Great news do-it-yourself heat treatment(9 posts)
I found a link for a do-it-yourself bed bug extermination using heat. This is done by the University of Florida and seems well researched. It looks like the equipment costs are less than $400.00 and may be purchased from Home Depot or Lowes or some such home center. Equipment list, instructions and temperature goals are included. Good luck
The key to remember here is NOT to use gas fired equipment. Follow the directions.
Good to know there are options other than packtites. I've been trying to come up with something on my own. I don't think this is it, but good for people with larger spaces.
This method looks pretty affordable and seems practical for smaller spaces.
You download the 6MB pdf then see pages 64-74.
But to me this doesn't appear to be "easy to use, and do-it-yourself" and fully-developed for everyday use by non-technical people. The way it's presented seems to be showing something experimental because it says "First attempt at heat treatment"..."Never reached 113°F"..."Second attempt at heat treatment"..."4 heaters blew circuit breakers"..."Final Setup for Heat Treatment"...and then shows a graph for a 2 hours and 20 minutes treatment where not all the components reached the necessary bug-lethal 113°F, and then another graph where they did all reach 113°F but the treatment time was more than 5 hours.
To me this doesn't look like a "well-beaten path" that's already been proven with large numbers of layperson adopters. It looks as though it might have promise, particularly for hotels, dormitories, and so on, but that a great deal of refinement is needed before if and when you and I can routinely use it in our own homes.
Do not use oil filled radiator heaters as described in the study because of the serious fire hazard.
The researchers relied on the over ride thermostat to keep the heaters running at 130 d F ... If the over ride thermostat fails a fire will be the likely result... This style of heater has a history of creating fires with major recalls of millions of units ... There are several models of different brands that are currently under recall for creating fires.
Placing the heaters in a chamber also voids the product warranty.
The U of Florida doc (a favorite of mine) is also a comprehensive rundown of various chemicals and even describes how to tent a truck and fumigate it with Vikane. These are best done by pros who understand how to deal safely with various situations. I'm eager to see a variant of the U of F thermal method made commercially available. It would save a lot of couches.
I read articles about professional heat treatment companies that had years of experience in dealing with heat treatment for other kinds of insects, and who then started to work on bedbugs. They had to learn a lot in the beginning about where bedbugs could hide, how long the heat treatment had to be, and how high the temperature. Unless someone has that kind of repeated experience getting rid of bedbugs, I am not so sure how a heat treatment could get rid of bedbugs the first time around. There are many more variables than the temperature you heat the room to.
As for the potential fire risk, in my town we can ask our fire department about something like this and they will give advice for free. They'd rather help people before a fire than after. So I'd suggest you do that first if you are considering this method and they might have good suggestions. If it is viable, I'm sure we'll see firemen getting into it part-time since they take on flexible part-time jobs and they'd be great at it.
For instance, is that type of heater designed for use indoors – otherwise would there any worry about carbon monoxide.
This is not a "do it yourself extermination" method as you suggest. It is only a method of treating items within the room (containerized heat treatment) and not for treating the structure itself.
This is definitely not something everyone can do or should do.
As jrbtnyc notes, there are potential dangers and pitfalls and as 'Keets notes, you may want to talk to the fire department.
You must log in to post.