Rid Your Home of Fleas with the Vacuum Cleaner

by Doris Donnerman
(last updated July 26, 2008)

If you bathe your dog and discover several fleas in its fur, it's a safe bet that its friends and family have staked a claim on your pet's bedding. And if the fleas are in your pet's bedding, that means they are also in your carpeting, drapes, bed linens, towel closets, and car. In other words, anywhere you live, a flea will live.

Fleas are parasites that sustain themselves with the blood of their host. A host can be dogs, cats, chickens, mice, rodents, birds, and humans. Not only an annoying pest, fleas are carriers of such diseases as typhus, tapeworms, and bubonic plague. From a health and safety standpoint, it is best to rid your home of fleas as soon as you see one. The best way to do that is with a regular routine of vacuuming. Follow these guidelines to rid your home of fleas using your vacuum cleaner:

  • Choose one entire weekend to rid your home of fleas. Remove pets to the outside, if possible, and have your family stay with friends, relatives, or neighbors.
  • Begin by removing all washable items from every room of the house. Drapes, curtains, furniture throws, bedding, pet bedding, fabric toys, pet toys, pillows, cushion covers, stored bedding, clothing—remove everything and wash it with very hot water and dry on high heat in the clothes dryer.
  • Move furniture away from the walls and into the center of each room.
  • Place a new vacuum cleaner bag inside of your vacuum, and start vacuuming the entire house, room by room. Sprinkle salt or borax on the floors as you go.
  • Periodically change the vacuum cleaner bag, placing it inside of a garbage bag, and immediately sealing it and removing it from the house.
  • Continue to vacuum, each room of the house, including hardwood floors. Use your crevice tool to vacuum, behind appliances, toilets, washing machine and clothes dryer, and pull your dishwasher from under the cabinet to vacuum behind it, if possible.
  • Once you've vacuumed the entire house, sprinkle borax or salt in every room and allow it to sit for at least two hours.
  • Vacuum each room again thoroughly, making sure you use your brush attachment to vacuum the walls and overhead light fixtures.
  • Sprinkle more borax or salt throughout the entire house. Spend the night with family, friends, or relatives, and return the next day to repeat the vacuum process again at least three more times.

Make sure that you frequently change the vacuum cleaner bag, sealing it inside of a garbage bag and removing it from the house each time. When you've completed the two-day vacuum process, you can put all of the furniture back into place, and replace everything you washed and dried. You will need to repeat the two-day vacuum process in about four weeks, continuing every six weeks, until you no longer see fleas in your home.

Author Bio

Doris Donnerman

Doris is a jack of all trades, writing on a variety of topics. Her articles have helped enlighten and entertain thousands over the years. ...

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