Kill Mites in the Laundry

Does the Water in My Washing Machine Get Hot Enough to Kill Mites, Bacteria and Other Parasites in the Laundry?


A guide to killing fleas, ticks, lice, bird mites, demodex mites, cheyletiella mites, scabies mites, mange mites, springtails, bedbugs, mold, viruses, nail fungus, E. coli, streptococcus bacteria and staphylococcus bacteria on clothing and bedding.


Our callers often complain that they just can’t get the mites out of their laundry and cars. Through the years, we’ve listened to countless accounts concerning mite infestations that affect searing hot vehicles parked in states such as Florida or Texas. We are just as confused by this phenomenon as you are. Technically, temperatures above 135 degrees Fahrenheit or 57 degrees Celsius should be enough to destroy mites in vehicles, washer machines and dryers. When temperature control doesn’t seem to do the trick, many customers turn to our cedar oil products.


Within the mainstream medical community, it is widely known that essential oils are powerful against bacteria and parasites. In an article released by the National Library of Medicine, essential oils are characterized as effective alternatives for chronic scabies mite cases where permethrin and lindane fail. (View Source.) Unfortunately, these oils tend to be quite expensive. A tiny two ounce bottle of Tee Tree Oil can cost more than $10 in some areas of the U.S. That’s fine for skin treatment, but there’s just not enough liquid in the bottle to address laundry and other household problems. Cedar oil is a precious commodity manufactured in the United States, which makes it much cheaper to obtain in large containers. Our cedar oil is sold by the quart and gallon to Veterinarian’s and animal keepers, which makes it a great wholesale alternative to buying tiny bottles of cedar oil.


Products for Wash Water

To soak clothing in wash tubs or washing machines, try our Vet’s Choice Concentrate. This product was originally designed to add to bath water for pets who are infested with fleas, ticks or mites. Since the concentrate contains 90% cedar oil, it should not be used full strength on skin. Follow package instructions for dilution. This product may also be added to wash buckets when mopping hard wood floors or linoleum. Our Vet’s Choice Concentrate is found on our page for Animal Products.


Products for the Pre-Treatment of Laundry

To pre-treat clothing, try our Indoor Spray Formula. This is the same formula used to treat carpets, furniture and bedding without staining. It’s also the same formula used in our fog machines. Do not dilute this product, as it’s mixed exactly as it should be. Pre-treatment of laundry is a wise practice for those who store their clothing in hampers for several days before washing. An even better practice would be to store infested clothing in snap tight plastic containers, as mites can easily escape traditional wash hampers and find their way back into your home. Our indoor spray formula is found on our page for indoor pest control products.


Does Bleach Kill Mites and Bacteria?

Yes. Unfortunately, it cannot be used in wash loads containing colored items, and it tends to weaken fabric and wear clothing out more quickly. Bleach may also destroy the finish on hardwood floors. For the treatment of wood floors, saturate a Swiffer dry pad with our indoor formula. In addition to serving as a pesticide, the cedar oil will condition the wood. The wood will hold the scent of fresh cedar for weeks, which is good news because cedar is a notorious repellent used in organic bug control sprays. When it comes to mite infestation, it’s not enough to clean carpets and flooring. The most effective treatments will leave a scent to repel parasites from sprayed territory. Note that floors may be slippery after using this or any other oil based product, including a number of oil based wood cleaning products sold in stores.


More Advice Regarding Laundry

A mite infestation can be very serious and chronic. Chronic cases often require many lifestyle changes. Do not get into bed wearing the same clothing you’ve been wearing to lounge around the house. Bedtime clothing should come directly from a snap tight plastic tub used to store laundered clothing. Empty bedroom drawers and spray them with our indoor formula.


* Fancy materials such as silk should not be included in wash loads treated with essential oils. Stick to everyday articles such as t-shirts, blue jeans, casual wear, sheets, towels and pillowcases. When in doubt, do a patch test.