Bed bugs are notoriously difficult to get rid of – even professional treatments which can be very expensive do not always work. There is one thing however which be bugs cannot with stand HIGH TEMPERATURES, making the use of steam a very effective way to kill bed bugs at all stages of development. It also means that these little vampire pests can be eradicated safely without using any toxic chemicals around your home.
Four Things to Look For When Buying A Steam Cleaner To Kill Bed Bugs:
1. It must reach temperatures greater than 200oF at the tip of the nozzle
2. It should produce dry steam. This is necessary to prevent your mattress etc. becoming too wet.
3. Make sure it has a long enough power cable – you will be covering a lot of ground.
4. Purchase a steam cleaner which has a good sized water chamber – you don’t want to keep stopping to top up!
How To Kill Bed Bugs With Steam:
1. Vacuum the whole room and I literally mean EVERYTHING, mattress, box spring, curtains, soft furnishings soft toys and so on. Try not to use a bag-less vacuum because this makes disposing of the contents more difficult. If a bag-less vacuum is all you have available to you make sure you empty the contents into a plastic bag OUTSIDE your home. MAKE SURE YOU CLEAN OUT YOUR VACUUM CLEANER – use hot water to clean all parts then leave to air dry.
2. If you have just purchased a steam cleaner for this task make sure you carefully read and fully understand the manufacturers instructions before you begin. Steam cleaners may not be toxic but they do produce steam at extremely high temperatures which can give very nasty burns and scalds.
3. As you begin to treat the room and its contents it is best to work in a steady methodical manner. Begin by tackling the high areas first such as mouldings around the ceiling, curtains and so on and work you way down getting to baseboards and floor coverings last. DO NOT USE STEAM ANYWHERE NEAR ELECTRICAL SWITCHES, SOCKETS OR APPLIENCES.
4. You cannot afford to rush this treatment. It is important that you move around the room slowly one inch per second is the recommended pace. You should also ensure that the nozzle of your steam cleaner is kept at the optimum distance from the surface you are treating which is round 1 – 2 inches for the best chance to kill bed bugs and their eggs.
5. If you can make use of the larger nozzle attachment for your machine. Smaller heads will blast out steam which is more likely to scatter than kill bed bugs! You may find that the model you have purchased gives you the facility to adjust the steam pressure.
6. Give everything you have steamed enough time to completely dry.
7. Over the coming days vigilance is essential. If you discover any signs of bed bugs in this time you must repeat the treatment.
8. As an additional insurance policy it is wise to use a non toxic bed bug spray once the steam treatment of complete.
N.B. If you have applied chemical treatments to the area great care should be taken when applying steam. It is possible that steam may prevent the chemical treatment working effectively.
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