How to Get Bed Bugs Out of Your Shoes

Cracks and crevices are common places that harbor bed bugs. Despite the name, your bedding isn’t the only thing that needs to be considered! Your clothing, furniture, and electronic devices can contain bed bugs.

Dark, secluded areas are ideal spots for bugs to thrive and breed. 

Does that include shoes? Yes, it can, particularly if you don’t use them often.

In this article, we’ll look at how to get bed bugs out of shoes.

There are a few ways to get them out of your shoes. Here are the basics:

  • ​Insecticide strips, made from resin with a chemical such as Dichlorvos, effectively remove bed bugs from your shoes. 
  • Some sprays can eliminate bugs from a shoe after a few applications
  • Shoes can also be placed in the freezer or washed in the washing machine to treat bed bugs

The first step to getting rid of bed bugs is to understand how they infest shoes, what to look for when checking your shoes, and, in the end, how to eradicate them.

How to Get Bed Bugs Out of Shoes

The easiest way to deal with bed bugs in clothing is to wash them and dry them on high heat.

Temperatures above 122 degrees quickly kill bed bugs. You can achieve temperatures such as those in several ways. Some are expensive, and some are almost free.

1. Put Your Shoes in the Washer and Dryer

A dryer or washing machine is the best way to kill bed bugs. You may not be aware of this, but you can actually clean many different types of shoes in a washing machine. Check any tags on the shoes. If there are no tags, check the website for the shoe brand, the Zappos listing, etc. to see if you can find any info on washing the shoes.

Materials play a big role in whether you can wash them. Cotton, polyurethane, nylon, PVC, and polyester can generally go in the washing machine.

You should avoid washing leather or suede shoes and shoes embellished with silk or satin. It is natural for leather to absorb water, so washing leather shoes in the washing machine for a full hot cycle will wreck them. 

The washing machine is good to try, as you don’t need anything additional than good detergent and a hot temperature.

Can Bed Bugs Survive in the Washing Machine?

There is no better way to kill bed bugs than a washing machine. It’s excellent for getting up to the required temperature. In addition, bed bugs that might have survived would be drowned in the water.

Follow these steps to wash your shoes:

  • Remove any loose dirt from your shoes by scrubbing them. You should do this if your shoes are dirty or muddy. However, you can skip this step if you’re only looking to kill bed bugs.
  • To prevent damage to your shoes, place them inside a laundry bag made of mesh. The laces won’t catch on the washing machine, nor will they tear out or wreck it. If you don’t have a laundry bag, you can use a pillowcase tied up with a string.
  • Shoes shouldn’t be put in there by themselves. You might also want to throw in some towels or clothes, so they don’t bang against each other.
  • Wash your clothes for at least sixty minutes on the hot setting in your washing machine. If there are any bed bugs hidden in the shoes, this will kill them.
  • As soon as the wash is finished, remove the shoes from the pillowcase and look for bed bugs. You may find some at the bottom of the bag, if there were any, to begin with.

2. Use a Blow Dryer or Heat Gun

If your shoes can’t be placed in the washing machine, you can try hitting them with a blow dryer on high heat for several minutes. Blow dryers and heat guns are pretty effective at killing bed bugs, as they can often get the surface temperatures of things nearby up to over 120′.

Note that it’s possible you will damage your shoes by doing this… however, if they’re already infested with bed bugs, it may be worth the risk.

Bed Bug Professional Heat Treatment

Professional heat treatment may be an option for shoes that can’t be dried or washed. You can eradicate a bed bug infestation this way when done correctly. Exterminators are the only ones who can handle this since you cannot do it yourself.

Professional heat treatment may be an option.

Specialized equipment is required, regulating the house’s temperature to 122 degrees, sometimes even higher. The house needs to be heated for several hours before it reaches the required temperature.

Heat is one of the best ways to guarantee their death.

3. Bag and Store Your Shoes

You can bag the shoes or store them in a box to kill bed bugs. Most people start with this method, but it does not always work. Shoes are placed in vacuum-sealed plastic bags or boxes until any bed bugs present die due to a lack of air and food.

Bed bugs die slowly, however.

If bed bugs are kept in total isolation, they can live for over a year before dying.

Their small size makes it impossible for them to suffocate due to their lack of air needs. In contrast to humans, they do not require hydration. Additionally, they are so tiny they can survive on just one meal per year.

Extreme heat or cold are the only exceptions. Extreme temperatures kill bed bugs. The temperature in the bag could reach dangerous levels in the summer, and if it exceeds 122 degrees for an hour, bed bugs are likely to die.

4. Spray with Bed Bug Spray

​It’s possible to kill bed bugs with several insecticides. If you’re looking for bed bug spray, follow the manufacturer’s instructions and spray it inside your shoes. You can completely eradicate bugs inhabiting shoes by spraying them several times a week with some sprays. 

​It’s possible to kill bed bugs with several insecticides.

While other sprays take longer to work, you must spray them more than once to eliminate the bugs effectively.

Dichlorvos Strips

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These strips work ​to get rid of stubborn bugs on your shoes. They contain resin plastic and an insecticide like Dichlorvos. Over weeks or months, these strips release the insecticide through vapor.

If you want to eliminate the nuisance-causing parasites from your shoes, you could buy one and place it inside your shoe closet. 

To eliminate bed bugs from your home, you must use these strips cautiously. Nuvan Prostrips has the highest efficiency for Dichlorvos strips. The technology relies on controlled release. 

With these strips, you can place them in your closet, and vapor gradually penetrates the closet or shoes, killing visible and hidden bugs and microorganisms. It produces a strong, odorless vapor that effectively kills everything in sight.

Final Thoughts

Bed bugs are a nightmare, a seemingly endless battle with little vampires that get into all your stuff, including your shoes. The good news is that with shoes (and clothing in general), you have options. Your first stop should be the washing machine and dyrer. If you can’t do that, try a blow dryer.

Good luck!