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Store-bought insect pest control products may work to kill individual insect pests when they are encountered within homes, but numerous research studies have found that these products largely fail to eradicate indoor insect pest infestations. Pest control professionals and entomologists working at university extension offices throughout the United States are frequently asked about total-release pesticide foggers, or “bug bombs” as they are commonly known.

Advertisements often state that certain bug bomb products will effectively eradicate cockroach, bed bug and ant infestations within homes. This claim is hard to believe given that most pest control professionals now rely mostly on heat treatments to eliminate bed bug infestations. Heat treatments are now considered the gold standard of bed bug control methods because most professional-grade insecticides have proven ineffective at ridding homes of bed bug pests. Cockroach pests in the US have also been developing a resistance to insecticides, and this is particularly true when it comes to German cockroaches, which is the most common roach pest species found within homes in the US.

Some studies provide evidence that bug bombs may be somewhat effective at ridding homes of airborne insect pests, like gnats, flies and mosquitoes, but the dubious claim that bug bombs adequately address roach and bed bug infestations has been thoroughly debunked by numerous studies. In fact, a surprisingly large number of house fires and indoor explosions have been caused by bug bombs. These catastrophes were the only incidents that saw bed bug and roach infestations fully eradicated as a result of using bug bombs.

Bug bombs have caused indoor explosions that resulted in the complete destruction of multiple types of structures, including apartment buildings, office buildings and single family homes. Most bug bomb products release flammable chemicals into the air within homes, which is why these products come with a warning stating that all indoor flames, like candles and pilot lights, must be put out before activating a bug bomb. Explosions have also occurred due to the presence of lit cigarettes. In short, bug bombs are not worth the money or the hassle.

Have you ever known a person who had success with bug bombs?