Do Bed Bugs Die in the Cold?

One of the most common questions that people ask when they suspect they may have a bedbug infestation is, “Do bedbugs die in the cold?” The answer may surprise you, as freezing isn’t always as effective as it once was. While the cold kills bedbugs, they also use strategies that make their bodies less sensitive to it.

To survive freezing temperatures, bedbugs enter a stage called diapause, which slows down their metabolic process. This phase, which is similar to hibernation, helps bedbugs conserve energy and halt development until the conditions become livable again. However, bedbugs don’t normally live in outdoor colonies, so this process isn’t necessary very often.

Another method for preventing bedbugs from entering your home is to place items in plastic bags. While this may prevent most bugs from escaping plastic bags, it can also cause damage to your possessions. If you have valuable clothes, these might get damp. Therefore, freezing your possessions or furniture isn’t the best idea. However, if you can’t afford to wrap everything in plastic, you can leave your furniture outside.

Unlike many other pests, bedbugs are resilient to cold temperatures. Typically, they can survive temperatures of 46 degrees Fahrenheit or less for up to four days. This is because the freezing point of the bugs’ bodies is lower than that of ours. However, at a temperature of minus -13 degrees Fahrenheit, bedbugs die.

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