When it comes to an efficient, effective bed bug management strategy, it is difficult, if not impossible to beat the steam treatment. While bed bug treatments have come a long way since traditional chemical pesticides, steam is without a doubt one of the best options available today. Don’t get this statement wrong, potential fallbacks come with most pest control treatments. But when all things are considered, steam treatment is one of the better options available today.
Just because steam treatment is one of the more effective options, it does not necessarily mean it is your only pest control option. Every infestation can be unique, requiring different treatment strategies. Therefore, it is imperative to take the time to learn everything you possibly can about steam treatment. That will help ensure you make the right pest control treatment decision, the first go-round.
How Does Steam Treatment Kill Bed Bugs?
The best and first place to start is understanding exactly how steam treatment works. The theory behind the treatment is simple, as it utilizes high-pressure/high-heat steam to eradicate the bugs. The bed bug will dehydrate and die out when it is exposed to temperatures of 140 Fahrenheit or higher. The internal organs cease up at the temperatures, causing the insect to wither and die immediately. Now, that statement means this is a kill-on-contact treatment. There are several upsides and several downsides to that, which you will learn more about later.
What you need to know now is, the bed bug steam treatment works around the same premises and theory as to that of the clothing steamer. The clothing steamer uses high-pressure/high heat to remove wrinkles from clothing. The bed bug steamer uses the same high-pressure/high heat to kill bed bugs. However, this does not mean that a clothing steamer will work to eradicate bed bugs. It won’t because the heat produced by these machines isn’t hot enough. The pressure is also lacking.
An Eco-Friendlier Option
When it comes right down to it, the steam treatment is one of the more preferred bed bug solutions available today because it is eco-friendly. This means that it is much safer for the environment. The need for eco-friendly solutions in the pest industry is becoming more and more known by both homeowners and pest management professionals. This has a lot to do with the fact that traditional chemicals and pesticides are no longer as effective as they once were.
Because exterminators are having to utilize harsher chemicals and, in more abundance, it is having a more harmful effect on the environment, increasing the need for eco-friendly solutions. More and more people are becoming aware of this and that’s why eco-friendly solutions are becoming more popular. As far as eco-friendly solutions go, the steam treatment would be right at the top of the list because it is nothing more than water and heat.
Other things To Know
In addition to being safer for the environment, steam treatments are an all-around more effective killer. This is because it kills bed bugs on contact when administered properly. As soon as the bugs encounter this high-pressure/high-heat steam, they die! This is both a good and bad thing. It means there is no residual effect, meaning customers can come right back onto the property after treatment is applied without worry of exposure to harmful lingering effects of the treatment.
Because the treatment is nothing more than steam, it can also be used around non-perishable food, electrical outlets, furniture, and décor.
Even better, steam can penetrate walls and other surfaces, where traditional chemicals and pesticides might not be applicable. With all this in mind, there are some downsides associated with steam treatment. One would be potential damage to heat-sensitive clothing and furniture. Some pieces of furniture, décor, clothing, drapery and other items may need to be removed before each steam treatment is initiated. Fortunately, this is not a major deal if you know which items are at risk in advance.
Another potential downside is associated with the kill-on-contact theory. Because there is no residual effect, mature bed bugs and bed bug eggs and larvae missed during the initial treatment may survive.
With traditional pesticides, there is always the potential that bed bugs can come back into contact with the chemical, resulting in future eradication. This will not be the case with steam treatment, bed bugs left behind will continue living.