Cleaning Carpet with Bed Bugs
Learn how to clean carpet with bed bugs.
We recommend cleaning your walls and floors thoroughly while you’re fighting a bed bug infestation. Even if they don’t show signs of active infestations these are the surfaces on which bed bugs will travel from area to area.
First let’s clean the flooring. The best tools to use when cleaning your flooring are diatomaceous earth and a vacuum cleaner. We cover diatomaceous earth in step four so if you need more information check that out. But basically diatomaceous earth works by drying out bed bugs slowly over the course of a week. You’ll want to spread a thin layer of diatomaceous earth out first and leave it there for about two weeks. So you maximize the chances of bed bugs crawling through it. If there are living bed bugs left after this time they’ll mix with diatomaceous earth in the vacuum cleaner and to killed that way.
A great tip we learn from dr. Jeanne Miller of Virginia Tech is to use pantyhose when you’re vacuuming up bed bugs. To do this you’ll either need to cut the end off of a pair of pantyhose or use knee highs. You’ll then want to put the foot portion up into the vacuum tube like so and make sure that the pantyhose are firmly attached to the end. You can use tape or elastic bands for this just make sure that it’s firm enough if the foot won’t be sucked up into the vacuum tube. This acts as an easy bag select all the bugs and diatomaceous earth. So you won’t have to worry about living bugs being trapped in your vacuum cleaner. If you’ve used pantyhose tied them off immediately.
Whenever possible and for your vacuum outdoors or empty it over a garbage can and take out the garbage immediately. Always minimize the risk of spreading bedbug. Whenever possible it’s better to be over cautious than to risk having bed bugs living inside your vacuum cleaner. We recommend vacuuming a second time also with the pantyhose just to be overly cautious.
If you want to be even more careful at this point you can use a carpet shampooer or a steam cleaner if you don’t have carpet floors. Walls are much less likely to have bed bugs on them except in severe infestations, but as always it’s better to be safe than sorry.
To clean your walls we recommend vacuuming them as much as possible, but if you don’t have a wand vacuum it’s not worth trying to lift a heavy vacuum up against the wall. If you can steam clean your walls we recommend that. Otherwise if you manually wipe them down with soap and water. This will just remove the bed bugs but it’s a great step to take before you vacuum.
Posted by Cameron Wheeler