How to Kill Bedbugs With Dry Ice

Bedbugs hide where people sleep.
Bedbugs hide where people sleep. (Image: bed image by Kirsten Alexander from Fotolia.com)

Bedbugs are a growing problem in many areas of the U.S., largely because most of the chemicals that were previously used to control them are now banned or restricted. Bedbugs hide in cracks and crevices in homes during the day and emerge at night to feed on human blood with their sucking mouth parts. Their bites leave itchy red bumps, similar to those caused by fleas or mosquitoes. While large infestations often require the help of a professional pest control company, you can control small numbers of bedbugs or determine whether you have them by building a trap using dry ice.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic pet food bowl with sloped sides
  • Fabric
  • Double-sided tape
  • Baby powder
  • 2 to 3 lbs. of dry ice
  • Insulated jug

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Wrap the outside of a no-tip plastic pet bowl with a piece of fabric and double-sided tape. The type of fabric does not matter; its purpose is to make the bowl easier for the bedbugs to climb into.

Turn the bowl over and sprinkle baby powder into the moat between the bottom of the bowl and the sides. Rub the baby powder up the insides of the bowl with your finger.

Place the upside-down bowl on the floor in an area where you suspect there are bedbugs.

Place 2 to 3 lbs. of dry ice inside an insulated jug or container. Place the container on top of the overturned pet bowl.

Leave the room and turn off the lights. The CO2 given off as the dry ice evaporates attracts bedbugs. The bedbugs climb the fabric and fall into the moat area, where the baby powder prevents them from climbing out.

Tips & Warnings

  • Bedbug bites are annoying, but they don't transmit diseases.
  • Always handle dry ice with gloves. It can freeze skin on contact.

References

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