Clothing Safety After Fogging a Home for Insects

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Insect issues not controlled by spraying may require whole-house fogging.

Controlling insect issues within a house can be handled through spraying or fogging. Using an insect fogger inside of a house requires extra safety measures be taken to help ensure your safety before, during and after the fogging process. From wearing safety gear to cleaning clothing after coming in contact with fogging chemicals, you will help ensure your own safety and the safety of those residing in the house by recognizing the lingering effects foggers leave behind.

Clothing Worn While Fogging

The clothing you were wearing while setting up and activating the fogger should be immediately taken off and placed in a plastic bag. You should seal the bag to prevent the fumes from escaping from the bag. This should be done as a precautionary measure even if you do not believe any of the insecticide was transferred on to your clothing. For an extra measure of safety, take a shower after removing your clothing and change into clean clothing.

Clothing Stored in the House

Depending on the manufacturer's stated instructions and your health condition, you may choose to wash all clothing left in the home. To prevent having to wash everything after fogging for insects, seal up clothing in plastic bags or storage bins to prevent the transfer of chemicals onto the clothing.

Safety During Set Up

To help protect yourself during the process of setting up the insect fogger, make sure to wear protective gloves and a face mask. You should wear a long sleeve shirt, long pants, socks and shoes while handling a fogger, even before it has been activated. This measure will help protect you in the event the fogging device leaks or has residual chemicals on the outside of the canister. If you are using a fogging machine which requires manual operations, cover as much skin and keep your eyes, mouth and nose covered during the fogging process.

Additional Safety Measures

You should wear goggles or protective eye wear when using a fogging device. This will prevent eye irritation or injury in the event the fumes or chemicals get in to your eyes. If you will be going back in to the house to check on the success of the fogging, you should wear goggles, a face mask and clothing to cover as much skin as possible. If you have sensitive skin, wear a hat or head covering to protect your scalp from chemicals which may still be present in the air. Make sure to wear protective gloves when removing the empty fogger as chemicals will be present on the outside of the container.

Odor Removal

Clothing worn while being around a fogger and the clothing close to where the fogging chemicals were used need to be aired out to help remove lingering odors associated with the insecticides used. If slight smells remain on clothing, hang clothing on a clothesline outdoors for a day or run clothing through a clothes dryer with dryer sheets to help remove odor. This method is fast and affordable, especially if the fogger was used close to a closet storing a multitude of clothing that absorbed chemical smells. Washing clothes may be required if airing out or running through the dryer does not remove the lingering smell.


Jennifer Hench

Jennifer Hench has been writing since 1990 on topics ranging from finance to technology. Her articles have appeared in "Network World" magazine, "Electrical Contractor" magazine as well as in other print and online media. Hench holds a Bachelor of Science in accounting and another in information systems from Lebanon Valley College and Lock Haven University.