Bed Bug Busters! - ...the other half of the extermination job

Frequently Asked Questions for Bed Bug Busters

Q What are the early signs of bed bug infestations? Are there any indications before
I get bit?
A  If you're not being bitten then the only way to tell is to regularly inspect the sheets, mattresses and box springs for tiny black specks (like pepper) or reddish brown spots.  Also, check regularly behind picture frames hanging near the bed.  NOTE: a significant number of people do not react to the bites, though it does seem that women have stronger reactions than men.

Q  Do bed bugs carry disease?
A  No, never.  There are no physical health hazards from bed bugs, though there are often psychological effects, like extreme stress and lack of sleep.  The main issue you face is the
itching and inflammation from the bed bug bites.

Q How long will it take to prepare my apartment?
A  A free in-home consultation is the only way to give an accurate assessment because it depends on how many belongings you own. However, a typical one-bedroom apartment with a "normal" amount of stuff (i.e.: not too cluttered) should take about two days.
 
Q How do you clean things?
A  There are four basic methods used for prepping:
    
    1. Prepping by vacuuming and placing in sealed plastic bags or wiping with alcohol and placing in sealed plastic bags.
    2. Sealing in plastic bags without prepping, then storing for 8 months; bed bugs cannot live more than eight months without a blood meal. If there are bugs in these belongings, they will die in that time.
    3. Heating to 120° in a unit called a Pack-Tite™ and “cooking” for one hour – this will kill all life stages from eggs to mature adults. This process can take time as it can take up to two hours to heat the unit before then having to "cook" it for one hour.
    4. Clothing and linens are treated in a hot dryer for 30 minutes.  Most clothing can be treated this way if it goes into the dryer dry - things that might shrink if they go in wet will not shrink if they go in dry.

Q  Do you use any harmful chemicals when you clean?
A  We use only vacuuming and ordinary 91% alcohol to prep - no chemicals or pesticides.
 
Q How much will it cost?
A  We work in teams of either three or four people, depending on the amount of work and the requested time frame.
    We charge an hourly rate (call 646-567-9850 for current rates) with an 8-hour minimum.  All supplies (including 2 HEPA-filtered vacuum cleaners) and onsite laundry are included in the fee. You would be responsible for the costs of rug cleaning and any laundry or dry-cleaning sent out.
 
How many treatments does a typical apartment need?
A  A typical, low-level infestation usually requires 2 treatments, with 10 days to 2 weeks between treatments.  The second treatment is to kill any eggs that may have been missed the first time and have since hatched.  Occasionally, a third treatment may be required.
 
Q  What about dogs? What should I do about my pets?
A  Pets are not usually subject to bed bug feeding because the bugs don't like the hair/fur.

Q What if my apartment is really cluttered?
A We will work with you to decide what can be discarded.  Many people see this as a golden opportunity to de-clutter and get a fresh start.

Q Are there any personal items that can’t be prepped and should be replaced?
A  Everything you own can be treated by heat, vacuuming and alcohol - even jewelry.  You do not need to discard anything, unless it's a badly infested mattress/box spring or upholstered chair or sofa.

Q When can I have a canine inspection to verify that the bugs are gone?
A  You must wait at least 30 days after the last treatment before bringing in a canine team.

Q How can I prevent a re-occurrence of bed bugs?
A The best method is to thoroughly clean your apartment and de-clutter your living space.

Q  What if I need an exterminator? Can you recommend one?
A  Bed Bug Busters NY works with many exterminators in the NYC Metro area and would be glad to make a recommendation.

Q Where can I find more information about bed bugs?
A  Go to the Bed Bug Busters NY resource page for news and further information about treatment.

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