Ask Your Question

Angie's List Answers is the trusted spot to ask home improvement and health questions and get answers from service companies, health providers and consumers. For ratings and reviews on companies in your area, search Angie's List.

Top 30 Days Experts
Rank Leader Points*
1 kstreett 240
2 Guest_9020487 110
3 Guest_9190926 105
4 GoldenKid 100
5 ahowell 95
6 KnowledgeBase 95
7 skbloom 80
8 Guest_98024861 70
9 Guest_9311297 70
10 Guest_9400529 70

*Updates every 4 hours

Browse Projects By Category

Question DetailsAsked on 8/19/2013

How do you get rid of bed bugs in apartment?

Older home made into 2 apartments, one up and one down. Only upper apartment is occupied. One person there. Have been trying "home remedies/holistic" with little improvement. Thanks.

Do you have the same question? Follow this Question

4 Answers

Voted Best Answer

The bed bug is a very elusive, resilient creature. Since they've resurged, making a come back since the last major epidemic back in the 40s and 50s, scientific methods of control have evolved drastically. Chemicals aren't what they used to be. (That's a GOOD thing for our health and environment!) And bed bugs are stronger than before, resisting the effects of many chemicals that are out there.

The one method that is very successful in erradicating these things is heat. The goal in any bed bug situation is to get them to come out of hiding first, in order to have a higher kill rate. Most pest control companies in the country are very familiar with this parasitic insect these days. A reputable local company that won't swindle you into a long term contract and has proper Thermal Remediation equipment is going to be your safest solution. Beware of over the counter gimmicks. A lot of times, those products are more dangerous and cumbersome than the insect infestation itself.

Communicate with your tenant. Has the tenant brought used furniture into the unit in the last several months? Did the tenant's prior residence have a bed bug presence or infestation? Has he or she done any travelling or had visitors stay in the unit? Bed bugs are transferred from place to place on items (purses, backpacks, luggage, furniture, etc.) and sometimes on people. They can go months without coming out of hiding for a blood meal and can slip into the tiniest spaces because they're flat like an apple seed. Talking to your tenant will help him or her understand how to avoid this in the future. Knowledge is power and the first defense against these things!


Answered 6 years ago by Janelle


Home remedies will not work. Steam used by a professional Pest Control operator skilled in Bedbug eliminations is your only choice. They will do a thorough inspection and discuss with you the history you've experienced and provide you a full treatment plan to solve the problem. Some things to keep in mind:

• Bedbugs will hide in small cracks and crevisses during the day close to their food source (the sleeper). It's the body heat and carbon dioxide that the sleeper exhales that tells the bedbug that 'dinner is ready'

You can view our Video here to give you all the information you need to understand how this insect lives and breeds.

• Treatment will include a detailed and agressive Steaming of all you bedding, upholstered furninishings and the edges of all you baseboards, other cracks and crevices found. You may also be forced to discard matresses and boxsprings if too heavily infested!

• There will be large amount of advance preparation of the apartments (Yes BOTH will need to be treated) and you'll be proveded a Users Guide to follow very closely.

Remember, it's not just the adult bedbug feeding on you residents you need to worry about but rather the 100-200 eggs every female lays! Normal pesticide treatment does NOT kill the eggs or affect the nymphs that hatch out!

Answered 6 years ago by GaryKasper


One suggestion - since there has a been recent tendency towards steam rather than dry heat to kill bedbugs and higher heat than used to be used, there have been numerous reports of damage of personal possessions from the treatment. Previously heat treatments ran about 120 degrees,which was the upper limit for electronics components. Today, dry treatment frequently reaches 140, and steam 150-170 degrees, which is well into the destructive range for electronic components and screens, as well as sometimes damaging varnishes and other wood finishes, particularly on furniture.

It is highly suggested you remove all electronics from the rooms being treated - stereos, TV's, computers, iPods, tablets, phones, alarm clocks, etc - why risk them being damaged by the process. Of course, they have to be checked by the treatment firm first to be sure you are not exporting bugs in the process. If the treatment firm finds that a problem, they should at least tightly bag them to keep the steam out, while still allowing them to be heated.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD


To our last responder, There already are ways to protect sensitive electronic items like alarm clocks, stereos TV's etc. First of all, unless these electronc items are very close (within 20 feet) to the bed (the bedbud's dining table) the chances for these items harboring live adult bedbugs or their eggs are very low. Second, professional PC operators take special care in NOT steaming these electronics for the eact reasons you mentioned.

Instead, these electronics and other sensitive items (framed photos, wall figurines, etc.) are placed into a large plastic bag and treated with a fumigationg product that will kill any adults and their eggs directly inside the bag! No Heat or steam application. We choose Steam generated heat for the exact concerns you mentioned - Steam is targeted, localized and short-term. I would NEVER 'cook' the entire house for hours for any reason!

Answered 6 years ago by GaryKasper


Re comment by Gary Kasper - I am glad you know how to do it right - I wish all contractors were conscientious like you.

I thought I would warn the questioner that some firms are running to 180 degrees with live wet steam for hours on end for rooms or even entire houses. I inspected one that was run with live steam overnight in the winter to kill carpenter ants and bedbugs and earwigs simultaneously, when outside temp was about ten - house was a total writeoff due to massive moisture condensation inthe insulation and walls, followed in a douple of days by massive mold growth - and uncovered because the contractor was unbonded and uninsured, and homeowners company would not cover contractor actions.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

Related Questions

Terms Of Use
Privacy Policy