Nobody wants to deal with a bed bug infestation in their home or apartment. They crawl on your body while you're sleeping and leave itchy bites all over your skin. Worse, they're very hard to get rid of once you have them. Everyone knows that you can pick up bed bugs in a hotel room, but any place that sees a lot of human traffic can have bed bugs, even your local laundromat. Here are three laundromat mistakes that can bring bed bugs into your home.
Washing your clothes in cold water
Some people like to wash their clothes in cold water to save energy or to not damage their clothes, and while this is fine when you have your own washing machine, it's not a great idea in a laundromat. This is because bed bugs can survive a trip through the washing machine if you use cold water. They will die after being exposed to high temperatures of over 46°C (115°F) for more than 7 minutes, so make sure to always use the hot wash cycle.
Folding your clothes inside the laundromat
You should never put your clothes on the communal folding tables that laundromats provide. This is because everyone else puts their clothes there, and you have no way of knowing if the last person who used the folding table had bed bugs crawling through their clothes. Instead, take your clothes back to your apartment to fold them. Place them on top of a white or light-colored sheet when you fold them, this way, it'll be easy to see bed bugs crawling out of your clothes.
Leaving your clothes unattended
Sitting in the laundromat all day is annoying, but leaving to do other errands is a dangerous gamble. If you aren't back in time to take your clothes out of the washer or dryer, someone else may do it for you, and that person may not be as careful as they should be. They may sit your clothes in their own (possibly infested) laundry basket, they may sit your clothes on the folding table, or they may just throw your clothes on the floor. Stay in the laundromat until your laundry is done to make sure that nobody else handles your clothes.
If you're not careful, you might bring more than clean laundry home from the laundromat. Make sure to avoid making these three mistakes or you could end up with a bed bug infestation inside your home or apartment. Learn more about bed bugs and pest control if you are interested.