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NYC Inconvenience

(8 posts)
  1. thissucks82

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Jun 4 2017 19:42:47
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    Well, I'm here

    We live in a fairly old apartment building on the fifth floor of a walkup and yup, we've got them. Oddly enough, I only ever see their bloated little bodies in the bathroom, but we've been getting chewed up in bed and on our couch. It's awful and I currently hate the world.

    Here's the biggest issue in all of this: how the heck do we deal with this in New York? When we got the list from the POC of how to prepare, we both almost fainted. It looks like it will take the two of us, who work full-time jobs, about three weeks to get this all in place. We have a HUGE collection of books and DVDs. I guess the plan is to bag everything and put it in storage until the treatments have proven themselves successful, then open everything back up very slowly and check everything for any sign of them? I just can't see us waiting 18 months to get this stuff back. If we seal it, and check it, we'll be safe....right? Or do we heat everything? OR DO WE JUST BURN IT ALL AND START ANEW?

    The problem is, and I'm sure other NYCers have gone through this, there's just no ROOM to do this. The list we have says to put items that are clean in the kitchen or bathroom while the apartment is being treated, but a) the bathroom has to be treated and b) EVERYTHING WON'T FIT IN A KITCHEN!

    We also have four cats, so THAT's going to be a blast.

    We're also trying to figure out the politics of getting rid of our couch, which was nearing the end of its life anyway. I'm pretty sure it's infested (based on how many bites we seem to get after sitting down for an hour or two) so I feel like we should trash it before the treatments, but will that spread the bedbugs around? Should I shove Diatomaceous Earth inside it for now, just to get through the next few weeks pre-treatment, or could that mess up the treatment?

    Oy oy oy.

    This is not fun. But I'm guessing you all already know this...

  2. Proudmommyto3rottenboys

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Jun 4 2017 20:00:35
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    Here's my story:I have been dealing with bed bugs off and on for 3 years.The first time I caught them I was unaware that they were real.Well my landlord paid for 3 bug sprays which didnt really help at all.May have been because he uses the cheapest place and the bug guys didn't do a good job.So after that I finally talked him into going half on a heat treatment.We would have to pay back the half he paid to him but not right away.So we paid $2,200 for heat treatment.It came with a 3 month warranty.Thought we were in the clear.Nope right after our warranty was up we found more.So again we paid $2,200 for another heat treatment.This time getting rid of our brand new couch.It was really really thick and sewed really good so the heat couldnt get in the middle of it.This time the heat treatment worked.We were bug free for 2 and a half years.The whole time I was still really freaked out and it took me forever to stop getting up in the middle of the night searching for them.For the longest time I made my boys strip outside after coming home from school,a friends house or just about anywhere.I disnt let anyone come in at all.Not even my brother or best friend.Well my brother and friend would always complain that I was rude for not letting them come in.Or because I would make them change outside before coming in.Well after 2 years bug free I finally gave in and thought its got to be hard to catch them from someone just coming in your house.So I started letting my brother and friend come in again.My brother lives in apartments and had bed bugs.Swore his apartment was treated and that he didn't have them anymore.But apartments are very hard to get rid of them.My best friend had them in her trailer and she moved to a little shed cabin thing.Taking all her stuff with her.She swore that last summer her shed got so hot all the time that it killed all the bugs.I knew both were full of crap but like I said I thought it would be really hard to catch them off someones clothes like that.So I started letting them come back in.Well a few weeks ago I was sitting on my bed and seen a bug crawling on my shoulder.It was a bed bug...I freaked out and started crying...Not again,not again!!!!We have a hard time paying our bills the way it is let alone having to pay for all these treatments.I get really freaked out by the bugs...The first time I had them I was outside in my back yard in a tent for weeks in the winter...It was 20 degrees Outside...I froze but I wasn't going to sleep in my house with them.It doesnt bother my husband or our 3 boys like it does me.So again we had to come with $2,200 for the heat treatment.My husband sold his truck that he loved so much just so we would have the money for the treatment.So now we are $6,600 in Treatments..We just got the treatment done a week ago...I SWEAR with everything that is in me that I will NEVER allow anyone in my house again..Never Ever...I hate living that way and never having company over for game night or dinners together.But I will NOT continue to go through this...I can't...I already have problems with depression and panic attacks and this bug drama is making me worse.....I pray that the treatment worked this time and if it didnt that I am able to know before the 3 month warranty is up.Its just hard to tell within the 3 Months.I'm pretty sure we just caught them again and I got really lucky to see that bug crawling on me.Most people dont know until they have had them for awhile...I dont think this whole bug issue is ever going to go away in my head...Its really messed with me.I wouldn't wish this crap on my worst enemy!!!

    TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS:
    Yes I would get rid of your couch if its infested.We kept ours and thats why we didnt get rid of them after our first heat treatment.We had another treatment done and got rid of the couch and we were bed bug free finally.If you know something is infested then yes get rid of it.As far as your DVDs and books.You should leave the books in the apartment For the treatment.I have tons of books and coloring books and left all mine in our house.You just have to lay them around so they are not stacked up.As far as the DVD's they can not stay in the apartment with the heat.We also have a ton of DVDs and music CDs.We threw away all the cases and went and bought huge CD books and thats how we keep ours now.We just didnt want to risk not seeing a bug if they were in there.Anything that is not treated needs to be dried or frozen if you can.If you can't do any of that then it needs to be checked over super good before coming back in the house.The big guys should give u strips to put in the bags that will kill the bugs.The strips have to be in the sealed bag for 2 weeks before opening them up.Also if you live in a apartment then a heat treatment will work for now but if the other tenants arent treated more than likely you will get them back.I would also have the bug people spray your house so your protected no matter what.

  3. Richard56

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Jun 4 2017 21:22:37
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    Seeing them only in the bathroom suggests they may be coming from a neighbor(s) who will need to be treated or they will keep coming back. Ideally, the prep would depend on where bed bugs and their signs (fecal, eggs, cast skins) were seen. (Unless you have a heavy infestation, why would bed bugs be in clothes hanging in your closet for example?) Many good PCO's now use little or no prep. What you describe sounds like overkill. The couch can be treated, but if it's going to be thrown out you will have to encase it.

    Richard

  4. Livingagain

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Jun 5 2017 6:13:35
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    Yeah, I think that the pest control people that the BedBug Central people recommend use the Low prep method, IIRC.

    You mention using DE, I'm not going to weigh in on the couch except that if you do anything DIY Cimexa is better than DE.

    Definitely get your neighbors inspected, side neighbors and up and down, because the bathroom thing is supposed to mean they are coming from neighbors.

    @Proudmommy-- you have good advice to offer, but reposting your story everywhere just spams up the threads. Good luck with your efforts.

  5. thissucks82

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Jun 5 2017 6:15:39
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    Thank you both! Proudmommy, I'm so sorry for all you've been through. I believe the POC is using a chemical treatment, not heat-based.

    I haven's seen any casts or fecal matter, but the fact that we're getting bit on the couch definitely tells us we have them there. We recently got a new bed and encased it right from the start. I think we're still getting bit in the bedroom, but I don't think they're setting up a colony in there.

  6. Livingagain

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Jun 5 2017 10:14:31
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    Encasements don't mean the bugs can't set up a "colony" in there. It just make them more comfortable off of the bed and make it easier to find evidence of them on the bed.

  7. bbmom

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Jun 5 2017 14:02:28
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    We live in NYC and had our landlord check apartments around us with K9 after we found one live bug on our sofa and got positive K9 in a few spots. Our landlord doesn't want the bad reputation and is on top of things, so all apartments adjacent to us were also examined with K9. You should definitely insist the apartments above and below are checked, if they are in your bathroom!

    We had negative visual inspection and have no bites, no signs of bugs or activity, but we saw one live bug on the sofa (throw away) and got positive K9 alerts on 4 furniture pieces (3 of them removed). When it comes to removing furniture you need to ask your PCO or landlord what procedures to follow, they may have specific services removing infested furniture as it cannot be just tossed outside. We had to wait for people to wrap our stuff in cellophane and take it outside.

    We also were required to do all the crazy prep, as if we have a heavy infestation. I don't know what to advise to you, other than do what you think is rational based on your level of infestation and where you think the risk is. We had K9 inspection, which helps tell us what furniture and whereabouts are at risk.

    I believe there are treatment strips you can put into the bags with your DVDs, books and electronics, which will kill the bugs and their eggs without having to wait for 18 months for them to starve. I would look into it or ask the questions. Also, ask them to treat your bathroom, because you saw the bugs there, we were told our bathrooms would not be treated and we were safe to put our stuff there. I don't think I would do this in your situation.

    As far as being cramped and not having space for all the bagged stuff, it's only for the treatment. As long as all your items are bagged and sealed, you can move them back into closets as long as they stay bagged and then take then out for another treatment. We are using some of our shelves to hold bagged and sealed stuff between treatments, otherwise, we would have no space to walk.

    If you don't get K9 inspection you cannot probably assume where the bugs may or may not be hiding, so it's better to do due diligence. If you don't have time to treat it all before bagging, then just bag it and treat whenever you can, just making sure you don't open the bags recklessly.

    FWIW, we haven't treated the non-dryer compatible items from the room or furniture not alerted by the dog, only spaces around where dog alerted. We did heat treat all the items from all rooms, that were easy to dry, clothes, bedding, linens. We also used Pactite to heat treat all the stuff from areas near where the dog alerted furniture was. We were also told that bathrooms were safe, we surely hope so, because we use them to store a lot of stuff and we didn't heat treat stuff from there. We might be ok, I hope, since we have no confirmed infestation or bites or signs. So, take my words with a grain of salt and try to prep as much as you can, and insist that they examine apartments below and above and treat your bathroom.

    hope this helps

  8. thissucks82

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Jun 5 2017 20:27:28
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    Lots of luck to you bbmom!

    I'm thinking we should bag our books and DVDs and either set them on a table/shelves or put them in storage during the treatment (just in part to make room). I might invest in a PackTite so that when we're ready to start reloading our shelves, we go through a process of heating everything in batches. My husband has a big comic book collection, so that's going to be a little trickier.

    The HAVE to treat our bathroom. We'll check with our landlords about how to handle it with the neighbors.

    STay tuned...


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