First time infestation(4 posts)
Me and three of my friends staid in a hotel about 6 month ago, in which we discovered bed bugs. Of coarse we left right away, but our luggage was sitting in the room all day.
Long story short about 3 1/2 month ago, my husband started having welts all over and we couldn't figure out what was causing this. In February this year we caught a bug crawling on my husband. We staid up all night and found a small "nest" in our reclyner. We immediatly steamed the heck out of the chair and the carpet around the area. We were fine until about 3 weeks ago, when all of the sudden I was the one who got attacked. We bagged all out cloth real careful and started washing and drying everything we could, steam cleaned all furniture in our bed room and living room. I have not been bitten for a week now.
I contacted a local PCO who gave me a rough estimate based on square footage:
- $500 - 800 for a chemical treatment and they need to come 3-4 times
- $1500 for a cryonite treatment, which includes the first treatment, spread of DE and a second visit and application of cryonite
- $3700 for thermal treatment
Although I'd love to do the thermal treatment, there's no way I can afford this.
Here's some information I saw needed in other posts to answer questions:
We live in a split level house that we own (4 bedroom, not very cluttered besides my craft room)
We have two cats, that are indoor only cats
I am absolutely desperate and I have read so much information that I don't know what to believe anymore. Can anyone help we figure out what should be my next steps? I have steamers and would be willing to buy DE as well. I am although willing to pay the PCO $1500 dollars for the treatment, if I could rely that that is a fair estimate and that there is some success using cryonite? Sadly there is no one else around here offering an alternative to chemical treatment and that would be the last option I would go with I think.
What do other's do about the mental impact?
One more question: How possible is it that I bring these bugs to other places? I work full time and am worried about infecting my work place as well?
Any help/advise would be greatly appreciated.
Thermal (baking the house) is a one shot application that (done right) is very effective. There is relatively little of the traditional "prep", though and there is some(namely, removal of items that can't handle the heat). It does not protect you against re-infestation, so the techs may also apply chemicals and/or dusts.
Cryonite sounds pretty sexy, but people on the forum have noted that due to its limited ability to penetrate objects, it may take more applications than chemicals & dusts. It (like heat) also offers no residual action on its own.
Most chemical practitioners recommend repeat treatments in order to kill off newly hatched bugs (today's chemicals have limited efficacy against eggs). Chemicals and dusts do offer some protection against stragglers and re-infestation.
I would work with a reputable pro to determine the extent of your infestation and choose an approach that's appropriate to the situation.
It's possible that you beat the bugs the first time and were newly infested by a new source. It's also possible that you drove bugs into hiding/dormancy and they re-emerged when they detected a food source and felt safe. It's possible that they first attacked your husband only (like, if they were only in the recliner and that's where he sat), but it's also possible that you were being bit from the start, but did not react initially (pretty common).
As you said, you've gone a week without bites. You may have beat them, again. Take a moment, review our FAQ. Engage in continued inspection to determine if you're seeing bugs and their signs (fecal marks, shells) and where. Research the pros you're most comfortable dealing with.
Thank you for your response.
Yes, I agree that the heat treatment sounds wonderful, but at almost $4,000 it's just not achivable for me!!
What worried me about the POC I contacted is that I was told that I have a MAJOR infestation at this point, but I have to say me and my husband have been bitten for a total of 1 1/2 weeks after we discovered what we are dealing with and after our first cleaning. We have found a small (one adult and 2-3 younger bugs) nest in February and haven't found anything else since. No fecal matter, no blood stains, no skins, no nothing, just bites. I know these bugs are very elusive, but a MAJOR infestation to me would mean I find something somewhere, especially the first time I looked I found the nest within 30 min!!! What do you all think? They didn't offer to come to my house to inspect the areas to be treated. They just gave me an estimate for the whole house and told me that's how it should be treated. Keep in mind they work with a K9 company together. Why wouldn't they come out first and inspect how big the issue is? Unless I am willing to pay another $250 just for the dog they won't come out?
We currently have laundered all our cloth, curtains, etc., have bug trapped our bed (double sided tape around the legs of all furniture in the bed room????), steam treated all furniture in the bedroom and living area and carpet throughout the house. We scheduled steamcleaning once a week for three month now (unless we will be bitten again, than I will call the POC right away). I am buying DE and hoping that'll take care of the issue.
Please if anyone has another recommandation on what I should do, let me know. I am located in WA in the Tacoma area, does anyone know a good company to work with? I am willing to work with a POC and pay the price, but I just have the feeling to be taken for a ride here and I really don't need that on top of everything else!!
Declaring "major infestation" without inspecting and finding physical evidence does not sound professional to me.
When I joined this board three years ago, I had seen a single bug (a nymph, positive ID). A "leading" NYC PCO's rep told me over the phone that:
- I had a major infestation
- It will cost me ~$2,000 for a 2 bedroom apartment, including a ton of mandatory extra supplies
- He'd send prep instructions (which would turn out to be way beyond onerous)
- Books and other items would need to be sealed for 18 months (this was before PackTite was on the market)
- Upholstered furniture can't be treated. It must be wrapped and discarded.
- Visa/MasterCard accepted
I've subsequently learned that there may be some ethical and competent exterminators out there.
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