12 Best Bed Bug Sprays in 2017
Bed bugs are every traveler’s worst fear when it comes to budget-friendly lodging, but they aren’t limited to just motel rooms and youth hostels.
These pesky insects can hide in your favorite rocking chair, your dog’s bedding, in luggage, in the flooring, and even behind artwork hanging on the wall.
If you have determined that you have a bed bug problem, then naturally your instinct is to find a spray to kill them.
To avoid purchasing the wrong spray and prolonging your pesky infestation, have a look at the best bed bug spray brands here in our guide.
We will help you understand what to look for before purchasing a spray and offer a few tips to help steer you toward the right product.
Top 12 Bed Bug Sprays Ultimate Table
Ready to Use vs. Concentrated Liquids
Bed bug and pest sprays typically come in a ready-to-use format or else as a concentrated liquid that you will need to mix before using.
Homeowners or apartment dwellers will do well with a ready-to-use product most often, but if you own an apartment complex, run a hotel, or have multiple rooms and surfaces to spray, it is much easier to purchase a concentrated liquid.
- Ready to Use – In this category, you will find liquids in squirt bottles or aerosols sprays.
Squirt bottles help you target smaller areas whereas aerosols can coat larger areas evenly. Proper ventilation is of utmost importance when it comes to using an aerosol insecticide or product, and make sure that you cover your mouth and nose with a filter mask to avoid inhaling the chemicals.
- Concentrated Liquids – Concentrated liquids will require you to have a sprayer already, and if you have a lot of ground to cover, you might even consider a garden sized sprayer.
- Foggers – Another option is to go with a fogger, also known as a “bug bomb.” We only found one fogger that targets bed bugs and fleas, but it wasn’t the top contender on our list.
Details to Consider
When it comes to comparing the labels and formulas, you need to consider a few things before purchasing.
What ingredients does it contain and will they be safe for the surfaces that you intend to spray? Does the product target bed bugs of all growth stages or only adults?
- Find Out What the Spray Targets – Some products are designed to kill adult bed bugs only, but when dealing with these creepy little critters, you need to think deeper.
Will it also kill eggs and nymphs (newly hatched bed bugs), too? We notice that many seem to complain about a spray not working, but most of the time that is because they did not read the label or instructions before using it to understand what it targets.
- Surfaces You Will Spray – Bed bugs are most commonly found on the bed, but they live other places, as well.
Do you need to spray your mattress, carpeting, pet bedding or clothing? Check the label to understand what materials you can spray to avoid causing irreversible damage or stains.
Powders & Dust
We didn’t include any powders since you set out in search of best bed bug spray. However, the diatomaceous earth powders are also very effective when it comes to combatting bed bugs.
A few brands that we recommend include,
Silica-based dust is another option, and many find the CimeXa Insecticide Dust to work extremely well.
What Are the Most Effective Sprays?
While some of you may not like it, the chemical-based insecticides are most effective when dealing with bed bugs.
Natural sprays and plant-based sprays may be more friendly to the environment and safe to use in the home if you have children or pets, but don’t expect them to work as quickly or be as effective as the insecticides.
The good news is that we have both kinds of formulas on our list, so compare some of the top products in our review section to see which one will work for your needs.
Top 5 Best Bed Bug Spray Reviews
If you have a particularly bad bed bug problem, then it is best to jump right to the strong stuff. Bayer’s Tempo SC Ultra is probably the best bed bug killer on the market, and since it is a non-staining formula, you can use it on a variety of surfaces.
As a concentrated liquid, you will need to mix it with water before using. The instructions will tell you the ratios. The entire bottle can make up to 30 gallons of spray, which is enough to cover 30,000 square feet. We recommend applying it with a garden spray like this one from Chapin.
Many wonder if this is safe to use around pets and children, and as the instructions indicate, just make sure that surfaces are completely dry before allowing pets and kids near them again. The active ingredient is beta-cyfluthrin, which is quite effective at killing many indoor pests and not just bed bugs. The recommend re-applying it ever 7 to 10 days, and to be on the safe side, you should do several applications to make sure you take care of any leftover eggs or nymphs.
PT Alpine’s spray is ideal for smaller bed bug infestations where the problem hasn’t gotten out of hand.
The formula contains both Prallethrin to kill adults on contact and Pyriproxyfen to kill hatching eggs for up to seven months.
While many seem to purchase it for fleas, we found it to be particularly effective as a bed bug killer. You can spray it on the carpet, which is recommended for fleas, but they also state that you can apply it to anywhere bed bugs gather or where they travel. It isn’t a problem to spray pet bedding, luggage, furniture, headboards or box springs, but they don’t say anything about applying it directly to the mattress.
It is a bit on the pricey side, but if you have pets and bed bugs, we consider it a product worth purchasing simply because the two insects that you are most likely to deal with are fleas and bed bugs.
Do you prefer a natural, non-toxic spray that you can feel safe using around your children and your pets? If so, EcoRadier is one of the most effective products you can spray.
This product will target bed bugs at all life stages, so whether you found an adult scurrying across the bed or discovered their nesting area, spray this and you will target them all.
We were impressed that the product was able to obtain a USDA BioBased insecticide certification, which means that you will have no problem spraying it directly on your bed or using it around your four-legged friends.
So, how effective is this BioBased insecticide?
We find that it works best as a preventative product and to help take care of small bed bug problems. As with any product, you have to be active in treating the problem before it explodes, and this is especially true with natural products like this. It is not as strong as a chemical insecticide so it might require more work on your behalf to keep up with the problem.
If you don’t think that one 16-ounce bottle will be enough, they do offer it in a gallon size.
Eco Defense is quite similar to EcoRaider, and while we initially thought that they were simply bottling up the same product under a different brand name, it doesn’t appear that is the case. While both are USDA certified BioBased products, they are different.
EcoRaider is backed by the BBB, is a NPMA member (National Pest Management Association) and this product from Eco Defense is not. Does it work as well as EcoRaid? Not quite, but it is still worth mentioning in the top five.
This spray will work to kill adults, eggs, and nymphs quickly, and as an eco-friendly product, you will need to stay on top of them and apply the spray religiously. You can apply it to your mattress or your sheets without any staining issues, and it is safe to use around children and pets.
One of the nice things about this spray is that they offer you a money back guarantee, so if you aren’t happy with the results, you can send it back for a refund (within 60 days of your purchase). Many find the results to be satisfactory, but if you don’t just send it back for a refund.
This unique product from Pest Peeve intrigued us, so we gave it a shot.
The active ingredients include geranium oil, cedarwood oil, and sodium lauryl sulfate. Yes, that’s right – soap. The main liquid is distilled water and ethyl lactate (a solvent), and alpha-Cyclodextrin. Honestly, it sounds like something you could whip up at home in small batches, but we wanted to try it as-is.
The results were decent. Cedar oil will help discourage bed bugs as will geranium oil (rose geranium oil is a wonderful tick prevention oil), but the simple formula alone doesn’t seem to be strong enough to handle serious bed bug problems.
If you have used another product to help kill them, use a product like this as an “in between” spray to help prevent them from coming back.
As a standalone spray, we wouldn’t recommend it to help consumers cure a bad case of bed bugs.