When you discover bed bugs in your house, you must act quickly to eliminate them and prevent the infestation from growing. The best way to ensure that the extermination process is conducted according to standards is by contacting a certified exterminator.
Avoid applying insecticides on your own as these products may be dangerous for your health if used incorrectly. Also, they can make the bed bugs more resistant to treatments.
If you are the owner of your house or apartment building and discover that there are bed bugs, you must promptly contact an extermination company. It is recommended that you contact a certified exterminator with a license and certificate from the ministère du Développement durable, de l'Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques (MDDELCC).
If you are a tenant and there are bed bugs in your residence, you must immediately inform the owner of your building so that they can quickly contact an exterminator. If you are a tenant in a low-rent housing (HLM) unit, you must contact the Office municipal d’habitation in your region.
Whether you are the owner or tenant, follow attentively the exterminator’s instructions regarding preparation of the premises for extermination. Also follow recommendations during and after extermination. Each step is essential in order for the extermination to be effective and to protect your health.
Before the exterminator arrives:
Fabrics are items made of woven materials, such as clothing, bed sheets, curtains, etc. Different treatments may be applied to infested fabrics and objects to get rid of bed bugs.
Treatment in the dryer is the best way to guarantee elimination of bed bugs.
Place your infested fabrics and objects directly in the dryer. Turn the dryer on at a very high temperature for at least 30 minutes.
If you do not have a dryer or if the fabrics are dirty and must be washed before drying, treat them in the washer.
Make sure you respect the following conditions to guarantee elimination of bed bugs and their eggs:
If you have a front-loading or high-efficiency washer, check the volume of water it can hold. If your washer’s water volume is not enough to completely cover the fabrics, do not treat them in the washer only. Also, follow these instructions for Treatment in the Dryer or Treatment without Washer or Dryer.
If it is not possible to treat your fabrics and objects in the dryer or washer, apply one or the other of these treatments.
Treat your fabrics and objects with a steam cleaner. Gather all your items to be treated in the infested room. Treat everything at the same time in this room to avoid infesting other areas. The steam temperature must reach 100 °C (212 °F). Take care to move the steam cleaner slowly over the items in order to conduct a deep treatment
Place your fabrics and objects in the freezer at a temperature of at least -18 °C (0.4 °F). Lay out fabrics in the freezer without packing them in. Leave them in the freezer for at least 3 and half days.
Caution: Some domestic freezers are not cold enough. Make sure that the temperature of your freezer is at least -18 °C (0.4 °F) to apply this treatment. This temperature allows items to cool rapidly. Cooling of bed bugs must be quick in order to prevent them from adapting to the temperature and surviving.
After treating your fabrics and objects, take the following measures:
When all the bed bugs have been exterminated, you can return fabrics and objects removed from the treated rooms to their place.
All persons and pets must evacuate the residence during extermination. After extermination, you must wait at least 6 hours before returning home.
This period of time increases to 12 hours for:
This period of time increases to 24 hours for:
Last update: December 8, 2017 12:01 PM
The information on this website by no means replaces the advice of a health professional. If you have questions regarding your health, contact Info-Santé 811 or see a health professional.