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It’s a widely known fact that bed bugs are extremely talented at finding the most “unconventional” living places.You can spot the pest moving house in weird areas like in between the pages of a book, in that one crack in your wall, and even in the head of a screw.
But what about your cleaning appliances?
Can bed bugs hide in a vacuum cleaner, for example?
Some basic information about bed bugs
Bed bugs are tiny insects, and when we say tiny, we are talking about 4.5mm. This fact alone makes them really hard to spot. When it comes to shape, the bloodsuckers have a flat and oval body.
In terms of colouring, it really depends if the bug has recently fed or not. If the insect has just had its dinner, it’s going to have a reddish hue, thanks to all of the consumed blood in its system.
The vampire bugs can be easily transmitted from one property to another, by taking a ride in your suitcase or on your clothing.
Like we said earlier, they have the tendency to choose the weirdest living spaces, but bed bugs are particularly known for living in your bed and mattress.
However, they are called this for a reason, which is that you can most commonly find the pest in your bed. This is because the insect likes to stay close to its feeding source, which is, well - you.
Generally, bed bugs are static through the day and go on a hunting spree in the nighttime. So, if you wake up and spot some interesting bite marks on your body, there is a possibility that you’ve been attacked by a bed bug army while sleeping.
Does vacuuming kill bed bugs?
To be completely honest, vacuuming itself won’t take care of a bed bugs infestation, especially if it’s on the more serious side.
However, it can still help you reduce the insect population in your property. With that being said, here are some useful tips for vacuuming bed bugs:
- Before you start, gather all of your bug-free possessions like clothes, bedding, or pillows and seal them in plastic bags to save them from getting infected as well.
- Get the best vacuum cleaner on the UK market - only quality gear will work well.
- Attach a crevice tool to your machine. This is important because you need to make sure that the suction power of your vacuum is strong. You see, bed bugs may seem small and weak, but in reality, they can cling to a piece of fabric extremely tightly.
- When vacuuming, restrain yourself from pressing too hard on the fabric you are cleaning. Instead of trapping the pest with the vacuum, you risk catapulting the bug and its eggs.
- Once you are done with the cleaning process, you have to dispose of the vacuum bag. Make sure to seal it with tape and place it in an additional plastic bag, just to be on the safe side. Afterwards, throw the bag away.
- In case you own a vacuum cleaner model that doesn’t have a bag, get a plastic one and empty the contains of the appliance. Again, you need to seal the bag and to throw it away.
Clean the container with a bit of soapy water. Generally, these types of vacuums have a filter attached. You have a few options here - to clean the filter, freeze it or throw it away and attach a new one.
- If you need to clean more than one area in your home because of the bed bugs, get some tape and place it on the nozzle of the appliance before you move it from one room to another.
This step is important because the insects inside the hose might try to escape. Once you are done with vacuuming your whole house, throw away the contents of the machine but bear in mind that bed bugs can live and survive outdoors.
- Remember the areas you've cleaned. You’ll need to repeat the whole process a few more times in order to control the bed bug problem. The bloodsuckers like to hide in previously infested places, so it’s a good idea to vacuum those frequently.
- To spare yourself the chore of vacuuming for bed bugs, it might be a good idea to try other pest control methods like freezing infested items, laundering them and etc.
Can bed bugs live in vacuum sealed bags?
The answer to this question is yes. Bed bugs are famous for their survival abilities, so being sucked with a vacuum cleaner and ending in a dusty bag is more of a rollercoaster ride for them, instead of a death sentence.
With that being said, once you are done with the cleaning process, it’s vital to discard the bag as quickly as possible. Put it in an additional plastic bag, tie it up, and throw it in the trash.
Also, check the hose for stuck insects trying to run away from the vacuum bag.
Can you use a bagless vacuum for bed bugs?
Yes, you can. However, getting rid of bed bugs with a bagless vacuum is a bit more tricky. Here are a few things you need to be cautious of:
- It’s more difficult to empty a container of a bagless vacuum, because the bed bug eggs can get stuck in the various parts of the machine, such as the filter. Same applies for additional brush or bristle attachments.
- Always use the open end of the vacuum hose. We recommend sucking up a bit of baby powder before and after the cleaning process.
This will help to kill the bugs that have Dispose of the bugs in a plastic bag and throw it away. Wash the canister to demolish survived your attack.
- Any remaining creatures. These steps are a must and you need to be extra careful while following them, otherwise, the bloodsucker family you just trapped will most likely end up in your home once again.
To sum up the article, yes, vacuuming bed bugs can and will help you control an occurring infestation, but won’t take care of the whole problem. We highly recommend hiring a professional pest control technician like the Fantastic bed bug pest control to take care of the situation.
This way you won’t have to deal with nasty bed bugs, their eggs, and you ensure the revival of the initial, safe state of your home.
Gemma Tyler is a freelance journalist with 15 years of experience writing for consumer publications. She has tested and reviewed a wide range of household items from vacuum cleaners to washing machines and dehumidifiers to steam irons. Her attention to detail and exhaustive testing certainly makes her an expert in her field.