Before you can begin using heat to kill bed bugs, you need to properly prepare your home. You must store and remove foods that can spoil or melt and remove flammable materials such as gasoline, alcohol, and propane. You should also inspect any items you bring in from outside. Bed bugs can lay eggs in these items and produce an infestation.
The temperature of the heat source will vary depending on the type of bug that is infesting your house. In general, a bed bug will die when exposed to temperatures over 118 degrees Fahrenheit. However, lower temperatures have a lesser effect. A temperature of 113 degrees Fahrenheit will kill more than 50% of adult bed bugs, while a temperature of 118.4 degrees will kill 99% of them.
The temperature of the heater should be 120 degrees Fahrenheit or above. This temperature is necessary to kill adult and larval bed bugs. If the temperature is too low, heat the item for a longer period of time. Be sure to use the proper equipment for this treatment. Using heat to kill bed bugs is best done when the items can be laundered.
If a high heat source is not available, you can use a vacuum. This method can kill bed bugs if they are present on a large surface area. The vacuum bag should be sealed properly and disposed of in a trash can outdoors. You can also use a hot box to kill bedbugs. You should be careful though; this method requires a high amount of heat and should be done in the summertime.