PREPARING FOR BED BUG TREATMENTS
Bed bugs are without doubt one of the most serious pest problems that pest control companies have to deal with, and they are also one of the hardest to treat if an infestation has taken hold.
If you’ve decided to hire a pest management company to treat the problem in your home, then they’ll have some requirements that you need to do before their arrival to prepare for the treatment.
These requirements will usually be issued to you as a preparation sheet or checklist. The sheet may look daunting but it’s really important that everything on there is carried out or the treatment might be unsuccessful and any guarantee may become void.
If you feel you are unable to complete it all, please talk to the pest management company so they can work with you to give you other suggestions and advice.
The amount of preparation you’ll need to do will be dependent on the type of treatment and also the type of residence you live in.
Below is a sample preparation sheet that will be similar to what you will be given and gives you a good idea of how to prepare for an exterminator visit.
BED BUG TREATMENT PREPARATION SHEET
- In the kitchen remove all food, plates and cooking utensils from the stove, dining table, and countertops and put in the fridge or cupboards.
- Furniture items in every room need to be moved away from the walls by at least 2 feet to allow the exterminator access to the baseboards. Baseboards might actually need removing if instructed.
- Remove all light switch plates, electrical wall covers, and phone jack plates.
- Remove front panel for air conditioning or heater unit if it’s located near the bed area.
- Remove ALL bedding from the beds and immediately place in bags and take straight to the laundry for washing and/or drying. Dry on the highest heat possible. Put the laundered items into new garbage bags and completely seal. Do not put back on the beds.
- Remove picture frames, mirrors, etc from walls.
- Remove infested curtains and put on high heat in the dryer – do not put back up until treatment has been completed.
- Remove everything from closets, dresser drawers, night tables, and under the bed. All clothing needs to be put on high heat (usually for approximately 45 minutes) in the dryer. When finished put everything into garbage bags and seal completely.
- Children’s stuffed toys need to be cleaned and put in the dryer on high heat then put in clean garbage bags and sealed.
- Plants need to be removed or covered completely. If removing, check for bed bugs.
- Pets and birds must be removed from the premises and not re-enter for 4-6 hours after treatment. Birds preferably 24 hours after treatment. Fish tanks and pumps must be covered and air filters must be disconnected and covered.
- Leave electronics in the room for treatment.
- Vacuum the floors, floor edges, and cracks and crevices and immediately discard the vacuum bag into a garbage bag, seal, and place in the outside garbage.
- Everyone must vacate the premises for at least 4-6 hours after treatment has been completed. If anyone in the household is pregnant or nursing, has children under 4 years of age, has allergies, asthma, respiratory problems or heart conditions, then they should remain away for 24 hours.
WHAT TO EXPECT AFTER A BED BUG TREATMENT
An exterminator will carry out a follow-up service approximately 2 weeks after the initial treatment, and will probably advise the following:
- You’ll want to do some cleaning after the bed bug treatment, but do not wash the baseboards, door frames, window frames or bed frames for the timeframe specified by the technician.
- Do not remove any mattress or box spring encasements. These protect from re-infestation and protect you from being bitten.
- Do not introduce any new items of furniture.
- Vacuum the carpets daily and remove the contents into a garbage bag and dispose of in the outside garbage immediately.
- Thoroughly clean all kitchen countertops and food preparation areas.
- Use clean sheets and bedding on all beds.
- Cover the couch with a clean sheet after treatment.
HOW DO YOU KEEP BED BUGS FROM COMING BACK?
Once you’ve had bed bugs, you’ll do all you can in terms of bed bug prevention and stop a re-infestation. The following tips will be useful and may provide you with some ideas on how you got bed bugs in the first place.
- Whenever you stay in a hotel, always make sure you inspect the mattress, box spring and bed area. Pay particular attention to the mattress piping and the headboard. Our guide gives you detailed instructions on how to inspect your hotel room so you don’t bring bed bugs back with you.
- Read about the three main ways bed bugs find their way into your home and how to check for them.
- Never open or remove the mattress and box spring encasements. Periodically check that they haven’t become worn or torn, if they have, they need replacing immediately. The encasements are an integral part of bed bug control. Click on the link above to read our guide on how to remove bed bugs as it details everything you need to know and what to look for in mattress encasements.
Watch the video below as it also shows you how to prepare for a bed bug treatment. If you are unsure of anything that is on the preparation sheet given to you by the pest control company, then always make sure you talk it over with them so they can fully address your concerns and provide the most effective bed bug treatment.