Bed Bugs In Your Car? Here’s How To Remove Them

lIf you’re unlucky enough to encounter these little pests in your vehicle, learning how to identify and remove bed bugs from your car isn’t an option; it’s a must-do.

How to Identify Bed Bugs in Your Car

Bed bugs love to travel, and boy are they good at it. Shoes, clothing, luggage, pets, furniture… you name it and they’ll attach themselves to it and tag along with you wherever you go. Cars are no safe-zone, in fact, they are one of the most common places to find bed bugs.

If you’re suspicious about bed bugs possibly being in your car, there are several easy ways to confirm whether or not the bugs are present in your vehicle. First, check the floorboards, cracks, and crevices in or around the dashboard, console, air vents, and anywhere else tiny insects can fit. Bed bug eggs, eggshells, and skin casings are yellowish. Crushed bed bugs are rusty red-colored stains. 

Keep in mind while searching for bed bugs, or the signs of their presence, that they are so small they can hide practically anywhere. They can even fit under tabs and screw-heads in your car’s molding. Truthfully, they could even be hiding in your seatbelt buckle or seat and steering wheel covers.

If you don’t see any of these signs you may be in the clear. However, you could still be dealing with some other pests such as fleas if you’re receiving bites or irritated red patches on your skin during or after being in your car.

7 Easy Options for Removing Bed Bugs From Your Car

Removing bed bugs from isn’t the hardest thing to do. However, you will need to apply some serious effort and make sure that you get them all. It takes no time for just a few missed bed bugs to turn back into a full-blown infestation in your car.

We scoured the internet for all of the best ways to remove bed bugs from vehicles, researching answers on popular forums, reading pest control services’ FAQ pages, and viewing videos on the subject. 

Here are the best methods we found for removing bed bugs from your car:

1. Heat

One of the best ways to kill bed bugs is by exposing them to certain levels of heat for prolonged periods. Approximately 120 degrees Fahrenheit for 4 hours does the trick. That said, it’s recommended to use a slightly higher temperature if possible. 140 degrees takes 2 hours, while 130 degrees require 3 hours to get the job done. 

2. Vacuum

If you’re lucky, and you notice signs of bed bugs early, vacuuming might actually take care of your issue. You’ll have to get on your hands and knees, and really get in there with the hose and make sure to vacuum every square inch of the interior of your car. 

This option is often used hand-in-hand with other options as well. For example, after heating your car to 130 degrees Fahrenheit for 3 hours, and good vacuuming will finish the job.

3. Chemicals and/or Pesticides

Various chemicals and pesticides are preferred by many when it comes to killing bed bugs. It is an effective method, albeit not the most environmentally friendly. With so many new products being introduced to the market constantly, make sure to do proper research before purchasing any one particular chemical or pesticide for killing bed bugs. The last thing you want to do is damage the interior of your vehicle in the process of removing bed bugs from your car.

4. Steam Cleaning

Another of the most commonly used tactics for removing bed bugs is steam cleaning. This option combines heat and vacuuming. That said, it is a pretty successful way to remove bed bugs from your car if the infestation hasn’t spread too wide and deep.

5. Diatomaceous Earth

This off-white powder-like mineral consists of the tiny fossilized remains of aquatic organisms. Diatomaceous Earth is safe to use in your car or house and is known for being extremely effective in removing bed bugs and a wide variety of other insects. all-in-all,  it’s an excellent choice for attempting to remove bed bugs from your car.

6. Tea tree oil

Believe it or not, tea tree oil is another great way to kill bed bugs. Whether or not it is the method for you, only you can decide as it can be harmful to humans. Mix 15 to 20 oz of water to 15 to 20 drops of straight tea tree oil in a spray bottle and soak the infested areas. Like wintergreen alcohol, tea tree oil typically kills bedbugs and their eggs upon the first treatment.

7. Fumigator

Many people are unaware that fumigation, which is often used in homes, is available for vehicles as well. That’s right, professionals are equipped to perform fumigation techniques that will easily remove bed bugs from your car. One of the perks of choosing this option for treating bed bugs in your car is that you can also place your other belongings into the car to be cleaned of bed bugs as well.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully with one or more of the above-listed methods for removing bed bugs from your car, you’ll be back to cruising around in a bug-free vehicle in no time. Each method listed-above is well-proven and practiced by thousands of people around the world. A combination of two or more of these methods works even better.

Do you know of other ways to identify and remove bed bugs from vehicles that weren’t on our list? If so, please feel free to share it with our audience in the comments section below!

Jordan Quinn Farkas
Jordan Quinn Farkas
Jordan is a full-time writer from his home in Southeast Europe. An avid outdoors-man and backpacker, he has gathered a plethora of tips and tricks for dealing with all sorts of pests.

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