We know that there are hundreds of treatment options that promise to get rid of bed bugs quickly and effectively.  But when you’ve got a bed bug infestation, you don’t have time to wait for treatments to work.  You need the fastest, most effective treatment that will get your life back on track.

To help you decide which treatment is right for you, we’ve compiled a pros and cons list for each treatment type and information on when those treatments are most effective.  Then, when you’re ready to schedule a treatment, you can call one of the IBBRA certified professionals, rent equipment from our approved heater rental providers, or purchase a DIY product in the IBBRA store.

 

Heat Treatments (Electric Heating Units)

Pros

  • Work quickly, usually between 8-24 hours
  • Kills all stages of the bed bug life cycle
  • Great for small, medium or spread out infestations
  • No need to pre-treat any items or rooms
  • Safe and eco-friendly
  • No chemicals
  • Usually only requires one treatment to solve the bed bug problems
  • Can be set up by a professional in minutes

Cons

  • Can be more expensive than other treatment options
  • Requires large heaters and fans that can’t be purchased anywhere
  • Usually requires a professional
  • Heat sensitive items may be damaged if proper preparation isn’t completed before the treatment

Most effective when applied by a professional and when a k-9 inspection is done before and after to ensure the treatment was successful.

 

Chemical Treatments (Professionally Sprayed Pesticides)

Pros

  • Cost effective (over 68% of people choose chemical treatments due to the affordable costs)
  • Initial treatments are completed quickly
  • Great as a follow up to heat and in conjunction with other treatment methods

Cons

  • Chemicals don’t kill the eggs, resulting in “reoccurring” infestations…over-and over again
  • Often requires multiple professional treatments before the infestation is gone
  • Bed bugs are resistant to many chemicals (and their resistance is always growing)
  • Chemicals, especially off-the-shelf varieties can be dangerous, causing an allergic reaction, illness, and other serious health effects.
  • If not applied properly, chemical treatments can spread an infestation rather than kill it

Most effective when applied by a professional and used as a follow up to a heat treatment.

IBBRA does not recommend anyone use off-the-shelf pesticides in an effort to kill bed bugs.  Chemical treatments should only be applied by trained professionals.

 

Portable Heat Chambers (Collapsible Heat Tents)

Pros

  • Treatment is portable and can be set up anywhere
  • Single items can be treated, rather than the entire room
  • No need to pre-treat any items
  • Easy to use, can be DIY
  • Safe and eco-friendly
  • No chemicals
  • Kills bed bugs in the treatment area in only one application
  • Fast and easy setup
  • Kills all stages of the life cycle

Cons

  • Can be more expensive than other treatment options
  • Doesn’t kill bed bugs living in the carpet, behind walls or in any non-treated furniture
  • Heat sensitive items may be damaged if subjected to the heating area
  • Usually takes a professional to complete the treatment
  • Spreading the infestation could be possible if items are not moved properly

Most effective for single item treatment and in conjunction with a professional chemical treatment follow-up. IBBRA does not recommend anyone use off-the-shelf pesticides in an effort to kill bed bugs.  Chemical treatments should only be applied by trained professionals.

 

 

Dust, Foggers and Off the Shelf DIY Treatments

Pros

  • Easy to find at a hardware store
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Can spread the infestation to other areas of the home
  • Some substances are not tested on bed bugs, therefore leaving them completely ineffective
  • Some products, if used, can cause professional treatments and inspections to become impossible due to health risks
  • Could take months to kill bed bugs, if at all
  • Chemicals can cause dangerous allergic reactions, illness, and other serious health effects. Pesticide dust, such at diatomaceous earth, can cause damage to the lungs if breathed in.
  • “Bug Bombs” can cause fire and reduced air quality in the home

Not effective – IBBRA does not recommend anyone use off-the-shelf pesticides, foggers, pesticide dust or other unapproved DIY methods in an effort to kill bed bugs.

 

Mattress/Furniture Encasements

Pros

  • Affordable & easy to buy online or instore
  • Nothing can get in or on your furniture or you
  • Provides instant relief against future bed bug bites
  • Locks in any existing allergens, bed bugs, and bed bug eggs preventing new infestations (in encased items)
  • Will keep furniture clean and protects against infestations in storage
  • Takes away bed bug hiding and breeding areas by covering seams, cushions, piping, pillows, and any crack or crevice
  • Saves you from throwing out your furniture

 

Cons

  • Can take months to kill bed bugs
  • Doesn’t kill bed bugs living in the carpet, behind walls or in any non-treated furniture
  • Reduces the look and feel of your furniture

Most effective when used in conjunction with heat or chemical treatments.  Very effective for keeping items safe during storage and moving.

 

Bed Bug Heater Rentals

Pros

  • Affordable daily rates
  • Work quickly, usually between 8-24 hours
  • Kills all stages of the bed bug life cycle
  • Great for small, medium or spread out infestations
  • No need to pre-treat any items or rooms
  • Safe and eco-friendly
  • No chemicals
  • Usually only requires one treatment to solve the bed bug problems
  • Easy setup and prep
  • Professional quality equipment

Cons

  • Packages include large equipment that requires set up
  • You’ll need to know the power capabilities of your treatment area
  • You may need to pick up the equipment from the provider
  • Heat sensitive items may be damaged if proper preparation isn’t completed before the treatment

Most effective when used as directed and after a k-9 inspection to ensure that all infested areas are treated.

 

Need a pro?  Search your provider map for a certified professional near you!