Bed bugs are one of the most deadly bugs on the planet. They can survive in both environments (very low and very high temperatures). Despite their efficient endurance, bed bugs choose to stay hidden, whether it’s your bed, cracks in the wall, carpet or fabric. As bloodthirsty human beings, their only mission is to drink blood from the host; their instinct for survival is intense. But, when it comes to H2O(water), bed bugs may not be that strong. So, the question arises here “Does water kill bed bugs?“
Water effectively kills bed bugs if appropriately used or combined with other substances such as salt, vinegar, alcohol and soap. Bed bugs may survive in water, but their life span after being submerged in water is very limited. A water temperature of approximately 140 degrees Fahrenheit or 60 degrees Celsius can kills bed bugs. If you want to kill bed bugs, this is the temperature you want to aim at. In this case, a 30-minute wash cycle can kill bed bugs and their eggs.
Since water can effectively kill bed bugs, we are making this article as deep as possible to cover every helpful method. Bed bugs may be stubborn and hard to kill, but it’s not impossible. We recommend you sit back, relax, and stay with us until the end.
1. Where Do Bed Bugs Come From?
People often think about the source of their infection. In many cases, it is almost impossible to give a definitive reference because these insects are notorious predators.
Bedbugs can be found anywhere globally and can get stored in luggage, handbags, clothes and backpacks. If a child goes to school with bed bugs in their bag or clothes, it can spread rapidly to other homes in a few days. Similarly, as a result of going to the movie theatre, some bed bugs crawl on your clothes and hide until you reach your home. Bedbugs’ ability to pass through taxis, buses, retail outlets and restaurants allows them to spread and get introduced in various environments.
Don’t let the name “BED BUGS” deceive you. Bed bugs won’t just stay on mattresses or box springs. Like most animals, they want to be close to food (humans) and shelter. Because of this, bed bugs can hide in all sorts of places. In addition to the beds, you can also find bugs in them:
- Wallpaper Seams
- Door Hinges
- Toy Boxes
- Under The Carpets
- Pet Bedding
- Window Mouldings
- Behind The Posters And Picture Frames
And many other places.
2. Effect Of Bed Bugs On Human Health:
Bed bugs can cause the following health risks to a human on direct or indirect contact:
- Too many bites over time can lead to anemia and potential anemia.
- Allergies from their bites and residue can cause asthma attacks in sensitive people.
- Bite allergies, caused by bed bug saliva, can cause hives, itching, and irritation.
- Biting can cause infection, causing additional problems.
- Blemishes can form and persist for months or more.
- Bed bug bites are most common on the face, neck, arms and hands.
- The bite-bite symptoms of bed bugs are similar to those of other insect bites and rashes. Bed bug bites are usually:
- Swollen spots, often with deep spots in the middle.
- Arranged in a rough line or cluster.
- Located on the face, neck, arms and hands.
3. Do Bed Bugs Like Water?
No, bed bugs don’t like water. It is accurate to say that bed bugs hate water because it represents a threat, mainly if we discuss drowning or using hot water against them. Bed bugs and water have an extraordinary relationship, unlike almost every living thing on this planet. They can live without water all their lives, which makes them dehydrated, meaning their survival is almost certain in any case. Also have a look at, does cinnamon oil kills bed bugs?
4. Do Bed Bugs Drink Water?
Bed bugs are rare creatures that do not need to drink water to survive. For example, people can only survive on water, with a small amount of food, while bed bugs only need blood to survive. Keeping in mind that blood also contains water and insects eat it, some say that water is obligatory for them to survive. It is not true because even though there is water in the blood, fresh water will not help the bed bugs to survive.
The warmth and fragrance of your skin attract the bed bugs, which is the main way for bed bugs to survive. If they do not feel close to your skin, they will probably stay hidden and look for other means to get close to you because they only need blood to survive.
5. Does Water Kill Bed Bugs?
“Does water kill bed bugs?” It totally depends on the method you use. You can’t kill bed bugs by directly spraying them with water. Bed bug sprays work by releasing residual pesticides on a surface. When the bed bug passes over them, it takes some pesticides and eventually dies. Water will not do that. However, water effectively kills bed bugs if appropriately used or combined with other substances such as salt, vinegar, alcohol and soap.
Bed bugs may survive in water, but their life span after being submerged in water is very limited. A water temperature of approximately 140 degrees Fahrenheit or 60 degrees Celsius can kills bed bugs. If you want to kill bed bugs, this is the temperature you want to aim at. In this case, a 30-minute wash cycle can kill bed bugs and their eggs.
6. Can You Drown Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs have flat bodies with short legs that do not allow them to swim or crawl. It means that bed bugs can be drowned using water. But let’s see how easy is it to drown a bed bug?
Theoretically, you can drown bed bugs and wait for them to suffocate, but this is almost impossible in real life. Bed bugs often hide various cracks in your bed or your home. Getting them out and drowning them is an impossible and pointless mission.
Even if you manage, you can only drown a certain number of them, not the whole disease. Furthermore, the drowning of bed bugs is time-consuming as they can be more tolerant of living underwater than humans. It can work if you plan to drown your whole room, but we all know it’s stupid and impossible.
7. Do Bed Bugs Swim In Water?
Bed bugs can not swim in the water, so even the smallest water can drown and kill them. When taking drastic measures, it can be used to our advantage. However, bed bugs, due to their tiny weight, will float up but eventually die because they cannot breathe. Bed bugs use holes around their bodies to breathe the air because their lungs and mouths are not human-like.
When bed bugs are in the water, the water fills their holes, and they cannot breathe air. Even so, they can survive by drowning for up to 24 hours. The important thing is these bugs might die after that.
8. How Long Can A Bed Bug Survive In Water?
We know that bed bugs can “hold their breath” for hours. But how long can a bed bug survive in water? Whether swimming or completely submerged, bed bugs can survive underwater for up to 24 hours. If they have access to the spots to breathe, it can be long until they die.
Bedbugs can survive underwater for up to 24 hours – much longer than humans. When we said that bed bugs are well prepared for any situation, that is what we meant. Sure, water can kill bed bugs, but is it worth the whole day to kill them? When you see bed bugs, squashing them with your feet or something is much easier than drowning them.
Since they cannot survive at different temperatures, you will need hot water to kill them.
9. Does Water Kill Bed Bugs?
(a)- Will Warm Water Kill Bed Bugs?
Hot water can kill bed bugs, but it should be hot enough to harm them. So, the question arises: ” Does hot water kill bed bugs?”
Yes, a water temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit or above (60 degrees Celsius) can kill bed bugs more effectively. While using laundry to kill bed bugs, this is the temperature you want to aim at. In this case, a 30-minute wash cycle can kill bed bugs and their eggs. Washing your bedding infected with bed bugs seems to be the best solution. You wash your beddings, all the bed bugs are washed, and it’s like new.
(b)- Does Cold Water Kill Bed Bugs?
No, cold water does not kill bed bugs unless we’re talking about drowning. As we said, it’s almost impossible to kill bedbugs only with water. In the washing machine, you can put cold water to wash your beddings, but it is less likely to kill. It is valid to a certain extent because once the centrifuges start spinning, bed bugs will sink with it, but it is less likely to happen at every spin.
In addition, you will need 24 hours to drown them. Do you think your washing machine can work 24 hours a day?
(c)- Does Boiling Water Kill Bed Bugs And Their Eggs?
Yes, boiling water kills all kinds of insects and bugs, including bed bugs. As we said before, hot water can kill bed bugs even if they don’t drown. In the case of boiling water, it is even easier to kill them because you need to sprinkle them with it, and they will die almost immediately. We often use this technique to kill a large sack of bees or hornets that affect parts of our homes. We boil water and sprinkle it on the nest to kill these insects. The same method can kill bed bugs, but only if you see them.
Be careful not to damage your household items, as boiling water is hazardous. Also, try not to throw it on yourself, as it can severely damage your skin.
(d)- Do Alcohol And Water Kill Bed Bugs?
It is possible to use only alcohol to kill bed bugs, which is a great way to get rid of them. Alcohol kills bed bugs on contact, so you will need to spray it directly on the infected area. As far as alcohol and water are concerned, this solution is not as effective because we have another ingredient – water.
While alcohol kills bed bugs on contact, it is not so smart of choice because it stinks, is flammable, and only kills on contact, so there is no residual effect.
(e)- Does Hot Water And Bleach Kill Bed Bugs?
Yes, both thin and diluted bleach kill bed bugs, but we recommend using it first. It is because bleach is potent and kills bed bugs but also damages your respiratory system. Bleach should be diluted with warm water. That way, it’s less harmful to your health and your mattress if you’re using it.
Undiluted bleach is more effective at killing bed bugs but also more harmful to your health. Hot water with an equal amount of bleach is enough to eliminate bed bugs wherever you want.
(f)- Will Soap And Water Kill Bed Bugs?
No, as much as this mixture seems compelling, it will not kill bed bugs. Bed bugs are resistent to soap and will not die unless you grab the soap and break the bed bugs with it. When dissolved in water, soap seems non-fatal.
(g)- Will Salt Water Kill Bed Bugs?
Using salt & water to kill bed bugs is pointless, as it will do nothing to kill bed bugs. Salt is known for its fantastic ability to absorb liquids. However, it is not as effective when compared to diatomaceous earth. It has no purpose if you use it with water.
On the other hand, just using salt may be a little more effective.
(h)- Do Vinegar And Water Kill Bed Bugs?
Vinegar alone is an excellent substance for killing bed bugs. It works the same as alcohol works against bed bugs. However, adding vinegar to water will reduce its effect, making it less potent and less likely to kill bed bugs. Grab a spray bottle, put some vinegar inside, and spray it around your house.
Vinegar also kills bed bugs on direct contact, meaning you need something to kill them quickly. We do not recommend adding vinegar to the water. Remember that vinegar, depending on the percentage of alcohol, can damage your furniture if used too much.
10. What Water Temperature Kills Bed Bugs?
A water temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit or 60 degrees Celsius can kills bed bugs. When using laundry to kill bed bugs, this is the temperature you want to aim at. In this case, a 30-minute wash cycle can kill bed bugs and their eggs.
It also backs up the boiling water method. The water boils at 100 degrees Celsius, making it more effective in killing bed bugs. But, there is also a downside, as boiling water can damage your skin and other things in your home.
11. How To Get Rid Of Bed Bugs Using Water Treatment?
Here we presented step-by-step instructions for the three best water treatments for killing bed bugs:
METHOD 1 – USING A WASHING MACHINE
1: Pack your mattresses, bedding and other infested items in plastic bags.
2: Take them carefully to your washing machine.
3: Place the affected material in the washing machine. Be careful not to do it quickly because the bed bugs will get disturbed this way.
4: Use hot water with a temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit or above.
5: Use plenty of detergents. Although there is no guarantee that this will affect them, too much soap will be toxic to their lives.
6: Wait for the cycle to finish.
7: Leave the bedding to dry.
8: Repeat the cycle if needed and use some bed bug control spray when infected items get completely dry.
Method 2 – Use Boiling Water
To answer many people’s questions, “can hot water kill bed bugs?” We have presented the easiest method to kill bed bugs. Please use this method with caution! (See warning below.) There is a risk of burning with boiling water.
- Use a large pot and pour a little water inside.
- Place a pot on the burner and wait for it to boil.
- Pour water into a glass and spray on the affected area.
- Repeat the process and check if the bed bugs are dead.
Warning: Burning with boiling water is called scald. Burning hot water is extremely painful and dangerous. Cells and tissues can be destroyed by heat from boiling water and steam. In some cases, hot water burns can be fatal. If you get irritated, apply cold water to the burn for at least 20 minutes. Put the burn in a clean dressing. If the burn is widespread, you go into trauma or show any signs of infection, contact a medical professional immediately.
Method 3 – Use A Thin Bleach
- Place a pot on the table.
- Use hot water and pour it into the pot.
- Use the same amount of bleach and add it to the water.
- Stir until bleach is completely thin.
- Pour the mixture into the spray bottle.
- Use this mixture to spray around your home but do not spray too much on furniture, as it can potentially damage it.
- Repeat this process for a few days and see if the infection has subsided.
12. Can Bed Bugs Survive In A Washing Machine?
Can bed bugs survive in the washing machine? Bed bugs can’t survive a washing machine cycle. Three things kill them in the washing machine:
- The water itself is deadly to bed bugs.
- The temperature is so high that it can kill the bed bug itself.
- Soap is toxic to life if eaten in large quantities.
In addition to these three factors, prolonged exposure of the washing cycle to bed bugs is fatal. It is an effective way to kill bed bugs in clothes or bedding (or anything washable).
The trick is to take them to the washing machine without scattering them around the house. Keep washable items in a bag and empty them directly into the washing machine. Wash them on a normal bicycle. Next, check for dead bed bugs.
13. How To Wash Garments Infected With Bed Bugs?
Careless washing and drying of bed bug-infected clothing can spread the odour to other areas of your home. Here are some tips to help wash your affected items in the washer.
STEP 1: Bag And Seal Your Garments
Check the care label on your clothes to learn how to wash them. Pack your clothes in plastic bags. Make sure there are no holes in the bag. Don’t move the bag too much to avoid irritating the bed bugs.
Note: Before storing clothes in plastic bags, spray with rubbing alcohol. Rubbing alcohol kills bed bugs on contact. You can put the wine in a spray bottle to make it easier. After sprinkling the clothes with alcohol, put them in a plastic bag.
STEP 2: Wash Your Garments
After sorting and storing your clothes, you can start washing them, and it is better if you have a dryer washer. Wash your clothes regularly, and don’t forget to use warm water & soap to kill insects. Choose the proper cycle for clothes and the warmest temperature recommended for your clothes.
STEP 3: Dry Your Garments
Not all dryers are the same, so you should use the best configuration to get the best results. Keep your clothes in the dryer for at least 30 minutes. Some dryers can last more than 30 minutes. Choose as many heat cycles as possible that will not damage your clothes.
To kill adult bed bugs and their eggs, the temperature must be over 120⁰F. Repeat this process to kill the remaining bed bugs. If you do not need to wash your clothes, you can keep the affected clothes in your dryer on high heat for 30 minutes. That’s enough to get rid of bed bugs
STEP 4: Store Your Garments
Fold and store clean clothes in plastic bags. If there are bed bugs that survive, they will affect other clothes. By placing your clothes in plastic bags, you can put your clothes in the washing machine without spreading bed bugs to other areas of your home.
NOTE: Some items cannot be washed in the washing machine, such as leather clothes, silk clothes, stuffed animals, lingerie, and suede shoes. You don’t have to worry because you can still kill bed bugs at extremely low temperatures.
Keep bed bug-infected items in plastic bags in the freezer for 2 to 4 days at the lowest possible setting or 0 ⁰ F. Larger objects will take longer to freeze. Use a vacuum cleaner to catch dead bed bugs. Throw the vacuum bag outside your home.
“Does water kill bed bugs?” It totally depends on the method you use. You can’t kill bed bugs by directly spraying them with water. Bed bug sprays work by releasing residual pesticides on a surface. When the bed bug passes over them, it takes some pesticides and eventually dies. Water will not do that. However, water effectively kills bed bugs if appropriately used or combined with other substances such as salt, vinegar, alcohol and soap. Bed bugs may survive in water, but their life span after being submerged in water is very limited. A water temperature of approximately 140 degrees Fahrenheit or 60 degrees Celsius can kills bed bugs. If you want to kill bed bugs, this is the temperature you want to aim at. In this case, a 30-minute wash cycle can kill bed bugs and their eggs.
Remember that bed bugs are very flexible to water and will survive for a day even if they sink. However, if you apply some of the water treatments we have mentioned, you will see results.
Don’t expect these treatments to fight off a severe infection. In the event of a severe infection, professionals are the best bet for you if you want to make sure every bed bug is dead. We are talking about small to medium infections that can be present without calling professionals.
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