Do you recall that feeling of restlessness, the constant itch, and the fear of being swarmed by bed bugs once you hit the bed? It is a nightmare that none of us want to experience again. Bed bugs are resilient pests that can survive for months without feeding and can reproduce quickly. The question is, can washing bedding in hot water really kill them? The idea of hot water as a bed bug killer has been in debates for years. In this article, we will explore the science behind hot water and bed bugs so that you can understand why and how it works. So, grab a seat, sit back, and let’s explore together how washing your bedding in hot water can be an effective solution to eradicate bed bugs.
Will washing bedding in hot water kill bed bugs?
By following these steps, you can effectively kill any bed bugs and eggs that may be lurking in your bedding. It’s important to be diligent and thorough in your cleaning, as missing a few bugs could lead to a new infestation. With careful attention and the use of high temperatures, you can rest easy knowing that your bedding is free of bed bugs.
Take a look at this fascinating video on Bed Bugs, I guarantee you’ll find it interesting:
Will washing bedding in hot water kill bed bugs?
Bed bugs are tiny insects that feed on the blood of humans and animals, primarily at night when people are asleep. These pests are difficult to detect as they hide in mattresses, cracks, and crevices in walls and furniture during the day. They multiply quickly and can spread from room to room, causing a lot of discomfort and anxiety.
One effective way to get rid of bed bugs is by washing your bedding and clothes in hot water. In this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at why hot water is effective against bed bugs, how hot the water should be, other ways to kill bed bugs in bedding, precautions while handling infested bedding, how often to wash bedding to prevent bed bugs, and whether dry cleaning can kill bed bugs.
Why hot water is effective against bed bugs?
Bed bugs cannot tolerate high temperatures. Exposure to temperatures above 113°F (45°C) for an extended period kills bed bugs, including their eggs. Washing your bedding and clothes in hot water ensures that any bed bugs or eggs present on the fabric are killed.
Bed bugs are very resistant to many chemicals and insecticides, making them difficult to eradicate. However, exposure to high temperatures is the most effective way to get rid of them. High temperatures cause the proteins in their bodies to denature and ultimately die.
How hot should the water be?
To kill bed bugs and their eggs, the water temperature should be at least 122°F (50°C), and you should maintain this temperature for at least 30 minutes. Setting your washing machine to the hottest setting will help kill off any bed bugs or eggs present on your bedding or clothes.
Note: Remember that some fabrics like silk or linen cannot be washed in hot water as it can cause damage. Always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines when it comes to washing instructions.
Other ways to kill bed bugs in bedding
Apart from washing your bedding and clothes in hot water, there are other methods you can use to kill bed bugs in bedding. Here are some effective options:
- Steam cleaning: This method involves the use of steam to kill bed bugs and their eggs. Heat from the steam penetrates into the fabric to kill any bed bugs or eggs present.
- Freezing: Place your bedding in a sealed plastic bag and place it in a freezer at a temperature of 0°F (-18°C) for up to 4 days to kill bed bugs and their eggs.
- Vacuuming: Vacuuming may not kill bed bugs but can help remove them from your bedding and bed frame.
- Insecticides: Some insecticides can be used to kill bed bugs. Ensure you follow the instructions and guidelines for safe use, as some insecticides can be harmful to humans and pets.
Precautions while handling infested bedding
When handling infested bedding, it’s essential to take precautions to avoid spreading bed bugs to other areas of your home. Here are some precautions to take:
- Wear gloves: Use gloves when handling infested bedding to avoid any bites and to prevent getting bed bugs on your hands or clothes.
- Seal infested bedding: Place infested bedding in a plastic bag and seal it before transporting it to the laundry area.
- Use hot water: Use hot water (as discussed above) to wash infested bedding to kill any bed bugs or eggs present.
- Use a clean bag or container: Use a clean plastic bag or container to transport your clean bedding back to your room.
How often should bedding be washed to prevent bed bugs?
Regular washing of your bedding can help prevent bed bugs infestations or detect them early enough before they spread. It’s recommended that you wash your bedding in hot water every two weeks. By doing this, you’ll kill any bed bugs and their eggs and also reduce the number of allergens like dust mites that can accumulate in your bedding.
Can dry cleaning kill bed bugs?
Dry cleaning can kill bed bugs, but some chemicals used in the process may not be effective at killing bed bugs and their eggs. Manufacturers of dry cleaning products have not yet come up with a standard for bed bugs’ control. Additionally, dry cleaning is expensive compared to washing in hot water. Therefore, washing your bedding in hot water is a more cost-effective and proven method for killing bed bugs.
Washing your bedding in hot water is an effective way of getting rid of bed bugs. High temperatures kill bed bugs and eggs, making it one of the most effective methods for controlling bed bug infestations. Remember to take precautions while handling infested bedding to avoid spreading bed bugs to other areas of your home. Regular washing of your bedding is key to preventing bed bug infestations. Although dry cleaning can kill bed bugs, hot water washing is more cost-effective and proven to be a more reliable method for killing bed bugs.