Killing Bed Bugs with a Washer and Dryer

If you are trying to treat your belongings that are infested with bed bugs, the dryer is your new best friend.  I always recommend drying the items first to kill the bed bugs, then washing and drying them as normal to get the dead bugs off the clothes.  Here is a bit of research provided by Pest West Environmental on the effectiveness of washing and drying.  Note: always treat your clothing at temps high enough to kill eggs.

May The Heat Be With You!

Treatment Method

Temperature & Duration

Control Level

Washing machine(non-biological detergent)3.2kg - 7lb

Cool – 30oC / 86oF – 30 minute wash

Did not kill egg stages

Hot – 60oC / 140oF – 30 minute wash

Killed all life stages

Tumble Dry3.2kg - 7lb

Cool dry – 30 minutes

Did not kill all stages

Hot dry – 30 minutes – 40/45oC / 104/113oF

Killed all stages

Cold Soak3.2kg - 7lb

Cold water – 30 minutes

Killed adults/nymphs only

Cold soak – 24 hours

Killed adults/nymphs only

Dry cleaning (perchloroethylene)

Killed all life stages

Freezing2.5kg - 5.5lb

2 hours at -17oC / -62.6oF (8 hours to get clothes and items to -17oC / -62.6oF, takes total 10 hours of treatment)

Killed all life stages