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Self Heating my apartment--bad idea?

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  1. Bedbuggy

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Thu Jun 27 2013 19:30:02
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    I found out that my apartment is in fact infested with bed bugs. The actual source of where they came from is unknown, however we believe they came from next door or we were already infested when moving in. We don't really have the kind of cash to call our own exterminator, and our apartment wants to tip toe around the subject and do a one time chemical treatment with no warranty.

    We are so fed up with the situation and can barely sleep at night--so we decided we could try to heat the apartment ourself. It's the middle of summer and we live in Las Vegas. The temperature this weekend is supposed to reach 117---so if we potentially turned off our air and turned on the heater, we think we could reach pretty high temperatures.

    Can someone tell me if this is possible?? And how dangerous is it?

  2. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Thu Jun 27 2013 19:52:31
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    Whether it's dangerous for you depends on the type of heater used, but the method you describe is not likely to help.

    Professionals who do heat treatment routinely heat the entire structure to 140F or so in order to make sure the heat reaches all the bed bugs. They do this quickly, so fleeing is minimized. And they maintain 140F or so for about 4-6 hours.

    Bed bugs die at 113.6F, but you have to understand that their M.O. when faced with such heat is going to be to flee into cooler areas of your apartment. That means into the walls and other areas of the structure, which will not reach temperatures as high as those in the room. If you heat the room to 117, they will easily find cooler spots to hang out in.

    They can survive to bite another day and they can also be harder to kill at that point because you just moved them from all the obvious harborages into remote areas where they're hard to kill.

    If you had the means to raise the temperatures not just in the room but the whole structure to 140F, then I would be concerned for your safety, since this is difficult and not a DIY option. One person here tried it and did not eliminate their problem, just spread it deeper as I noted above.

    Another guy was recently in the news who burned his home down.

    I should also note I am not a PMP or entomologist.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  3. cilecto

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Thu Jun 27 2013 20:15:59
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    What NoBugs said. In addition, there's the issue of your neighbors being a ready reservoir of fresh bugs to come in and re infest, even if treatment worked. You should not try approaches like this on a property that isn't yours.

    Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night...
    - Psalms 91:5-7

    (Not an pro)
  4. Bedbuggy

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Fri Jun 28 2013 1:14:01
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    We just aren't really sure what to do. Our apartment complex is willing to do just enough to abode by the law, but nothing to help us get rid of the bugs completely. We feel like we need to throw away everything we own. We can't sleep in our rooms-especially me because I react terribly and now the creatures have evaded our living room. How do you deal with this and not let it take over your life?!

  5. cilecto

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Fri Jun 28 2013 6:27:25
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    If you must do it yourself, follow the practices in a compressive guide, like David Cain's or Paul Bello's book (for sale in the right hand margin) or this one from our Resources page.

  6. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Fri Jun 28 2013 9:25:41
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    Hi,

    As others have said home thermal without the right equipment and controls is extremely unlikely to work and without a dedicated convective heating source it most certainly will not work.

    To fix this sort of issue you need to actually work with your neighbours to ensure that you all focus on the issue at the same time and get it resolved. Without the complete issue being addressed you are only going to stem the flow of bedbugs for a few days or a few weeks.

    To get relief from the bites you may want to look at the sleep tents that have been developed it will at least enable you to get some rest while the treatment is happening.

    DIY is possible but as so much of bedbug work is experience and that can only really be gained through treating multiple cases the heavier and more complex the case the longer it is going to take you to resolve. I would advise a few days of reading and researching before you decide how to tackle this. My book is actually less likley to be of help to you as the DIY protocols contained in it are for light to medium cases and if multiple units are infested then we do not recommend DIY.

    You may also want to explain to the management team that like all problems in life getting it right from the start actually costs less money than the bandaiding that they are doing. Lets face it at this rate they will soon have multiple units infested and the solution will only end up costing them more and more.

    You may also get some help from your public health department who will at least be able to confirm with the management team the logic in getting the job fixed correctly the first time.

    Hope that helps.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    If you have found this information helpful please consider leaving feedback on social media via google+ or FaceBook or by like/loving the images.

    In accordance with the AUP and FTC (legal requirements) I openly disclose my vested interest in Passive Monitors as the inventor and patent holder. Since 2009 they have become an integral part in how we resolve bed bug infestations. I also have a professional relationship with PackTite in that they distribute my product under their own branding. I do not however receive any financial remuneration for any comments I make about products.
  7. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Fri Jun 28 2013 14:01:59
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    Bedbuggy - 12 hours ago  » 
    We just aren't really sure what to do. Our apartment complex is willing to do just enough to abode by the law, but nothing to help us get rid of the bugs completely.

    About that-- it is highly unlikely the law says "landlords have to make an attempt at treatment." It's more likely the law says they have to get rid of pests. So consider whether you want to call on the city or county. There's usually some kind of department that is responsible for housing inspections and verification of housing violations, which means someone else follows up to see if the problem is solved. Here in NYC, for example, you can call 311.

    Some people are reluctant to do this because it may annoy the landlord and there may be repercussions from that. It's an individual choice. However, as Ci ad David noted, if all affected units aren't treated at once, the problem continues, which is why self-treatment in such a setting is unlikely to solve the problem.

    Bed bugs are not easy to deal with and landlords who don't care may be able to get away without doing much, but there may also be ways to enforce any laws which apply.


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