The Truth About Chemical Bed Bug Treatment

Will chemicals / pesticides kill bed bugs?

A Word From The Owner, Marc Cohen:

"The other day a potential customer called and wanted to set up an appointment for a bed bug inspection. She had contracted another company to do a chemical treatment but was still being bit by the bugs. She had heard that heat worked better but wanted to save money, so she went with a chemical treatment.

Later she called to cancel the appointment. Why? She already paid $1800.00 to the other company and simply could not afford to pay for another treatment.

This is a typical story. Customers can't handle the fact that getting rid of bed bugs is expensive , so they try cheaper alternatives. Almost every customer I have serviced in the past 3 years has spent hundreds on home remedies or chemical-only treatments that may have solved some of the problem, but not the whole problem. By the time we have completed our treatment, these customers have paid twice!

As stated before, the problem with chemicals is they only work if applied as a wet spray directly to the bug. Much research has been done on the efficacy of a dried spray and the results are always the same - bed bugs will simply not have enough contact with a dried spray for it to be effective. Unless every bug is contacted with a wet spray, there will be survivors.

This past December I attended The Global Bed Bug Summit held in Denver, Colorado where I attended a lecture given by Dr. Alvaro Romero of New Mexico State University. He presented a paper regarding the residual efficacy of insecticides on bed bugs in long and short exposure assays. He exposed the bed bugs to the 3 best bed bug insecticides on the market and collected data.

Dr. Alvaro Romero of New Mexico State University
What he found was that even if the bed bugs were continually exposed for up to 3 weeks (laying on top of insecticide), less than 80% died and if exposed for only an hour (which is what a bed bug might experience if it crawls to the host and back) less than 40% died! To make matters worse bed bugs were observed to build immunity to some insecticides in just one generation. Many pest control companies are either unwilling or unable to offer heat treatments so they sell you what they got. They will warranty their treatments which means they will come back several times, but when their obligation has been fulfilled, you will still have bugs, which means you will probably be calling me. In light of these revelations, it may just make more sense to bite the bullet and get a heat treatment the first time."


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Pest Control License # 28248-59492

At Once Pest • 5828 Deer Park Rd • Reisterstown MD 21136 • 443-562-9509