How Much Heat Do I Need?
To determine the amount of heat input required to remediate a bed bug problem, begin by applying the simple rule of thumb of 50 watts per square foot. A small studio apartment or hotel room measuring under 500 square feet can normally be handled with one of our TAT 24.5 kw systems, consisting of the base unit, 3 satellite heaters and a timer. For larger spaces (ie, 1000 square feet), two systems are required - as shown above.
What other factors can affect the heat load requirement?
Insulation, number of windows, type of windows (single or double paned), and ceiling height should also be considered when sizing a TAT system. Older buildings with plaster walls and poor insulation can require 1/3 or more heat input compared to newer, well insulated buildings. Bed bug removal is not an exact science. It is better to oversize the heat load requirement than to undersize it.
What preparations do I need to make?
Seal around doors, cracks and other openings to prevent heat escaping is part of the process of preparing the space. Remove sofa cushions, stand bed mattresses on end, pull stoves and refrigerators away from the wall, open up cupboard and closet doors, remove bar soap and candles (they can melt) and remove any electronics that you feel may have a low heat tolerance. Bedding and linens can go through the normal wash cycle.
Keep in mind that bed bugs like to hide in mattress seams, carpeting and other hard to see areas so good air circulation is also important. We want heat uniformity. Ceiling paddle fans can help. We also recommend commercial grade floor fans (also available through Infra-Red Products Supply). Good circulation ensures that the heat is evenly circulated from top to bottom and from side to side and to every nook and cranny where bed bugs can hide. The goal is to have a total kill and to do it with the least amount of time and energy.
It takes approximately 4 hours at 140 deg. F for a total kill of the adult bugs and their larvae. Once room temperature reaches 140 degrees, the system cycles on and off intermittantly to maintaim that temperature for the full 4 hour duration. Then it shuts down. If sized and prepared properly, the TAT heat treatment system is the ultimated solution for getting rid of bed bugs and other insects. It is clean, safe, cost effective and eliminates the need for costly and dangerous chemicals.