Does washing clothes kill bed bugs?

Does washing clothes kill bed bugs?

It is possible to wash bed bugs out of your clothes. The goal here is not to drown them, but as it turns out bed bugs aren’t very resistant to heat.

Most experts agree that washing your bed-bug infested clothes at a constant temperature of at least 120 degrees Fahrenheit and maintaining that same temperature when drying can be an effective method in killing and ridding them from your clothes. Duration varies between 20 minutes to one hour although you might want to err on the side of an hour to be sure.

Sort out your infested clothes and put them in a plastic bag and seal the mouth tightly before bringing your clothes to the laundry area. Put the mouth deep in the washing machine before opening to release the clothes. Put the plastic bag in a second plastic bag, seal and dispose safely.

If you suspect bed bug bites or bed bug presence, do not hesitate to contact Bed Bug Control Hamilton for a complete bed bug eradication.

Thick fabrics such as cushions, pillows, draperies and bedding may be more difficult to treat because the thickness may not allow the heat to penetrate all layers. Consider using the maximum heat allowable for these fabrics and for a longer time or opt for a dry cleaner.

Dry cleaning also works for killing bed bugs in case you have delicate fabrics that cannot with stand high temperature. It is safe that you inform the dry cleaner that your clothes are infested so that they can take appropriate measures to prevent spreading.

Be careful while transporting infested clothing to the dry cleaners. Use a bed bug proof laundry bag or double plastic bags with the mouth tightly sealed. Dispose of the used bags carefully.

Apart from washing and drying in high heat, there are a few other things you can do to get rid of bed bugs in clothing. You can try bed bug laundry treatment and detergents designed for use in your washing machine. Look out for products with natural ingredients and safe for fabrics since some of these treatments can be harsh on textiles and even humans. Unfortunately, many of these aren’t as harmless as advertised. You should be skeptical about bed bug treatments that claim you to wash with cold water.

An alternative heat treatment option is to put your clothes inside a black, sealed plastic bag and leave them outside on a hot day. There is actually heat treatment bags designed for this very purpose. These treatment bags come complete with a digital thermometer so you can check the heat has reached at least 120 degrees Fahrenheit. 

All in all these methods are proven to be effective and results may vary depending if all steps are followed through. The best way to proceed with this kind of situation is to proceed with caution, so contacting a pest control service might be your, if not only bet, but your best one as well.