What To Do If Your Clothes Have Been Infested With Bedbugs

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I all grew up hearing the saying, “Goodnight, don’t let the bedbugs bite.” But, as adults, how can we ensure that we don’t let bedbugs bite us?

Learning how to wash clothing that has been exposed to bed bugs is one method. I’ll show you all you need to know about killing bedbugs on laundry in this tutorial.

What To Do If Your Clothes Have Been Infested With Bedbugs

  • Using rubbing alcohol, spray your clothes: If your clothing is colorfast, rubbing alcohol can be sprayed on them.
  • Sort the clothing as follows: Sort your clothes into garbage bags the same way you would normally.
  • Clean your clothes: Using normal detergent, wash according to the clothes label’s recommendations.
  • To dry the clothing, follow these steps: If at all possible, dry them with heat.

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What Are Bed Bugs?

Bedbugs are tiny insects that feed on the blood of humans and animals. They ly strike when we’re asleep, which is a little frightening. They don’t transfer illness or cause any other health problems, thankfully. They’re simply revolting.

A bedbug is a tiny brownish bug approximately the size of an apple seed that crawls about your bed. It’s time to bid them farewell!

Bedbugs are truly on the move. To get from one place to another, they utilize luggage, handbags, and backpacks. They can also be found in infected regions and on old furniture. They may move from your neighbor’s house into yours if you reside in an apartment.

What Are the Most Common Places Bedbugs Hide?

Bedbugs are very tiny, allowing them to fit into even the tiniest of hiding places. Between your baggage, clothing, linens, sofas, and, of course, your bed, you’ll catch them. They also tend to reside in groups; if one bedbug is found, there are likely to be many more.

They’ve figured out that hiding in your bed gives them easy access to food at night, as disturbing as that may seem.

If you leave filthy clothing in the hamper for an extended period of time before washing it, it creates a bedbug haven. They go from one location to another by wearing filthy clothing.

If you’ve just visited a hotel (where bedbugs are still a major problem), bedbugs may have latched onto your dirty clothing and made their way into your house.

Can Washing Machine Kill Bedbugs

If done correctly, washing your garments can kill bedbugs.

It’s natural to feel alarmed when bedbugs are discovered in your house. Thankfully, there are alternatives to throwing away your entire outfit.

Do Bedbugs Survive In Water

It is debatable. I know, it’s probably not the response you were hoping for, but bear with us.

In most cases, bedbugs would drown if exposed to water, therefore the simple answer is no, they cannot survive in water. However, if they rise above the water level in a washing machine, they still have some access to air. They have little chance of survival in the situation.

If you’re going to kill a bedbug in water, make sure it’s thoroughly submerged. In addition, the water should be as hot as possible, with a temperature of at least 122 degrees Fahrenheit.

What Is the Lifespan of Bedbugs on Clothing?

Surprisingly, bedbugs have a lifetime ranging from six months to a year.

Bedbugs, on the other hand, aren’t going to acquire any food if they’re living on your filthy clothing. Even if a bedbug isn’t feeding, it may live for two to three months without food. This varies widely based on where they live and the climate.

Finally, it’s critical to understand how to wash bedbug-infested clothing so that you can put a stop to this lengthy cycle.

What You’ll Need to Get Started:


  • Laundry detergent rubbing alcohol
  • Trash bags (optional)
  • Dryer and washing machine
How to Handle Bedbug-Infested Clothes (Step-by-Step)

How to Handle Bedbug-Infested Clothes (Step-by-Step)

Now that you’ve got your bedbug-fighting gear, it’s time to guide you through the crucial stages of washing your garments. Begone, bedbugs!

Rubbing Alcohol

You’ll need to check which apparel is colorfast for this stage. If the garment label specifies that it should be washed separately or with comparable colors, it is not colorfast and this step should be skipped.

As soon as you’ve discovered a bedbug infestation, spray colorfast garments with rubbing alcohol.

This won’t get rid of the eggs or the infestation, but it will kill the bedbugs that are alive.

It is combustible to use rubbing alcohol. As a result, do this away from smoking areas or rooms where an open flame may be present (from candles, fireplaces, etc.). If you’re feeling apprehensive, you can skip this step.


Sorting your clothing according to the washing directions on the labels is critical.

Colors should be kept together, and objects that can withstand a hot wash should be kept together. This prevents your garments from being ruined during a washing cycle.

While you wait for your turn in the washing machine, keep the clothing in garbage bags. This keeps bedbugs from spreading to other areas of your home.

To prevent bedbugs from spreading throughout your home, sort your clothing in the infected area or near your baggage.

Wash Clothes

Fill the washing machine with the bags one by one, one cycle at a time. After you’ve emptied a bag, place it in a new trash bag and throw it away.

Use your detergent and wash the garments at the highest temperature they can handle. Select the appropriate wash cycle for the items you’re washing.

Empty the laundry bag carefully into the washer. If you toss them in, bedbugs may go airborne or fall to the floor, where they may find a new host.

Dry Clothes

You should dry the items for at least 30 minutes at the highest temperature the fabric can handle. If your dryer can reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit, bedbugs and their eggs will be killed.

You don’t want to clean your garments, but you do want to get rid of the bedbugs. You can then go to the next step without first running them through a washing machine.

What Happens If You Can’t Dry Your Clothes in a Regular Dryer?

Put your dry-clean-only garments in a garbage bag and take them to the dry cleaners. Make certain you tell them about the infection so that they can determine whether or not to accept them. Some dry cleaners may not want to risk infecting other clients by spreading the infection.

Maybe you have a piece of clothes that can’t be tumble-dried at all. Don’t be concerned! You may take the clothes to a commercial laundry and heat them in a dryer with a shelf. To guarantee that the bedbugs are destroyed, expose them to heat for at least 90 minutes.

On a really hot day, you may leave the things on your dashboard if you have a car. Carry on like this for at least a day.

Washing Instructions for Bedbug-Infested Clothes and Bedding

Washing Instructions for Bedbug-Infested Clothes and Bedding

Do you want to go above and above to make sure your bedbugs are truly gone? Or perhaps you don’t have access to some of these materials or tools? Here are a few more pointers.

Take additional measures in common spaces, especially if you’re in a shared laundry room. Check for bedbugs in the folding areas a washing machines. When it comes to these vile animals, you can never be too cautious!

Invest in a steamer for your clothes: To operate the steamer, follow the manufacturer’s instructions. To kill bedbugs, the fabric steamer should be heated to between 160 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit. To get rid of the infestation, steam each and every inch of the garment.

Vacuum: Investing in a HEPA vacuum is a wise decision. It will pick up the leftovers of the dead bugs if you use them after washing or steaming your infected garments. Of course, make sure to empty the vacuum bag and toss it in a trash can outside.

Freeze your clothes: I know we’ve been talking about the heat a lot, but freezing your garments also works. For items that can’t be cleaned at a high temperature, such silk, suede, shoes, or stuffed animals, use this method. Simply place the ingredients in a freezer-safe plastic bag. Preheat the oven to -4 degrees Fahrenheit. The bedbugs will be killed by this method, but you must freeze them for at least two days. Larger things may require more time.

Frequently Asked Questions

You could still have some unanswered bedbug questions. I’ll answer the final essential questions since it’s vital to cover all bases.

Washing Clothes That Have Been Exposed To Bed Bugs Bottom Line

You’ll never have to worry about bedbug infestations again now that you know how to wash garments exposed to bedbugs. You don’t want to wake up in the middle of a nightmare the next time you’re in bed. You can get rid of your bedbugs for good if you follow these simple steps.

Need More On Bedding?

Washing Instructions for Bedbug-Infested Clothes and Bedding

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