rooms for bed bug inspection and treatment. Ask the property manager or administration for help if there are preparation steps that cannot be accomplished alone, such as disassembling or moving furniture. Disabled and elderly individuals should request assistance with preparation.

• Prior to treatment, place all clutter and garbage from infested rooms in sealed plastic bags. Bagged items should remain in the infested room for treatment by a PMP prior to disposal.

• The day of the pesticide treatment, all bedding and clothing should be bagged in plastic, transported to the laundry and laundered using hot water. Dry the items for at least 30 minutes on high heat. Bags used for transport should not be re-used, but should be sealed and disposed with other infested refuse.

Bed bug infestations are a problem that affects everyone. Do not be reluctant to discuss a possible infestation because of embarrassment. It is important to report the infestation to management. The earlier the infestation is addressed, the more likely it will be quickly controlled.

How Do Hotels Get Rid of Bed Bugs?

Managers and owners of hotels may have to deal with bed bug infestations, with a plan of action in place for getting rid of them. Responsible hotel management will make sure that bed bugs aren’t an issue by performing regular inspections and other steps in a complete plan.

Here are steps a hotel can take to eliminate bed bugs.

Inspection of Hotel Rooms

The first step hotelsshould take in removing bed bugs is inspecting the rooms to determine how severe the infestation is; in bedsheets, box springs, and nearby furniture and flooring. There are several signs of bed bugs that hotels should look for when figuring out the level of infestation, including:

  • Fecal spots – Fecal spots could be bed bug waste, and appear as thin black streaks on bedsheets and upholstered furniture.
  • Shed skins – These are left behind as bed bugs molt, showing that they are growing into adults, similar to other insects and arachnids. They will appear as gold-colored shells.
  • Blood spots – These are dark red and are found where bed bugs have been crushed, opening their stomach.
  • Bed bug eggs – Eggs are milky white and around the size of a grain of rice.
  • Live bed bugs – Bed bugs are dark red and brown, growing to the size of around five millimeters, with six legs, short antennae, and a segmented abdomen that has tiny hairs.

Preparing the Room

Hotel staff shouldl then prepare the room for treatment by reducing clutter to eliminate possible hiding spaces and to assist in speeding up the heating process. Item such as books, clothing, drawer contents, and electronics should always be sealed in bags and stored out of the treated room. Staff should also remove couch cushions and lean the mattress against a nearby wall.

All dresser drawers and closets should be opened to facilitate heating throughout, followed by pre-heating the room to 90 degrees or higher, sealing all windows to trap the heat.

Treating the Room

Heater units are placed around the bed and other areas in the room, with time to allow them to heat up. Heaters should be on the high setting until the room reaches approximately 106 degree.

Fans are also used in heavily infested areas to circulate the heat and bring these areas to 130 degrees for two to four hours, which is the temperature at which bed bugs are killed.

After this is completed, hotels should apply a spray to prevent any potential future infestations.

Failure to take these steps can result in severe infestations, for which bite victims may be able to receive compensation.

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