How To Get Bed Bugs To Come Out Of Hiding
How to Find Bed Bugs
If you have a bed bug infestation, it is best to find it early, before the infestation becomes established or spreads. Treating a minor infestation, while an inconvenience, is far less costly and easier than treating the same infestation after it becomes more widespread.
However, low-level infestations are also much more challenging to find and correctly identify. Other insects, such as carpet beetles, can be easily mistaken for bed bugs. If you misidentify a bed bug infestation, it gives the bugs more time to spread to other areas of the house or hitchhike a ride to someone else’s house to start a new infestation. Learn about identifying bed bugs.
Bites on the skin are a poor indicator of a bed bug infestation. Bed bug bites can look like bites from other insects (such as mosquitoes or chiggers), rashes (such as eczema or fungal infections), or even hives. Some people do not react to bed bug bites at all.
Looking for Signs of Bed Bugs
A more accurate way to identify a possible infestation is to look for physical signs of bed bugs. When cleaning, changing bedding, or staying away from home, look for:
- Rusty or reddish stains on bed sheets or mattresses caused by bed bugs being crushed.
- Dark spots (about this size: •), which are bed bug excrement and may bleed on the fabric like a marker would.
- Eggs and eggshells, which are tiny (about 1mm) and pale yellow skins that nymphs shed as they grow larger.
- Live bed bugs.
Where Bed Bugs Hide
When not feeding, bed bugs hide in a variety of places. Around the bed, they can be found near the piping, seams and tags of the mattress and box spring, and in cracks on the bed frame and headboard.
If the room is heavily infested, you may find bed bugs:
- In the seams of chairs and couches, between cushions, in the folds of curtains.
- In drawer joints.
- In electrical receptacles and appliances.
- Under loose wall paper and wall hangings.
- At the junction where the wall and the ceiling meet.
- Even in the head of a screw.
How to Make Bed Bugs Come Out of Hiding
Bed bugs have lived with us for thousands of years. We thought we’d finally gotten rid of them over the course of the 20th century through using pesticides, heat treatments, etc. But, they have always found a way to survive by hiding from us. So, how do you lure bed bugs out?
Bed bugs are naturally drawn to CO2, body heat and many other ‘lures’ that draw them to their host at night. By using their natural instincts against them, you can get them to come out of hiding so that they’re easier to kill.
In this guide, we take a look at what attracts bed bugs, in particular, the ‘markers’ that tell them where their host is, and when is the perfect time to feed (including a fewmyths about what bed bugs like, and don’t like). Afterward, we look at how to get bed bugs out of hiding, including information on where they tend to hide, where they lay their eggs, and whether they can live on you.
Table of Contents:
How to Lure Bed Bugs Out of Hiding
So, you can use the bed bug’s instincts to force them to come out of hiding. These are based on of years of their adapting to live with us. They use them to find us at night so that they can feed.
Some tools and methods are better for bed bugs in furniture. Others are useful for bed bugs hiding in wall cracks. So, let’s take a look at where bed bugs hide during the day.
Where do Bed Bugs Hide?
Bed bugs are expert hiders. They can conceal themselves and evade our best efforts at killing them. They have specific skills and qualities that are hard to combat.
Their shape is almost entirely flat. This gives them the ability to hide in any gap or slot the width of a credit card. As you can imagine, this gives them any number of places to hide.
- A bed bug’s favorite place to live is in your mattress and box spring. They offer the perfect mix of easy access to a host and many hiding places. Each has fabric folds that they can hide underneath, and besides that, it’s a rare occasion that you lift ormove your mattress. And, if there’s a way inside, that’s even better.
- They can also hide in your bed frame, even a metal one. The cracks and joins in the wood are wide enough for them to fit. The underneath is always dark and stable and offers corners to hide. Even metal frames have screw holes they can live in.
- Furniture offers dark corners, cracks, and joins for them to live. Here, they’re not as close to you, so it’s not a preferred location. You’ll find them here in moderate infestations.
- In the most severe infestations, bed bugs will live anywhere that they can reach you from. They can live in wall cracks,inside the wallsthemselves, inside old pipes, inside the gap between the carpet and the baseboard, and in the carpet itself. As long as they can find their way to you at night, they’ll live there (provided that there’s nothing to kill them or wash them away).
- Can bed bugs live in carpet? Yes, they can, and in soft furnishings like curtains too. Wherever they can find a safe purchase, they’re happy to live. You may also see bed bugs running across the carpet at night, as part of their general explorations.
They use pheromones to mark their territory: the best hiding spots. They make their way back to these spots after they feed, and stay there, immobile for days as they digest. That’s why it’s so important that they pick somewhere still, dark and secure so that they aren’t disturbed. Then, they’ll lay their eggs nearby and continue thebed bug lifecycle.
How to Check for Bed Bugs in a Room
There are many basic checks you can make to find bed bugs, in a room:
- Start by checking in the bedding itself, inside the duvet cover if there’s a duvet.
- Remove the sheets from the bed, air them, and check on top of the mattress.
- Check the folds in the mattress.
- Check underneath the mattress, underneath any dust covers in the box spring, and in the bed frame itself.
- Check underneath any furniture, and in the corners of any drawers.
- Check the soft furnishings, e.g., curtains, next to the bed.
- Check the corners of the room, the carpet, and the electrical outlets too.
- Check for any crack in the wall.
You should be looking for many things: bed bugs themselves, old bed bugs shells, fecal staining (black and tar-like spots) and eggs. But what makes somewhere a good place for a bed bug to lay eggs?
Where do Bed Bugs Hide Their Eggs?
Long story short, anywhere that they won’t be disturbed.
This includes dark corners, inside your bed frame, on your mattress and box spring—anywhere that they won’t be disturbed, and that’s dark and hidden. For example, they might choose the underside of a pillow on your couch, but they certainly wouldn’t lay an egg on top of it.
If you lay perfectly still for a year, they would lay their eggs on top of your mattress and bedding, because the only other thing they think of is proximity to the host.
Have a quick search for eggs and see what you can find. They’re small and white, about the size of a sesame seed. They’re stuck tight to the surface that they’re laid on so firmly that you wouldn’t be able to vacuum them up, and they’re even difficult to scrape off. The ‘live’ ones are rubbery andhard to squish. If you know there’s a central location for an infestation, under your mattress, for example, then it’s likely that there are eggs there too.
Where do Bed Bugs Hide on Your Body?
Here’s a crucial point: bed bugsdon’thide on your body. They’re a specific kind of parasite that lives near their host, but not on them. They don’t need to live on you, and even if they tried, it wouldn’t end well for many reasons. Here’s why:
- Even the ‘greediest’ bed bugs only need to feed once every five days. Depending on the weather, they might only feed once every couple of months. If you only needed to eat once a week, you wouldn’t camp out in the kitchen near your fridge, would you?
- Bed bugs lack the leg shape and structure needed to push their way through hair. Lice, for example, have front claws that can hold onto a hair; bed bugs don’t. They’re also the right shape to crawl across your scalp and fit between hairs. Bed bugs are wide and flat: the worst possible shape to live in hair. That’s why they don’t.
If you’re still convinced thatbed bugs live on the skin, bear in mind that the cause might be psychological. According to any number of psychological papers—and this summary in theHuffington Post—itching is partly physical and partly psychological. People with lice, bed bugs and other infestations regularly report PTSD. This is the continuation of itching in the complete absence of an infestation.
Bed bugs don’t live in your hair, or on your body. They don’t need to, because they can always find their way to you from where theydolive.
What Attracts Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs are perfectly in tune with their hosts. They know how to recognize a sleeping person, through heat, sweat, breath, and pheromones. Using each of these things that attract bed bugs is the key to drawing them out of their hiding places.
Do Bed Bugs Like the Dark?
Bed bugs are photophobic. This means that they hate light, a fact reported in many journals, including theJournal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology.
At the root of this is the necessity of them being secretive. The easier they are to find, the easier they are to remove. Therefore, they have learned to avoid light and easy detection.
Conversely, bed bugs are drawn out of their hiding place in the dark of the night. In the day, you might see just one or two, if your infestation is severe enough.
As a test, the next time you wake up at night, turn on the light. You’ll likely see plenty crawling around, either on the carpet or the wall—especially close to their harborages.
Are Bed Bugs Drawn to Carbon Dioxide?
By nature, we need oxygen to live. Air, though, is only 20.95% oxygen. W, therefore,e breathe out a concentration of air with less oxygen.
Not only that, though, but webreathe out more carbon dioxide we breathe in, which we took in from food. This increased level of CO2 is a marker for bed bugs that their host is nearby.
According to a piece in theJournal of Pest Science, this has a specific effect on bed bugs nearby. Their mobility is increased.
The paper looked at a new bed bug treatment: desiccant dust (something like diatomaceous earth, which dries them out) in combination with a small increase in CO2 in the nearby air.
They found that the CO2 increased the number of bed bugs that explored the area covered by the desiccant dust, which is something they usually avoid. This resulted in more deaths.
Are Bed Bugs Attracted to Heat?
Bed bugs are also attracted to body heat. They seek out your warmth at night because you’re likely to be the only thing giving off warmth in the room at night. Their attraction to heat, therefore, helps them to find you.
According to a paper inLaboratory Medicine, bed bugs are attracted to both heat and CO2 to find a host. They travel at around the same speed as ladybugs, from their harborage, towards their sleeping host, to feed.
Pest control experts can take advantage of this using traps that give off the same warmth as a human. However, far more common is heating the room to lethal temperatures.
The same paper detailed how this process works. According to the review, bed bugs die at 122 degrees, which is achievable in a room using specialist equipment.
This kills 100% of bed bug stages, including eggs, over the course of 90 minutes. You can also achieve much the same effect by throwing clothes in a washing machine or dryer.
Kairomones and Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are also attracted to other chemicals that you naturally emit over the course of a night. These are calledkairomones.These are chemicals like pheromones that humans and other animals use to communicate with others chemically.
Bed bugs and other insects (and predators too) take advantage of these pheromones to locate a host, or to find prey during hunting. Prey can also use them to locate predators. Mice and rats can detect cats who emit them, for example.
Because we thought we’d almost eradicated bed bugs, little research was done on them in the 20th century. A review in the journalPest Management Sciencefound that bed bugs have something calledolfactory sensillaon the end of their antennae. These are like tiny noses that sense specific chemicals (kairomones especially).
Their paper reviewed other studies that looked into kairomones too. They found that kairomones have an “additive effect” when used in traps that emit carbon dioxide and heat.
In other words, they make the traps even more attractive than they were before, presumably by making them appear even more like a human host than they otherwise would have.
Do Bed Bugs Use Pheromones?
Bed bugs also have pheromones of their own. But they don’t serve the same purpose.
Bed bugs, like many other animals, use pheromones to communicate with one another. This is necessary because making any noise or another signal would be obvious to their host, who would surely get rid of them if they got the chance. One key reason they communicate is to find their way home. They’re called trail pheromones, and it’s how ants find their way back home.
Bed bugs don’t use trail pheromones, but they do use pheromones in another way. They use them to mark out their home, which is why you see so many congregating in one place.
Are Bed Bugs Attracted to Poor Hygiene or Is It a Myth?
One common myth about bed bugs is that they’re drawn to people with poor hygiene. That’s not true. Anybody can catch bed bugs, and it’s all down to the luck of the draw. You can catch them from friends, relatives and work colleagues.
All it takes is for them to find their way into your bag or some folded-up clothing that you aren’t wearing. Once you bring them home, they immediately hide. If you’re unlucky enough to have brought a female with eggs home, you’ll have an infestation.
That being said, poor hygiene can play a part in spreading infestations, for example:
- Clothes left on the ground provide a hiding place (harborage) for bed bugs and their eggs.
- Failing to change your sheets gives bed bugs more time to establish themselves. Laundering sheets kill both bed bugs and eggs.
- Not using your vacuum cleaner for a long time has a similar effect, allowing an infestation to spread and take hold more easily. Vacuuming does not kill bed bugs but reduces the biomass (number) of bed bugs in an infestation.
Bed bugs aren’t drawn to you any more or less by the fact that you regularly bathe, or choose not to bathe. You release the same warmth and CO2 that attracts them regardless of whether you bathed yesterday or last month. Bed bugs won’t come out of hiding to bite people with worse hygiene than others.
Are Bed Bugs Attracted to Blood Type?
Some people seem to get bitten by bed bugs more than others. Many myths try to explain why, for example, that there’s such a thing as a bed bug blood type preference. It’s not true.
Bed bugsdohave a particular blood type that they’re raised on from birth: the blood type of their host. Some studies have looked at whether raising bed bugs on a certain kind of blood would give them a preference. A paper in theJournal of Circadian Rhythmslooked to test that exact question.
They looked at the feeding behaviors of many different bed bug species to see whether they could learn anything about them, and how to kill them more effectively.
They found that raising a bed bug on a certain kind of blood resulted in a “modest delay of feeding” when they were then presented with a different kind. However, they found overall that bed bugs will feed on any blood type, not just one or two, and none with any preference. Bed bugs, therefore, won’t come out of hiding to attack a new or different host with a different blood type.
Can I Make Bed Bugs Come Out of Hiding?
So, now that you knowwhat bed bugs are attracted to, can you convince them to come out of their hiding places? Yes, you most definitely can. You can use bed bug lures to persuade them to leave behind their harborages, and come out in search of you. The lures themselves are the only thing that can make them come out because the bed bug thinks they’re closing in on a host.
By and large, bed bugs are inactive during the day. That’s because they’re photophobic. They spend the day hiding somewhere that you can’t get them, like a crack in the wall. They also remain inactive for a long period of time after they feed, as they digest. But you knew all that already.
What you might not know is that this makes many common bed bug treatments like diatomaceous earth, insecticides and DIY treatments like tea tree oil ineffective.
They might be able to kill most of the population, but not all of them. That’s why getting them to move away from their harborages and out into the open is vital, and the best way is using lures.
How to Get Rid of Hidden Bed Bugs
We’ve outlined some do’s and don’ts for getting rid of bed bugs when they have many hiding places.
Don’t Use Insecticides for Bed Bugs
Insecticide has long been a preferred bed bug treatment. There are many different chemical insecticides available to exterminators, and which have been in use for many decades. Manufacturers of bedding, mattresses and so on used DDT extensively during the twentieth century to prevent infestations, for example.
This was the favored way to get rid of hidden infestations. The air inside the entire home would become poisonous for bed bugs, and it would reach even hidden cracks and crevices in the wall and beyond. However, as with all pesticides (and antibiotics, for similar reasons) extensive use has ensured that some populations have begun to become immune to common insecticides.
This is most often the case for populations in major urban areas like New York, L.A. and big cities across the U.S. A BBC News article detailed how bed bugs in Cincinnati and Michigan had developed “dramatic levels” of immunity to many common pesticides. And, as you should know, just 1% of an infestation surviving is enough to re-establish the population within just a month or two.
Exterminators, therefore, have to consider alternatives to insecticides to kill bed bugs. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of ways to kill them: let’s take a look at a few.
Plastic Bed Bug Traps (Passive Monitors)
The simplest traps are often the best. You can immediately cut off the majority of a population by using basic plastic traps, tape or even Vaseline.
These passive monitors fit around the feet of your bed. They are referred to aspassive monitorsbecause they don’t actively lure in bed bugs, they get in their way as they’re trying to get to you. They look like small Tupperware tubs or small round plastic caps that fit around the feet/legs of your bed. The bed bugs try to climb up your bed leg to reach you, but they fall into the trap and can’t get out due to the slippery surface.
Variations include the following:
- Basic plastic bed bug traps that fit around the feet of your bed. The bed bug can crawl in, but can’t crawl out. You can also use water traps, which are the same idea, but the trap is filled with water. Not only can the bugs not climb out, but they drown, too.
- Sticky double-sided tape around the legs of your bed frame stops them from being able to crawl up to get you. Bed bugs are smart and avoid any surface that they would find it difficult to crawl over. As such, the vast majority of bed bugs would avoid the tape. Any others would get stuck to it.
- Vaseline makes the legs of your bed frame too slippery for them to climb up.
These traps will stop any bed bugs from harborages in walls, furniture or the carpet from being able to reach you. The plastic traps, in particular, will stop them from being able to get back to their safe spots too.
Bed Bug Lures (Active Monitors)
Bed bug lures are like the traps we described above, but they both attractandtrap bed bugs. Active monitors actively release a lure that draws the bed bug in. An example is a CO2 or heat trap, which releases either a steady stream of CO2 or heat at a similar temperature to your body (or both). Some release both, alongside kairomones, which increases functionality (draw in more bed bugs).
Over the course of a period of time, normally a few hours, these lures will persuade bed bugs to leave their hiding places. Not all of them will come at once since bed bugs often have a long period where they don’t need to feed. Depending on the temperature and the stage to which they’ve developed, they may take between five days and many months between each feed. There will, therefore, be many that have recently fed and ‘aren’t hungry.’
This lure will gradually draw in more and more bed bugs from their hiding places, although it will take time. Placing lures around your bed may discourage them from coming for you, specifically. This will reduce the number of bites you get, but not stop them completely. You’ll have to do something more active to get rid of them all.
Using CO2 to kill bed bugs isn’t a new idea. Like any other animal, they can suffocate if they go without oxygen for long enough. However, since bed bugs are also attracted to CO2, it’s a unique treatment in that it draws them outandkills them with 100% effectiveness (if the treatment is done correctly).
A paper in theJournal of Medical Entomologyexamined how effective CO2 was at killing bed bugs. They accounted for many factors: the developmental stage of the bed bug, the temperature at which the treatment was administered, and the time they had to take to kill 100% of the bed bugs. They found that:
- Concentrations of CO2 higher than 30% were sufficient to kill an entire infestation at 71 degrees, over the course of 24 hours.
- Eggs required higher CO2 concentrations: 80% or more to kill them over the course of a full day. However, with 100% concentration, they would be killed within 7 hours at 71 degrees.
- Eggs were more susceptible to 100% CO2 concentration but less susceptible to 80% concentrations and lower.
This is applied both in a laboratory and home settings. In particular, the researchers checked whether bed bugs would survive in trash bags or ziplock bags filled with CO2: they didn’t. This applied to bags that were filled with clothes and boxes, too, proving that it could be done at home. However, they had to use over three pounds of dry ice per bag to achieve the effect, meaning that this would be an inefficient way to kill bed bugs at home.
Either way, using CO2 is an excellent way to kill bed bugs that are hiding. First of all, since CO2 is a lure anyway, it increases their mobility. But also, it decreases the available oxygen (and increases the amount of CO2) throughout the entire room. This, therefore, kills the bed bugs, even if they choose to remain hidden.
Heat treatments achieve much the same as CO2. Heat increases a bed bug’s mobility and speeds up their development. That’s whybed bugs breed and grow quicker during the summermonths.
However, once the temperature reaches high enough, they quickly begin to die. Temperatures of above 113 are enough to make them die, although over 122 is high enough to kill an entire infestation in a few hours.
Again, heat treatment is a good choice because it kills bed bugs even if they choose to remain hidden. It’s also effective against eggs, which not all treatments are.
Can Essential Oils Kill Bed Bugs?
Tea tree oil and other essential oilsare a well-known alternative to chemical insecticides. And not just according to online blogs and forums, but according to real, hard science.
A study in the journalInsectstested many essential oil mixes to test their effectiveness. They picked a natural spray (EcoRaider) and compared it to Temprid SC as well as a mix of both. They then sprayed many test rooms (real, infested apartments that had agreed to be a part of the test). Unfortunately, there was no control group since nobody was willing todo nothingabout their infestation over the course of the experiment. However, the results were still interesting.
Did they work? Over a period of 12 weeks, they reduced mean bed bug count by a number approaching 100%. Temprid SC was more effective at first. However, these were small infestations of 100 bed bugs or less, to begin with. Over the course of 12 weeks, their numbers were reduced to ten or less for each of the sprays.
The treatment, therefore, is reasonably effective. However, one has to bear in mind that these were medium-sized infestations, not large infestations. For infestations numbering in the thousands (which is more than possible), getting them under control would take longer.
The treatment also doesn’t have to be applied consistently; the scientists sprayed the apartment thoroughly and left it for weeks afterward. It’s, therefore, a decent solution for medium-sized infestations.
DIY Bed Bug Killers & Home Remedies for Bed Bugs
Last but not least, there are many DIY options for killing bed bugs. These are particularly appealing because hiring an exterminator can cost north of $1000.
And, for $1000, you’d hope that the infestation would be guaranteed to be dead: but that’s not always the case, which can be exceptionally frustrating. So, what kind of DIY bed bug treatments are there?
- Does baking soda kill bed bugs? The idea is that baking soda (also known as baking powder and sodium bicarbonate) can dry out bed bugs, and cause them to dehydrate and die. It’s how diatomaceous earth and alternative desiccants work. Unfortunately, baking soda isn’t sharp enough or coarse enough to break into a bed bug’s outer shell-like desiccant powders, so it doesn’t work.
- Strongvinegar can kill bed bugs on direct contact. However, everyday home-use vinegar isn’t strong enough to do so.
- Rubbing alcohol can kill bed bugson direct contact, but not all. It also depends on the concentration (the stronger, the better). Even so, it doesn’t kill them all, so it can’t control an infestation.
You also have to bear in mind that none of these methods will kill hidden bed bugs, only those that crawl around outside their hiding places.
Your best bet is therefore to use heat treatments or CO2, or bed bug lures that actively draw bed bugs away from their harborages. As a long-term treatment, essential oil sprays and traps can work, and in combination with lures, this may be enough to kill even hidden bed bugs.
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Hi, I’m Lou. I’ve long been fascinated by bed bugs, ever since a friend’s life was turned upside down. That’s why I’ve put together this specialist site. You’ll find detailed answers to all of your questions on how to get rid of a bed bug infestation. I hope you find it useful!
Where Are the Bugs Hiding?
Bugs are pests not because they’re tiny, and not even because they like to hang out in packs. Bugs are pests because they hide. They’re sneaky, and they know how to make themselves scarce. But if you know how to root them out and find their hiding places, you can get rid of bugs in your home and garden areas.
One of the most high-profile home pests are bed bugs, properly known as Cimex Lectularius. That’s Latin forget out of my house. That’s a jest, of course, but it’s no joke that you don’t want bed bugs in your home.
Bed bugs feed on human blood, and any home can be vulnerable to them despite its cleanliness. Bed bugs like people best, but they will also feed on household animals. You will usually find them around the bed, as the name suggests. Look for them around mattresses and bed frames. Check folds and dark, hidden places. They’ll even hide under carpeting and in cracks. If you find inexplicable blood spots on your bedding, you may have a bed bug infestation.
Ants are a common pest problem both inside the home and in garden areas outside the home. If you’re finding ants repeatedly in a single location, there is an ant nest nearby.
Ants don’t always build their homes in soil. They may also build nests beneath rocks and in other dark, hidden locations. To find the ant nest, look for an ant trail. These pests commonly walk in long lines as they go about their routines. Find this line of ants and follow them to their nest. Once you know where the ants like to hide, you can get rid of them.
Ladybugs are tricky home and garden pests because of the superstition surrounding them. They’re good for your garden, and everybody loves them in twos or even threes.
But they can infest your home, and ladybugs can also draw other types of beetles once they’ve set up shop. They do not necessarily bring you good luck, but they won’t eat fabrics or wood. This means your home won’t be damaged by them. They will bite human and animal skin, however, which can make life unpleasant.
Ladybugs need to hibernate, and this can draw them into your home. Warm cracks and tree trunks are attractive to them. Look for yellow residue, something ladybugs leave behind, to locate their hiding places. Ladybugs and beetles are very hard to remove once they are inside the home, but they will leave their hibernating places in summer.
When you know more about where bugs like to hide, you have a better chance of getting rid of them. Start looking for areas that might be attractive and inviting to bugs, and take care of them.
Door seals:Check all the doors on the exterior of your home and look for gaps. Use a threshold and/or door sweep to fix gaps beneath the door. Weatherstripping can improve gaps elsewhere.
Windows:Screens on windows prevent bugs from flying in, so install them! Installing a screen is a simple DIY task.
Spot trouble:Walk around your yard and look for problem areas. Overgrown and shadowy areas attract bugs, as do standing pools of water. Even a small pool of water will draw insects. Keep pools and hot tubs covered when not in use. Eliminate bird baths, fix poor-draining areas, and you’ll have fewer mosquitoes hanging around.
Seal:Look all around the outside of your home, and search for chinks in the armor. Don’t forget to check the foundation, too. If you find cracks, gaps and other weak points, seal them up with caulk or cement. Replace rotting wood, broken siding, and other trouble spots that you find. Big holes can be covered with fine wire mesh first, then repaired with caulk or cement.
Get Rid of Bugs
If you find bugs on your house or garden plants, drive them away with a little garlic water. Mash fresh cloves in water and pour the mixture in a spray bottle. Apply this to bug-infested plants of all types. Draw unwanted bugs already inside the home with a bowl of sugar water. Squirt a little liquid soap in the mixture and place the bowl somewhere. Bugs will be drawn to it.
Find out where the bugs are hiding so you can seal off their entry points, get them out and protect your home. No bug is truly harmless, because they draw more bugs all the time. Before you know it, they’ll take over your home and garden. Once you know how to find them, you can stop them.
How to Make Bed Bugs Come Out of Hiding
Aside from being good hitchhikers, bed bugs are good at hiding. Without checking for signs and and a thorough inspection, you may not notice that you are already having an early case of a bed bug infestation in your home. Whether you have a full-blown infestation or a low-key one, finding and catching them is the most challenging task you will experience.
They love to settle in areas that are rarely touched or disturbed like cracks, crevices, bed frames, wooden furniture and even in wardrobes. Cleaning every nook and cranny in your home is not enough since these insects are resilient. If you ever leave out their eggs or spread nymphs to other parts of your home, expect a bigger infestation to happen.
Can’t Find Where the Bed Bugs Are Hiding? Here are Ways to Make Them Come Out!
Fortunately, there are things you can do to make these bed bugs come out of their hiding places. Some of which are the following:
- Bed bugs usually come out at night. So, take advantage of the usual time when they crawl out of their hiding spots. Once you see where they are coming from, you can treat these areas with heat.
- Move beds away from the walls and use active traps like our BeapCo 6-hour CO2 trap. It has a 6-hour window of detection using CO2 and heat, which will attract bed bugs and trap them on the glue cartridge. You can vacate your room and put this on top of your bed or nearby furniture to attract the bed bugs.
What brings bed bugs out of hiding is the heat and CO2 that the body releases when sleeping. These are emitted by the trap, which will make the bed bugs climb up to reach the source of heat and CO2, but will fall inside the trap and get stuck in the glue paper. What makes our 6-hour trap worth trying? It comes with refills, which makes it possible to continuously monitor and trap bed bugs whenever they come out to feed on you.
- A steamer is also a good option when trying to kill bed bugs in your bed, furniture or couch. You can also use it on the walls and other parts of your home. The steamer may not exactly pass through the area where the pests are hiding, but the heat emitted can make them come out of hiding and look for another hiding spot.
- What draws bed bugs out of hiding is heat, as it is an indicator that their host is nearby. They will most likely stay a few meters away from the source and venture out when they are going to feed. Among our popular traps, one of them which makes these pests come out is the Beacon. It provides two weeks of continuous detection, which will attract bed bugs continuously and allow you to monitor the severity of the infestation.
You simply need to set it up in an area where you think bed bugs are hiding and they will be attracted to the small amounts of CO2 emitted by the trap. Slowly, bed bugs will come out and travel towards the unit. They will be trapped inside and help you identify how serious the infestation is. The fact that it comes with refills makes it more convenient to use for a few more weeks until you finally get rid of them or find out if the treatment you got is effective or not.
- Wash untouched, stored, or stocked clothes on high heat. When washing your clothes, always put the setting on the hottest temperature. This is necessary for both washing and drying your clothes. The higher the temperature, the higher the chance of killing both adult bed bugs and their eggs.
If any of these fail or doesn’t work as expected, you can always use other bed bug lures in your home.
Other Tools to Lure Bed Bugs Out of Their Hiding Places
When trying to lure bed bugs out of their hiding spots, there is nothing wrong with using several tools at once. Our Surge has up to 90 days of active detection that will give you the ease of trapping as many bed bugs as possible, in a discreet manner. It works by attracting bed bugs with the heat it emits. When bed bugs climb in, they will become trapped in the glue paper inside the surge. You can place it in areas where you think bed bugs are hiding.
As with our other active detection traps, Surge comes with refills to get a replacement glue cartridge when needed. With its 90 days active detection, you can make sure that bed bugs hiding anywhere in your room, office, or any part of your home will come out and become trapped in this product.
With the right tools, it is easy for you to make bed bugs come out of their hiding places and capture them using active detection traps. Should you have any questions or would like to know more about these traps, feel free to contact us via email or phone and our bed bug experts will assist you with your concerns.
What Causes Bed Bugs in Your Home ?
If you wake up in the middle of the nigh scratching itchy arms and legs, you may have a bed bug infestation. These small, reddish-brown bloodsucking pests can cause a number of health issues if they are not eliminated quickly.
A single bug is no larger than an apple seed. This is why you may not be able to detect them till it is too late. They can remain hidden between cracks, crevices, box springs, the headboard, and any furniture that is near your bed.
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How Do Bed Bugs Get In Your Home?
These pests don’t materialize out of thin air and land on your bed. Bed bugs are notorious hitch hikers – they can get on you and you won’t even realize they are there till they multiply on your bed. Here are some common places where these bloodsuckers can come from:
- Office buildings.
- Daycare centers
- Nursing homes
- Police station
- The theatre
- Bus depots (from seats)
In fact, bed bugs can also transfer from one person to the next so you aren’t safe even if you avoid the aforementioned locations.
1. Doesn’t Matter If You Are Clean
What causes bed bugs to come? Let’s get one thing straight – no matter how clean you are, you are still susceptible to an infestation from these pesky insects. Their main diet is human and animal blood and they can live almost any place that has a ready supply of either of these. So no matter how pristine your home is and even if you don’t have pets, you may have these bugs.
Even though bed bugs prefer to remain hidden, they venture out when they sense a suitable source of food nearby. These are quite caution though which is why they come out in the middle of the night. Plus, there is a reason why you don’t feel them biting you when you are asleep. When they bite, they inject a weak anesthetic into their host so that they can eat their fill without being noticed.
2. They Are Master Hitchhikers
As mentioned before, for bed bugs to get in your home, they have to hitch a ride on you or anything you are carrying. Normally, they don’t remain on a host after they have fed their fill but they may crawl onto them and ride to a new location.
Needless to say travelers are the ones who are the most susceptible to this. If you stay in a hotel that has a bed bug problem, you will probably take some home with you on your luggage, purse, backpack and coat.
3. They Prefer High-Activity Areas
Since bed bugs travel from one feeding ground to the next by hitching a ride on unsuspecting people, they are usually found in populated areas. This includes shelters, dorms, hotels, apartments, etc.
In other words, if you have a lot of guests coming over for dinner or a party, chances are at least one of them are hiding pesky uninvited guests so to speak. People who live in single family residences are at a lower risk.
4. They Love Clutter
Once bed bugs get in your home, they immediately start searching for hiding places. This can be anything from baseboards and wallpaper to your sheets, under switch plates and especially clutter. This spells bad news for hoarders – the more things you have lying around your home, the harder it will be for you to get rid of them.
Once they find a decent hidey hole, they spare no time multiplying and they do this quite fast. In fact, a single female can lay over hundreds of eggs at a time. With a ready food source and isolation, it can produce eggs as many times as it needs.
5. They Can Be Found In Second Hand Furniture
If you prefer to buy furniture second hand, chances are you will get more than you bargained for. If it comes from a home that is infested with bed bugs, it will definitely have a few that can infest your home as well. This also includes rented furniture which is not deep cleaned and inspected for pests after it is returned.
Unfortunately, isolating an infested piece of furniture may not resolve the problem. Bed bugs can survive for months without feeding after all.
Frequently Asked Questions
What causes bed bugs and how to get rid of them?
To summarize, bed bugs are caused by clutter, infested furniture and travel. Here are some ways that you can prevent an infestation and/or get rid of them:
- Be diligent when you are traveling. When you are staying at a hotel, place your bag on your suitcase, not on the floor or the bed. Plus, keep it away from the furniture and the walls.
- Before purchasing new or used furniture, examine it for bed bugs by lifting the seams, cushions and tufts.
- Vacuum your home frequently
- Cover all power outlets. Bed bugs hide in the holes during extermination and come out when the coast is clear.
- Store clothing in vacuum sealed bags while traveling. This will prevent these pests from hitching a ride on you all the way back to your home.
How do I know that my home has bed bugs?
- You see small, red bumps on your skin that itch when you get up in the morning.
- You see blood stains on the sheets.
- You see black droppings on furniture, in crevices, in your bed and in cracks.
- You notice a musty odor in your home
- You see dark spots on the walls.
- You see bed bug shells (white, husk-like specks) on your mattress.
- You see small, white spots in the furniture.
I have a bed bug problem. How do I control it?
- Get rid of clutter and clean up your home.
- Move the bed well away from the furniture before treating it.
- Wash infested sheets, pillows, blankets etc and dry it in a hot dryer for at least half an hour. This should kill the eggs as well. After that, consider using spring and box spring covers to prevent re-infestation.
- Seal all openings such as cracks and crevices especially where the pipes and wires are located.
- Remove all the drawers from a dresser to search for the bugs and pull it away from the wall to block escape routes.
- To dislodge eggs, scrub infested areas with a stiff brush and then vacuum the room extensively. A vacuum hose attachment will be effective especially in cracks and small holes. Since bed bugs latch on tightly, use the nozzle of the vacuum to scrape them lose and then suck them up.
How do I use pesticide to eliminate bed bugs?
Only use pesticides if the infestation is too large to manage. Plus, make sure to use a product that is made specifically for eliminating it such as Temprid FX. Follow the directions that are mentioned on it carefully. Use only the amount that is prescribed and place it in a spray bottle.
Spray the pesticide in areas where bed bugs are usually found such as in corners, around thresholds, and window frames, under the furniture, the bed and furniture legs, the edge of carpets and baseboards, etc. Whatever you do, do not spray an entire carpet or floor and allow it to dry on areas that you do spray before removing dead bugs.
What health risks do bed bugs carry?
Bed bugs affect each person differently. Some people may not even see any red spots or signs of an infestation on their body while others may either get small, red and engorged marks on their body or a full-on allergic reaction which may require medical aid. The worst case scenario may be burning and an anaphylactic reaction. Some people may also suffer from insomnia if they know that their bed has bugs in it for fear of being bitten.
How do I prevent bed bugs from returning after cleaning them out?
Even if you evacuate your home, some bugs may return and feed off other pests such as rats and mice. In other words, make sure that you get rid of them as well as the bugs at the same time.
How do I prevent an infestation after returning home from a vacation?
- When you get home from a vacation, take your luggage into the garage or any area that is not near your home and shake out everything in it.
- Place all of the clothes in your luggage in a plastic bag and wash them separately in the washing machine even items that you never wore during your trip. Use hot water for this.
- Vacuum your empty suitcase from the inside out thoroughly and dump the contents outside. Take extra precautions by rubbing the suitcases with rubbing alcohol. Apply it to a cotton ball and rub it around the crevices and cracks.
- Items that should not be washed can still be treated. For example, you can leave the shoes you used in your travels out in the sun for a couple of days to drive out any bed bugs in it.
If you see a single bed bug, chances are there are more behind it hiding in your home. Take the threat seriously by taking the mentioned preventative/elimination measures and you will be free of the pesky critters in no time.