How to Treat Used Furniture for Bed Bugs

Creating a Bed Bug Treatment Plan for Used Furniture

If you have a tendency to buy used furniture or come across a free item somewhere that would be perfect for your home, you definitely want to get it checked out for bed bugs. This is often something that people forget to do, and before they know it, they have a full-on, blood sucking infestation on their hands. To help prevent this, we’re going to show you how to treat used furniture for bed bugs so that you and your household can stay safe.

Prepare for the Inspection

If you feel comfortable that the person you’re purchasing a piece of used furniture from won’t be offended, then it never hurts to ask them if they’ve checked for bed bugs themselves. In a situation where you don’t feel comfortable or you’ve picked up a free item somewhere, prepare for the inspection by picking up latex gloves and a magnifying glass. Also, it’s always best to leave the furniture outside your home during the inspection, if possible.

Closely examine the furniture

The next step is obvious. It’s time to actually inspect the furniture. You don’t want to just give it a cursory glance because bed bugs are extremely good at hiding and certainly don’t want to be found. You can use the magnifying glass and latex gloves to search deep inside for any signs of adult bed bugs, eggs, or larvae. Whether you’re dealing with upholstered furniture or something a bit more open to inspection, flip it upside down and check the underside, too.

Removeable Items Should Be Laundered

Even if you don’t find any bed bugs, it’s always safer to wash removable items such as couch cushions, cushion covers, pillows, etc. In fact, you should not use any of your used furniture unless it has already been cleaned before or after you pick it up. Bed bugs can’t survive high temperatures, so wash removable items in high heat to kill them.

Clean the Item with Steam

Lastly, you should steam-clean any piece of furniture that you’ve purchased from someone else. Since steam cleaning uses high heat, this will be a very effective way to kill bed bugs if any are hiding in cracks or crevices. You can do this yourself or hire a professional cleaning crew, which will be extremely thorough.

What Should You Do If Bed Bugs Get Past You?

Treating used furniture is a great way to prevent a bed bug infestation, but there’s always a slight chance that some got past you. If this happens, it could lead to difficulty sleeping, infections, and an overall “gross” factor. Here are a few things you can do if you’ve brought used furniture into your home or simply think that bed bugs might be a problem:

Look for the Warning Signs

There are several obvious warning signs of bed bugs that you should watch for. The most common reason people realize they have these nasty critters in their bed is because they wake up with red, itchy spots on their skin. Other signs include red blood stains, a musty odor that smells like wet towels, and brown spots of feces.

Install Bed Bug Interceptors

If you’re not sure if you have bed bugs or are waiting for professionals to arrive, you can install a few bed bug interceptors around your furniture. These multi-walled plastic cups are placed under each leg of your bed, couch, etc. and will capture bed bugs as they try to scurry up the furniture. The number that you catch each day is a good indicator of how severe the infestation is.

Plan a Heat Treatment

Are you sensing a running theme today? Although past exterminators used chemicals to get rid of bed bugs, and many still do, they’ve realized that heat treatments are much better. This organic pest control method increases the temperature of selected rooms or the entire home to a level where bed bugs cannot survive. This eliminates adult bed bugs, nymphs, and eggs, which chemical treatment may not accomplish.

Contact ProHealth Pest Control to Treat Your Used Furniture

ProHealth Pest Control handles residential and commercial pest control needs, and we can get rid of bed bugs in your home or office too. If you have any questions about treating used furniture for bed bugs or would like to schedule an appointment to get rid of any type of pest, reach out to us at (727) 310-0521 today.