Does Steam Cleaning and Vacuuming KILL Dust Mites?

Did you know that if you have a dust mite allergy that using a Steam Cleaner and Vacuum Cleaner can help with the dust mite problem? The correct vacuum cleaner contributes to getting rid of the eggs and the food that the dust mites eat, while the steam cleaner kills them with intense heat.

In this post, we want to talk about the best ways to use a steam cleaner and vacuum cleaner to kill dust mites. We show you the correct methods and tips for what to use and how to use it. Following these steps can help you live a life with fewer dust mites and allergies.


Before we get into it, I have found a great video how to get rid of Dust Mites quickly…

Items Mention in Video

What You Need

If you want to do the job properly, you need the right tools. You might be wondering if you can just Vacuum up dust mites and not use a steam cleaner. Or you might be thinking the opposite and just steam cleaning only.

The truth is if you want to do the most in the way of getting rid of Dust Mites then you need a  Steam Cleaner and the Correct Vacuum Cleaner. It’s only effective when you use both items.

You might have noticed that I keep saying “the correct” vacuum cleaner. You can’t use just any old vacuum cleaner; these little guys are tiny. A standard vacuum will actually just suck them up and blow them back out and most of the time they will survive.

The Vacuum Cleaners with the HEPA filters will work the best. If you have a vacuum with a HEPA filter that is more than 6 months old, then you need to go ahead and replace it. Most of the filters will last a year, but I like to play it safe. You can find HEPA Vacuum Cleaner Filters here* if you need one.

As for the Steam Cleaner just about any will do. I would avoid the ones you see all over the TV; they’re not really built for what we’re trying to do (some lack the attachments that make life easier). I’m a fan of the McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Steam Cleaner that you can find here.*

Test First

Before you get too involved with getting rid of dust mites due to allergies or what have you – it’s best to test to see if you even have dust mites. If you don’t have dust mites, then you could be fighting an imaginary battle.

The way to test if you have dust mites is by buying a Dust Mite Kit here*. It’s a very simple way to see if you have dust mites.

You could also get tested for the allergy by your doctor. It’s best to talk to your doctors about anything when it comes to stuff like this.

Get Rid of Dust Mites

To get rid of Dust Mites you must understand what they hate. Here is a list of things that dust mites hate…

  • The Sun – Open as many windows as possible to let the Sun in. These little guys love dark areas and blinding them with the warm brace of the Sun Kills them.
  • Humidity – Dust mites actually drink the water in the air, if the air lacks water then they die. You can pick up a humidifier to suck out all the excess moisture in the air. You can use a Humidity Meter like this one here* to keep track of how much moisture is in the room. Anything under 40% to 50% kills the dust mites. Avoid going under 30% humidity.
  • Wool – If you wake up sneezing, then you might want to consider wool bedding. Wool naturally repels dust mites and sleeps well too. Wool also sleeps cool when it’s hot and warm when it’s cold – it’s a miracle sleeping material if you ask me.
  • Steam – Dust mites just can’t handle the heat. It’s best to also wash your clothing and bedding in hot water to kill the dust mites.

Vacuum First

Since we understand what dust mites hate and are doing the things they hate we can move on. What you want to do is vacuum everything.

Yes, everything.

The vacuum will get the eggs and the food (dust) that these guys like to eat. For places that are delicate that you can’t use a vacuum on just use a duster or a rag to dust things off. If you have an air purifier with a HEPA filter make sure to have it on full blast, this will help to collect the dust which will have the dust mites in them.

Don’t forget to vacuum the mattress too; this is the area where you want to focus most on. You spend hours sleeping on your mattress, and you don’t want to overlook this area.

What Vacuum Should You Buy for Dust Mites?

Did you know the UV light can kill dust mites? That’s why they hate the Sun. Did you also know you can get a Vaccum Cleaner that has a UV light built-in that also works perfectly for mattresses? If the problem is serious enough I would consider a vacuum cleaner that has the UV light built in for killing dust mites.

A HEPA Filter Vacuum Cleaner works well to get rid of dust mites. To be honest, you can get these vacuums just about anywhere. HEPA filters have actually become commonplace, and the only real concern is to replace the filter every 6 months (or one year if you want, but 6 months if you’re me).

I actually would go with a Shop Vacuum like this one* with a HEPA filter on it. I’m a huge fan of a Shop Vacuum for around the home. Shop Vacuums are durable, affordable, and can suck up just about anything. I feel like you can do more for longer with a good Shop Vacuum and that is why I always recommend them, but really any HEPA Filter Vacuum will work.

Steam Clean Next

Once you have vacuumed as much as you can with a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter, then you can move on to Steam Cleaning.

When it comes to the mattress, it can be a sticky situation with Steam. Even though the Steam will kill Dust Mites, the mattress can trap the moisture from the Steam. Drying the mattress is a whole another problem you don’t want to deal with. I would stick to using a UV Light Vacuum instead. If you must use Steam to clean the mattress make sure to use a Shop-Vac or Wet/Dry Vacuum to dry the mattress out. Leaving warm moisture behind is bad and can attract new dust mites.

When it comes to steam cleaning couches and upholstery, I have a post about that here.

For cleaning carpet rugs here is an excellent video below. I would recommend using the correct attachment and microfiber rags.

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