Can I Flea Bomb One Room and Stay in the House?

Patricia Oelze
by Patricia Oelze
Flea bombs are effective at killing fleas and similar pests, but they are also harmful to humans. It is never safe to stay in the house even if you only use a flea bomb for one room. Whether it be taking safety precautions or figuring out how much time to let the house air out, let’s explore why you should never stay in the house even if you only flea bomb one room.

Fleas are a nightmare for any homeowner whether you have pets or not. Sometimes, flea activity stays local to a single room or area in the house without spreading. So, can you flea bomb one room and stay in the house?

It is unsafe to stay in the house even if you only flea bomb one room. The insecticides in a flea bomb can seep through cracks and travel through the air in your home leaving behind a residue that lasts for 14 days. There are several health risks if you stay in the house, such as difficulty breathing, conjunctivitis, nausea, and vomiting.

Luckily, you can reduce the hazards associated with flea bombs if you take safety precautions. The most important thing is to avoid ignition sources and cover food or water before you use a flea bomb in a single room. Follow along as we explore why it is unsafe to stay in the house when you use a flea bomb.

Can You Stay in the House With a Flea Bomb?

You cannot stay in the house with a flea bomb because the insecticides are harmful to humans. Homeowners need to leave the house even if you only flea bomb one room at a time. It is also ineffective to flea bomb in a single room in many cases because that cannot completely eradicate the fleas.

It is difficult to eliminate all of the eggs and remaining fleas if you bug bomb one room. Staying in the house while you flea bomb even a single room is a serious threat to your respiratory health.

How Dangerous are Flea Bombs?

Flea bombs are generally safe unless you breathe them in or stay in the house while in use. However, they contain strong insecticides that can pose several health risks for humans, such as:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Sore throat
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Central nervous system damage

The insecticides in many flea bombs are carcinogenic, but you can minimize health risks if you take precautions. Breathing difficulties, nausea, throat irritation, dizziness, and more severe side effects are linked to direct exposure. Staying inside while you flea bomb the house is how you are most likely to experience negative side effects.

Failure to shut off your refrigerator and air conditioner or cover food and water sources can also cause health risks. Flea bombs leave behind residue that is harmful to consume, and you must follow the fogger’s safety instructions.

Safety Precautions

You can safely flea bomb a single room if you leave the house and take safety precautions. It only takes 10-20 minutes to prepare before you flea bomb your house. However, you must prepare the entire house even if you only plan to flea bomb one room.

1. Cover Food and Water

A flea bomb can taint any food and water that you leave out and render it unusable. The first thing you should do before you flea bomb a room in your house is to remove or cover any food and water that is left out. Empty water bowls for pets and put away bowls of fruit or vegetables that you have on the counter.

Immediately dispose of food or water if you leave it out while you flea bomb the house. The insecticides in a flea bomb are harmful to humans and animals, and it isn’t safe to eat food that’s exposed to it. Make sure to cover or hide your toothbrush as well or wash it afterward so that you don’t consume any insecticide.

2. Remove Toys and Pets

Children’s toys are easy to forget about, but residue from flea bombs can cling to them for weeks. Small children and pets frequently put toys in their mouths, and that is the same as eating food contaminated with insecticides. Your pets are also at risk and flea bombs can harm them as well, so you need to remove them from the house.

The best method is to put all of the children’s and pet’s toys in a bag and take them with you when you leave the house. Open the windows after 2 hours, then wait another 2 hours before you return your pets or toys to the house.

3. Close Doors and Windows

Close the doors and windows in the room that you are flea bombing to contain it. The insecticides will still spread throughout your house, but it will concentrate them to one primary room. Read the label on your flea bomb to find out if there are restrictions for what size room you can set it off in.

For example, you cannot put most flea bombs in small spaces such as closets, cabinets, and storage spaces. Close the window as well if the space is large enough so that you don’t waste the flea bomb.

4. Open Cabinets and Drawers

Open the cabinets and drawers in the room to maximize the efficiency of your flea bomb. Fleas can easily hide in crevices where they may survive during a flea fogger. Remove essential items or fabrics that you don’t want insecticide residue to soak into or else you will need to wash them afterward.

5. Avoid Ignition Sources

Flea bombs have the potential to cause or worsen a fire, and you should never set them off near an ignition source. Pilot lights, water heaters, circuit breakers, and other electrical and gas appliances can all cause an explosion while running near a flea bomb. Turn off these ignition sources before you use a flea bomb even if they are not near the room you are bombing.

The insecticides can travel in the air throughout your house and can react with distant ignition sources. There is a bigger hazard for a fire or explosion if you place a flea bomb near an ignition source in a confined space.

6. Turn off Appliances

Not only are appliances such as refrigerators ignition sources, but they are also susceptible to contamination. The insecticides in a flea bomb can work their way into a refrigerator and taint your food so that it is harmful to eat. Residue from the flea bomb can remain in your refrigerator for weeks, and it can waste your food.

Never set off a flea bomb near a refrigerator or other appliances such as microwaves and ovens. Avoid putting a flea bomb near anything that comes into contact with food that you eat. Turn off your air conditioner so that you don’t spread the insecticide and reduce the fire hazard.

How Long to Wait for Flea Bomb

You must wait for an average of 3 hours before you reenter your home after you flea bomb it. It is unsafe to enter the home before 2 hours, and it rarely takes longer than 4 hours for the air to clear. The average can fogger or flea bomb dispenses all of the insecticides into the air within 10 minutes.

After that, the insecticides dissipate throughout the room and house leaving behind a residue. The safest way to reenter your home is to open the windows after 2 hours and let the house air out for another 2 hours. You can safely go back inside, vacuum the floors, wash your clothes, and wash your bedding after you air out the house.

Do You Need Pest Control Services?

Get free, zero-commitment quotes from pro contractors near you.

Related Questions

Are flea bombs safe for pets?

Flea bombs are not safe for pets because they contain a pesticide that can harm animals as well as fleas. The pesticides in flea bombs are strong and can linger for 14 days, so you’ll need to clean surfaces such as floors to remove remaining residues. That will make it safer for your dogs, but it may dimmish the efficacy of the flea bomb to remove the insecticide residue.

Do flea bombs work?

Flea bombs can effectively kill fleas, but they may not be able to kill all of the fleas in your home. A flea bomb may not work if there are fleas or flea eggs that are lodged in the carpet or dense fabrics. However, the pesticides in flea bombs can effectively stick to most other surfaces and in some cases kill all of the fleas in your home.

Are flea bombs safe for plants?

You can use a flea bomb without harming your plants, and it is perfectly safe. Many insecticides cannot harm plants, but consumable plants may suffer from flea bombs and similar foggers. Otherwise, you can leave the average house plant in your home when you use flea bombs.

Do flea bombs leave residue?

Flea bombs leave an insecticide residue that can stick to surfaces in your home for 14 days. Generally, flea foggers come with instructions that recommend that you leave the residue alone so that the insecticides can work. The insecticide residue that flea bombs leave behind is why you must cover food and water sources before you fog the house.

Summing It Up

You cannot flea bomb one room and stay in the house because you may inhale the insecticide or get it in your eyes or throat. Cover all of the food and toys in your house before you use a flea bomb. Unplug your refrigerator to protect your food and turn off your air conditioner to prevent insecticides from spreading.

Open the windows throughout your house even if you only flea bombed one room. Vacuum your floors and immediately wash any bedding that was out during the flea bombing. Let the flea bomb residue sit for 14 days to make sure that all of the fleas and eggs die.

Related Guides

Patricia Oelze
Patricia Oelze

I am a DIYer who loves writing about anything home-related. When I am not writing, you can find me studying for my PhD in Psychology, photographing nature, and swimming at the lake with my grandkids.

More by Patricia Oelze