How To Kill Bedbugs With Heat

Bed bugs are incredibly good at hiding in tiny crevices and cracks and this makes it difficult to eradicate them. Additionally, they’ve nowadays become resistant to most insecticides.  Because of this, pest management companies and homeowners have had to come up with more creative ways to kill bedbugs. One very popular way that has turned out to be highly effective is through the use of heat.

How to get rid of bed bugs using heat

Using heat to kill bedbugs has been known to be very effective method and can be used in multiple ways. For example, heat from steam can be used to treat bedbugs hiding in places such as upholstered furniture, behind the boards, and in carpets.

Portable heat chambers and hot dryers can also be used on household items infested with bedbugs. Furthermore, professional heating systems can be used to treat entire structures such as rooms, while larger heat chambers can be used to treat furniture.

But why is heat such a preferred method of getting rid of bedbugs?  Well, unlike other methods, treating bedbugs with heat has various advantages. To begin with, heat is non-toxic therefore poses no side effects to humans and pests. Again, heat can kill all bed bug life stages, including the eggs.

Be that as it may, heat has one disadvantage. It may turn out to be an expensive affair, especially when applied in any other form save for using it as your home clothes drier. Moreover, heat has no long-lasting effect (residual activity).

Heat Treatment Methods for Bed Bugs

The lack of a residual effect/activity here means that bedbugs can re-infect as soon as the first round of treatment is over. Despite of this shortcoming, killing bedbugs using heat remains one of the most effective ways to fight bedbugs. So, what are the various methods that can be used to kill bedbugs using heat?


Steam is an effective way that pest management companies use to get rid of bedbugs. A professional exterminator can use steam to treat bedbugs on upholstered furniture, behind baseboards, along the tacking strips of the carpet, mattresses, and other areas considered undesirable if pesticides were to be used.

Steaming requires patience, as it is slow and methodical. A professional steamer must ensure that the target temperature is maintained throughout the steaming process. Temperatures should be around 160-180 degrees Fahrenheit.

When conducting the steaming treatment, care must be taken not to exhaust the treatment personnel so that the treatment process remains just as good as it is at the beginning and throughout to the end. Steaming has shown to be an effective way to get rid of bedbugs quickly. Pricing for the services ranges from a low of $300 to a max of $1,200.

Whole room heating systems

Apart from using steam for bedbug treatment, whole room heating systems are another effective way proven to kill bedbugs which is through superheating infested rooms.

Currently, there’re two such systems – Temp-Air Heat Remediation System and ThermaPureHeat. The principals behind these two technologies basically compare the same to the first steaming method aforementioned. Nonetheless, using ThermaPureHeat and Temp-Air Remediation System involves either the use of propane generated heat or electric heaters.

It is an effective way to eliminate bedbugs in hard-to-reach places such as crevices and in between cracks. The method involves placing sensors in such places and then heat is maintained throughout the whole treatment process. The heating process is left to continue for typically one hour or more. Advantages of using these treatment methods is that the owner of the property to be disinfected doesn’t have to undergo the hustle of bagging their belongings.

Also, most infestations are typically killed in just a single treatment. The only downside to using the technologies are still new and therefore finding a pest management company with such systems is still hard today, although they are becoming more and more prevalent.   

Do It Yourself Heat Treatment

Besides the two methods aforementioned, tenants and homeowners can also get rid of bedbugs using cheaper alternatives such as using a clothes drier or a portable heating device.

A clothes drier can be an effective but temporary way to kill bedbugs on toys, bedding, shoes, and clothes. In just about 30 min, a loosely filled drier set on “high” can be a cost-effective way of killing bedbugs. Better yet, a drier with a removable shelf is excellent for exterminating bedbugs on handbags, books, knick-knacks, and shoes. Typically things that cannot be tumbled. Although using a drier may be an effective yet cost-effective method of killing bedbugs, it takes quite some time to reach the insect’s thermal death point.

Additionally, portable heating devices can be used as well. The best example being the PackTite portable bed bug heaterPackTite portable bed bug heater.

Unlike the clothes dryer mentioned above, this one is specially designed to kill bedbugs. Originally intended for treating suitcases, the PackTite is an effective heat chamber for treating bedbugs on places such as sleeping bags, pillows, purses, shoes, CDs, books, tools, clothing, and backpacks.

The PackTite is essentially a collapsible duffle bag that holds the items to be disinfected. After loading, the bag is then heated to a temperature of 120 degrees Fahrenheit.  The advantages it has over the clothes drier is its portability and its ability to treat items in enclosed places such as in suitcases. Be that as it may, it usually takes longer to treat infested items. 

Wrapping Up

As can be seen, heat is an excellent bed bug killer, and even though they can manage to survive even without oxygen and food, they aren’t that tough enough to survive the heat. Heat penetrates every surface and kills bugs hidden in clothes and beddings.   Heat does this without propagating any side effects. We recommend to use a heat gun or other portable heating device to get rid
of bugs concentrated in smaller surfaces such as clothes, backpacks, shoes, etc., and homeroom services and steam on larger areas such as whole rooms.  With this said, a steamer, with the proper accessories, like the Vapamore MR-100 can project steam into narrow and small areas, killing bed bugs on contact.

Killing bed bugs off will give you back the comfortable life you and your family deserve, as the constant biting from these vampire bugs can without a doubt make life miserable for all.

Get FREE Local Bed Bug Exterminator Quotes

Fill out our simple and easy form, and get FREE and LOCAL bed bug exterminator quotes sent straight to your inbox.