Best Bed Bug Killer Sprays: photo

Bed bugs have become a common household problem since the World War II era. Around that time they were eliminated with loads of different pesticides. However due to their undercover behavior and habits combined with a lack of public awareness, their infestation spread at a very rapid rate world-wide. Spray is the fastest killer. But which one to choose? We'll help you to make the right choice. Here you'll find 10 best bed bug sprays: natural and professional insect killers.

Table of Contents:

Even today no specialist can identify for sure what actually causes an increased bed bug activity globally. What has been proven is that they have been primarily identified in the hotel rooms. That is why this specific insect is generally associated with travelling, but not with poor sanitation or just poverty. Yes, cleanliness and social status have nothing in common with getting these bloodsuckers. This misconception leads to the million dollar question of how to get rid of bed bugs in the hotels, commercial buildings, public transportation, and people’s houses.

Without residual pesticide application the they can travel freely and safely. They just move from the luggage right into your bed, and thus a new infestation begins. Luckily, today’s pest management practices can boast of a miraculous elimination of bed bugs. The infestation in the hotels and motels, as well as apartments and houses today can be eliminated with the help of pesticides.

bed bugs in hotels: photo

But as VDACS research shows, “There are relatively few insecticide products registered for indoor use. Those that are registered are primarily from one chemical class, the pyrethroids. Bed bug populations in the United States are known to be resistant to pyrethroids, therefore no single insecticide is capable of eliminating a bed bug infestation if used alone”. Scientists recommend not relying entirely on the repellents and IGRs (insect growth regulators) in terms of completely exterminating bugs, but also using such products as liquid insecticides, insecticidal dusts and of course aerosol insecticide sprays.

The Scientists’ Opinions on Bed Bug Killer Sprays

What scientists unanimously agree on is that homemade bed bug sprays are a far greater threat than commercial ones, so do not use them! Any sprays containing detergents as well as alcohol, are dangerous. Commercial products, on the other hand, have undergone the necessary laboratory tests and are allowed for indoor use. The Michigan State University experts recommend using only “EPA- and MDARD-registered products that come in their original packaging”.

Don’t count on repellents either, as the Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech states: “However, none of our current insecticide products appear to be repellent to bed bugs, particularly after they have dried. For whatever reason, bed bugs do not recognize repellent chemicals the way that other household insects do. So far, no insect repellent or insecticide product has been able to stop bed bugs from biting.”

That is why we will have to resort to contact killing with natural and artificial chemical insecticides. Let’s see what the entomologists recommend doing and how.

Natural Sprays

Some conditionally organic low-toxic sprays can indeed kill bed bugs on contact. As the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension unit specialists state, don’t expect any residual action after such sprays are dry. In addition, it has been proven that these pests can avoid any places treated with organic sprays. Along with that, the scientists consider two oil-based products (based on the Rutgers University study) to be “surprisingly effective against adult species and eggs.” They are EcoRaider ™ (Geraniol & Cedar extract) and Bed Bug Patrol ™. Direct spraying of EcoRaider™ causes high initial death toll (80%) and 100% of the insects were dead within 10 days.

Artificial Chemical Sprays

Nowadays, pyrethrin- or pyrethroid-based (the latter are synthetic analogues of pyrethrins) remain the most popular chemical sprays. They attack nerve cells and cause multiple nerve excitation. This ultimately leads to paralysis and the death of the insects. These pesticides are one of the most powerful ones, but many insects have become resistant to them over the years. Nevertheless, pyrethroid-based sprays are most common today.

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the registered active ingredients for bed bug control include 16 pyrethrins and pyrethroids, 4 neonicotinoids, 3 inorganic compounds, chlorfenapyr, DDVP (dichlorvos), propoxur, S-hydroprene, alcohol, and neem oil.

The University of Kentucky Entomology team also considers professional products such as Temprid ® SC, Transport® and Phantom® effective. Among their active ingredients, not only pyrethroids are found, but also neonicotinoid compounds (imidacloprid, acetamiprid) as well as pro-insecticide chlorfenapyr. These products are reviewed below, in our list of Top-10 best killer sprays.

IGR products

The Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech specialists explain that today “there is only one insect growth regulator that is labeled for bed bug control – hydroprene”. However, some latest research has shown that IGRs don’t actually sterilize these insects, they slowly kill them instead. This means that bed bugs can produce at least one generation of offspring before dying. The Cornell University experts don’t recommend rely on IGRs too much either (“Insect Growth Regulators (IGRs) affect the development and reproduction of insects. Although they can work well, they don’t kill bugs quickly”). Therefore, we can say that you’d better use IGRs that are complementary to other insecticides.

Why Are Insecticides More Effective Than Natural Products?

It is professional products that are most recommended for use by experts. Their advantage is their long-term action and residual killing effect after they are dry. However, in order for an adult insect to die of an insecticide’s residual effect, it should remain within the boundaries of the treated territory for several days. For this reason, it’s best to spray chemicals in places where insects typically hide, such as floor cracks, corners, places along and under the skirting boards.

Also remember that these pests’ eggs are most difficult to eliminate as their outer shell protects future larvae from insecticides. That is why several repeat treatments will be necessary to remove any larvae that could hatch.

  How Bed Bug Killing Sprays Work

Type

Active Ingredients

Killing Action

Residual Action

Natural contact sprays

Geranium oil, geraniol, clove oil, sodium lauryl sulfate etc

Are partially effective on contact.

N/A

Artificial chemical contact sprays

Pyrethrins and pyrethroids

Kill on contact, may be ineffective against certain pyrethroid-resistant populations.

High level of residual control: kill several days after drying.

Neonicotinoids (imidacloprid, acetamiprid), chlorfenapyr and other chemicals

Kill on contact, no insect resistance has been determined.

High level of residual control: kill several days after drying.

IGRs

Hydroprene

Poison the insects on contact, death will come before sterilization.

High level of residual control: kill several days after drying.

What You Should Know Before Spraying the Room

1. All sprays work in the same way: they kill the insects once they come in contact with them. The manufacturers promise that this is a matter of minutes or even seconds and the killing effect will last for a few hours following the application. However, experience reveals that it’s better to use the spray a few times regardless of the infestation scale instead of counting on the effect of a single use. In addition, the first spray can simply paralyze the insects rather than directly kill them.

2. Know the dangerous spots and objects in the room to be sprayed, such as:

  • Luggage you’ve brought from a trip. As we’ve mentioned earlier, bed bugs tend to travel and come back home with you and then spread and breed all over the house
  • Floor and walls, carpets, cracks in the wooden floor, in the corners, door and window frames, behind the paintings or wallpaper, outlets.
  • Furniture and your sleeping place, the drawers in the chest or cabinets, sofa and armchair upholstery, mattresses, pillows, bed sheets and others.*

where do bed bugs live: photo

3. Never go for a single measure even if it seems that the bed bugs are gone. University of California scientists advise to combine the insecticides with infestation prevention measures, such as removing and cleaning infested beds, mattresses, and other harborage sites—as well as nonchemical tactics such as steam or heat delivery. Make sure you also invest in a mattress cover.

4. Monitoring devices such as ClimbUp® for ~$13 are useful for confirming the presence of bed bugs when a visual inspection cannot. When installed under bed legs, such traps provide a barrier between floor and your sleeping place what can potentially reduce bites, especially when beds are pulled slightly away walls and encased, as per advice of Michael F. Potter, Extension Entomologist, University of Kentucky.

Climbup Insect Interceptor Bed Bug Trap: photo

Top-10 Best Bed Bug Sprays

We have included 7 best killer sprays according to Amazon.com sales rating in our today’s review. There are both artificial chemical and organic products. Each product is great in its own way, so instead of rating them, we’ll give you a more detailed description of each of them so that you could choose one that suits your needs the best.

Bed Bug Killer By Eco Defense - All Natural Organic Formula 

Bed Bug Killer By Eco Defense: photoThis ~$19.95 spray has already managed to become one of the best selling products. In spite of the fact that the manufacturer claims that it is all natural, we can’t consider it to be fully organic as it contains, for example, such synthetic chemical as sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS). It contains such active components as Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Geranium Oil. Inactive ingredients: Distilled Water, Citric Acid, and Ethyl Lactante. It is a good thing that some of the active components are natural ones, but nevertheless we can’t call it all-natural.

The manufacturer promises that the Eco Defense Spray will kill bed bugs once it comes in contact with them, as soon as possible, won’t leave any stains or artificial odor, but is this really so? Yes, some users speak of “killer results” in their reviews. Others share that it didn’t work at all or simply paralyzed the insects. The lack of odor is also debatable as some customers don’t complain of it, while others say that the odor is worse than chemical sprays’ one. You might as well read all of the customer reviews on your own and make your own judgment. As for us, we advise using it combined with other treatments as a means of indemnifying.

Price: ~$19.95 Check the current price

Bed Bug Killer by EcoRaider, 100% Fast Kill and Extended Protection, Green & Non-toxic

Bed Bug Killer by EcoRaider: photoThis 16 oz bottle is #1 Best Seller in Pest Control Sprayers on Amazon.com. Among the active ingredients of ~$19.95 EcoRaider Spray are geraniol (1%), cedar extract (1%) and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (2%). The manufacturer claims that it is the most effective spray, as the Entomological Society of America Journal Publication named it "the only natural product that kills bed bugs with 100% efficacy". In addition, EcoRaider is highly appreciated by experts from the Department of Entomology, Rutgers University, calling it a “potentially useful pesticide for controlling bed bug infestations.” The EcoRaider is available as a travel size spray for ~$6.99 and a 1 gallon jug for ~$89.95.

In summary, it destroys any kind of bed bugs, even those resistant to insecticides, bedbugs in the larval stage and the adult stage, but it also has a two-week residual effect. What do users say about the effectiveness of the product? Many of them agree that the sprays, including this one, are most effective as part of an integrated approach - together with the use of a mattress cover and traps. By the way, some users have tried to improve the deadly effect of this spray, mixing it with Gentrol Insect Growth Regulator - and stated that this mix has worked better. You can also read more than 2000 other reviews on Amazon.com and find out more helpful tips.

Bed Bug Killer by EcoRaider
Bed Bug Killer by EcoRaider

The Entomological Society of America Journal Publication named it the only natural product that kills bed bugs with 100% efficacy.

Price:
~$19.95

And finally, the other characteristics of the product. Cedar scent is not for everyone, but it is quite tolerant: "The smell of this spray is intense, it smells like concentrated cedar, like a cedar chest, but once it dissipates, the smell is not too bad". Also, Eco Raider does not leave marks on the furniture or floor, so you can use it anywhere without getting spots and stains.

Price: 16 oz bottle: ~$19.95 Check the current price

Price: 2 oz travel size bottle: ~$6.99 Check the current price

Price: 1 gallon jug: ~$89.95 Check the current price

Temprid SC Killer

Temprid SC Bed Bug Killer: photoTemprid SC is a professional dual action pesticide. It can kill over 50 types of pests including bed bugs. Its active ingredients are two powerful insecticides: beta-cyfluthrin and imidacloprid. The former kills regular species while the latter will be able to deal with pyrethroid-resistant ones. The killer is available both as a ~$22.95 ready-to-use spray and a ~$76.30 concentrated suspension that has to be dissolved in water. Concentrate is better-suited for a large-scale invasion while a spray is more appropriate for smaller areas.

The manufacturer doesn’t recommend spraying Temprid directly on surfaces where people are constantly in contact (cushioned furniture, mattresses). Use it for treating joints, seams and edges of the mattresses, as well as box springs, bed backs, any furniture and floor cracks, corners, skirting boards, carpets, shelves, cabinets and curtains.

95% of users are satisfied with the concentrate’s killing effect as it has received a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars. They have additionally learned from the manufacturer that Temprid’s effect is best if used immediately after being dissolved without leaving it idle for a long time. As for the spray, it should be used during a small-scale invasion. Judging by the customers’ reviews, 2-3 applications are enough to get rid of bed bugs completely.

Price: Temprid Ready Spray: ~$22.95 Check the current price

Price: Temprid Sc Concentrated Insecticide: ~$76.30 Check the current price

Bed Bug Killer Patrol

Natural Bed Bug Killer Patrol: photoNatural plant extracts of peppermint and clove oils and Sodium Lauryl Sulphate from сoconut extract are among the active ingredients of this non-toxic spray. The product promises to kill bed bugs on contact. Its residual effectiveness under lab conditions has been proven by the Rutgers University scientists. They claim that although it takes longer time to kill on contact than chemical sprays, 91-92% mortality rate was detected within 10 days after treatment.

It is also reported that this ~$18.48 spray can be applied not only on these bloodsuckers’ regular home hideouts, but also directly on the mattress and its cover, cushioned furniture and other surfaces with which people come in contact. The users’ opinions on its effectiveness are contradictory. Some find it helpful like no other treatment, while others note the slowness of its killing action (“Yes, it seems it does work ok but only on direct contact with the bed bug that it dies and not all that fast like 15 minutes or more.”) and lack of residual effect (“This stuff will work on live bugs if it is sprayed directly on them. Once it has dried, worthless,”) It is up to you to make the right choice, so read all customer reviews on Amazon.com to learn more.

Price: ~$18.48 Check the current price

Ortho Home Defense Dual-Action Bed Bug Killer Aerosol Spray

Ortho Home Defense Bed Bug Killer Spray: photoHow does Ortho differ from others? The manufacturer assure you that this bottle’s contents are able to kill not only regular bed bugs, their eggs, fleas, ticks and lice, but also pyrethroid-resistant species. When we looked into this issue in more detail, we found a National Geographic article claiming that certain types of bed bugs have become pyrethroid insecticide-resistant, and humans are to blame as they’ve been exterminating these insects like that for ages. This resulted in DNA mutation and appearance of chemical-resistant genes. Ortho also helps if you want to get rid of dust mites

According to the happy customers’ comments, such as “Washed all my bedding, sprayed carefully around and below my queen-size bed, then I didn't get a single bite for about 2 weeks”, ~$12.98 Ortho seems to be really working. Those who didn’t measure period of action admit that the bugs die within 3 seconds after coming into contact with the spray. But don't stop. Re-spray all of the surfaces weekly until no signs of bed bugs are to be seen.

Price: ~$12.98 Check the current price

Harris Bed Bug Killer 1 gallon

Harris Bed Bug Killer & Harris Toughest: photoHarris with deltamethrin kills bed bugs and lice on contact; the customers therefore call it “instant death” and often use it simultaneously with Harris Bed Bug Diatomaceous Earth Powder for ~$6.99.

One of the customers has shared that it were their kids who brought bed bugs home and that for the first couple of months these insects went completely unnoticed as they were breeding actively and hiding well. Their activity peaks at night, when humans are asleep. Harris Killer helped reduce the population in few weeks. It costs ~$19.98. Harris also has 1 Gallon Toughest Bed Bug Killer for  "pyrethroid resistant" bed bugs and eggs for ~$54.79.

Some consumers tested this product on cockroaches. Others use it as a preventive measure. In fact, another reason for us to really like this spray is that it comes in large volume and that it is really cost-saving (which experienced users appreciate the most). You can read all customer reviews as a proof.

Price: Harris Bed Bug Killer ~$19.98 Check the current price

Price: Harris Toughest (for "pyrethroid resistant" bed bugs): ~$54.79 Check the current price

*Attention! Although many users spray these products right over their sheets, we wouldn’t recommend doing it if the said product contains sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), a synthetic chemical which is also present in all other cleaning products. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, in spite of the fact that SLS is commonly used in household chemicals production and other products, long-term contact with this substance can lead to dermatitis.

If you’re still torn between a spray and a fogger, follow the specialists’ advice. According to the National Center for Healthy Housing, "Bug bombs" are not effective against bed bugs. The pesticide droplets generated by foggers typically do not penetrate the hiding spaces used by insects.

As for us, once again we would like to remind you (along with the University of California professors), that Insecticides must be combined with infestation prevention measures, such as removing and cleaning infested beds, bedding, and other harborage sites, as well as nonchemical tactics such as steam or heat delivery.

Bed Bug Killer Sprays Comparison Chart

Product Active Ingredients Odor Price

Eco Defense

Bed Bug Killer By Eco Defense min: photo

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Geranium Oil

Some customers don’t complain of it, while others say that the odor is worse than chemical sprays’ one.

~$19.89

EcoRaider (16 oz)

Bed Bug Killer by EcoRaider: photo

Geraniol, Cedar extract, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate

Cedar scent is not for everyone, but it is quite tolerant.

~$19.95

EcoRaider Travel/Personal Size (2 oz)

Bed Bug Killer by EcoRaider Travel: photo

Geraniol, Cedar extract, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate Cedar scent is not for everyone, but it is quite tolerant.

~$6.99

EcoRaider (1 Gallon Jug)

EcoRaider Bed Bug Killer Spray 1 Gallon Jug: photo

Geraniol, Cedar extract, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate Cedar scent is not for everyone, but it is quite tolerant.

~$89.95

Temprid Ready Spray

Temprid Ready Spray min: photo

Beta-cyfluthrin,

Imidacloprid

Low odor

~$22.95

Temprid Sc Insecticide

Temprid Sc Concentrated Insecticide min: photo

Beta-cyfluthrin, 

Imidacloprid

Low odor

~$76.30

Bed Bug Killer Patrol

Natural Bed bug killer Patrol min: photo

Natural plant extracts of peppermint and clove oils, Sodium Lauryl Sulphate

Low odor

~$18.48

Ortho Home Defense

Ortho Home Defense Bed Bug Killer Spray min: photo

Phenothrin, Imidacloprid  It is odorless. 

~$12.98

Harris

Harris Bed Bug Killer: photo

Deltamethrin  It is odorless. 

~$19.98 

Harris Toughest

Harris Toughest: photo

Phenothrin, Imidacloprid Slight chemical smell

~$54.79

Chapin Sprayer

Chapin Sprayer: photo

 –

from ~$9.99