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MM Novato News

Are bed bugs catching the train, or is the train catching the bed bugs? Today’s philosophical question is brought to you by a flurry of reports of bed bug sightings in several New York City subway trains over the last week. While tourists might be shying away from the summer heat, bed bugs think the […]

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Bed Bugs Riding the Rail in New York City

Bed Bugs on NYC Subway
Are bed bugs catching the train, or is the train catching the bed bugs? Today’s philosophical question is brought to you by a flurry of reports of bed bug sightings in several New York City subway trains over the last week. While tourists might be shying away from the summer heat, bed bugs think the August weather is a great time to hit the scenes in the Big Apple, and there’s no more convenient way to travel the town than the underground rails.

At least five subway cars have been taken out of service to be inspected and treated after bed bug activity was reported on them, usually by riders. So far, the outbreak seems to be limited to the “N” and “5″ lines; however, this is only based on reports that are accessible to the press. The cars in question were inspected by bed bug-sniffing dogs, then fumigated.

Perhaps more troubling was the discovery of bed bugs in the lockers of two “N” train workers. This is clear evidence that bed bugs are thriving in the subway system, and are easily able to travel out of the train and into someone’s personal belongings. The news has prompted the Transport Workers Union Local 100, the union representing the “N” train workers in question, to call for fumigation of the entire “N” line.

“This is a very annoying and possibly costly infestation if it gets back to fellow employees’ homes, cars, and possessions,” says Kevin Harrington, a vice president with the union. “Some of our fellow employees are experiencing great trepidation concerning possible infestation.”

In response to the locker room findings, crew rooms for the “N” and “Q” line workers were cleared out for fumigation later in the week. The crew rooms were in Coney Island, Brooklyn, and Astoria, and are used by motormen, conductors, signal maintainers, and other workers.

Joseph Costales of the TWU Local 100 isn’t convinced that treating those cars and lockers is enough. He told Daily News that the MTA should also fumigate the homes of all workers on the affected lines. “Otherwise, you’re not resolving the issue,” Costales explained. “You’re just doing the quick fix. It will be like a ping-pong match with workers bringing the bugs home and then back to work.”

Adam Lisberg, a spokesperson for the MTA, feels differently about the severity of the case. “With 6,300 subway cars, this is a minor incident,” Lisberg said. “The subway system has 5.5 million riders every single day, and we can’t check all of them for bedbugs before letting them on the train. That said, when we get reports of bedbug sightings, we investigate — and exterminate. This is an interesting story, but not a big problem.”

If you’re a New Yorker and/or are feeling a little itchy right now, fear not — there are a couple of easy ways to keep these hitchhikers from following you home. For starters, give the subway seat a quick glance before sitting down on it; if you spot signs of bed bugs, like thin black fecal marks or small red blood spots (or even living or dead bugs), it’s best to remain standing. This is by no means a guarantee, but visible signs make it much more likely that bed bugs are hiding nearby.

The most effective prevention method available to commuters is a small bed bug heater, like the ThermalStrike Ranger. This device costs less than two months of rail commuting, and can safely heat your briefcase and other personal belongings to lethal temperatures, killing any bed bugs and eggs hiding inside in a matter of hours. Use it to treat your briefcase, suitcase, clothes, shoes, books, and work papers as soon as you get home from work.

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MM Novato Reviews

A common and effective way to treat clothes and bedding for any possible hiding bed bugs or eggs. On high heat settings, a single laundry cycle can effectively kill bed bugs due to their susceptibility to heat. Unfortunately, not everything in life belongs in a washing machine – your shoes, books, DVDs, and dry-clean only […]

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ZappBug Oven 2 Bed Bug Heater Review

A common and effective way to treat clothes and bedding for any possible hiding bed bugs or eggs. On high heat settings, a single laundry cycle can effectively kill bed bugs due to their susceptibility to heat. Unfortunately, not everything in life belongs in a washing machine – your shoes, books, DVDs, and dry-clean only clothing might not survive even the gentle cycle. To safely treat these items for bed bugs, you’ll need a portable bed bug heater. That’s where the new and improved ZappBug Oven 2 comes in.

ZappBug Oven 2 assembled

This isn’t the first ZappBug we’ve reviewed here at Bed Bug Supply: we’ve looked over the gigantic ZappBug Room, as well as the compact and budget-friendly ZappBug Heater. The ZappBug Oven lies somewhere in the middle – it has about twice as much usable space as the ZappBug Heater without costing twice as much. Like all ZappBug heaters, the Oven features insulated walls, automatic shut-off timers, and a wireless thermometer.

As you might have guessed, the ZappBug Oven 2 is the replacement for the ZappBug Oven. The new and improved Oven 2 now features dual heating units, one on each side of the tent. Now with two heaters, this unique design more evenly heats the items inside while eliminating the risk of any cold spots.

Unboxing and First Look

Unboxing the ZappBug Oven 2

Unboxing the unassuming brown box that the ZappBug comes reveals the necessities to a successful bed bug heat treatment: the two heater units, temperature gauge and wireless probes, auto shut-off timers, foam support blocks and support net, an extension cord, and an instruction manual. The upgrade from the smaller ZappBug Heater means that instead of a carrying bag, you’ll get twice as many foam support blocks as well as a heavy-duty extension cord.

The extension cord isn’t just for convenience: due to the amount of power that each heater unit draws, it’s important that you plug each heater into separate circuits. Most buildings have a different circuit in each room, so use the extension cord to reach another room, like a bathroom or kitchen.

ZappBug Oven 2 heater unit

As always, the construction and design of this ZappBug is superb. The double-layered, insulated walls are just as impressive as ever, and the fold-out design makes assembly ridiculously easy. The heater units have the same Scandinavian design qualities to them, and feel like they can hold up to years of use.

Using the Oven 2

Setting up the Oven 2 for treatment is easy, and should only take a couple of minutes. The tent unfolds in seconds in your hands, and doesn’t need a separate frame. Once unfolded, the tent reveals its two elastic ventilation tubes, which is where the heater units are to be installed.

Inside the ZappBug Oven 2

If you plan to treat heavy, rigid items, like furniture or luggage, put the foam support blocks on the bottom of the tent before putting those items in. For loose items like books and clothes, use the support blocks followed by the support net, which hooks into place at six points.

Once assembled, the Oven 2 is ready to be filled with whatever you suspect may have bed bugs. The generous space of the Oven 2 is suitable for a full-sized suitcase (or two), a closet full of clothes, or even some furniture like chairs or night stands. Just make sure that you don’t pack anything in too close to the walls, as airflow is needed to ensure everything heats up thoroughly.

Electronics included with the ZappBug Oven 2

Once everything we want to treat is packed in, it’s time to zip the Oven shut and plug the heaters in. The included timers shut off automatically when the timed treatment is done; simply plug the heaters into their timers, and the timers into the wall. Since it’s difficult to say exactly how long it will take to heat everything inside the Oven to at least 120° F, we advise setting the timers to their maximum setting to be on the safe side.

Without the noisy ventilation fan that the larger Room uses, the Oven 2 operates quietly and politely. In our testing, everything hit 120 ° after a little over three hours, but that was on a fairly light load. In the case of a bed bug infestation, we would run the heaters for an additional hour just to be safe.

Wrapping Up

ZappBug Oven 2 bed bug heater

There’s really nothing to compare to the Oven 2. It’s larger than every other heater on the market except for the enormous ZappBug Room (which is really in its own class), yet its low price per cubic foot also makes it a great deal. This makes the Oven 2 a sure bet for any homeowners or pest control professionals looking to treat large items (or a bunch of little items) safely and easily. There’s a reason that the ZappBug Oven 2 is such a hot seller; it’s a no-brainer.

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MM Novato News

Whether or not you do bed bug inspections for a living, you can imagine how tough it can be to confirm whether or not bed bugs are in a room. Even if someone is reporting bites, that’s no guarantee – the bites could be from a different location, or they could be from something other […]

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NightWatch Active Monitor Now Featuring Kairomone Lures

NightWatch Bed Bug Monitor

Whether or not you do bed bug inspections for a living, you can imagine how tough it can be to confirm whether or not bed bugs are in a room. Even if someone is reporting bites, that’s no guarantee – the bites could be from a different location, or they could be from something other than a bed bug. Inspections take time, money, and special equipment, and still won’t be 100% accurate. Fortunately, the NightWatch active monitor makes inspections easy, and now features a powerful kairomone lure to make it even more effective.

NightWatch is a bed bug monitoring device that has been on the market for years now. It has always been extremely effective at determining whether or not bed bugs are active in a room, especially in a room that isn’t occupied by a sleeping person. Previously, the NightWatch used a combination of carbon dioxide and heat to mimic a sleeping host. By radiating heat and emitting a steady release of CO2, the NightWatch is able to draw bed bugs out and capture them in its pitfalls.

NightWatch Active Monitor with Kairomone Lure

To make the NightWatch even more effective (not that it needs it), BioSensory has added a kairomone chemical lure. This lure works in conjunction with the heat and carbon dioxide, mimicking the human scents that bed bugs have evolved to be sensitive to. BioSensory previously had a kairomone lure for the NightWatch, but regulatory setbacks have kept it off of the market for about a year now. Now, this unique host odor attractant is back on the market in full force, ready to enhance bed bug monitoring efforts everywhere.

One of the most common uses for the NightWatch is treating unoccupied rooms for bed bugs. Without a sleeping host, there is nothing to encourage bed bugs to leave their hiding places, so it’s not likely that they will come in contact with the insecticide sprays and powders that have been applied. The NightWatch mimics a sleeping person, drawing bed bugs out and causing them to cross the defenses that have been laid down. Therefore, without an active monitor like the NightWatch, bed bug treatments in unoccupied rooms may not be effective.

The NightWatch monitor has always been a favorite here at the Bed Bug Supply office. It’s extremely well constructed and easy to set up, and has been proven effective over the years. The reintroduction of the kairomone lure will be very popular with pest control operators and property managers that have come to depend on the NightWatch as part of their inspection routines. Instead of spending laborious hours searching all over a room for traces of bed bug activity, you can set up a NightWatch in five minutes and let it work for up to 7 nights before needing to refill the bottle or replace the lure cartridge. If you already own a NightWatch monitor, the kairomone lures can be used with your existing unit – you may purchase them in 4-packs here.

NightWatch Bed Bug Trap and Monitor (Includes FREE Kairomone Lures 4-Pack)

The NightWatch Is The Most Advanced Active Bed Bug Monitor On The Market Utilizing a Kairomone Lure, CO2 And Heat To Effectively Monitor And Trap Bed Bugs.
Our Price:$399.95
$349.95
NightWatch Bed Bug Trap and Monitor (Includes FREE Kairomone Lures 4-Pack)
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MM Novato FAQ

A common question we hear is whether or not bed bugs can be harmful to a person’s health. Some health concerns go as far as fear of one’s life. But can a bed bug infestation really result in death? Let’s explore the facts and the possibilities: First off, while bed bug bites are a nuisance, and […]

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FAQ: Can Bed Bugs Kill You?

Bed Bug KillerA common question we hear is whether or not bed bugs can be harmful to a person’s health. Some health concerns go as far as fear of one’s life. But can a bed bug infestation really result in death? Let’s explore the facts and the possibilities:

First off, while bed bug bites are a nuisance, and they often result in itching and burning, they are not known to transmit disease or pose any serious health risks. Of course, this could be proven wrong in the future, as we know very little about bed bugs at this time. The most common health issues associated with bed bugs are sleep deprivation, insomnia, and stress, which can sometimes be severe enough to result in post-traumatic stress disorder after experiencing an infestation.

Unfortunately, some cases of bed bug infestations can result in injury. This is usually a result of improper treatment attempts, either by the resident or by a pest control operator. Overexposure to any pesticide can be harmful, and can be made even worse by poor ventilation or by pre-existing health conditions. Injuries and poisonings are an important reminder that you must always follow the product label and MSDS whenever you are using an insecticide.

According to a CDC report published in 2011, there has only been one death attributed to a bed bug infestation. In 2010, an elderly North Carolina couple attempted to treat a bed bug problem in their home. First, they sprayed their baseboards, walls, and bed with two insecticides, neither of which were registered for use against bed bugs. Later that day, they released nine cans of insecticide fogger.

A couple of days later, they resprayed around the bed and released another nine cans of fogger. In addition to that second treatment attempt, the woman sprayed her arms, chest, and hair with a flea insecticide, and covered her hair with a shower cap to keep the insecticide there. Shortly after, the woman was taken to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead. She was 65 years old, and had a lengthy history of pre-existing medical conditions, including kidney failure, heart attack, diabetes, hypertension, and depression. She was taking at least 10 medications at the time of exposure, according to the report.

This case is a tragic example of people panicking and taking drastic action against a bed bug infestation without doing the proper research and without following the instructions on the products they used. Bed bugs are certainly stressful to deal with, but it’s extremely important to stay calm and take all necessary precautions, especially when handling insecticides.

Other mishandlings of insecticides mentioned in the report (and attributed to injuries and poisonings) included mass quantities of insect repellent, as well as use of agricultural and outdoor pesticides inside a house.

If you’re in the mood for some light reading, the 2,000-word CDC report can be found here.

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MM Novato Treatments

Supermarkets and hardware stores: love them or hate them, these stores are everywhere. You can often find huge aisles dedicated to pest control products here, which treat all types of different insects, including bees, ants, roaches, and mosquitoes. While they often cost less than $7 per spray, and do seem convenient, this may not be […]

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Say no to cheap store-bought bed bug sprays

Say NO to cheap bed bug sprays

Supermarkets and hardware stores: love them or hate them, these stores are everywhere. You can often find huge aisles dedicated to pest control products here, which treat all types of different insects, including bees, ants, roaches, and mosquitoes. While they often cost less than $7 per spray, and do seem convenient, this may not be the best place to purchase your bed bug sprays and powders.

Outdated Formulations

Bed bug sprays found in local hardware stores and supermarkets mainly consist of outdated pesticide formulas. These were once very popular among pest control professionals, but have since lost much of their effectiveness due to how rapidly bed bugs can build resistance to toxins that they’re exposed to.

Since chemical companies invested so much research and development into each formula, they don’t want to completely scrap a less effective formula in place of a newer one. Instead, they often sell these products directly to consumer-based retailers at a value price. This is why most people who attempt a bed bug treatment themselves using these inexpensive  store-bought “bed bug sprays” often fail.

Fortunately, you can find the same sprays and powders that professionals use by shopping online or by searching for niche pest supply stores. These sources provide anyone with the ability to tackle an infestation by following an integrated pest management approach, including the use of encasements, steamers, and monitors.

However, professional sprays can cost considerably more than inexpensive and outdated sprays found in local stores. This is because chemical companies like to recoup much of their R&D expenses in the first few years of a new formula’s launch, bringing the cost up for professional formulations that haven’t yet encountered resistance. Although more expensive, it’s a small price to pay for a much greater chance that your bed bug treatment will succeed.

Bug Bombs and Foggers

When most homeowners encounter a pest problem, they reach for one of many popular “bug bombs” or “foggers“. Unfortunately, these bombs have been found to be largely ineffective against bed bugs: an Ohio State University study showed that most major bug bomb brands have a very poor success rate in killing bed bugs.

This is due to how the insecticide in a bug bomb reaches its target. Bug bombs work by filling an open space with insecticide gas, killing insects that inhale it. This may work for bugs that spend most of their time in open terrain, but bed bugs are much less often found in open space – they prefer to tuck away in tight spaces where they won’t be disturbed between meals. A gas that isn’t directly injected into these areas isn’t going to penetrate effectively, meaning your bed bugs might be out of the chemicals’ range.

In order to kill bed bugs, an insecticide needs to be applied where they are most likely to be active. Contact sprays that are applied to beds and furniture are likely to cut down the population, while residual sprays and powders can be laid down on cracks and crevices throughout a room to kill bed bugs that come out of their hiding places.

Unregistered or “Exempt” Sprays

Be wary of store-bought bed bug sprays claiming to be all-natural or EPA “exempt”. Ingredients that are outside of the jurisdiction of the EPA usually have no insecticidal properties, and are often not fully tested; this means that they could have no effect at all against bed bugs. This is why Bed Bug Supply only carries EPA-certified bed bug sprays, which have been fully tested to ensure that they will work as intended.

Despite the occasional FTC action against deceptive advertisers, there’s little stopping EPA exempt spray companies from selling you a cheap bed bug solution that they promise will work, despite the product never going through any certification or lab trials. These products are commonly made from natural oils, claiming to be an environmentally friendly alternative to “harmful pesticides”. When a product is EPA exempt, it’s normally because the ingredients used are not actually insecticides, and are often never tested against bed bugs in a scientific environment.

Can cedar oil kill bed bugs? Sometimes, yes. But so can alcohol. Or your shoe. When you buy professional-strength products, you’re not just getting something that can kill bed bugs – you’re getting something that kills most, if not all of them. Cutting down a small portion of an infestation does nothing; to solve the problem, you need to eliminate the population completely. That’s what our professional-strength treatment process is for.

Unfortunately, there are no cheap and easy shortcuts with bed bugs. Your supermarket doesn’t have the solution for your bed bug infestation. Bed bugs are a tough foe to conquer, and you need a professional-strength, professionally proven solution using multiple products and techniques.

Get rid of bed bugs like the pros with our professional-strength powders and sprays. All of our sprays and powders are EPA registered and include free shipping.
Starting at:
$9.95
Professional Bed Bug Kits
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