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INTRO TO BED BUGS
With so much information available on the internet, we hope to not repeat it but provide you with valuable information and resources that will allow you to determine IF you really DO have them, what to do next if you DO, and where you can get trusted information for additional research if you choose to know more. We'll also provide you with information on how we at Gary's can take control of the situation for you and thoroughly treat your house so that you can return to having both peace of mind AND a good night's sleep!
This short clip from National Geographic will provide a good starting point.
Bed bugs have increasingly become the media attention-getters, and for good reason. We receive calls on a weekly basis for either folks that think they might have bed bugs or they know they have them and they're not sure what to do next. Whereas the internet is full of hundreds of web sites dedicated to bed bug information and unfortunately misinformation, we hope to put you at ease on what to expect from our treatment.
FIRST THINGS FIRST...THE INVESTIGATION
First, DON'T TOUCH, MOVE, THROW OUT OR DISASSEMBLE ANYTHING! When we first visit your home, we will want you to see your home as you normally live. Don't clean anything until we get there. Your bedrooms are a "crime scene" and there are key pieces of evidence indicating the presence and severity of bed bugs that we'll be looking for. We're also going to need to see how the bugs may be traveling throughout the room and gaining access to your bed, nightstand, and other furniture.
Secondly, we'll need to know what you've done in regards to the bugs up until our visit. Have you sprayed anything?Have you moved anything? Have you laundered anything? How long have you experienced the bites? How many rooms are supposedly affected? Do you have an idea of how you may have contacted the bed bugs? Have you had any visitors into your home? Have you traveled? Get the idea? Yeah...there's a lot of questioning and you are the eye witnesses and the most critical part of the investigation so it's vital that we get to interview all those affected before we can begin a treatment and prevention process.
Once we have established answers to our questions and determined where the bed bugs are hiding throughout the room(s), we will discuss with you the plan of treatment. We usually enlist the help of our customers and for this, you'll need to have a supply of several large trash bags on hand.
The best way to begin treatment is to carefully inspect and then remove items that will need to be laundered because they may contain bed bugs or their eggs. These items, such as clothing, bedding, curtains, etc., will need to be carefully placed into large trash bags and then tied up and transported into the laundry room to be washed in hot, soapy water and allowed to soak for about 45 minutes to ensure that the bugs have been destroyed. Other items such as stuffed animals, toys, etc., can also be removed and bagged for transporting to a dryer, either your own or a commercial dryer, and then run through a heat cycle for about an hour. The bugs will die once the temperature reaches 140 degrees for at least 20 minutes but when individuals are performing this, we want to make sure that there are no mistakes and therefore no survivors.
Once the room is cleared of these items, our team of techs will begin disassembling furniture such as beds, drawers from chests, mirrors from dressers, etc., so that these surfaces, cracks and crevices, can be properly treated in order to kill the bed bugs and their eggs. Wall covering will need to be inspected and treated, such as pictures, posters, even paneling, wall switch covers, electrical outlets, etc. We'll also have to inspect any electronics for bed bug harborage too. If they are infested, we'll have to use fumigants to destroy the bed bugs and depending on the size of the equipment, we may have to resort to additional possible options for doing so.
Finally, the bedding will be treated such as mattress and box springs. We'll also discuss mattress encasements with you to ensure that any bed bugs or their eggs that may have survived the treatment process, within both the bedroom and the bedding, will not be able to exit the bed and feed upon the sleeping persons because the encasement will seal them in and/or seal them out so that the bedding can't be infested ever again in the future.
A: No. This is seldom necessary. Throwing out furniture before we assess the severity skews the bed bug evidence within the room or house. We can't tell the extremity of the infestation, nor help establish a timeline without the mattress and box springs. Also, in cases where people did this, the remaining bed bugs within the room were forced to relocate to other areas of the house they wouldn't have gone had they still had the bed in place. This always spreads the problem causing elimination to take longer and only increases costs. Plus, dragging your infested furniture through the house causes bed bugs to fall off onto other areas of the house. Not cool! Not smart!
If you buy new furniture before the problem is eliminated, the bed bugs will only find and infest the new furniture anyway.
Remember, the bed bugs are after you, not your furniture!
A: Right away, actually. We'll protect you from additional bites but we need you to continue sleeping in place until the problem passes. If you try sleeping elsewhere, they'll simply follow you and infest THAT area of the house. Remember, they are after YOU, not any of your furniture.
Call us before you decide anything for a free consultation.