Bedbugs are small, pesky, oval, brownish insects that live and thrive from drinking the blood of animals and humans. They can be identified by their flat bodies, which swell to the size of an apple seed after feeding.
While bedbugs cannot fly, they can quickly move from the floor to beds, floors and ceilings. Female bedbugs, about the size of a speck of dust, can lay thousands of eggs over a lifetime. Favorable breeding conditions allow bedbugs to produce three or more generations year. For hotels and infested homes, bedbugs can present a serious threat to health and commerce.
What is Thermal Remediation?
In the war against bedbugs, Thermal Remediation is fast becoming the newest weapon and innovation of choice. Also known as “heat treatments,” the process superheats the air in “kill zones” within a business or home. Air temperatures usually reach between 120 and 135 degrees Fahrenheit. Exposure to this these levels of heat can kill bedbugs, at each stage of their development, within minutes.
Thermal Treatment vs. Traditional Chemical Treatment
Traditional treatment, in the hopes of eradication bedbugs, has fallen short in being able to eliminate the insect in a single treatment. The reason is that bedbugs have different stages of life where the chemical proves ineffective. Multiple treatments must be staged that require property owners to prepare for each treatment. This can be time-consuming and expensive for property owners. Frequent laundering of bedding and clothing items, along with moving furniture must be facilitated.
Heat treatments, on the other hand, require only one treatment as heat can permeate a treatment area and kill bedbugs at every stage of their life, from egg to adult. Property owners may be required to make certain preparations for the thermal treatment, such as items that need to be placed in a property unit, but the heat treatment team can easily handle most of the preparations. Successful treatment requires thermal heat to be evenly distributed.
Using Biology and Behavior to Eradicate Bedbugs
Thermal Remediation is highly effective because it takes into consideration a bedbug’s biology and behavior. Bedbugs target their next meal by heat signatures and carbon dioxide emissions. Thus, human and animal hosts are the perfect source for bedbugs looking to feed. During Thermal Remediation treatments, bedbugs will leave their hiding place to locate the heat source provided by portable heaters. As bedbugs move toward the heat source, bedbugs are left susceptible to the 120-135 heat temperatures that can kill them on the spot.
Bedbugs are a growing problem around the world. People can get them unwittingly at the movies, retail stores, visiting a friend, or simply sitting in a chair. Bedbug infestation carries stigma that can be easily offset by the cost of successful treatment. Traditional methods may cost hundreds, even thousands, of dollars with no sure guarantee that bedbugs have been killed and will not return.