do bed bugs live in wooden furniture
Kristina Davis

The great big question about bed bugs is, do bed bugs live in wooden furniture? Or do they just stay in bed parts, mattresses, and other similar locations?

I never liked bed bugs. They’re the type of bugs that will “bug” you both while you’re awake and while you’re sleeping.

So, I decided to act on it by finding out whether they can thrive in wood or not!

Yes, bed bugs can live in wooden furniture in the same way that they can live and thrive in their usual hiding places like under your bed, the seams, etc. You can get rid of them by using an insecticide or by cleaning and steaming your furniture.

Before answering the question, can bugs live in wood, let me first go over some of the signs of bed bug infestation in wooden furniture.

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Signs of Bed Bug Infestation in Wood Furniture

the signs of bedbugs infestation

Personally, I find these signs obvious, regardless of the material they’re breeding on.

The region where I live is known for the widespread infestation of bed bugs, and I’ve experienced it both as a kid and an adult.

Here are some signs you need to watch out for that would point to a bed bug infestation in your wooden furniture.

Itchy, Red, and Evident Insect Bite Marks in the Morning

Have you ever felt so itchy in the morning, and you don’t know what caused it?

Check the area of your legs and see if it’s reddish and inflamed – bed bugs are the culprits.

Could it be other insects? Well, possibly, but do note that mosquitoes and ants do not cause this type of redness and swelling.

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Bloodstains on Bedsheets, Pillowcases, and Linen

bloodstains on fabrics

I recently learned that bed bugs feed for at least half an hour (30 minutes) or until they overdrink their host’s blood.

During sleep, you could have crushed them unknowingly, resulting in the multiple bloodstains you see on your pillowcases, blankets, and bedsheets.

Sweet and Musty Smells and Odors

When you find out that they smell sweet and musty, then there’s a chance for you to love them instead. Kidding aside, these are the distinct smells they could give out.

However, the smell could vary from soft and mild sweetness to hard sweetness depending on the infestation that’s happening, says Orkin, a well-known pest control services company in the country says 

Egg Shells, Fecal Spots, and Empty Skin Sacks

egg shells

Last, but definitely not least would be the appearance of empty sacks of their skin or shells, as well as mild fecal spots.

They’re creatures, so they perform the same things we do.

Quite usually, I’ve seen these shells, sacks, and fecal spots at the bottom part of my bed – and it was almost always after waking up to harsh rashes around my legs in the morning.

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The question remains – can bed bugs live in wood?

Can they thrive on wooden surfaces and furniture? Or do they just stay in mattresses and other types of fabric?

Do Bed Bugs Live in Wooden Furniture?

Yes, bed bugs can live on wood and wooden furniture the same way they live in fabrics.

These brown, reddish-flat insects are small, about the size of a rice grain. Well, they don’t necessarily look for wood in a house.

What they’re typically looking for to thrive in would be an area that is hidden, concealed, and is not usually accessed by people.

bedbugs live in wooden furniture

That’s one of the primary reasons why they’re called bed bugs – you’ll find most of them within the folds, creases, as well as the seams of mattresses, linen, furnishings, wood, etc.

I used to think that they’re attracted to wood, but they’re actually not. Instead, they’re attracted to the spaces where they’re less likely to be seen by humans.

Do These Bed Bugs Eat Wood?

So, if they thrive on wood, then they should eat wood, right? They should survive with it, correct?

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In fact, no, that is not what the case is.

I have had bed bugs in my residence for a few weeks and I can vouch that they feed on humans.

They suck up the blood of their hosts – that’s what’s keeping them alive, and that is why they’re seen in locations where there’s less activity and more stationary moments.

They simply use wood to hide and conceal themselves for them to stay alive and not get exterminated!

Can Change to Metal Furniture Minimize Bed Bugs?

change from wood to metal

No, this is a myth about bed bugs. These annoying insects don’t hold preferences for whether they’ll strive in wood or in metal.

They even hide in some toys as long as they feel they’re hidden!

Changing to metal, brass, and even glass furniture is not the best and most ideal solution to get rid of them.

Although we commonly see bed bugs in wood and fabrics, they won’t hesitate to infest metal furniture if the area is concealed or hidden.

3 Methods on How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs in Your Wooden Furniture?

Approaching the problem isn’t too difficult. In fact, you can simply hire a pest control company and have them take care of it.

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methods to get rid bedbugs

Doing it every week for a month can exterminate bed bugs on wood furniture completely.

But what if you don’t like the idea of spraying chemicals all over your home? What if you don’t want to pay the excessively high fees?

I found various ways how you can get rid of bed bugs without the need for a pest control services company!

Method #1: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs Using a Homemade Insecticide

There are various mixtures and DIY approaches for bed bug insecticides.

But the most common would be the mixture of vinegar, cleaning wood furniture, and essential oil.

Mix 2 parts of wood cleaner with 1 part vinegar, and about 5 drops of the essential oil scent of your choice.

homemade insecticide

Shake and mix these ingredients properly until they become a single type of liquid in terms of color and scent.

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Spray or wipe the area where the bed bugs are and let the furniture dry out under the sun.

Do this once every week and you can expect the bed bugs to be gone!

Using Standard Insecticide

If you have regular or standard insecticide, sitting inside your home and waiting to be used, then use it.

Just make sure that you take all precautionary measures before doing so.

It contains poison and cyanide, so have people leave the room or the area where you’ll spray it on for at least an hour.

Method #2: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs Using High Heat From Steam

Another option you have is to get rid of bed bugs using a steamer.

This is usually what I recommend to homeowners who do not like pushing the effort of applying a solution to their wooden furniture.

high heat from steam

High heat temperatures are known as an effective and ideal solution to kill insects.

You simply need to add hot water to the steamer, and then steam out the crevices, seams, cracks, and the hidden parts of your furniture.

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Keep this on for at least 90 minutes or (1 and a half hours).

NOTE: Your hot water doesn’t need to be boiling, but I highly recommend that you put boiling water inside the steamer.

Method #3: Getting Rid of Bed Bugs Using a Vacuum Cleaner

Last, but most definitely not least is by using a vacuum cleaner.

These pests, contrary to what you might have believed in, do not attach themselves to wooden furniture.

They simply hide from people, so using a vacuum cleaner could be an effective way of getting rid of these pesky insects.

use a vacuum cleaner

And if you use a vacuum cleaner, you don’t just help yourself get rid of bed bugs, you also clean the furniture from dirt, dust, and hair, too!

It’s like you’re hitting 2 birds with one stone!

NOTE: When you do this method, make sure that you use a powerful vacuum to catch everything, including the eggs they could have laid. Vacuum everything from your wooden furniture, upholstery, textiles, carpets, etc.


In case you feel like you need more information, here are some of the most asked questions about bed bugs living in wooden furniture.

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questions about bedbugs

How Long Can Bed Bugs Live on Furniture?

The typical lifespan of bed bugs is around 3 weeks. But, if the temperature is below 25 degrees Fahrenheit or -3 degrees Celsius, they wouldn’t last 2 weeks.

They will die if they’re exposed to temperatures higher than 45 degrees Celsius or 113 degrees Fahrenheit for a week.

What Kind of Furniture Do Bed Bugs Live In?

They’re not picky, per se, about where they thrive and breed. What matters to them the most is the type of space where they’ll be residing.

Bed bugs love the harbor in shallow and narrow spaces and are typically close to where humans sleep because that’s what they eat.

They’re nocturnal creatures and strike in the night.

Final Words

In case you’re wondering and asking, do bed bugs live in wooden furniture, the answer is yes!

They’ll live and thrive in wood, metal, fabric, or wherever they want if the space is enough for them to hide and conceal themselves.