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Potential bedbug problem and moving

(7 posts)
  1. MKNYC

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    Posted 9 years ago
    Mon Aug 23 2010 15:12:08
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    Hi, I was hoping someone could give me some advice on what is the best course of action.
    I live in New York and like many of us have been freaked out by recent media over-coverage of the bedbug issue.
    So here’s my situation: My boyfriend and I are moving in a couple of days to an apartment in a building with no reports of bedbugs on bedbug registry. In our current apartment we have seen no bugs, blood stains or such in the 3 years we have lived here. We have no red spots or bites. Occasionally we would get scratchy or bitten by something, but who doesn’t. In preparation for the move, all our stuff has been boxed up and piled up ready for the truck.
    And then this morning I found a dead and very dry adult bedbug in a shoe box that I was going to throw away. I’m not even sure any more what we kept in the box, but it was under the bed. Now my paranoia kicked in and I started getting itchy all over, but I’m trying to stay calm and figure out what to do.
    I cannot unpack everything, but I’m afraid of infecting my new apartment. I don’t know if there are any live bugs and where they could be, but with our stuff mixed up in boxes they could easily spread to other things. I looked around the mattress and found particles I could not identify but nothing conclusive...
    I will let my current landlord know that I found one bug, so they could possibly treat our empty apartment after we’re gone, but I’m more worried about our stuff.
    Should I unpack in the new place or call someone to check our stuff while it’s still in boxes? Who do I call? Should I buy a cover for the mattress right away or wait until the official verdict? What brand? Should do something to be sure, buy a beacon or that trap thing? Is it possible to make the trap? Any precautions I could take in the new place to stop any possible bugs from spreading or to make their life there difficult?
    Another thing: I’ve read some of the things people on this forum say they do to stay bug free, and I just have to say that getting rid of books and paper is not an option, nor is avoiding guests and public transport and such. Also our budget, especially since we're not even sure what's happening and with all the moving expenses is very limited, so no $300 heating machines or expensive steam cleaner, at this point, unfortunately

    So, if anyone has ideas, I would very much appreciate them…
    Thanks
    Mark

  2. MKNYC

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    Posted 9 years ago
    Tue Aug 24 2010 16:10:41
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    Ok this has just gone beyond potential:
    1) I saw a few live bugs in the earliest stage on the bottom of a black backpack that was on the floor of the bedroom. I killed what I could and bagged and taped the backpack. I'm worried since this wasn't the backpack's original location, but so far all signs were in the bedroom
    2) On close inspection I realized I do have a few tiny red dots on my body that I cannot identify and don't remember having before. they look nothing like bites I've seen on the website but I keep reading that everyone reacts diferently... Still maybe I'm paranoid.

    So here's my plan for the move on Sat.
    I have temporarily sealed my mattrass in a cheap cover until i get protect-a-bed (prob. tomorrow)
    I'm washing and extensively drying clothes and other fabric items and closing them in plastic boxes then taping them up.
    I'm throwing away all paper and fabric items that are not absolutely necessary.
    I'm wiping down all other items with rubbing alcochol. I also did this with the floors in the apartment
    I will bag up the boxes with books in garbage bags and tape tehm up.
    When I get to the new apartment I will not unpack anything that has been taped and bagged until I get an exterminator to come over and ok it.
    The clothes I need I will rewash and still keep in plastic boxes

    What else can I do. Once again I don't have a budget for packtite, or to gas the truck?
    Please help! I still think this is very low level, but I want to nip it in the bud. I don't want them in my new place. Any advice is welcome

  3. bb_gave_me_ocd

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    Posted 9 years ago
    Tue Aug 24 2010 16:58:04
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    Are you sure these were bed bugs that you found? If you take some pictures, put them on Flicker and link them here so somebody can take a look. Please don't take this as an insult to your intelligence or anything--lots of people have been fooled by bad/inaccurate pictures or descriptions in the press and have thought they've found bed bugs when it was something else entirely.

  4. MKNYC

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    Posted 9 years ago
    Tue Aug 24 2010 23:16:04
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    It's definitely a bedbug. I will try posting an image as soon as I can.
    I will definitely pack everything tightly and would like to schedule an appointment with an exterminator as soon as possible to inspect my bagged up boxes before I unpack anything. Can anyone recommend one in Bushwick, Brooklyn.
    Also tomorrow I'm getting a protect-a-bed. Would it be a good idea to spray the mattress with something before I put it on?

  5. MKNYC

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    Posted 9 years ago
    Tue Aug 24 2010 23:20:00
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    Oh and another thing... Is there anything I could spray around the new apartment to make sure they die even if they do manage to come over on our luggage?
    What could I do to make the new place less bedbug friendly. Plug holes and cracks? With what? How to bug proof NYC hardwood floors?

  6. bushbugg

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    Posted 9 years ago
    Tue Aug 24 2010 23:32:05
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    I have called a few places about this. Some will prespray a non lived in apartment for a fee. If the bugs continue to bite, they will do a real spray, and the total cost was quoted to me as just one spray. I would get it in writing of course, and ask what evidence they need to do the followup- in depth spray. also, make sure its a reputable company.

    Its possible to follow up with DE. (theres a DE faq)

    Theres also Vikane. You have your stuff packed, maybe you could Vikane the truck. You would need proper ventilation.

  7. bb_gave_me_ocd

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    Posted 9 years ago
    Wed Aug 25 2010 9:51:43
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    You can close up cracks in wall seams, etc. with caulk. I don't see any reason to spray anything on a mattress if you're going to cover it with the protect-a-bed.

    I'd get a pro to come and assess the situation before you move. Make sure they're licensed and have experience with bed bugs--don't be afraid to ask for references.


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