No one wants to share their space with cockroaches. They’re gross, they spread harmful bacteria, and they have a tendency of appearing when you least expect it.
Whether you’ve seen a single cockroach or multiple cockroaches in your home, you’re probably eager to find out how to get rid of them. We’ve included the most common ways to get rid of cockroaches and any limitations these methods have in comparison to booking a professional cockroach control treatment.
Signs Of A Cockroach Infestation
Before we start guiding you on how to get rid of cockroaches, it’s important to know the warning signs of a cockroach infestation. Like many pests, cockroaches are notorious for hiding during the day, making it hard to tell if you have cockroaches or not — you may never see them!
If you need more guidance or proof to know if you’re dealing with a cockroach infestation, take note of these clear warning signs:
- Cockroaches leave an unpleasant odour. If you’re smelling a musty scent lingering around the house you could have cockroaches!
- It’s common to see black circular drops or dark brown smears along horizontal surfaces close to skirting boards.
- If water is left pooling anywhere in your home, cockroaches will leave brown, irregular smear marks along the floor or skirting boards after crawling through it.
- Shed skin close to where cockroaches like to hide (near small cracks and crevices). Cockroaches shed their skin 5 to 8 times before they’re adults, which gives you the chance to see them without really seeing them!
- Cockroaches can drop egg capsules (called ootheca) that contain multiple eggs.
- Any live or dead cockroaches found in your home (even just a single one) is cause for concern.
- Worst case scenario, you’ve seen a cockroach in or near your food!
If you’ve come across any of the above signs, you’re most likely already dealing with a cockroach infestation.
How To Get Rid Of Cockroaches
Now that you’re more confident you’re dealing with a cockroach infestation, we’ve included common do-it-yourself ways of getting rid of cockroaches and why they don’t work as well as a professional cockroach control treatment.
1. Cockroach Baits
For do-it-yourselfers at home, cockroach baits are marketed as the best way to get rid of cockroaches. But for them to work, you have to know how to use them!
There are three main types of cockroach baits — liquid, gel, and solid. These baits can usually be found at your local hardware store or supermarket. Though gel baits are used by most professional pest control technicians, they are only used in places where you can’t flush out cockroaches.
Limitations To Using Baits
Though baits may seem like the most popular, or easiest way to get rid of cockroaches, they are a better way of drawing them out than getting rid of them entirely. Baits are best used alongside aerosols and dust.
Another downside to using baits at home is that they don’t last long and will eventually become unpalatable. If you’ve placed the bait in the wrong spot you risk wasting your baiting efforts entirely with a spoiled product.
Baits are also a huge food source for cockroaches, but this means your single bait faces competition between more than one colony. If you don’t bait all source areas where cockroaches have been found, you’re likely going to continue to see cockroaches return.
Professional pest control experts know where to look — we’re trained for it! We’ll inspect every inch of your home and use not just baits, but professional sprays and dust to properly treat your cockroach infestation.
2. Insecticides & Surface Sprays
Over-the-counter insecticides and sprays are a highly accessible option for controlling a cockroach problem in your home. They are commonly sold as liquids or aerosol sprays.
These sprays and dust are meant to be placed within the cracks, crevices, and areas of your home that cockroaches are most likely to congregate, so that cockroaches that come in contact with the product will be around it long enough to absorb it.
Limitations To Using Over-The-Counter Insecticides
The biggest limitation to using over-the-counter insecticides or sprays is that homeowners aren’t trained to find all the areas of concern. Without treating any and all harbourage points, you risk not treating your cockroach infestation.
More importantly, sprays don’t work well enough to penetrate the cavities of a home. Pest control professionals, like us, use fine dust that will completely fill a cavity. Dust is incredibly hard to come by over-the-counter and if used improperly, can be harmful to homeowners. A small puff of dust in the right spot can solve your cockroach problem — less is more!
3. Cleaning Up Your Home
A clean home is the best defence against cockroaches! Some helpful tips to make sure your home isn’t a welcoming place for cockroaches are to:
- Store all your food in sealed containers.
- Clean up food and drink spills — immediately!
- Have a tight lid for your rubbish bin and take it out regularly.
- Empty and wash out pet bowls every evening and don’t leave them sitting on the floor.
- Monitor any compost bins.
Limitations To Keeping Your Home Clean
It’s true that keeping your home clean is the best way to keep cockroaches away, but it won’t necessarily get rid of the infestation you’re already dealing with. A professional cockroach control treatment will effectively flush out the cockroaches from your home, and proper cleaning practices will help keep them away — for good!
4. Fix All Cracks & Gaps Wherever Possible
Fixing cracks or sealing gaps in and around your home including cracks around air ducts or electrical boxes, large gaps near windows and doorways, and gaps near piping, is a good way to keep cockroaches from roaming in and out of your home.
Limitations To Fixing Cracks & Gaps In Your Home
This method is another preventable cockroach control method rather than a way of truly getting rid of cockroaches in your home. To make sure you feel comfortable in your home, we recommend a professional cockroach control treatment alongside these repairs.
5. Repair Any Leaks Or Broken Pipes That Cause Pooling Or Excess Water
Water is a huge food source for cockroaches — a single drop can sustain a number of those dirty pests!
Spotting and fixing any plumbing issues or pooling in your home can be an effective way to rid your home of cockroaches. This includes keeping your tubs and sinks dry, cleaning up liquid spills, and fixing those leaky pipes or seals in your dishwasher.
Limitations To Repairing Leaks In Your Home
Though getting rid of a food source can help get rid of cockroaches in a single area, it’s more a preventative measure. It won’t truly get rid of all cockroaches.
Common moisture problems in a home are also easy to ignore. For example, condensation on your air conditioner or broken seals in your fridge or dishwasher seem like small, insignificant problems — but it’s those types of issues that can cause the biggest pest problems.
Want to get rid of cockroaches in your home?
The best way to make absolutely sure your home is free from cockroaches is to hire professional pest exterminators. They’re trained and experienced to properly identify the type of cockroaches you’re dealing with and only use the best, high-quality products to get rid of your cockroach infestation.