What You Need To Know When Buying a Bed Bug Heater

Posted by Michael Ferkiss on

One of the more creative attempts by Google to offer up the most relevant information to people asking questions of it is the ‘People Also Ask’ section also known as PAA in Googlespeak.

If you search Google for  “bed bug heaters for sale” one day you will find questions with clickable answers.

The Google algorithm that manages this section of search results will then use artificial intelligence (AI) to attempt to read your mind based on which questions you are clicking on to anticipate your next question.

The more questions you click on = the more additional questions that will appear.

The mechanics of how search engines work has mostly baffled me until I decided to try and understand them better. I wanted to believe that how a search engine behaved did not matter and that if my customers were trying to find us they would easily be able to do so. I found out the hard way that it does matter and as most of you know by now Google Search is the primary method people use to answer any and all questions including those having to do with bed bug infestations, how best to kill bed bugs and is there such a thing as a bed bug proof mattress.

It really is quite incredible but since Google is trying to read our customer’s minds I will attempt to answer as many of these questions as possible in the hope that some of the answers will be helpful to anyone trying to eradicate bed bugs either from their own homes or killing bed bugs for a living for their customers. So here it goes...

Where can I buy a heater to kill bed bugs?

You can buy do it yourself DIY bed bug heat treatment equipment from us here at  www.pestprothermal.com Call or Text us at 970-443-8119 for meaningful answers to your intelligent questions. If you buy just a bed bug heater with a built-in fan the heat may not be dissipated quickly or effectively enough if you need to direct the hot air into hard to reach places, and the bed bugs will figure out where the heat is coming from and run the other direction. This will make the problem worse. You may need an external bed bug heater fan that will stand up to the high temperatures created by the electric bed bug heaters.

What kind of heater kills bed bugs?

Commercial bed bug heat machines are engineered to quickly get a room up to lethal temperatures of at least 125° F. PestPro bed bug heaters are set to achieve 135° F but can be reset for a variety of conditions. All bed bug heater components are manufactured to withstand temperatures up to around 170-180° F. PestPro bed bug heaters are all manufactured to these standards which is why the Government of the Territory of the Northwest Territories in Canada purchased large volumes of PestPro Thermal Systems bed bug heat treatment equipment to remediate bed bugs territory wide. Normal heaters typically used to heat up living spaces to keep people warm typically max out at 90° F which is well below the temperature required to kill bed bugs. If you try and disable the temperature thermostat on these types of ‘people heaters’ not only will you void the warranty, but the internal electrical components will fail quickly at higher temperatures and you will be left without any heater at all, much less a bed bug heater. Not to mention you might start a fire if the insulation melts and causes a short circuit. Don’t do it!

Do bed bug heaters really work? 

    YES bed bug heaters really work. Commercial bed bug heat equipment from PestPro contains only the highest quality, most durable components available and will last for up to 10 years with daily usage. All bed bugs die, regardless of where they are from or what strain they are at around 120° F within 15 minutes. Anyone with a powerful enough heater and a high volume heat resistant fan can kill bed bugs and not have to throw out their furniture. A successful heat treatment takes place in one day. Chemical insecticide treatments are spread out over weeks and expose you, your children and pets to residual chemicals in the place you spend 1/3 of your life breathing deeply while you sleep. As long as you get the entire room up to a lethal temperature quickly and have sealed it off using plastic sheeting and painters tape so bed bugs and heat cannot escape through cracks, vents and electrical conduits 99% of you will have absolute, first time success. Owning your own equipment allows you to repeat the process as needed.

    Can a regular heater kill bed bugs?

    NO a regular heater, depending on how you define regular, will not work to kill bed bugs nor bed bug eggs nor bed bug nymphs. As explained in the answer to "What kind of heater kills bed bugs?"  above, heaters designed for keeping humans warm are inadequate at killing bed bugs for the reasons described.

    What do bed bugs look like? What is the actual size of a bed bug? Show me a picture.

    Bed bugs are  reddish brown and about the size of an appleseed when fully grown. They are flat before feeding on your blood and rounded and engorged after feeding on your blood.

      A fully engorged adult bed bug on human skin having just finished a blood meal. A bed bug room heater will kill bed bugs.Three bed bugs tucked along the seam of a mattress where they like to hide as it is close to their nightly blood mea - you. 

      A bed bug on a dime shows the relative size which is that of an appleseed. Bed bug heat machines kill bed bugs.

      Electric Bed Bug Heater

      How long do you need to heat a room to kill bed bugs?

      In order to answer this question meaningfully we need to tackle it in parts. First, you need to know the dimensions of the room, what is inside that room, how well insulated is that room, are there heat sinks (items that absorb heat like a sponge) in that room like mirrors, exposed masonry/concrete walls or floors or ceilings. You get the point. Details matter.

      If the following conditions are met:

      • Standard North American 8-foot-tall ceilings
      • Wood frame construction (wallboard on wooden studs)
      • Carpeted floors with insulation underneath
      • An average amount of furniture and personal items (not hoarder stacks of stuff up to the ceiling)
      • You have sealed all the cracks, vents and covered the windows in the room from the inside with thin plastic and blue painter tape (or similar) so no air OR bed bugs can get in or out
      • Removed all light switch plates (usually 1 screw) and electrical outlet plates so heat can get in there. Bed bugs like warm places and anywhere electricity is flowing will be warmer than anywhere else
      • The room has been pre-heated for at least 2 hours using the furnace, boiler, radiator or space heater up to it's maximum setting. You are starting your bed bug heat treatment at 85° F or higher

      Once all of these conditions are met you can expect that 1000 Watts of heat output will allow you to treat 30-40 square feet. So if you had ten 1000 Watt hair dryers going at the same time you would be creating 10,000 watts of heat.

      This is a critical starting point to understand how bed bug heat treatment equipment actually works. If you extrapolate out to what a 10,000 Watt electric bed bug heater can do for you just add a zero and you end up with 300-400 square feet of bed bug heat machine coverage.

      PestPro Thermal bed bug heat equipment is engineered to put out 10,000 Watts (or 34,120 BTUs) of heat when plugged into a 50 amp electric stove outlet. For complete power flexibility the PestPro Universal Heat Package also allows you to plug into 40 amp stoves and 30 amp electric dryer outlets. With four included power adapter plugs you will be able to plug into any High Voltage 220/240 power outlet.

      Example: If your bed bug infested room measures 18’ x 19’ (342 square feet) and you plug your PestPro bed bug heater into your 50 amp electric stove outlet this will be, on average, what you can expect.

      1. It will take 90-120 minutes for the air in that room to get up to the lethal, death temperature that kills all life stages of bed bugs of 120° F.
      2. It will take another 45-60 minutes for the room air temp to achieve the maximum, preset temperature of around 130-135°. This higher temperature is required for the heat to penetrate and cook all the bed bugs hiding in that room inside furniture, baseboards, etc. Cooking bed bugs in furniture and personal items is no different than cooking food in your oven. To get a safe internal temperature so you don't get sick from eating raw meat you need a higher external air temp that will penetrate into that meat to get it to a safe temperature. Bon Appetit!
      3. Total treatment time will be 5-6 hours (on average) from the time you turn on your heater. Again, all the pre-treatment steps listed above before starting the treatment must be taken. There are no shortcuts to an effective bed bug heat treatment. Bed bug killing machines are not a silver bullet. You must approach this in a methodical way to be sure you are positioning the hot air to penetrate your stuff and kill the bed bugs, the bed bug nymphs and the bed bug eggs which will hatch if you don't.
      Electric bed bug heater

      What temperature kills bed bugs instantly?

      Your PestPro Thermal bed bug heating system is designed to work in concert with an external fan to quickly distribute hot air coming out of the electric bed bug heater. When used properly, and this means adequate preparation and preheating of the room before actually beginning the bed bug heat treatment, a lethal temperature of 120° F will be achieved. When exposed to this temperature adult bed bugs will dry out and die within 15 minutes. Bed bug eggs need to be exposed to this temperature for about 30 minutes in order to ensure they are killed.

      Can you heat treat your own house for bed bugs?

      Most definitely you can DIY heat treat your own house using a PestPro bed bug heat treatment machine. Heat has been proven many times over to be the most effective method for killing bed bugs without using chemical insecticides which have been proven many times over for actually making the problem worse due to bed bugs long ago having developed evolutionary resistance in the same manner humans continue to develop resistance to antibiotics. We are witnessing an identical situation with the current pandemic where the virus is creating variants which are at least partially resistant to the first generation vaccines created to prevent transmission.

      What do bed bugs hate?

      Bed bugs hate and avoid cold hard surfaces like countertops and bathroom tile floors. For this reason, it is recommended to place your luggage on the bathroom floor of your hotel room for maximum safety.  Bed bugs hate PestPro Thermal electric bed bug heaters for sale because the temperatures achieved will quickly kill them. Bed bugs love warm temperatures like inside any electronic device plugged into the wall because the electrical current, even when the item is turned off, still is warmer than anything else in that room. That is why it is critical to remove the faceplates from both light switches and electrical outlets so the hot air can penetrate and kill the bed bugs. Equally important is leaving electronic devices like TVs, radios, stereos, alarm clocks and desktop computers in the bed bug heat treatment area because there it is very likely there are bed bugs inside and your PestPro bed bug heat treatment equipment will not get hot enough to damage these electronic items. Be sure to unplug electronics before undertaking a heat treatment.

      Does washing clothes kill bed bugs?

      If you wash clothes in water that is at least 120° F then the answer is YES. The hot water will kill bed bugs. Since most folks have no way to test the temperature of the water in their washing machine a much easier thing to do is to dry the clothes in the dryer on HIGH for at least 20 minutes. This will guarantee the bed bugs will be killed and then you can wash them in any temperature water at a later time knowing the bed bugs and bed bug eggs have been killed.

      How many heat treatments does it take to kill bed bugs?

      If you are using well designed bed bug heater equipment that includes a separate heater and separate fan (for targeted flexible air distribution), have prepared the heat treatment area as described earlier in this post it will only take one treatment to kill bed bugs and eggs. Like anything else there is a learning curve, but the right temperature always kills all life stages of bed bugs the first time around. Science has proven this. Ask any entomologist. It is an absolute truth that cannot be disputed. There is no such thing as a heat proof bed bug.

      PestPro electric bed bug heater

      Do Bug Bombs Work On Bed Bugs?

        NO  - bug bombs do not kill bed bugs. Furthermore, they may cause the problem to get worse due to bed bugs trying to get away from the toxic chemicals and end up scattering further and wider throughout a home when they might have been resident in just one bedroom or piece of furniture and you could have killed them using heat alone. Bug bombs are also extremely potentially dangerous to humans  both from the toxicity of the chemicals and the risk of explosion if all ignition sources like pilot lights on hot water heaters and stoves are not turned off "safely" before using. Read the Case Reports in this release from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on the dangers of Total Release Foggers (bug bombs). It ain't pretty. I do not understand why they are allowed to sell dangerous products that do not work to people in desperate need of an effective and honest solution. Also be aware of your neighbors using them if you share ventilation systems in apartment living situations.

        Bed bug bombs do not work. They can explode, make the problem worse and poison human inhabitants including children and pets..

        What Kills Bed Bugs Naturally?

        Heat is as natural as it gets so using electric bed bug heat treatment equipment to kill bed bugs is the most natural method for effectively killing bed bugs. There are numerous natural ways described on the internet to kill bed bugs that do not work. Dig deeper if someone is claiming that lavender and tea tree oil will kill bed bugs. There are lots of "herbal" remedies that do in fact repel bed bugs but this will not solve your problem. Bed bugs need to die as a permanent solution to getting bitten by them and heat is the only proven natural way to kill bed bugs and bed bug eggs. 

        What Prevents Bed Bugs? How Do You Keep Bed Bugs Away?

        The short answer is to live in a bubble like we all have been during this latest pandemic. Bed bugs do not discriminate. Bed Bugs drink human blood and all humans, regardless of race, creed, color or socioeconomic status can bring bed bugs into their home from almost anywhere. 

        There are steps you can take while traveling to minimize your risk of picking up these devious hitchhikers.  Some examples are to never ever let your luggage touch anything with fabric on it. Don't throw your backpack on that upholstered chair, don't put your suitcase on the bed, etc. Avoiding sitting on anything with fabric in public places is not a bad idea either. 

        No one can anticipate everything the world will ask Google about bed bugs contrary to what Google’s artificial intelligence algorithms might have you believe. Rather than try to answer all the questions that popped up today in the ‘People Also Ask’ section I am going to tackle them in future posts given that they are constantly changing depending on the will and mood of the Google algorithm of the day. Although there are thousands of Google algorithm updates each year the major updates are given names like Fred, Penguin, Panda and Payday.

        If you don't believe me - just Google it.

        Thank you for your time today and we look forward to helping you figure out the best ways to deal with your bed bug challenges.


        For additional information and details on bed bug heating equipment visit this post: The Ultimate Guide to Bed Bug Heaters: Buying a Bed Bug Heater vs Renting


        bed bug heat equipment for sale


        Call or text 970-443-8119 for meaningful answers to your intelligent questions about our bed bug heat treatment equipment.

        We appreciate and thank you for your time.


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