Killing Bed Bugs with a Washer and Dryer

Will a Washer & Dryer Kill Bed Bugs?

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, and how different temperatures affected bed bugs in the clothing. 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 – 30°C / 86°F – 30 minute wash

Did not kill egg stages

Hot – 60°C / 140°F – 30 minute wash

Killed all life stages

Tumble Dry 3.2kg - 7lb

Cool dry – 30 minutes

Did not kill all stages

Hot dry – 30 minutes – 40/45°C / 104/113°F

Killed all stages

Cold Soak 3.2kg - 7lb

Cold water – 30 minutes

Killed adults/nymphs only

Cold soak – 24 hours

Killed adults/nymphs only

Dry cleaning (perchloroethylene)

Killed all life stages

Freezing 2.5kg - 5.5lb

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

Killed all life stages

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