Chances are, if you’re a Cleveland resident, your heart automatically sank reading that we’d gone “down in the rankings.” Our sports teams have historically had a bit of a rough time, despite Clevelanders’ undying loyalty to their favorite teams. However, we promise that this time, moving down in the rankings is actually a great thing! Cleveland has also historically struggled with bed bugs, topping the list of the cities with the worst bed bug problems. This year, we’ve gone from the number 1 spot all the way down to number 11!
Why Were We Number One Before?
You might be wondering why Cleveland was so high on the list of the cities with the worst bed bug problems. Believe it or not, the highway I-71 is a factor in Cleveland’s struggle with bed bugs. I-71 provides an easy way to get from Cleveland, all the way up in northern Ohio, to Cincinnati, all the way down in southern Ohio. As a result, bed bugs that might be traveling in cars can get around the state and travel through the major cities with ease- especially if the people driving those cars stay in hotels along the way. Cleveland has lots of tourist attractions, such as the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, as well as a world-class hospital, which draws people from all over the country to visit our city. Unfortunately, bed bugs can tag along with them to their hotels, their rental cars, and even their hospital beds. Bed bugs also thrive in low-income areas, such as Cleveland’s east side.
Knowledge is Power
A lack of education is also partly to blame for the bed bug epidemic. Many people don’t even realize that bed bugs are real- it’s often thought that they’re just a myth or a story made up to scare children. Another common misconception about bed bugs is that they only inhabit beds. It’s true that beds are a common place for bed bugs to hang out because they like to wait until humans are sleeping before coming out at night to bite- but beds aren’t the only place you can find bed bugs. They can live in other furniture, books, cars, movie theaters, and more.
Battling the Bugs
If you search the web for ways to get rid of bed bugs, you will find several suggestions. Some are effective and some are not. One of the most common suggestions is using “bed bug sprays”, similar to ant spray. The problem with chemical sprays is that you have to spray them directly onto the bed bugs in order to kill them. Bed bugs are tricky little pests that are great at hiding. It’s very difficult to find every last bed bug and use the spray to eliminate them. If you miss just a couple of them, then they will reproduce and before you know it, your home is infested once again. Additionally, the use of sprays or foggers can fill your home with chemicals and cause health issues for pets, children, the elderly, and anyone with respiratory illnesses. The best way to treat your home and/or vehicle is to use heat treatment.
What is Heat Treatment?
Heat treatment is effective because bed bugs have a very limited tolerance to heat. Once the temperature goes above 120 degrees, they will not survive for long. Heat treatment involves bringing industrial heaters out to your home, as well as large fans to move the heat through your home. In order to heat-treat your home and/or vehicle, your furniture is moved out of the way to allow enough room for the heaters and fans. Then, the heaters are used to heat the space until the temperature is between 130 and 145 degrees. Wireless temperature monitors are used to ensure that the space stays at a deadly temperature for bed bugs, and generators are used to ensure that the heaters have enough power to keep running for as long as they’re needed. After the heat treatment is finished, the heaters and fans are removed, your furniture is moved back into its place, and your home is guaranteed bed bug free for 60 days.
How Can We Continue to Move Cleveland Down in the Rankings?
Going from the number 1 worst city for bed bugs down to number 11 is a great accomplishment, and Bed Bug BBQ has played a vital role in improving that ranking. Co-founders Chris Gonda and Laura Steelman started Bed Bug BBQ in order to help tackle the bed bug problem in Cleveland, and they’re changing lives daily through education and eradication. In February 2019, Bed Bug BBQ treated the home and car of a Vietnam War veteran, who unknowingly had over 10,000 bed bugs in his couch alone. The removal of those bed bugs made his life much easier and more comfortable. In addition to bed bug eradication all over Cleveland, Bed Bug BBQ is committed to educating the public on bed bug identification and prevention. Blog articles are posted on their website weekly. Together, we can remove Cleveland from the list of the top worst cities for bed bugs altogether!
Got a Bed Bug Problem in Cleveland?
Bed Bug BBQ in Lakewood, OH can help! Contact Bed Bug BBQ today for a FREE quote and inspection at (216) 221-1227 or through our website, and check out our other bed bug informational resources on identification, prevention, and eradication.