How to use Boiling Water for Bed Bugs

Boiling water for bed bugs

In this article, we will answer the question: How to use Boiling Water for Bed Bugs?
Bed bugs, those persistent and unwelcome pests, can be a nightmare to deal with. However, there is a simple yet powerful weapon in your arsenal: hot water. Harnessing the power of high temperatures, hot water can be a highly effective method for tackling bed bug infestations.

In this article, we will explore how hot water can be used as a practical and affordable solution to eliminate these pests from your home. From laundering infested items to spot treatments, discover how this readily available resource can help you fight back against these troublesome pests. Say finally Ciao to bed bugs as we dive into the world of hot water treatment.


What Temperature Water kills Bed Bugs?

They are resilient pests, and their tolerance to temperature varies depending on their life stage. However, in general, exposing these insects to temperatures above 113°F (45°C) can effectively kill them. Exposure to this temperature will result in the death of bed bugs and their eggs.


Can Hot Water alone kill Bed Bugs?

Hot water alone may not be sufficient to kill bed bugs. While they are sensitive to high temperatures, they are also adept at finding hiding spots and can survive extreme conditions for short periods.

Exposing bed bugs and their eggs to hot water can be effective if certain conditions are met:

  • Temperature: The water must be heated to a temperature of at least 113°F (45°C) to effectively kill them and their eggs. However, water heaters in most homes do not reach temperatures this high, so it can be challenging to achieve the required temperature solely with hot water from a tap.
  • Duration of Exposure: They require sustained exposure to high temperatures to be eradicated. Simply immersing infested items in boiling water for a brief period may not be sufficient to kill all the bugs and eggs.
  • Penetration: They often hide in cracks, crevices, and fabrics, making it difficult for hot water to reach them. While hot water can kill bed bugs on exposed surfaces, it may not effectively eliminate bugs in hidden or hard-to-reach areas.


Will 60 Degree Wash kill Bed Bugs?

Washing items in hot water at a temperature of 140°F (60°C) or above can potentially kill bed bugs and their eggs. However, it is important to note that the effectiveness of a 60-degree wash may vary depending on several factors:

  • Exposure Time: They require sustained exposure to high temperatures to be effectively eliminated. A standard washing machine cycle usually lasts for a shorter duration, and it may not provide enough time for the heat to penetrate deep into the fabric or effectively kill all the bed bugs and eggs.
  • Fabric Type: Certain fabrics may not tolerate high temperatures or can shrink, become damaged, or lose their integrity when exposed to very hot water. Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions on the care label of the item to ensure you are using the appropriate washing temperature.
  • Hidden Infestations: They are adept at hiding in various places, including seams, folds, and crevices. It’s possible that some bed bugs may escape the washing process if they are not exposed to direct heat or if they are in inaccessible areas within the items being washed.


Will boiling Clothes kill Bed Bugs?

Yes, boiling clothes can potentially kill bed bugs and their eggs. They are sensitive to high temperatures, and exposing them to extreme heat can be an effective method of eradication. Boiling water can reach temperatures above 212°F (100°C), which is well above the threshold required to kill them and their eggs. You should be aware that boiling clothes will potentially damage them.


Will Boiling Water kill Bed Bugs Eggs?

Yes, boiling water can potentially kill bed bug eggs. Their eggs are generally more resistant to heat than adult bugs, but exposure to high temperatures can still be effective in killing them.

When using boiling water to kill bed bug eggs, it is important to ensure the following:

  • Direct Contact: The boiling water should come into direct contact with the bed bug eggs. Immersing infested items or pouring boiling water directly onto the eggs can help ensure that they are exposed to lethal temperatures.
  • Sustained Heat: Their eggs require sustained exposure to high temperatures to be effectively eradicated. Maintaining the eggs in contact with the boiling water for an extended period, such as a few minutes, can increase the chances of killing them.
  • Accessibility: Bed bug eggs are often laid in hidden locations, such as cracks, crevices, and seams. If the eggs are not accessible or submerged in boiling water, they may survive the treatment. It’s essential to target the areas where the eggs are present to maximize effectiveness.


Does Cold Water kill Bed Bugs?

Cold water alone is generally not effective in killing bed bugs. Despite extreme temperature variations, including cold temperatures, they demonstrate remarkable resilience as persistent insects. While exposure to freezing temperatures can be detrimental to bed bugs, it usually requires extremely low temperatures and prolonged exposure to be effective. (source)


Can bed bugs be killed by washing sheets in hot water?

Washing sheets in hot water can help kill bed bugs and their eggs, but it may not be completely effective on its own. Here are some key points to consider:

  • Temperature: To effectively kill them and their eggs, the water temperature should be at least 140°F (60°C) or higher. This high temperature is necessary to kill these insects.
  • Duration: Bed bugs and their eggs require sustained exposure to high temperatures to be eradicated. A standard washing machine cycle may not provide enough time for the heat to penetrate deep into the fabric and effectively kill all the bed bugs and eggs. Using a longer wash cycle or selecting a specific “hot” setting can help improve the effectiveness.
  • Detergent: Using laundry detergent along with hot water can help increase the effectiveness of the washing process. They have a waxy outer coating that protects them, and detergent can help break down this coating, making them more susceptible to heat.
  • Drying: After washing, it is important to thoroughly dry the sheets using a high heat setting in the dryer. The heat from the dryer can further kill any bed bugs or eggs that may have survived the washing process.


While washing sheets in hot water can help reduce the bed bug population. It may not eliminate all bugs or their eggs, especially if the infestation is widespread. We recommend you to combine washing with other control methods such as vacuuming, steam treatments, and targeted insecticide applications.


Can Hot Water and Salt kill Bed Bugs?

Using hot water and salt alone is not a reliable or recommended method to kill bed bugs. While hot water can help eliminate them, salt does not have proven insecticidal properties against them. They have a high tolerance for salt and do not easily get affected by it.


Can Bed Bugs survive in the Washing Machine?

They cannot survive the typical washing machine cycle with hot water and detergent. The high-water temperature, agitation, and use of detergent can effectively kill bed bugs and their eggs during the washing process.


Does Washing alone kill Bed Bugs?

Washing infested items alone may not completely eliminate a bed bug infestation. While washing can help reduce the number of bugs and remove some eggs, it is often not sufficient on its own to eradicate the entire infestation. Here’s why:

  • Hidden Infestations: They will find hiding spots in cracks, crevices, and other hard-to-reach areas. They may lay eggs and harbor in locations that washing alone cannot reach. Consequently, they may survive the washing process and reinfest the area after laundering.
  • Infested Environment: They infest not only bedding and clothing but also other areas of the living space. Such as furniture, baseboards, and cracks in walls. Washing items alone does not address the infestation in these areas. They can easily spread to other surfaces and continue to breed.


Can Bed Bugs survive a Hot Shower?

Bed bugs cannot survive a hot shower. The high temperature of a hot shower can effectively kill bed bugs and their eggs. They are sensitive to heat, and exposure to temperatures above 113°F (45°C) for a sustained period can be lethal to them.

During a hot shower, the water temperature typically ranges from 105°F to 120°F (40°C to 49°C). which is within the temperature range that bed bugs cannot withstand. If any bed bugs are on your body or hair, they would be exposed to the hot water and heat, resulting in their death.

However, it’s important to note that a hot shower alone is not a comprehensive solution for treating a bed bug infestation in your living environment. They will hide in various areas, including bedding, furniture, and cracks and crevices. They can quickly spread and reinfest other areas if not properly addressed.


Is it necessary to wash all of my clothes if I have bed bugs?

If you have detected bed bugs, best is to launder all clothes and bedding that may potentially be infested.
Washing these items in hot water can help kill them and their eggs. And reduce the chances of spreading the infestation or reintroducing the pests into your living space.

If you are interested in a DIY method using steam to get rid of Bed Bugs. You can have a look at our article on Iron Steamers and Bed Bugs.


How to use Boiling Water for Bed Bugs

Using boiling water as a direct treatment for bed bugs can be challenging. Due to the need for sustained and controlled application. However, here are some ways you can utilize boiling water as part of an integrated pest management (IPM) approach for bed bug control:

  • Steaming: Bed bugs and their eggs are sensitive to high temperatures, including steam. Using a steam cleaner that produces steam at temperatures above 140°F (60°C) can be an effective way to kill these insects on surfaces such as mattresses, furniture, baseboards, and cracks/crevices. Ensure that the steam is directed at the bed bug-infested areas, as direct contact is necessary for effective treatment.
  • Hot Water Laundering: Washing infested clothing, bedding, and other washable items in hot water (140°F or above) can help kill bed bugs and their eggs. Ensure an adequate duration of exposure and follow proper washing and drying procedures to maximize effectiveness.
  • Spot Treatment: For localized infestations, you can use boiling water to target specific areas where they are visible or suspected. Carefully pour boiling water into cracks, crevices, or other hard-to-reach spots where they may be hiding. Be cautious when using boiling water to avoid injury or damage to sensitive materials.


It is important to note that using boiling water alone may pose safety risks and could cause damage to surfaces or items.



In this article, we answered the question: How to use Boiling Water for Bed Bugs?
Hot water has proven to be a valuable ally in the battle against these insects. Its ability to reach high temperatures and penetrate fabrics and crevices makes it an effective tool for killing them and their eggs.

Whether it’s washing bedding and clothing or using spot treatments. Boiling water provides a practical and accessible solution for homeowners dealing with bed bug infestations. While it may not be a standalone solution, combining hot water treatment with other integrated pest management techniques can significantly increase the chances of eradicating these pests from your home. So, embrace the power of hot water and reclaim your peace of mind from those pesky bed bugs.

Steaming is a very effective and cost effective solution to get rid of bed bugs. To discover the best bed bug steamers and heat chambers available online, you can check our Bed Bug Steamers Buying Guide