The Truth About Bed Bug Heat Treatment

by | May 18, 2023 | 0 comments

Bed bugs can be a nightmare for homeowners, causing discomfort, sleepless nights, and even anxiety. Many individuals turn to professional pest control services for a solution when faced with a bed bug infestation. In this blog post, we will explore the effectiveness of heat treatment for bed bugs, debunk common myths surrounding this method, and offer an alternative solution that has proven successful.

As always, hiring a professional bed bug exterminator can help ensure the treatment is performed correctly. But, understanding bed bug behavior and knowing how to prepare your home for treatment is just as crucial.

Before we dive in, it’s important to note that the information provided in this post is based on a professional pest control specialist’s expertise and should not replace a qualified professional’s advice.

Understanding Bed Bugs and their Behavior

Before delving into the effectiveness of heat treatment, it’s crucial to understand the enemy we’re dealing with. Bed bugs are tiny insects that feed on human blood and are notoriously difficult to eliminate. They are experts at hiding in cracks, crevices, and even within walls, making complete eradication challenging. Moreover, bed bugs can survive for several months without a blood meal, making it harder to starve them out.

Evaluating Heat Treatment for Bed Bugs

Heat treatment has gained popularity as a method for exterminating bed bugs due to its ability to penetrate hiding places and kill pests. The process involves raising the temperature in infested areas to levels lethal to bed bugs, typically above 130 degrees Fahrenheit. While heat treatment can be effective in some cases, it is crucial to understand its limitations.

One of the primary challenges with heat treatment is that bed bugs are instinctive to retreat into walls or other inaccessible areas when exposed to high temperatures. This behaviour allows them to survive the treatment and return once the heat is turned off. Additionally, insulation can act as a barrier, preventing the heat from reaching bugs hiding in walls, further reducing the treatment’s effectiveness.

The Problem with Heat Treatment

While heat treatment may seem attractive for eliminating bed bugs, its limitations make it a less reliable solution. Even if the treatment successfully kills the bugs in visible areas, those hiding within walls or other inaccessible spaces will survive and continue to breed. This can lead to a recurring infestation, causing frustration and financial strain.

The Effectiveness of Liquid Pesticides

Liquid pesticide treatments, specifically those containing non-repellent neonicotinoids like Crossfire, have emerged as a reliable alternative to heat treatment for bed bug control. Unlike heat treatment, liquid pesticides provide a residual effect, meaning they continue to work even after the initial application. When applied correctly, non-repellent pesticides are lethal to bed bugs, including those hidden in walls or other inaccessible areas.

Non-repellent pesticides work by utilizing the “transfer effect.” When a bed bug comes into contact with the treated surface, it carries the pesticide back to its hiding place, inadvertently spreading it to other bugs. This ensures that even bugs that may have escaped direct exposure are still affected, effectively eradicating the infestation.

Addressing Concerns and Debunking Myths

Some individuals argue that the constant use of synthetic pyrethroids or neonicotinoids can lead to resistance in bed bugs. However, non-repellent neonicotinoids like Crossfire have shown limited resistance development, making them an effective long-term solution. It’s important to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer and consult with professionals to ensure proper application and minimize the risk of resistance.

Another common misconception is the belief that constant spraying is necessary to eliminate bed bugs. In reality, proper treatment using non-repellent pesticides can provide lasting control without the need for frequent spraying. This saves homeowners time, money, and reduces their exposure to unnecessary chemicals.


Becoming informed about bed bug heat treatment is pivotal when battling a bed bug infestation. However, the process is more than just understanding the method of extermination. The first crucial step is to correctly identify a bed bug infestation. Recognizing the signs early on could save time, effort, and money.

Following detection, the extermination process needs to be swift and effective to prevent the infestation from spreading further. Our guide on fast bed bug removal techniques offers insights into several effective strategies, including heat treatment, that could expedite extermination.

Preparing the home adequately for the bed bug extermination process is equally important to ensure the effectiveness of the treatment. The 7 essential steps to prepare your home for effective bed bug treatment are a must-read for anyone in the throes of dealing with an infestation.

Understanding these various components related to bed bug infestations and their effective treatment can aid in managing such situations efficiently. Being well-equipped with knowledge can often be the key to resolving these pest problems effectively and swiftly, restoring your home’s comfort and peace.


Can I heat treat for bed bugs myself?

While DIY heat treatment methods are available, it is generally recommended to seek professional assistance for bed bug heat treatment. Professionals have the equipment, expertise, and knowledge to ensure effective and safe heat treatment.

What precautions to take after heat treatment for bed bugs?

After heat treatment, it is important to follow the recommendations provided by the professionals. These may include keeping the treated area well-ventilated, refraining from reintroducing infested items, and maintaining good hygiene practices. Additionally, continue monitoring for any signs of bed bug activity to catch potential re-infestations early.

Is it normal to see bed bugs after heat treatment?

It is not uncommon to see bed bugs after heat treatment, especially immediately following the treatment. Heat treatment may cause bed bugs to scatter and become more active before they eventually succumb to the high temperatures. However, if you continue to see bed bugs persistently after a few weeks, it is advisable to contact the pest control professionals for further evaluation.

How long does it take to heat treat a house for bed bugs?

The duration of heat treatment for bed bugs varies depending on the size of the infested area and the severity of the infestation. In general, it can take several hours to heat treat a house thoroughly. The professionals will assess the specific situation and provide an estimate of the treatment duration during the inspection process.

Can bed bugs survive after heat treatment?

Bed bugs are highly susceptible to heat, and proper heat treatment conducted within the recommended temperature range is effective at eliminating them. However, the success of heat treatment depends on factors such as the accuracy of temperature control and the ability to reach all hiding places. Professional heat treatment conducted by experienced technicians typically results in the eradication of bed bugs.

Should I see dead bed bugs after heat treatment?

Yes, it is possible to see dead bed bugs after heat treatment. As the treatment is designed to kill bed bugs, you may come across deceased bugs during and after the process. The presence of dead bed bugs is an encouraging sign that the treatment is effective. However, the absence of visible dead bed bugs does not necessarily indicate treatment failure, as they may be located in inaccessible areas or hidden from view.

Duane Cepeda is a highly skilled and experienced bed bug exterminator with a passion for creating pest-free living spaces. With a keen eye for detail and a thorough understanding of bed bug behavior, Duane is dedicated to providing effective and tailored solutions to help clients rid their homes of these persistent pests. Trusted by many, Duane Cepeda is committed to delivering top-notch pest control services that ensure peace of mind and a good night’s sleep for his customers.


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