Bed bugs hitchhike from place to place on clothing, luggage, backpacks, and second-hand furniture and appliances, among other items. That means they can happen to you, even if your house is spotless. Bed bugs are about the size of an apple seed. These pests are oval, brown, and have flat bodies. When they have had a blood meal, they are reddish and rounded. They are nocturnal and hide during the day in cracks in headboards and frames, the seams of mattresses and box springs, and in other areas. As the infestation gets worse, they spread out from sleeping areas to other parts of the house.

Bed Bug Hotspots

Hotels and motels are where most people get bed bugs on them or on their things. That means when you come home from these places, you might bring home bed bugs too. But there are things you can do to avoid bed bugs when traveling.   

  • When you get to your room, put your luggage in the bathtub or shower. Bed bugs won’t bother them there. 
  • Pull the linens off of the bed you will be using.
  • Look around the upper seams in the mattress carefully. Do you see anything moving as the light hits the mattress? Do you see black flecks around the seam? What about red smears on the mattress?
  • Check the box springs in a similar manner.
  • Check the bed frame for signs of bed bugs.
  • Check the webbing on the luggage rack and the frame.
  • If you do not find any bed bugs after a thorough inspection, you can safely put your linens on the bed again.
  • It is safe to get your luggage out of the bathroom and put it on the luggage rack or bed.
  • If you find bed bugs, leave the room with your luggage and ask for another room.

Even if you checked your room, when you return home, it is a good idea to immediately wash your clothes in hot water for at least 30 minutes, then dry them on the hottest dryer setting for 30 minutes. This kills any stray bed bugs. You should also check your luggage closely, especially near the seams.

Secondhand Bed Bugs

If you buy used furniture or appliances, you are at risk for bed bugs. Secondhand items come from all over and are not generally washed or checked for bed bugs. If you buy secondhand goods (if possible) take them apart. In the case of sofas, beds, chairs, or other soft furnishings, inspect them carefully, paying particular attention to the cushions and frames to see if you see bed bugs or bed bug signs on them. Vacuum the furniture completely, then reassemble. If you have the means, treat them with extreme heat or extreme cold to kill the stragglers. With appliances, look on the bottom, the sides, and the top, and inside the appliance. Vacuum them thoroughly and treat them with heat or cold.

It isn’t just furniture or appliances that may have bed bugs. You should wash clothes, backpacks, pillows, and anything else you can in really hot water for at least 30 minutes. If something can’t be washed, put it in the dryer and set it on hot for 30 minutes.

If Your Orange County, CA Home Gets Infested

If your home gets infested, then you need help dealing with bed bugs. Bed bugs are notoriously hard to eliminate, even for professionals. HomeShield Pest Control can get rid of the bed bugs in your Orange County, CA home.  We use eco-friendly products by EcoSMART that are child-, pet-, and family-friendly. They are also proven to work. We guarantee our work. Contact HomeShield Pest Control today to get rid of your bed bugs.