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Boxspring or no?? Experts please help

(15 posts)
  1. brooklynscott

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 10:20:08
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    Hi everyone.
    After a recent round of bed bug remediation (focused on another bedroom in my house, not mine), I encased both my box spring and mattress.

    The problem now is that the Protect-A-Bed box spring encasement is so flimsy that it's gotten minute tears and rips in it--from normal movement, and also from the metal bed riser that it sits in. I gather that this is making it ineffective if not WORSE to have on there. I have passive monitors on the outside of the encasement itself.

    What I'm thinking of doing is simply getting rid of the box spring and having my encased mattress sit directly on the floor, no riser, with passive monitors installed however Sir David Cain would recommend. (Whatever your thoughts on encasements in general, I need it on the mattress due to dust mite allergy).

    The downside here is that no bed riser means I can't put ClimbUps on.

    Any (expert) advice??

  2. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 10:23:34
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    If you have a passive monitor I don't think it would be necessary to throw away your box spring. Remove the torn encasement if it concerns you.

  3. brooklynscott

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 10:25:08
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    Do you think a torn encasement is better than no encasement?

    The only reason I'm loathe to go with an unencased box spring is that, to be honest....my roommate's bed had unencased box spring and mattress. He was getting bit for about 2 weeks. At the end of that time I noticed a SMALL little speck on his passive monitor. PCO came and found a nice hidey-hole of bed bugs in the box spring--near one of the labels--which makes me think that, while the passive monitor is great, there's no 100% guarantee bed bugs will decide to set up shop in it first thing given some other nooks and crannies...

  4. brooklynscott

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 10:25:53
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    That's not to say I'm not grateful for the passive monitor, since it's what tipped me off! Just that I'd like to remove whatever possible homes the bugs might have as well, whatever gets them into the passive quicker. (Well, you know, hypothetically. The better option is no damn bugs).

  5. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 10:34:55
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    It would do you better to learn the spots that they tend to prefer. When I search a room I generally start at the tags on mattresses and box springs and move to the piping along the mattress from there. Once I've made it through all for seams on the mattress the box spring is turned up on its side and seams, slats and joints inspected from underneath.
    I'm sure there are as many variations of search as there are searchers, but in my limited experience bed bugs prefer the path of least resistance.

  6. brooklynscott

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 10:41:44
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    Yup, this is basically the protocol I was following too when I just went over my bed and box spring.

    I guess the basic question though is: If you get rid of the boxspring entirely, and only have an encased mattress, doesn't that simplify things--cutting down the places to check, the places to hide, and making it more likely that bugs would relocate to the passive monitor, which would then likely be the most attractive spot (in the absence of available boxspring...or mattress seams...or labels...etc....)

  7. AshamedandScratching

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 11:28:26
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    Don't panic at this image, but here's my first concern...

    What kind of floor do you have?

    If the mattress sits directly on it...can you easily check that surface?

    I have 50 year old wooden floors. Plenty of cracks and places for a bed bug to hide. Putting my mattress on the floor would expand my areas that I need to check thoroughly.

    I look at the box spring & my passive as a nice place for a BB to raise a family and an excellently easier place for me to check in a blind "what bit me?' panic.

  8. AbsolutelyFreaking

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 11:43:37
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    brooklynscott - 1 hour ago  » 
    Hi everyone.
    After a recent round of bed bug remediation (focused on another bedroom in my house, not mine), I encased both my box spring and mattress.
    The problem now is that the Protect-A-Bed box spring encasement is so flimsy that it's gotten minute tears and rips in it--from normal movement, and also from the metal bed riser that it sits in. I gather that this is making it ineffective if not WORSE to have on there. I have passive monitors on the outside of the encasement itself.

    Hi brooklynscott,

    Could you possibly (duct) tape the tears/rips in the existing encasement as best you can, purchase another encasement for the compromised box spring encasement, place the new encasement over the existing encasement, use additional duct tape on the metal bed riser to "soften" the edges where it would rub up against the encasement, and also use those Felt cushion thingys anywhere where the encasement would be rubbed against the frame or riser?

    (Or you could simply just discard the old torn encasement and buy a new one, installing it with the duct tape and Felt cushion precautions?)

    Just throwing some ideas out there for you!

  9. brooklynscott

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 12:01:20
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    Thanks guys, this all makes sense (as does the problems involved in putting mattress right on the floor since it is, yes, an old wood floor).

    I'm thinking I'll try to repair the boxspring encasement, maybe double up (or maybe put a mattress encasement on the boxspring?? They're more expensive, but DEFInitely more durable fabric??). And this way I can also keep the bed risers and put ClimbUps on...

  10. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 12:32:49
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    I have pretty severe allergies myself. After two years I am down to every three weeks for my two shots. I have only a mattress encasement and a bare box spring and don't seem to have dust mite issues.

  11. brooklynscott

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 12:34:11
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    Yes this is true, for dust mites I think the major issue is the mattress itself--they seem to prefer that part of the bed, unlike those OTHER bugs.

  12. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 13:26:12
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    Hi,

    Get one of the sturdier, cheaper and equally effective dust mite encasements. Stand the bed base upright and slide the new one one as you lower the old one off.

    Saves you the cost of replacing the bed base and will most likley be cheaper than the initial cost of the "bedbug" encasement.

    It is often that simple.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    I am happy to answer questions in public but will not reply to message sent directly or via my company / social media. I am here to help everyone and not just one case at a time.

    In accordance with the AUP and FTC 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 pro
  13. brooklynscott

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 16:40:24
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    David, makes sense...the encasement I have is actually a dual purpose one, Protect-A-Bed, which I THOUGHT was a good brand...does anyone have recommendations for better box spring encasements available in the US?

  14. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 16:57:07
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    The encasements FAQ notes that John Furman (KillerQueen) recommends buying two Protect-a-bed mattress encasements (rather than a mattress and box encasement) for the reason you note-- they're sturdier than the ones made for box springs.

    David has stated he does not agree with bed bug encasements. He recommends dust mite encasements for dust mites, but in my understanding, David doesn't think you need an encasement for bed bugs.

    Other experts here disagree and do recommend encasements.

    However, I will note that I had used such an encasement as David suggests (sold for $10 at Target) because I had bed bugs before the bed bug-specific encasements were available. It had gaps where the zippers stop. And removing such gaps is something the major bed bug encasement brands (Protect-a-bed, Mattress Safe) are designed to do. If you did have bed bugs on your mattress or box, these gaps would be a problem as much as a tear, I would think. I am not an expert, and would defer to them. I just want to clarify -- as the encasements FAQ attempts to do -- that there are different perspectives on this issue from experts.

    A torn encasement is definitely a problem and the tears should be sealed with duct tape or the encasement replaced. I am not sure a dust mite encasement is a solution, though.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  15. P Bello

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Jul 30 2014 22:34:52
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    A few comments:

    > Encasements - Yes.

    > Tears - Tape them.

    > Box Spring - one of the top bed bug harborage areas, needs to be encased when dealing with bed bug concerns.

    > Mattress and/or Box Spring Directly on Floor - Not good. In fact, this suxdotcom ! Let's not put our bed directly on the floor to make it even easier for bed bugs to get at us kids, this is just plain dumb !

    Hope this helps ! pjb


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