It has long been our Field Representatives’ practice to put his/her clothes, shoes, backpack, etc. into the dryer to kill any suspected bed bug adults, nymphs, or eggs that might have gotten on them. Every bed bug K9 handler I know does this same practice.
I have found it is easier to do this than spending the next month wondering if I introduced a bed bug into my home or office.
To do this you need a have a change of clothes and a new plastic garbage bag to throw the suspected clothes and items into. I store my fresh change of clothes in the new garbage bag and keep it in the garage. Storing it in the house near the door would also work as long as you don’t have to walk through the house to get it.
Hot water typically does not get hot enough to kill bed bugs so don’t wash the clothes first. Also if you wash the clothes the dryer’s heat will be lessened by the wet clothes. Simply put the clothing in the dryer and set it as hot as it goes for an hour. Wash the clothes after the dry cycle if you must.
Note: On two occasions, I am aware of bed bugs that were found inside dry cleaning bags and we have had numerous request to treat dry cleaning establishments. Apparently, dry cleaning chemicals do not kill bed bugs.
1. Have a change of clothes ready
2. Put suspected items in dryer FIRST; on “High” for one hour