Homemade "Bed Barriers" (Climbup Interceptors)(15 posts)
I created my own homemade “barriers” around the legs of my bed. (I can’t afford to purchase ClimbUp Interceptors. ) I purchased some Rubbermaid food containers that are about 3 inches high. I placed a line of double sided tape around the interior of the container and placed the containers under the legs of my bed (so each bed leg is sitting in the bowl of the container). I will add some talc powder to the containers tonight.
Has anyone tried to make something like this? Will the bb’s even be able to climb the smooth sides of the plastic Rubbermaid container? Is there some further “trick” that the Climbup Interceptors use that I’m missing here? Is Johnson & Johnson baby powder the correct kind of powder to use?
he does a review on the interceptors, including a way to reapply talc and what to put on the outside (adhesive tape for bandages?). I'd be interested to see how this works for you as I'm having a bit of a hard time justifying $60 for 12 interceptors
I keep waffling between "I'm ordering them right now!" to "well, do I "REALLY need them with only seeing 2 since spraying?"
I added powder to the containers. So far no bugs in them. (I only put them on 24 hours ago.)
As per the video link above (Thanks NoBugsOnMe! ), do you think I should add tape to the outside of the Rubbermaid containers to provide a rougher surface for the bugs to climb (if they are in fact off of the bed and trying to get on to it)? Or should I leave it as is, because if they are unable to scale the smooth Rubbermaid container to even reach the double sided tape and talc powder, then they are for sure not getting on to my bed and having me for a snack?
Rosella in NYC - 2 hours ago »
...do you think I should add tape to the outside of the Rubbermaid containers to provide a rougher surface for the bugs to climb (if they are in fact off of the bed and trying to get on to it)? Or should I leave it as is, because if they are unable to scale the smooth Rubbermaid container to even reach the double sided tape and talc powder, then they are for sure not getting on to my bed and having me for a snack?
The ClimbUp has two inner areas: an outer moat with a wall and an inner bowl, if you will. If they come from outside the bed, they get stuck in the outer moat -- the talc makes it too hard to scale the wall into the inner bowl. If they come from the bed, they're stuck in the inner bowl. Having encountered talc there, they presumably can't climb back up.
You are putting double sided tape on the inner bowl -- why?
On the outer side of the bowl, you're right -- a ridged surface might make it easier for them to climb in.
And just to be clear, this is all just speculation on my part!
I hope you will let us know how this works for you. Even with ClimbUps, I expect it would take some time to catch a sample. Bed bugs living in your bed are feeding just fine and have no reason to branch out just yet. Those away from the bed may be biting you somewhere else in your house. You may need to wait until an "outlier" from the bed sets off for a new harborage, or a bed bug harboring elsewhere in your home or building gets peckish.
One thing the ClimbUps have that you don't replicate is the inner and outer collection areas, which allow you to figure out if bed bugs are coming from the bed or towards it (which could be helpful in an infestation and definitely would be helpful in a monitoring situation).
There was a researcher that used Ikea bowls to create a similar trap, but I think you might end up spending more than five dollars a trap with the design.
You might want to try a small amount of mineral oil in the bottom of your trap, instead of the talc.
Creating a surface that can be scaled from the outside of the bowl is best, if you are using the device as a monitor.
NoBugsOnMe - Thanks so much for your info and input. I put the double sided tape in the inside of the bowl before I read about the talc powder option. My thought with the tape was that any bugs climbing down (from outside the bed attempting to get on the bed ) or up the containers side (from on the bed attempting to migrate around my apartment) would get stuck on the tape. I was considering putting two lines of tape about an inch or so apart to help distinguish which direction the bugs were coming from. I have since added talc to the containers as well.
DougSummersMS – Thanks! This weekend I intend to put masking tape (or medical tape) on the outside of the containers to “aid” the bugs in getting into the trap. I bought the Rubbermaid containers and tape from the $1 store, so I have so far invested about $6 total in this experiment.
The “interceptors” have been on for 3 days now and I have caught nothing so far. I should probably also mentioned that I am not 100% sure I have bedbugs (although that may just be my denial kicking in). While I have received 11 bites over 19 days (mostly in clusters of 3), I have not yet seen a single bug, fecal dropping, blood stain or anything else. My dermatologist confirmed they are insect bites, but was unable to tell what insect, out of the thousands out there, had chomped on me. I have been laundering the bedding, vacuuming the mattress and floor, wiping down the bed frame and isolating the bed. I should also mention that my boyfriend is battling bedbugs (he has seen the actual bugs), which is why I have a dreaded feeling that is what is causing my bites.
I’ll keep you posted on my progress with these homemade interceptors.
UPDATE: Day 14 of having the homemade interceptors on my bed, and so far nothing has been caught. Also, I have now gone 18 days with no bites (can I get a “hallelujah!”). Still no sign of any bugs, droppings or anything. I have ceased sleeping in a long sleeve shirt tucked into long pants tucked into socks, and am leaving myself out there as bait. So far, nothing has bitten.
I’m beginning to wonder if it was bedbugs after all… But I’m not ready to give up my anti-bedbug routine yet. Still laundering regularly and being hyper-vigilant. In cleaning the rest of my apartment last week, I did notice several cobwebs (mostly near the floor, under cabinets, in corners) and I don’t recall having to vacuum up this many cobwebs (or any cobwebs!) in the past. Am I just being hyper-vigilant/super aware, or could I have some sort of biting spider in my apartment? I live in Brooklyn NY. Are biting spiders common in Brooklyn? I haven’t actually seen any spiders, but I guess the cobwebs are proof that one (or more?) is around (or was) here.
Not catching bed bugs in the interceptors does not prove you do not have bed bugs biting you somewhere in the home.
It also does not prove bed bugs aren't biting you at work or other locations.
That said, if your only evidence was bites and they happened over 19 days and stopped, that may be cause for optimism. When was the 19 day period???
The first bites were discovered on Oct 25 (no idea when I was actually bitten, but once the bites appeared on Oct 25 I was really aware of them as they itched like crazy). The last of the 12 bites appeared on Nov 5. So today has been 19 days with no new bites. I’m really beginning to wonder if it wasn’t bedbugs, then what bit me? It’s a bit unnerving to not know what was biting me (not that thinking of a bedbug biting me is exactly comforting).
Rosella in NYC - 1 day ago »
Am I just being hyper-vigilant/super aware, or could I have some sort of biting spider in my apartment? I live in Brooklyn NY. Are biting spiders common in Brooklyn? I haven’t actually seen any spiders, but I guess the cobwebs are proof that one (or more?) is around (or was) here.
See BedBug TV where Jeff White has a video on spider bites. Basically unless you really try to piss them off or scare them, spiders do not bite humans. If a spider was in your shoe and you put it on, it probably will bite in defense.
I’m really beginning to wonder if it wasn’t bedbugs, then what bit me? It’s a bit unnerving to not know what was biting me (not that thinking of a bedbug biting me is exactly comforting).
You had skin reactions and while arthropod bites are a possibility, do not rule out something like an allergic reaction to some substance you were exposed to.
Thanks Jim. I went to my dermatologist after the first 6 bites and he ID’ed them as insect bites, and said it was not a rash or allergic reaction. He was not able to specify what insect, but he though bedbugs was a good guess. He prescribed me a steroid cream as the itching was horrendous.
If spiders only bite when provoked, then I guess I’m back to the bed bug theory. I haven’t seen any spiders, and most of my bites appeared first thing in the morning, or after a nap.
Also, I was wondering what effect my electric mattress pad could be having on the situation, if any. I have been using it on most nights, and I’m wondering if I do have bedbugs, maybe they don’t like the heat so are staying away?
I’m currently continuing with my routine of laundering bedding and checking the mattress and frame. I purchased an encasement (figured it’s not a bad thing to have even if it’s not bedbugs) and will put that on the bed tonight. I feel kind of silly doing all the extra loads of laundry, and searching my bed with a flashlight. But I’m too scared to not be doing all of this, especially after spending time on this website!
It doesn't surprise me that the dermotoligist couldn't identify the bites and a steroid cream would irrate the bite, you need a cortisteroid based cream for these it stops the itch. Also is your itching only at night? They though I picked up scabies and proceeded to give me the treatment. This stuff conatains the same active ingrediant I found out that they just sprayed my house with in a dermal application.
Yes it was BB's and I had no clue that they were even in my house. Scabies are a mite that burrows into the skin and the bites have an uncanny resemblense to BB's and yes they cluster bite also and burrow in a straight line. The tell tale sign is take a magnifying glass and examine the area you will see the tunnel. The only bonus to having this is one treatment usually gets them and they don't live for more that 3 to 4 hours off the host. A good wash of your bed linens and cloths they are gone.
Climbup interceptors are rather expensive for what they are. After all there just a double walled piece of plastic, made in china. Susan McKnight must be rich now!
Homemade bed bug interceptors are a great idea for those that can’t afford to buy them. I think some homemade ones will work better then the commercial version. The taller the walls of the trap the better chance bed bugs will not be able to escape. For a homemade barrier trap I used 2 plastic containers per bed leg from food products, yogurt, ice cream sour cream, chip dip or margarine containers with flat bottoms work well. Put all bed, couch or dresser legs inside the smaller container, and then use a larger container on the outside to form a mote. Make sure the sides of the 2 containers don’t touch. Use masking tape on the outside of the larger container so bugs can climb in. Use a cotton ball and lightly coat all sides of the two plastic containers with talcum baby powder (except outer masking tape side). This makes it too slippery for bed bugs to get out. Wash out containers once a month and re-apply the talc. The taller the container the better, just as long as it is a little shorter then the legs are. Make sure nothing hangs off the bed and touches the floor. Pull bed, couch and dresser away from the walls. Watch out bugs doesn’t climb up electrical or phone cords. We want the only way up to the bed, to be the legs. I added a bit of diatomaceous earth to the bottom of both containers to kill any bugs that enter. Talc won’t kill bed bugs; it is just used to make the plastic more slippery.
Baby powder is made from two formulas, talcum (talc) or cornstarch. powder. Talc powder is more slippery for bed bug traps. Inhalation of talc is bad for the lungs, but if you are only using it on traps, it is not a problem.
For the outside walls of the homemade barrier traps, wrap a layer of white hockey tape instead on masking tape. Hockey tape is made of fabric and has a rougher surface than masking tape allowing the bed bugs to climb up and get trapped.
Why put tape around the outside wall at all? Because we want the bed bugs to easily be able to climb up and get trapped instead of wandering around your bedroom possibility breeding or getting to your bed another way. These two container traps will help prevent your bed or couch from getting infested, but they are to be viewed as a monitoring device, meaning if you do catch one, you should consult a pest control professional.
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