Can Bed Bugs Climb Metal or Plastic? 3 Tips

Bed bugs are quite aggressive! 

I won’t be surprised if you found some atop your bedroom furniture like nightstands, bed frames, curtains, dressers, or baseboards ready to bites you

So, can bed bugs climb metal or plastic? Well, Yes, bedbugs are very good climbers and can scale both metal and plastic surfaces. However, if the surface is smooth and with no grooves for bedbugs’ feet to grip, they find it difficult to climb up.

Bed bugs do not fly but once bed bugs get on your kitchen countertops or bedroom furniture etc., don’t worry – these bugs prefer sitting still rather than moving around fast! 

Let’s dig into the details below.

Can Bed Bugs Climb Plastic? 

YES, but bed bugs have a difficult time climbing very smooth surfaces such as plastic, glass, and metal. 

Bed bugs climb, hide, and hang out on clothing closets, mattresses, and furniture. But plastic coverings on these objects may temporary relief but won’t protect against bedbugs for long. 

Can Bed Bugs Climb Plastic

For plastic rapping to be effective in controlling bed bugs on furniture, you must use a combination of methods including a fogger for massive bed bugs

Also, you must discover how else bed bugs use to reach your bed and other furniture. For example, bed bugs will climb up surfaces, get to the ceiling, and then fall over onto your bed.

Can Bed Bugs Climb Metal? 

Most polished metal surfaces are very smooth, making it difficult for bed bugs to gain any traction. But the bugs can struggle up some of these surfaces thanks to their strong grip or grasp

Can Bed Bugs Climb Metal

Bed bugs do not live on metal or wood; they’ll hide in narrow spaces around the human’s sleeping area. 

So, bed bugs might not climb up your bed or furniture frames if it is metal. But they can find another way to get up there. For example, they can use wood or concrete and fabrics (like curtains) that are close. 

  • Despite their difficulties climbing metallic surfaces, bedbugs are still able to get onto your bed or sitting area and suck human blood meal.

Once you get into bed, the bed bugs will emerge from their hiding place and bite you. The hiding place may include a mattress with no bed bugs encasement.

The few bed bugs disturbing your peace won’t grow into a larger pest problem without preventive care.


Although bed bugs cannot climb metal, you should still be vigilant in inspecting your home for any signs of the pests and take steps to eradicate them as soon as possible. 

How to Prevent Bed Bugs from Climbing Up My Bed?

Michigan State University’s extension department advises isolating the metal bed that has been infested with bedbugs to guarantee uninterrupted sleep and protection from bites.

After a restful sleep, it becomes easy to eradicate the bedbugs infesting your spaces.

  • So, you need to get rid of the bed bugs that live in your metal bed and create a barrier so that other bed bugs cannot jump on your bed. The “island” bed will be safe for them because of the barrier.
  • You might not need to throw away your bed, box spring, and mattress after a bedbug infestation. You may only need to seal them or treat them with bug spray.
  • Inspect and clean your footboard, headboard, and bed frame, to remove eggs and adult bedbugs.

Bed bugs can jump onto the bed if it is against the wall. To stop them from falling on your bed, move them away from the wall. Place interceptor devices (bowls or cups) under the legs of your bed to catch any bugs that fall off.

How to Control the Bedbug Infestation 

Bed bugs hatch from eggs and then take about seven weeks to grow into adults – (see tips for protecting yourself)! 

The following are steps to control the bed bug infestation;

  • Clean clothing, curtains, linens, and bedding using hot water plus high heat in the dryer. Place non-washable and stuffed items such as shoes or animal fabric toys in the dryer (for 30 minutes) to kill any bed bugs’ life in them. 

1. Heat treatment

By heating the infested fabrics or surface to about 120 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, you can kill bedbugs and their eggs – set your dryer at 30 minutes

Use a large commercial-sized clothes dryer set at high temperatures or bring home an electric space heater for your house in order to reach this temperature.

It is important not to use heat treatment inside closed spaces such as bedrooms due to fire hazards.

  • To fight bedbugs, you can also try black plastic bags in the car on a hot day or also use some portable heat chamber for the room.
  • Also, hiring an exterminator for whole-house treatment will use more proven and intensive treatments.

2. Steam Cleaning

Using a dry or wet steam cleaner at 130-degrees Fahrenheit to clean the affected surfaces with a diffuser can kill bedbugs and their eggs – with bed bug steamers

A dry cleaner will require you to pull out all of your furniture from the room, cover it with plastic wrap or old sheets, wet them down in order to prevent any water damage, and then use a steam cleaner on the fabric for about 15 minutes.

Steam cleaners are available at your local hardware store or on Amazon for about $200-$400.

3. Cold treatment

Freezing the home spaces to 0-degrees F treatment is not a long-term solution, but it can help in the meantime.

You’ll need to put all of your clothes and linens into airtight bags or bins with zipper locks and expose them in the freezer overnight or outside on an unheated porch.

A thermometer is useful for monitoring the temperature.

This can be a temporary solution until you have your home treated by an exterminator or other professional pest control service.

If possible, do not store any food in the freezer while it’s being used as cold treatment – especially if there are pets in the house who might access and potentially eat this food! 

  • If you are worried about a possible bedbug invasion in your home, you can begin by setting traps in suspect areas to confirm or dispel your fears. 
  • You can do this by placing each leg of your bed and other furniture into a container filled with water. You may also add some rubbing alcohol into the water to kill the bugs.
  • The water will temporarily keep the bugs from getting to you when you sleep. Bedbugs will float on water for a short while but die within minutes of being submerged.

4. Thorough Clean-up 

Also, scrub the mattress using some stiff brushes – these will remove the adult bedbugs and bug eggs too – and finally undertake appropriate vacuuming.

Bed bugs will take about seven weeks to develop from eggs and grow to the adult stage – and hence when there are many adults, these bugs have been around for over seven weeks. 

You will be shocked just how relentless bedbugs are to turn you into their dinner. The fact that they can’t climb metal or plastic should not guarantee you a good night’s sleep. 

You must take additional measures to keep off their nasty and painful bites by killing the bed bugs or preventing multiplication.

You can also pour some ammonia around the metal or plastic pipes or spray the bugs to discourage the bed bugs from scaling them. 

Where Will Bed Bugs Be Hiding? 

Bedbugs are masters of hiding and seek, and they will always find a nice corner in your bed or somewhere between the sheets to sleep.

Remember that bedbugs need proximity to their food source in order to survive, which is your bed.

But not just beds have bedbugs. Usually, they will look for any spaces where you sleep because they want to come near you when you sleep.

  • In lamps, electrical outlets, bed frames, and boxsprings
  • In curtains or nearby walls and carpets

The best defense against bedbugs is to take proactive steps and inspect the furniture, doorways, the floor of your bedrooms, and anywhere else you think a bedbug could be crawling.


Bed bugs are able to climb up nearly any type of material in an attempt to reach their host. But they’re unable to climb surfaces that are extremely smooth such as plastic, glass, or metal. 

But bedbugs can be difficult to control not just because they’re very determined that will go out of their way to find alternative routes to an ideal hiding spot. 

They can travel on a wall, floor, or even up the side of your bed.

Meanwhile, you’re trying to just get some sleep! How do you control them and protect yourself from these insects? Here’s how:

  • Buy sealable zippered mattress covers so they won’t be able to burrow into your mattress and suck your blood while you’re sleeping
  • Use a special bedbug spray on all of your furniture and any other items that are in contact with the floor

Also, keep up with regular vacuuming to get rid of all their hiding places such as under beds, couches and rugs. 

Please share your experience with bed bugs climbing metal or plastic.

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