Bed Bugs and Electronics – How to Protect and Clean Your Devices

Bed bugs are tiny creatures, and they are possessed of the ability to squirm their way in to almost any space. There are very few areas of your home or office that are immune from bed bugs, and if necessary they will choose any hiding place that they feel will protect them from predators. 

While bed bugs tend to be fairly sedentary creatures, they will scatter into hiding places when the need arises. That’s why it’s often so difficult to effectively combat at a large-scale infestation. Bed bugs may be hiding under floorboards, inside of crown molding joins, and along baseboards. It’s not unusual for bed bugs to infest sofas and beds, tallboys and chests of drawers. In short, these blood-sucking parasites can get darn near everywhere, and that includes your electronic devices. 

Do Bed Bugs Like Electronic Devices

First things first, here’s a bit of good news. Bed bugs are not, by nature, really attracted to electronics. Electronic devices don’t provide any opportunity for them to feed, and the heat that most devices put off in the course of normal use simply isn’t enticing to a wandering bed bug. So, in the grand scheme of things bed bugs are not going to make a beeline for any of your electronic devices.

However, in the case of a full-scale bed bug infestation, nothing is off-limits to a bed bug. Laptops left on sofas, alarm clocks by beds, cell phones recharging on top of bureau all provide ample hiding spaces for bed bugs. Overspill from highly infested areas of your home may lead to bed bugs seeking out convenient hiding places after a feeding, and any device that is in close proximity to a feeding area is fair game.

Protecting Your Electronics from Bed Bugs

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and that certainly applies to protecting your electronic devices from bed bugs. When at all possible keep electronics away from areas of your home or office where bed bugs may feed or breed. This is particularly important if you have started to notice any of the telltale signs of bed bugs that could indicate a larger possible infestation. 

Overspill from areas of infestation will lead to stray bed bugs looking for convenient places to hide. Electronic devices in easy reach of high traffic feeding or nesting area will become appealing to bed bugs, and they may choose these are easy places of concealment until they come out again to feed. If you suspect there may be bed bugs in your home or office try your best to keep your electronic isolated from these hot spots.

Treating and Cleaning Your Electronic Devices

With regard to bed bugs, care must be taken when cleaning and treating your electronics and appliances. Electronics are sensitive to heat, dust, and moisture so the majority of conventional treatment methods are likely to damage your property. Consequently, over the counter insecticides (sprays, powders, etc.) are not going to be fit for our purposes here. Other methods of disposing of bed bugs, namely freezing or over-heating them, are also out of the question for fairly obvious reasons, These types of bed bug treatments will surely damage your devices as much, or more, than the bed bugs. So that leaves us with few alternatives.

Again, the good news is that bed bugs are unlikely to seek out your electronic devices. In most cases, they would be the last resort to be used as a hiding place in an emergency. So, for example, if you are having your home or office treated for an infestation the bed bugs may try to escape by taking refuge in any electronic device they can squirm their way into, and as we know these bugs can squeeze into some pretty tiny spaces.

Direct Treatment

Fortunately, there is an alternative to bug sprays and insecticide powders to treat your appliances and electronics. You can use a bed bug chemical strip (Nuvan Strips) to eliminate the bugs from your devices. It is important to note here that the chemicals used in these bed bug strips can be toxic and harmful to humans and pets. So you must handle these strips with care. Always wear disposable gloves when working with these chemical strips and be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after any contact with the product. For best results read and follow the instructions on the package and contact a doctor immediately if you begin to feel unwell.

If you find that you have any electronic devices that are harboring bed bugs simply take the infested device and place it in an airtight plastic bag along with one of these bed bug chemical strips. Securely seal the bag and leave it untouched for at least a week. At the end of this period remove the device from the bag. Again, make sure you are wearing disposable protective gloves for this procedure. Safely dispose of the plastic bag and the chemical strip and wipe down your device to remove any traces of the active chemicals. Make sure you thoroughly clean your device before handling it normally again.

In Conclusion

If you are facing a full-scale bed bug infestation there is a fair chance some of the insects may take refuge in some of your electronic devices. Once you have called in a professional bed bug removal service you will still have to deal with the possibility that stray bed bugs are hiding in your personal belongings, waiting for a chance to emerge and begin a new cycle of breeding and feeding. 

Before you return any of your belongings to your living areas you need to take steps to clean and treat them so that you don’t inadvertently reintroduce bed bugs into your home or office. As always, your bed bug removal experts will be able to advise you on the best ways to clean and treat your belongings. Follow their instructions closely, and in the case of electronic and Nuvan Strips be sure to heed the manufacturer’s guidelines for safety. With proper care, you can safely treat your appliance for bed bugs without having to dispose of any of your expensive electronic devices.

Published by Scott Palatnik

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