Bed bugs are synonymous with sleeping areas like hotels, bedrooms, and couches for most people. However, these elusive parasites’ goal is to stay close to their human hosts. Therefore, they have no problem moving from place to place to get their blood meal. So, can bed bugs live in your car?
Here’s how to identify a bed bug infestation in your car and tips to eliminate them.
So, can bed bugs live in your car? Well… the answer is yes and no. Bed bugs prefer dark places like bed spreads and furniture. So, while bed bugs can certainly get into your car, likely from luggage or clothes, they do not seek to infest your car.
Once they hitch a ride on you or your property, they will travel in your car and enter your property when you return home. This is where the “real” infestation nightmare can begin.
How else can bed bugs travel?
Usually, a bed bug infestation in a car won’t have as many bugs as you would find in sleeping areas.
Are you suspecting a bed bug problem in your vehicle? Here are the unmistakable signs of an infestation in your car.
Clutter is the most common reason a bed bug infestation in your car can go undetected. Remove trash, knick-knacks, clothing, and books from your car.
Ensure you place washable items under the highest heat setting in the washing machine. Place the non-washables in plastic bags. You might want to use diatomaceous earth to get rid of the bed bugs.
Clean your car properly using car shampoo. Also, ensure you take out the floor mats and seat covers, wash them and hang them outside to dry under the sun.
Vacuuming your car is only ideal when dealing with a small infestation. Using a HEPA-filter vacuum, focus on nooks and crannies, especially between seats and other dark areas.
Heat is one of the most effective ways to get rid of the bed bugs in your car. Steam cleaners with over 200 degrees Fahrenheit steam settings can penetrate cracks and crevices and kill bed bugs.
Diatomaceous earth is a natural bed bug control method, meaning it’s safe to apply with kids, pets, and adults around. This silicate mineral is a product of fossilized algae called diatoms. It works by dehydrating bed bugs resulting in their death.
Sprinkle it inside hard-to-reach areas where bed bugs hide and on floorboards. We recommend letting this powder sit for a few days before vacuuming. Note that you may have to repeat this treatment several times to fully get rid of bed bugs.
Nuvan strips are insecticides with 2,2-dichlorovinyl dimethyl phosphate—great at killing bed bugs and other critters. These strips only work in an enclosed area, so ensure you keep the doors and windows closed during treatment.
Hang the strips and leave them for up to three days. Take them out and air your vehicle for an entire day before use. These strips are reusable for up to four months. So, store them in a plastic bag until the subsequent use.
Bed bugs are resilient, and while some DIY treatments may work. You probably won’t have to worry about an infestation in your car, your home may be vulnerable to an infestation.
McDonald Pest Control uses specialized heat treatment to kill bed bugs and eggs. We offer a $100 discount, and the procedure is 100% safe. Don’t let bed bugs ruin this year’s spring season. Call us at 727-734-0963 to schedule a free consultation.