Key to Success - Preparing Your Home
Thermal Remediation® is a proven non-chemical method of treating bed bugs. Research has shown that all life stages (adults, nymphs, and eggs) die within minutes at a temperature of 120 degrees. During the thermal remediation process, temperatures in your home will be from 120 degrees and 140 degrees. These are lethal temperatures to bed bug populations but not hot enough not to damage most things (see list of items that need to be removed or protected - Item #2). A successful heat remediation is a partnership between the occupant and the heat remediation provider. Our goal is to eliminate the bed bug and its eggs. The goal is more likely to be reached if you are able to help in the preparation. Please use these instructions as your guide.
Your thermal remediation provider will need information from you, the occupant.
- How long has it been since the first sighting of a bed bug?
- In what areas of the home are bed bugs being seen? Bedrooms? Living and dining rooms? Kitchen? Bathrooms?
- Are bed bugs feeding in areas other than the bedrooms?
- Do you see bed bugs during the daytime hours?
Items that must be removed or protected
- Pets - including fish in aquariums.
- House plants.
- Fresh food, fruits, vegetables, etc.
- Food that melts - chocolate, candy, etc.
- Prescription and over the counter drugs.
- Make-up and other cosmetics.
- Wax based items - Candles, wax figurines and fruit, lipstick.
- Anything pressurized - spray cans, fire extinguishers, oxygen bottles, etc.
- Flammables lighters, lamp fuel, alcohol, solvents, etc.
- Wooden and stringed musical instruments - leave the cases.
- Family heirlooms and irreplaceable items should be inspected and a determination made as to whether they should be treated.
- Some of the smaller items can be stored in the refrigerator during the treatment. Larger items can be boxed and left by the door for inspection. It will be determined if any of these items need to be treated for bed bugs.
The bed bug will seek shelter on and within clothing. To avoid re-introducing bed bugs, any clothing removed from the space before a thermal remediation must be treated before being returned to the treated areas.
- Washing using the hottest water cycle and drying using the hottest dryer setting will treat most clothing.
- Avoid contaminating the freshly washed clothing. Do not return the clean clothing to the container (bag, basket, etc.) it was transported in unless that container was also treated.
- Clothing left in the heated space must be placed in open weave laundry baskets. Clothing must be packed loosely! Tightly packed baskets will prevent lethal temperatures from reaching all items. Do not place clothing in plastic bags.
- Clothing in drawers can be left in place. Except if clothing is tightly packed, then some items must be removed. Also, it may become necessary to remove the drawers from dressers to help with the air movement.
- Clothing on hangers may be left in closets if the space between the items is large enough to allow the heated air to circulate. Arrange hanging items to open up air space between them.
Larger fabric items - Linens, towels, blankets, etc.
These items should be left in the area being heated, as they are likely to shelter insects.
- Place these items in open weave laundry baskets. Pack the items very loosely to allow for air circulation. Do not pack in plastic bags.
Papers, smaller items, etc.
- A thermal remediation treatment requires moving large amounts of air to be successful. All items that can be blown around and possibly damaged need to be protected.
- Loose papers need to be gathered and boxed.
- Glass items, knick-knacks etc. will need to be secured. Do not leave breakable items on shelves or other areas where damage could happen.
- Pictures, paintings, and other wall-mounted items will need to be taken down to prevent damage.
Electronics, Televisions, computers, video players, stereos, etc.
Electronics are a hiding place for bed bugs; do not remove electronics from areas being heated.
- Switch all electronic appliances to the off position.
- Disconnect all electronic appliances by unplugging from the wall outlet.
Waterbeds and airbeds.
- Waterbeds will need to be drained. If the waterbed is not drained, it will prevent the frame from reaching lethal temperatures.
- Airbeds will need to be partially deflated to avoid damage.
- Select Comfort type airbeds with an electronic pump must be partially deflated and unplugged from the wall outlet.
Returning to your home
- The temperatures will probably be elevated when you return. Higher temperatures are a result of the thermal remediation process and a cool down period will be needed.
- Open windows or turn on air conditioning to aid in cooling.
- During the heat remediation some of your things may have been shifted to get an even heat distribution. They may not have been returned exactly to where they were before the heat remediation.
- Damage - Any damage to your possessions must be brought to the thermal remediation providers attention as soon as damage is confirmed.
With your cooperation, we will be able to successfully eliminate this serious and challenging pest from your home. We hope that your expectations have been met and we thank you for your help.