Thinking about using an ultrasonic repeller for bed bugs? Think again.
Do Electronic Bed Bug Repelling Devices Actually Work?
What are electronic bedbug repellents? Electronic devices that produce an ultrasonic frequency are often touted as an alternative method of repelling bedbugs. These methods are also sometimes referred to as high-pressure ultrasonic sound waves,
How do electronic bedbug repellents work? Some claim to utilize your house existing wiring to send electromagnetic waves flowing through the wiring, thus repelling pests nesting within the walls, or emit a stream of negative ions which force them to vacate their nests. Others claim to utilize ultrasonic, or very high pitched, sound. They are most typically plugged directly into an electric wall outlet or via an adapter cord.
Snake oil? There is NO independent scientific data, (and scarce anecdotal evidence) that these claims are true. The vast body of evidence indicates that these sonic repellent devices are virtually useless at managing a bedbug infestation. Electromagnetic, sonic and/or ultrasonic energy will not kill bedbugs, and there is no scientific data that substantiates the claim that they are not even effective repellents. Conclusion: ultrasonic bed bug devices do NOT function as advertised, and are NOT effective bedbug solutions. Consumers should consider them a waste of time and money in their fight against bedbug infestations.
The evidence On May 3rd, 2001, the Federal Trade Commission's Division of Enforcement (which exists in part to protect the consumer from fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business practices) warned more than 60 manufacturers and retailers of ultrasonic pest-control devices for making claims without substantiated scientific evidence, citing the FTC Act, which prohibits false and deceptive advertising. Specifically, explicit claims about the products' capability to eliminate rodents or repel insects were not adequately supported. -"FTC Warns Manufacturers and Retailers of Ultrasonic Pest-control Devices", www.ftc.gov
Need more evidence? WedMD reports that according to new research in the Journal of Economic Entomology, researchers from Flagstaff, Arizona observed "no differences in the number of bedbugs in the area" when using 4 different ultrasonic bedbug devices in accordance with manufacturers instructions
Counter productive? In many cases, these ultrasonic bedbug devices actually emit a small amount of heat energy, which can function as a short-range attractant for bedbugs.
Even if sonic repellent devices do work to repel bedbugs (which they don't)... Although seemingly counter-intuitive, repelling bedbugs is NOT what you want. Bedbug repellent devices will only force the bedbugs deeper into your home, or into a neighboring unit where they can quickly reproduce and ultimately return. If you simply repel them but do not treat the source of the issue, the infestation will simply grow and never be handled properly. An appropriate treatment will kill all of the adult bedbugs, nymphs, and eggs, so that the population is completely decimated and cannot simply return again and again.
"Never have [Ultrasonic Bedbug Devices] proven themselves to be effective control tools." Michael F. Potter, PhD, entomologist at the University of Kentucky in Lexington.
"...the research does not support the claims that the manufacturer makes. They typically don’t work." Susan C. Jones, PhD, associate professor of entomology at Ohio State University in Columbus.
How to actually kill bedbugs permanently Your efforts would be better spent on other trusted methods of killing bedbugs, proven techniques that have worked for thousands of homeowners and Pest Control professionals. With a little bit of work, it is possible to exterminate bedbugs without calling in an expensive exterminator (which can cost from hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on the severity of the infestation and the square footage of the living area). Read The Ultimate Guide to Killing Bedbugs
Source: Efficacy of Commercially Available Ultrasonic Pest Repellent Devices to Affect Behavior of Bed Bugs (Hemiptera: Cimicidae), J. Econ. Entomol. 105(6): 2107-2114 (2012); K. M. Yturralde AND R. W. Hofstetter.
-- Please refer to all manufacturer instructions and warnings when using a bed bug control product. Pest Control Info is an independent resource. This site receives compensation from the Amazon Affiliates program, which allows us to run this site at no cost to you. Your purchase price, and this review are NOT effected. Pest Control Info receives NO compensation from the manufacturers of CimeXa, Diatomaceous Earth, or any other product. We do not necessarily endorse any bedbug products that may appear on the 3rd party ads on this site, which will be clearly marked as such. We are not responsible for any inaccuracies or omissions, or any new information that has been released since the time of publication, or your actions taken as a result of any of these things. If you have any doubts about your ability to safely utilize any of these pest control methods, please consult a professional bed bug exterminator before attempting them. You can find a trusted local exterminator here. Read more about us.