Effectiveness of Steamers on Bed Bugs

BedBug Central's picture
Submitted by BedBug Central on Sat, 2009-10-03 00:00

In this episode Jeff is explains how to determine if the steamer you have purchased or have at home will be effective in killing both bed bugs and their eggs on contact.  One thing that we know about bed bugs is that they are susceptible to heat and if they are exposed to temperatures in excess of 180oF both bed bugs and their eggs should be killed on contact.  In previous episodes we have also discussed how steamers can be effective for killing bugs and their eggs on contact and good be a good tool to address resistance concerns in a bed bug population.  If you have purchased a steamer and would like to determine if it will be effective in killing bed bugs and their eggs on contact, you should first purchase an instant read thermometer (similar to the one you would use to cook food in an oven).  If you then take the steamer and turn it on and move the steamer over the thermometers sensor you can see if you are achieving temperatures in excess of 180oF.  If you do achieve temperatures in excess of 180oF then that steamer should be sufficient to kill bugs and eggs on contact.  Please be aware that steamers can damage fabrics and finishes on different surfaces, so always use caution when steamer different items.

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