Can Clothes Steamers Kill Bed Bugs?

If you’re having a problem with bed bugs, you may be looking for a natural, cost effective way to kill them. Steam will kill bed bugs on contact, providing the steam is 160-180 degrees Fahrenheit. Most full size garment steamers heat up to this level.

How do you Steam a Mattress?

First, start by removing all the linen from your bed and put it in the dryer on the highest heat setting possible. The heat from the dryer will kill any bed bugs that are in your linen. You will then want to follow up with washing and drying of your linen.

Vacuum your mattress thoroughly. Using the largest amount of suction, vacuum the top sides and under any pillow tops and in any crevices of your mattress. Once you have completed vacuuming your mattress, remove it from the bed frame if possible and vacuum the underside. Ideally, your mattress should be standing upright so you can access all surfaces of the mattress.

Using Steam to Kill Bed Bugs

Please keep in mind that steam will only kill the bed bugs that it comes into contact with. If you have bed bugs deep within your mattress, you may need to treat the mattress several times as the bed bugs come to the outer surface of the mattress.

With the steamer on the highest setting, run the wand, or head of the steamer over your mattress at approximately 1 inch per second. Work from the top of your mattress to the bottom, ensuring you cover every square inch of the mattress, including the underside.

If you have a pillow top, or creases within your mattress, make sure the steam gets into every crevice. The steam needs to come into contact with the bed bugs or their eggs, or heat their environment up enough (above 160F) to kill them instantly.

Dry Your Mattress Thoroughly

Leave your mattress to dry and air out. A fan may assist with this. Check the mattress over for any remaining bed bugs – as mentioned above, if bed bugs move deeper within a mattress, they may not die. Make sure your mattress is fully dry before returning to your bed frame and remaking your bed.

Still Having a Problem with Bed Bugs?

You may be interested in the following items:

Avoid Bed Bugs with Encased Mattress Protectors

We recommend the use of fully encased mattress protectors to stop the spread of bed bugs such as the SafeRest Premium Zippered Mattress Encasement. Check out the video below to see how it works.

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