Will vinegar kill bed bugs? I’ll say it depends, as the solution is a temporary fix.

Bed bugs are among the most problematic pests to have around. This is rightfully so due to their resilient nature in terms of survival. When a bed bug infestation is identified, all sorts of remedies are thrown at it by homeowners.

However, it’s not about the treatment applied but about its efficacy.

Whenever you search online for common remedies for bed bug control, you’ll always find tons of search results with varying answers. One of those you’re likely to find is vinegar.

So we ask, does vinegar actually kill bed bugs? You’ll need to stick around to find out.

About Vinegar Bed Bug Control

Before we get into details about the effect of vinegar on bed bugs, it’s important to take a look at what it’s about.

Vinegar has a wide range of uses, including pest control, and is sometimes called spirit vinegar. It’s quite versatile and has applications as a cleaning agent, for cooking, gardening, in addition to its medicinal value.

There are lots of benefits to having in a single product which is why vinegar is quite popular. As a matter of fact, it’s a mainstay in most homes. White vinegar is made up of about 93 to 96% water and 4 to 7% acetic acid.

Can Vinegar Kill Bed Bugs Completely?

Vinegar does kill bed bugs. However, it isn’t an effective solution for bed bug problems.

How so? This is because you’ll have to find and drown bed bugs in a bowl of vinegar. Now that’s impractical as it significantly drops efficiency. So why not spray such vinegar around bed bug-infested areas?

Vinegar will do little to no harm when applied as a spray. When it comes in contact with bed bugs, vinegar may end up damaging their nervous systems. However, it does nothing to their eggs.

With fully matured bed bugs gone, it doesn’t still solve the problem as the eggs left behind will soon be hatching.

Before long, a full-blown bed bug infestation will occur. This defeats the aim of treating bed bug issues as these pests continue to cause problems and embarrassment to homeowners.

Handling a Bed Bug Infestation The Right Way

You’ll find lots of treatment options available when dealing with bed bug problems. However, their efficacy and results obtained leave much to be desired. This isn’t to say that DIY methods of bed bug control don’t work.

We’re only saying that a lot of these aren’t as efficient.

This is coupled with the fact that persons applying such DIY measures aren’t trained or don’t understand bed bug behavior. As a result, certain vital actions are skipped are ignored.

This compounds the problem being faced.

  • With Clear Limitations Explained What Next?

So far, we’ve learned that vinegar does kill bed bugs.

However, it’s impractical or inefficient to use as it doesn’t destroy bed bug eggs. As a result, treatment performed using vinegar gives short-term relief until bed bug eggs hatch. This isn’t good enough.

Your best bet will be to call for professional help. This is the most comprehensive method of dealing with a bed bug infestation. Bed bug presence is a serious matter and must be given the attention it deserves.

As prolific breeders, you could be wasting vital time in pursuing remedies such as vinegar that don’t work.

Time wasted translates to more bed bug eggs being laid.

When calling a pest management service, it’s important to go for a reputable one. You’ll readily find reliable bed bug control services by way of positive reviews dropped by clients.

While I Wait for a Pest Technician, Is There Anything I Can Do?

With vinegar out of the question as a reliable bed bug extermination remedy, you’ll need to call a pro as soon as you detect bed bug presence.

However, while you wait, certain important tasks can be done to prepare the ground for treatment.

Actions to take include removing clutter, deep cleaning infested items, and pulling your bed away from the wall and other attached areas. Last but not least is the need to vacuum the area.

These are only temporary and preparatory measures pending the arrival of a bed bug expert.

  • Removing Clutter

Bed bugs love clutter as it provides them with ample hiding spots. One of the preparatory actions for professional treatment is the removal of all clutter lying around.

These could include crumpled pieces of paper, scattered clothing, scattered books, and so on.

By clearing out any clutter, you’re making way for more efficient treatment as bed bugs can hardly escape whenever proper treatment commences.

Much of the clutter collected needs to be gotten rid of pending the arrival of the pest technician.

  • Deep Cleaning Infested Items

Bed bugs won’t survive extreme temperatures. This includes hot and cold temperatures.

Using this knowledge, you can place certain items in a Ziploc bag and place them in your freezer for 4 to 7 days. Such low temperatures should be enough to eliminate bed bugs and their eggs.

The other method involves bed bug heat treatment.

Here, you’ll need to load up your tumble dryer with these items or clothing until after a few days when you’re ready to have them washed.

By this time, bed bugs and their eggs should be long dead from the heat exposure. Heat kills bed bugs faster than cold does.

  • Pulling Your Bed Away from the Wall

The proximity of your bed to the wall and other attached areas makes for easy reach by bed bugs. After sucking your blood to their fill, bed bugs return to their hiding spots.

By pulling your bed away from the wall, you allow for better treatment of affected areas. Bugs hiding in wall cracks are easily exterminated.

  • Vacuuming the Area

Vacuuming is another way to prepare for a pest technician’s arrival.

Here, your floors, carpet areas, and couches are the targets. Vacuuming picks up both adult bugs and their eggs. This is in addition to the carcasses of dead bugs.

So far, we’ve seen that vinegar will kill bed bugs, but that depends on how it’s applied. The efficacy of this ubiquitous household item is largely limited by its inability to destroy bed bug eggs.


Vinegar indeed will kill bed bugs upon contact. Bed bug populations will expand as long as no action is taken.

Luckily, vinegar is readily available in most households. All you need to know is how to apply it. For this to be effective, it must be used as a contact treatment.

We have established the fact that bed bugs can be killed with vinegar. But how exactly can this be done? For vinegar to be effective in this regard, it must be sprayed directly on bed bugs. This means you need to see them before applying them. Unfortunately, these are nocturnal pests that hide during the day. So, you’d have to find them.

Having identified their presence, pour some vinegar into a spray bottle. Find out their hiding spots in the cracks. You’d also find them holed up in tight spaces on furniture. Vinegar should be applied to such areas effectively.

However effective it is, vinegar won’t solve a difficult infestation problem. Especially their eggs. You’d have to introduce additional strategies.

Heat treatment is one such way. You can also introduce diatomaceous earth among others.

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