How to Find Bed Bugs in Your Car—and How to Get Rid of Them

By | January 25, 2019

Mattresses and sofa cushions are among the most obvious places to check for bed bugs. But these sneaky creatures can also find some unexpected hideouts—including your own car.

Bye-bye, bed bugs!

Bed bug Cimex lectularius Akos Nagy/Shutterstock

A bed bug infestation in your car, although rare, is no minor inconvenience. These many-legged hitchhikers can easily access every place you go, just for starters. And once they reach your front (or back!) door, they can be much harder to get rid of. “As much as the thought of having bed bugs in our car is alarming, it is much worse having an infestation in the home where there are many dynamic components and people involved,” says Jody Green, Ph.D, an urban entomologist at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Keep bed bugs at bay by following these simple tips. Check out the 16 secrets bed bugs don’t want you to know, but are crucial for keeping them at bay.

Telltale sign of bed bugs: Dark spots on the seats or floor mats

Business car interior. Rear leather seats.AlexandrMakedonskiy/Shutterstock

Bed bugs can sneak into your car via clothing, purses, moving boxes, and even books, Green says. To prevent these pests from getting the best of you, closely inspect areas of your vehicle that are made with fabric. One of the most common clues of an infestation will be small fecal or blood stains near the seams of the seats, cracks around the console or glove box, and edges of floor mats. Don’t forget to search car seats or other fabrics like blankets as well.

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Telltale sign of bed bugs: Exoskeletons near cracks and crevices

How to Find Bed Bugs in Your Car—and How to Get Rid of ThemDmitrii Erekhinskii/Shutterstock

According to Terminix, bed bugs shed their exoskeletons five times before reaching adulthood, or about once a week. Look for those exoskeletons in places where bed bugs love to hide, such as between your seats and inside the glove compartment or center console. Pro tip: Use double-sided tape to inspect any hard-to-reach areas, including the edges of seat cushions and floor mats.

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