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Laundry prep help

(4 posts)
  1. secondguessing

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    Posted 6 months ago
    Fri May 19 2017 12:20:47
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    Long story short: moved furniture out of my sons room last weekend to paint. Found bugs on box spring and velcro strips holding posters on the wall (framed and unframed). Dragged bed out to the garage, wiped and vacuumed any visible trace of them, finished painting.

    Later that night as I cursed my slovenly son sleeping on the couch, I started researching and OMG. Yes, they were bed bugs. Yes, I did every wrong thing when I found them. Yes, if they weren’t already contaminated, I had contaminated the couch and the garage. Yes, I drank several glasses of wine. Yes I’ve been drinking a couple of glasses every night since then so I can sleep, which I do with the lights on.

    I already have anxiety issues, this is fraying my nerves.

    PCO found no traces on any other furniture at ground zero, other beds or couches. I woke up with a couple bites a few days after initial discovery and son2 had a couple bites on his feet (although he thinks he got them while moving the bed). Interestingly, son1 in ground zero bedroom has no visible signs of being bitten.

    PCO coming on Sunday to treat and again in two weeks.

    I’ve read a lot (probably too much) but still have so many questions. I’ve separated them into different groups. Any answers would be great.

    About Laundry:

    1. Once clothes have been run through the drier, how do you get them folded and in the bag without coming into contact with the contaminated clothes you’re wearing? Because even if you’re wearing “safe” clothes as soon as you sit on the couch they’re unsafe again.

    2. For that matter where do you put the bag? The concrete floor of my laundry room had the kids’ dirty clothes on it so I don’t feel that’s safe. Every surface of the house had the kids’ clothes on it. My most repeated phrase is “Pick up your clothes”. What I’m doing now is standing virtually naked in my laundry room folding an item and placing it back in the dryer and then when everything’s folded, opening the bag in the dryer and working them in. There’s gotta be a better way.

    3. If I use zip ties, how do I know the zip tie is tight enough to make it airtight?

    4. Once the clothes are in the bag, where do you put the bag? There is no safe zone. If I clean my bathtub and surrounding tiles and walls with bleach can I put them in there?

    5. In fact where do you put the box of bags? On the floor? Isn’t that contaminated? And once the box is open, isn’t it possible for them to get in there and therefore the bags are now contaminated?

    6. This morning I was wearing untreated clothes and when I unzipped a bag (currently on the front porch) to get my son some treated clothes I leaned over the bag. Couldn’t they now be contaminated?

    So tired and I've barely even begun getting ready.

  2. bbcomox

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    Posted 6 months ago
    Fri May 19 2017 19:16:56
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    Hi,

    Here are my answers to your questions. My apartment had bedbugs four years ago, and I had a procedure that I followed for laundry.

    1. Once clothes have been run through the drier, how do you get them folded and in the bag without coming into contact with the contaminated clothes you’re wearing? Because even if you’re wearing “safe” clothes as soon as you sit on the couch they’re unsafe again.

    I would buy large Ziploc bags at Walmart or The Home Depot. The dried clothes go into clean Ziploc bags, and they are labeled as such. I had one bag for "outside, work" clothes and one bag for "inside" clothes. When I had to go out for work, I would shower in the morning and just before leaving the house, change into my work clothes.

    2. For that matter where do you put the bag? The concrete floor of my laundry room had the kids’ dirty clothes on it so I don’t feel that’s safe. Every surface of the house had the kids’ clothes on it. My most repeated phrase is “Pick up your clothes”. What I’m doing now is standing virtually naked in my laundry room folding an item and placing it back in the dryer and then when everything’s folded, opening the bag in the dryer and working them in. There’s gotta be a better way.

    This takes cooperation with your kids and other members of your family. Perhaps, now is a time to be very selectively with the clothes that you are going to wear while you are waiting or treating your house. For clothes that you are not going to wear, put the Ziploc bags in a well lit area and do not open them.

    3. If I use zip ties, how do I know the zip tie is tight enough to make it airtight?

    I would used Ziploc bags.

    4. Once the clothes are in the bag, where do you put the bag? There is no safe zone. If I clean my bathtub and surrounding tiles and walls with bleach can I put them in there?

    Put Ziploc bags in a well-lit area. Bedbugs are bugs after all, you can inspect for signs of bugs on the outside of the bags.

    5. In fact where do you put the box of bags? On the floor? Isn’t that contaminated? And once the box is open, isn’t it possible for them to get in there and therefore the bags are now contaminated?

    You can see if your Ziploc bags are contaminated on the outside. As long as the Ziploc bags stay closed until you have determined that your place doesn't have any bedbugs, you can slowly inspect the bags as you take the clean clothes out.

    6. This morning I was wearing untreated clothes and when I unzipped a bag (currently on the front porch) to get my son some treated clothes I leaned over the bag. Couldn’t they now be contaminated?

    The chance is low unless you see a bedbug fall into the clean bags.

    In summary, please keep in mind that bedbugs are crawling insects. While small, you can still see them. So, keep Ziploc bags sealed tight, and bedbugs, if any, will stay outside.

    Good luck.

  3. secondguessing

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    Posted 6 months ago
    Sat May 20 2017 6:23:00
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    Thanks bbcomox. I still don't understand how you got the clothes into the bag. Did you put the bag on the floor or on a table or something and put the clothes inside? Aren't these surfaces unsafe?

    My concern (and horrifying panic) isn't just the bed bugs that you can see but the eggs which you can't see.

    I did switch to the Ziploc bags because I just wasn't comfortable with the contractors bags and zip ties. With the clear Ziploc I can see what's in them and on them.

  4. bbcomox

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Sat May 27 2017 0:21:33
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    Hi secondguessing

    Sorry for the delay in replying. Here are my answers:

    I still don't understand how you got the clothes into the bag. Did you put the bag on the floor or on a table or something and put the clothes inside?

    Yes, after I finished drying a load of laundry, I would immediately place the clothes into a clean Ziploc bag. I made sure that my clothes does not touch the floor or any other surface. I would zip closed the bag right away.

    Aren't these surfaces unsafe?

    The chance of these surfaces being unsafe is low, as my drier was in a well-lit area. You can see bedbugs. If I were you and wanted to be sure, I would carefully clean the area where my Ziploc bags will be placed to receive the loads of clean laundry from the drier.

    My concern (and horrifying panic) isn't just the bed bugs that you can see but the eggs which you can't see.

    Eggs are very small, not invisible though, and I think they tend to be laid in tight spaces.

    I did switch to the Ziploc bags because I just wasn't comfortable with the contractors bags and zip ties. With the clear Ziploc I can see what's in them and on them.

    Good luck with this! You can do this.


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