How to Kill Mites on Furniture

Laura Dixon

Dust mites accumulate easily in furniture, burrowing deep into fabric-covered surfaces and multiplying rapidly, until millions take up residence throughout your home. Fortunately, there are ways to kill these persistent pests on furniture and surrounding areas.

With the proper cleaning and preventative measures, it is possible to stop the mites in their tracks.

  1. Remove all bedding, linens, draperies and cloth furniture covers to be washed. Launder these items in a washing machine at hot temperatures, up to 140 degrees F, and dry them in a laundry dryer. If your linens won’t withstand a cycle through the washer and dryer, kill any mites that may be living on them by placing the linens in the freezer overnight.

  2. Protect your mattress and box spring, both prime mite breeding grounds, against the pesky insects by encasing it in a plastic or dust-proof cover that zips up (see Resources).

  3. Regularly vacuum all cloth-covered furniture, as well as any carpeted areas in the house, to effectively kill mites. Reinforce this anti-mite weapon by equipping your vacuum with double-thickness bags and quality filters to keep any mites from slipping through. You may want to invest in a good HEPA vacuum to increase the odds that more mites will die.

  4. Keep your pets off of the furniture whenever possible, as they tend to track in plenty of dust from outdoors or throughout the home, carrying along with them tens of thousands of mites.

  5. Tip

    According to an Environment, Health and Safety Online article, a quality vapor steam cleaner, when used regularly on carpet and other household fabrics, can be an effective defense against mites living in or around your furniture.


    Avoid a just-vacuumed area for about 20 minutes as any remaining dust or allergens will need to settle during this time.