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There are no Valpas member hotels where I'm travelling. How can I try to stay safe? 

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Tue, 21 Jun 2022 10:57:18 GMT

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We are constantly growing, and the number of Valpas member hotels is increasing rapidly. However, we are aware that there still are locations around the world where there are no hotels that are guaranteed safe from bed bugs. A few other tools available can lower the risk of a bed bug infestation, although not eliminate it. We'll go through everything you need to know about traditional bed bug traps in this article. 

Bed Bug Traps: Everything You Need to Know

Bed bugs can be a nightmare. You wouldn't know how agonizing a series of nights with these creatures can be unless you are a victim. These bugs are so difficult to get rid of that you need always consult an exterminator to eliminate them. But before that, using bed bug traps can help you detect the condition.

Bed bug traps can be of different types. Passive bed bug traps work well for detection and, to a degree, prevention of bed bugs in constantly used rooms. Active bed bug traps should be used in the opposite, empty spaces, where there is no natural attractant, to detect the presence of bed bugs. These attract bed bugs that not only detect infections but can also reduce the scale of the infestation.

In this article, we take a deep look into how bed bug traps work, the issue with traditional bed bug traps and how newer technologies not only improve upon them but make them surpass even professional extermination methods. So, keep on reading to get an entire idea of the strengths and weaknesses of this type of device that is designed to remove bed bugs.

 

What is a Bed Bug Trap?

A bed bug trap is a reasonably effective means of detecting and minimizing the damage of a  bed bug infestation. Bed bug traps aren't like mice traps or bear traps where the trap more or less incapacitates the prey. These kinds of traps do not actively catch the bed bugs, but once they are trapped, it becomes difficult for them to get out of the trap.

It's up to you to decide what to do with them after they are trapped. Bed bugs aren't particularly good climbers. When you sleep, bed bugs in your room converge on your position and climb onto the bed using the bedposts. Bed bug traps are placed around the bedposts. They are like cups with an outer moat to keep the bugs from climbing out of the trap.

Bed bugs can't climb vertical bedposts well. It takes a few attempts to climb onto the bed successfully. This is what bed bug traps leverage. When they fall from the posts in failed attempts, they cannot climb back up because of the trap's structure. To make the trap more effective, little talcum powder can be added to make them slippery and more difficult to escape.

 Do Bed Bug Traps Work?

As mentioned, bed bug traps aren't like typical traps. When you use a mousetrap, you know that the trap will lure the mouse towards it. Also, the trap will partially incapacitate the mouse. This is the case in almost every trap people use to catch various prey.

But traditional bed bug traps are not like that. Unlike fly or mosquito traps, this trap keeps the bugs from climbing to your bed instead of actively catching and incapacitating them. You may also ask what about the bugs already on the bed or the mattress. This kind of drawback automatically asks about the efficiency of the traditional bed bug traps.

Bed bug traps work quite well. They are an effective method of catching bed bugs without putting in too much effort, and the cost is also reasonable. 

Types of Bed Bug Traps

There are mainly two types of bed bug traps; active and passive. Each has different functionality. Let's have a look at both of them below:

Active Bed Bug Traps: First, let's briefly discuss why bed bugs bite us. It will make it easier for you to understand both types. Bed bugs are attracted to the carbon dioxide released by our bodies. Also, our body warmth attracts them. When they have found themselves in a cosy place, the bugs spread pheromones to attract other bugs to join the party.

Active bed bug traps use similar methods. This type of trap uses chemicals to lure the bugs to the traps. Active traps may require electricity or any other power source to work. Some active traps use carbon dioxide for more effective bug capturing.

Their downside is that the amount of carbon dioxide they emit to lure the bugs is only a small fraction of what a human body does, so they should only be used when rooms are empty. Otherwise, the bugs will follow the stronger source of carbon dioxide, the human, making the trap useless. The quality of the lures varies a lot. Finally, you also need to replace the lure every few days, so they are only convenient for detecting bed bugs in empty rooms where you suspect you might have bugs. 

Passive Bed Bug Traps: Passive traps were also briefly discussed above. They do not work actively to capture or kill bed bugs but use them as a lure to the human body and then capture bugs on their way to the human body. These traps sit passively at the feet of the bedposts and wait for the bugs to enter the traps. The effectiveness of passive traps depends on a human lure present in the room and the design of the traps.

Passive traps are simple and easy to use, and they can detect bed bugs early to help prevent a large infestation of bed bugs. If you already have an infestation, passive traps will not help you much in getting rid of the bugs on your bed and in the room.

 Advantages of Bed Bug Traps

Although bed bug traps are not foolproof methods of bug control, they have quite a few advantages. Here are the advantages of bed bug traps:

Easy to Use: Passive bed bug traps are very convenient to use. You won't need any training or specially trained individuals to implement those traps. If you are using it for the first time, the simple instruction on the back of the pack or a YouTube tutorial is enough to get you started. However, recall how active traps require lure refilling every few days. 

Safe: Passive bed bug traps do not threaten children, pets, or any individual. They are harmless and completely passive. However, active bed bug traps, the ones that use chemicals, can pose health hazards. For example, Nattaro Labs traps carry a "Systemic health hazards" warning. 

Reusable: Passive plastic traps can be used again and again. They do not decay in time. Also, they don't get damaged after a long time of usage. After one night of operating, you can get rid of the bugs, clean the traps and start using them again, year after year. However, recall how active traps require lure refilling every few days. 

Great for assessment: As we have already said above, bed bug traps are not for completely getting rid of bugs from your house. If you suspect the presence of bed bugs, traps are excellent for confirming the suspicion. However, you still need to call an exterminator.

Affordable: Bed bug traps are usually made of plastic. They are very affordable and widely available. You can get them at any shop near your house or almost any online shop.

 What to Look for When Buying a Bed Bug Trap?

There are quite a few things that you should look into when buying bed bug traps. Here are those:

Type

The first thing to consider is whether you want active or passive bug traps. Passive traps are cheap and easy to use. But they don't offer as effective bug control as active ones. If you want to get rid of bed bugs as much as possible, both from your bed and your room, you should go for active traps.

They will attract the bugs using various methods like carbon dioxide emission, UV lighting and heat generation to attract bed bugs actively. Even though they might be costly, they are much better for the long run and can be a great way to save you money on professional extermination.

Design

There are various designs for both active and passive traps. Some passive trap designs offer easier installation. You can also put baits, powders, etc. Once the trap is full of bugs, it might get messy. You won't like the contact with so many bugs.

Many manufacturers design traps in a way so that you can get rid of the bugs from the traps without any contact. There are so many designs, each offering a different utility, so check a few designs before buying.

Having smart technologies installed on your trap is also a great plus. These traps keep track of a number of bed-bug-related information, such as how many have been trapped and when one has been trapped, letting you a brief glimpse into the effectiveness of your investment.

Lifespan

Interceptors last a very long time. They don't have any moving parts or chemical interaction, so they don't get damaged easily. So, you shouldn't worry much about their lifespan or warranty.

Active traps are more complex. They have electrical parts inside, require a battery, have chemicals inside, etc. So they might need some management. Even so, these do capture more bed bugs and are more effective. So, you will be more benefited in the long run.

Tips On Using Bed Bug Traps

For effective bug control, you should use multiple types of traps. One important thing to remember is that bed bug traps are not effective for bed bugs to prevent bed bugs fully.

Traditional bed bug traps, the ones we are discussing here, are also called bed bug interceptors or interceptor traps. Interceptor traps give you an overall idea about the presence of bed bugs in your room. Here is how to use them:

●  Make sure the traps are neat and clean.

●  Put the traps in all four-bed posts.

●  If you can put talcum powder in the cups, that's even better.

●  If there is an alternative route for the bugs to climb (like a hanging bed sheet), the traps won't be effective.

●  The interceptor traps won't work with the box cot.

●  You cannot catch the bugs already in the bed with passive traps. Use active traps for extermination.

You need to use refuge traps to catch the bugs already in the bed. These are like cards with glues in them. You have to put them on your bed in tight spots, like the crevices of the mattress. This provides an excellent hiding spot for the bugs, and they get caught in the glue.

 What To Do With Captured Bed Bugs?

If you keep the bed bugs inside the trap long enough, they will eventually die out. But the best thing to do would be to kill them yourself. When you have a bunch of bed bugs, it is difficult to say which are alive and which are not.

Our advice would be to take them and flush them down the tap or toilet. Bed bugs cannot survive immersion in water. 

 Conclusion

Bed bugs have been a common nuisance for generations. They are hardy and multiply exponentially. Controlling them is difficult, and it is only becoming more and more difficult due to their resistance to pesticides. Pesticides and other reactive solutions used to be the go-to solution to this problem, especially an active infestation. Bed bug traps were a step forward but still lacking in effectiveness to prevent infestations and hence, can effectively be only used for detection. 

Valpas is the only solution that gets people and hotels safe from bed bugs forever – in just 48 hours. Valpas is the new design standard used by 100s of hoteliers that frees guests in rooms from the bed bugs they may carry, so guests return home safely and the hotel never gets infested. Learn more about the Valpas bed bug safety standard here

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