How to use Steamers for Bed Bugs?

Steamer used to get rid of bed bugs

In this guide, we will answer the question: How to use Steamers for Bed Bugs?
Welcome to the steaming tutorial for bed bug control! In this tutorial, we will explore how to use steam to eliminate these insects effectively. Steaming is a powerful and eco-friendly method that utilizes high-temperature steam to kill bed bugs and their eggs.

Join us as we learn the step-by-step process and best practices for using steamers to combat bed bug infestations. Let’s get started on your journey to a bed bug-free environment!


What Temperature Kills Bed Bugs?

Adults, nymphs, and their eggs cannot survive more than a few minutes at 123°F (50°C).
Steam forms from water at 212°F (100°C), so it’s already beyond the limit temperature necessary to kill them instantly.


Does temperature affect the Eggs of Bed Bugs as well?

Yes, temperature does affect the eggs of bed bugs. Like the adult bed bugs, their eggs are also sensitive to temperature fluctuations. However, their eggs are generally more resilient to heat compared to the adult bugs. Effectively killing bed bug eggs requires higher temperatures.

Their eggs typically require sustained exposure to temperatures of around 120-130°F (49-54°C) or higher to ensure their complete eradication. It’s important to note that the eggs are more heat-resistant than the adult bugs, so it may take longer exposure times to ensure their destruction.


How does Steam kill Bed Bugs and their eggs?

Steam kills bed bugs and their eggs by rapidly heating and penetrating their bodies, causing thermal shock and ultimately killing them. Here’s how steam works against bed bugs and their eggs:

  • High temperature: Steamers designed for pest control can produce steam at temperatures between 200°F (93°C) and 230°F (110°C) or higher. This high temperature is lethal to bed bugs at all life stages, including eggs, nymphs, and adults.
  • Heat transfer: When hot steam comes into contact with bed bugs, it rapidly transfers heat to their bodies. They have a narrow thermal tolerance range, and exposure to temperatures above 113°F (45°C) can lead to their death. Steam can quickly elevate the temperature of bed bugs and their eggs to lethal levels.
  • Penetration: Steam has the ability to penetrate into cracks, crevices, and other hiding places where they reside. The high-pressure steam reaches deep into mattress seams, furniture joints, baseboards, and other challenging areas, directly exposing the bed bugs and eggs to the lethal heat.
  • Moisture content: Steam also contributes to the killing process by introducing moisture. The moisture in steam can disrupt the waxy outer layer of these insects, leading to dehydration and ultimately causing their death.
  • Immediate effect: Steam acts quickly, killing them on contact. As the high-temperature steam comes into direct contact with the insects, it causes immediate damage to their delicate bodies, including their nervous system, internal organs, and outer exoskeleton.


How to use Steamers for Bed Bugs?

Here are the steps to follow when using steamers for bed bug:

  • Choose the right steamer: Select a high-quality steamer specifically designed for bed bug control. Look for a steamer that can reach temperatures of at least 200°F (93°C) or higher and produces dry steam rather than wet steam.
  • Prepare the infested area by removing clutter and vacuuming.
  • Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Start steaming: Systematically steam the infested areas, targeting cracks, crevices, seams, and hiding spots. Maintain a steady steam flow as you slowly pass the steamer over these areas. Give extra attention to mattress seams, box springs, bed frames, headboards, baseboards, furniture joints, and carpet edges.
  • Direct steam at specific spots: Direct the steam nozzle at specific spots where they are likely to hide, such as seams, tufts, and folds. Hold the nozzle close to the surface but without making direct contact, as this can blow bugs away instead of killing them.
  • Steam for sufficient time: Maintain the steam flow on each spot for a sufficient amount of time to ensure effective heat transfer. Generally, 15 to 30 seconds of steam exposure should be enough.
  • Move methodically: Work your way from top to bottom, left to right, or vice versa, ensuring thorough coverage and overlapping steam paths to avoid missing any hiding spots.
  • Be cautious with delicate materials: Use caution when applying steam to delicate materials that may be susceptible to damage from heat or moisture.
  • Monitor and repeat treatment if needed: After steaming, monitor the area for any signs of remaining bed bugs or new activity. If necessary, repeat the steam treatment.
  • Clean and maintain the steamer according to instructions.


If you want to steam a couch or a sofa. You can have a look at our Tutorial to steam a couch for bed bugs.


Can Steam be used on all types of surfaces and materials?

Steam can be used on many types of surfaces and materials, but caution should be exercised to prevent damage. Here are some considerations:

  • Hard surfaces: Steam is generally safe for use on hard surfaces such as countertops, floors, walls, and furniture. However, porous materials like unsealed wood or certain types of wallpaper may be more sensitive to moisture and heat, so it’s important to test a small, inconspicuous area before applying steam more broadly.
  • Fabrics and upholstery: Steam can be used on many fabrics and upholstery, including mattresses, bedding, curtains, and furniture. However, it’s crucial to check the fabric care instructions and use caution on delicate or heat-sensitive materials. Some fabrics may shrink, discolor, or get damaged when exposed to high temperatures or moisture. Consider using lower steam settings or using a fabric attachment for more delicate materials.
  • Electronics and electrical outlets: You should never use steam on or near electronics, electrical outlets, or any sources of electricity to avoid the risk of electrical shock or damage.
  • Heat-sensitive items: Certain items, such as wax-based products, musical instruments, artwork, or items with adhesives, may be sensitive to heat or moisture. These should be kept away from steam to prevent damage.


Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions and guidelines for both the steam cleaner and the specific surfaces or materials you intend to treat


Is it necessary to hire a professional or can you Steam by yourself?

Steam treatment for bed bugs can be conducted by homeowners without the need to hire a professional in many cases. However, it’s important to consider the severity of the infestation and your level of expertise in using steamers effectively. While DIY steam treatment can be effective for small-scale infestations or localized areas. Severe or widespread infestations may require the assistance of a professional pest control service.


Can Bed Bugs survive in high humidity environments?

They are known to prefer and thrive in environments with moderate humidity levels. They are adaptable pests that can survive in a wide range of humidity conditions, but their optimal humidity range is between 70% and 80%.



In this guide, we answered the question: How to use Steamers for Bed Bugs?
Congratulations! You have successfully completed the steaming tutorial for bed bug control. You now have the knowledge and skills to use steamers effectively in your battle against these pests. Remember, steam treatment can be a valuable tool in your pest control arsenal, as it harnesses the power of high-temperature steam to eliminate bed bugs and their eggs.

By following the proper techniques and precautions outlined in this tutorial, you can create a safer and more comfortable environment free from these pesky pests. Take action today and say goodbye to bed bugs with the power of steam!

How can you determine the most effective weapon or product to combat these pests and make the right choice for your specific situation? This is why we prepared an exhaustive Bed bugs Steamers Buying Guide, to find the best one on the market.