Just the mention of the word “roach” is enough to send shivers down your spine. Roaches are nocturnal insects, so if you spot one during the day, it’s possible you have a cockroach infestation.
They are a common nuisance, especially here in Florida, and can be tough to eradicate. Roaches may be a nuisance anywhere they are found, so if you find any in your kitchen, bathroom, or other section of your home, you should take immediate action to eradicate them.
If you’re looking for a permanent solution to your roach problem, you’ve come to the right place, as we’ll be discussing the most effective and efficient methods in this piece.
What Type of Florida Cockroaches Are in My Home?
There are over 4,500 species of roaches worldwide, but only around 69 of them reside in the United States. While the vast majority of roach species have little interest in inhabiting your home for themselves, there are a select number that will gladly do so.
How to Identify Roaches
Roaches can typically be identified by their color and shape. Roaches have an oval, rusty brown body with a reddish brown head and legs. They could be as short as 0.75 inches or as long as 3 inches. The American cockroach, the German cockroach, and the brown-banded cockroach are the three most common types found in Florida. It’s crucial to maintain your house clean since these cockroaches are attracted to the food sources inside and surrounding your home.
In the United States, the German cockroach is by far the most prevalent species. Because of how quickly they can reproduce (hatching 20-40 roach offspring per egg case), a single female cockroach in your home might lead to an infestation of over 30,000 pests in just one year.
A female German cockroach, in contrast to most other roach species, is able to transport her egg pouches until they are ready to hatch. Consequently, it may be challenging to contain an infestation once it has begun to spread.
Cockroaches share a common appearance of a large, flat body with lengthy legs and antennae. Most of them have black or brown wings that are folded flat and rest on their backs. However, the German cockroach is typically a lighter shade of brown with two parallel dark stripes running from its head to its wings.
The brown-banded roach prefers dry, warm environments and is often found hiding in walls or appliances.
The flying cockroach is extremely adverse to being in or near water.
They average around half an inch in length and have a mostly brown coloration. The wings and bellies of both the male and female are marked with thin, yellow stripes.
American Cockroaches (Palmetto Bug)
In most of the United States, the American cockroach isn’t the most frequent roach species, but it is by far the largest.
It also has a rather long life span, ranking among the longest at around two years.
It’s not uncommon to hear these roaches referred to as “sewer roaches” or “palmetto bugs.” They can grow to be between 1 and 3 inches long and have a brown or reddish-brown body with a pale yellow border.
What Attracts Roaches to My Home?
There is one certainty: cockroaches of any variety are undesirable in the home.
Cockroaches are a nuisance for more reasons than one: they can cause asthma attacks, contaminate food, and even transfer disease. Because of this, they can pose significant health problems.
The good news is that figuring out what’s luring roaches into your property is the first step toward exterminating them.
Here are a few of the most typical causes of cockroaches:
1. Food sources
Because they are omnivores, roaches will consume anything. They enjoy meat, oily cuisine, sweets, carbohydrates, and sweets in particular.
Simple food sources, like pet food on the floor, crumbs on the counter, or dirty dishes in the sink attract roaches the most.
Roaches also enjoy waste, so be sure to frequently remove it from the house and to keep any garbage cans sealed.
Cockroaches seek sanctuary in homes.
Depending on the species, roaches may reside inside electronics, beneath sinks, behind toilets, hollowed-out wood, or behind picture frames.
Roaches will enter homes as the outside temperature drops.
They may reside behind big appliances, in the crevices of basements, or in the attic since they enjoy peaceful, abandoned places.
We are aware that you may be questioning “why do I have roaches in my clean house?”
When you’ve taken care to stay away from frequent attractants, solving an infestation of roaches can be challenging.
Unfortunately, roaches prefer certain environments over others.
A door left open or a breach in the window seal allows species such as the American cockroach, or palmetto bug, to enter your home and begin establishing themselves without the need for unclean circumstances.
Roaches require water to survive, just like any other animal, and they will enter any home, no matter how clean, to get it.
Open showers, pet water dishes, and dripping faucets are all typical roach attractants.
Roaches enjoy living indoors, but they will also enter your yard in pursuit of shelter, food, and water.
They will be drawn to areas with standing water, such as gutters, flowerpots, birdbaths, and areas with food supplies like fruit trees or bird seed.
How Roaches Enter Your Home
Roaches are drawn to your home by shelter, food, and water, but how do they enter? Roaches frequently enter homes through very small cracks and openings in doors, windows, and other places.
Some of their preferred access locations are listed below:
1. Cracks and Gaps in Windows and Doors
Roaches most commonly enter homes through cracks and holes in the doors and windows. Roaches have the ideal entry points in improperly sealed doors and partially closed windows.
2. Holes in Pipes and Vents
Roaches can enter through cracks in pipes and vents, which is another typical entry point. Roaches are encouraged to enter an older house if the vents have gaps or are improperly sealed.
When replacing or servicing your vents, check them for holes or other openings. Also, keep an eye out for these things on your pipes and plumbing fixtures.
3. Hitching a Ride on Furniture and Other Items
Always examine used furniture and other objects for roaches before bringing them into your home. When they’re inside your house safely, these insects can hide in used objects and hole up before coming out.
Where Do Cockroaches Hide?
Roaches are nocturnal, making it difficult to detect an infestation until it has reached epidemic proportions. They’re masters of disguise and can squeeze through the tiniest of openings. The largest American cockroaches can squeeze through a hole 1/16 of an inch wide, so that’s all they need to go inside from the outdoors or hide out in the wall behind the bathroom vanity.
HOW TO DETECT SIGNS OF A COCKROACH INFESTATION
During a cockroach infestation, the bugs’ waste products will be easy to spot. The feces of smaller roaches resemble those of coffee grinds or black pepper, whereas those of larger roaches take the shape of a cylindrical pellet. There is a correlation between the amount of feces present and the severity or length of an infestation.
Oval egg casings, or ootheca, can be spotted in unexpected places like the cracks between books or under couches.
There are some species that give off a foul odor. An overpowering greasy or musty odor may be prevalent in severely infested areas. Cockroach corpses also appear to be dispersed throughout the dwelling.
How to Get Rid of an Infestation
If you think you’ve found cockroaches in your house, it’s a good idea to get in touch with a pest control company to learn more about inspection and elimination alternatives.
How to Get Rid of Roaches Infestation Inside the Home: 5 Conventional Methods
Want to try some more traditional methods to get rid of the roaches?
Some of the quickest methods for eliminating roaches are as follows:
1. Use Glue Traps to Identify Problem Areas
In order to find the source of an infestation and eradicate the pests, glue traps are a useful tool.
Roaches are drawn in by the trap’s scent and then caught by the adhesive strip.
Glue strips purchased from a retailer should be placed under the fridge or under the sink, as well as any other areas where roaches have been seen moving around.
Pros: Effective, secure for use around children and animals, and quick-acting
Cons: As soon as the strips start to accumulate dead roaches, you must switch them.
2. Set Bait Stations
Exactly what might be used to quickly eliminate cockroaches? Put out some bait. If you’ve seen roaches in a certain area, you can set up one of these long tube-shaped bait stations.
Roaches will be drawn in by the bait’s scent and will end up eating the poison. When the roach returns to its nest and dies there, the other roaches will consume it and spread the poison to themselves.
Pros: Rapidly effective
Cons: In addition to being unsightly and potentially dangerous to children and pets, the use of bait stations for roach control can also result in the spread of poisoned roach carcasses throughout the home, which may then be ingested by non-target species such as birds and other animals.
3. Caulk all Entry Points
If new roaches are regularly invading your home, no amount of glue strips or bait stations will help. Keeping this in mind, caulk should be used to cover cracks and other potential entry locations. Check for drafts through cracks in the walls or tiles, air leaks around the windows and doors, and other signs of weatherization that may be deteriorating.
Pros: Highly efficient, risk-free, and cheap
Cons: Caulk degrades over time, therefore entry sites need to be checked repeatedly.
4. Use a Liquid Concentrate
Pick up some liquid roach repellent concentration from an appliance or hardware store. This powerful liquid can be diluted and then sprayed into nooks and cracks where roaches are hiding.
To get a deeper clean, you may also mix some of the concentrate with water in a mop bucket and use that to mop the floor. This strategy will eliminate roaches overnight and prevent them from returning.
Pros: The best of all worlds – efficient, quick-acting, and cheap.
Cons: Avoid using around children and pets due to the presence of hazardous chemicals.
5. Hire a Pest Management Professional
If you want to get rid of roaches for good, it’s best to employ a professional service like On Demand Pest Control to do it.
Your family, pets, and home will be safe from harm while trained professionals identify and eliminate roach infestations.
Pros: Proven to be effective against the infestation of roaches both inside and outside the home; non-toxic; durable; long-lasting
Cons: It costs more up front than do-it-yourself alternatives.
Roach Bombs: Avoid if Possible
Some folks who can’t afford to hire a professional exterminator resort to using roach bombs. Roach bombs, often known as “foggers,” release a pesticide fog into the air.
The pesticide kills its intended targets by adhering to the surfaces it coated as it falls to the floor. Roach bombs, in their typical form, are meant to be activated by placing them in the middle of the room.
Roach bombs, unfortunately, are quite poisonous, so we don’t advise using them. Eliminating a cockroach infestation can be done in a way that is less hazardous and more efficient.
Cons: Roach bombs are toxic, combustible, and work best on flying roaches; nevertheless, they are unsafe for use in households with pets or small children, and you will need to leave the house while they are in use.
How to Get Rid of Roaches Naturally: 6 Home Remedies
You’re in luck if you’d want to avoid using poisons like bombs, foggers, or sprays to exterminate roaches. Several safe and effective home treatments can get rid of these pests, and they won’t hurt your kids or pets in the process.
Several that come highly recommended are as follows:
1. Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth, or DE, is a fantastic all-natural option for controlling pests. DE is made up of ground-up fossilized algae, and its particles are both sharp and drying. DE causes severe damage to the exoskeletons of roaches and eventually causes death by dehydration.
Get some DE that is food grade and lightly dust it onto any area where roaches have been seen.
Pros: Efficient, cheap, and not harmful to children or animals
Cons: It’s unpleasant to use DE since it leaves a mess and you have to reapply it regularly and then find and remove the dead roaches.
2. Baking Soda
One of the quickest and easiest (and likely already-stocked) methods for exterminating roaches is baking soda. Do it yourself roach bait by mixing some baking soda with a handful of diced onions.
Put this snack on a dish and set it where you’ve seen roaches. When roaches eat the baking soda, their stomachs fill with gas and they explode.
Pros: Safe, effective, cheap
Cons: Pets could accidentally ingest the onion solution (onions are harmful to dogs), and finding and disposing of the dead roaches is a bothersome and unpleasant task.
3. Boric Acid
Boric acid can be found in nature. Boron is present in plants and fruits as a water-like compound.
It kills roaches but has no effect on humans or pets. Boric acid causes cockroaches to become stuck on their own legs and wings. After swallowing the powder, roaches die quickly from effects on their neurological and digestive systems.
Roach control using boric acid is as simple as dusting a paper plate with a little of the powder. Place the dish with an orange peel or peanut butter in the center wherever roaches have been seen.
Pros: Natural, inexpensive, efficient, non-toxic, and simple
Cons: It may not be suitable for households with pets or young children, can be untidy, requires multiple applications or treatments, and necessitates the hunt for and disposal of dead roaches.
Borax, a popular laundry ingredient, can be used to swiftly and successfully get rid of roach infestations. The best results can be achieved by combining white sugar with borax in a 1:1 ratio. The powder should be sprinkled in any areas where roaches have been spotted. Roaches that eat the borax will rapidly dehydrate to death.
Pros: Kills adult and young roaches equally well and affordably.
Cons: Often messy, necessitates reapplication, and calls for hunting down and removing dead roach bodies
Cockroaches may find citrus fruit unpleasant, yet humans enjoy its flavor. Particularly, the citrusy scent of lemons can keep roaches at bay. Mopping the floor with water that has been infused with a few drops of lemon oil will help keep the space smelling fresh. Roaches will flee, but humans won’t be able to smell it.
Pros: Effective, inexpensive, and suitable for households with children and pets
Cons: Only serves to repel roaches, not to kill them.
6. Essential Oils
Natural roach repellents like essential oils are amazing. Essential oils like peppermint and lemongrass, when diluted with water, produce the most satisfying results. Place the spray in any area where roaches have been seen.
Pros: Effective, inexpensive, and suitable for households with children and pets
Cons: Only serves to repel roaches, not to kill them.
Roach traps, roach spray, bug traps, bait stations, and other ways of home insect control can be used to kill or at least repel cockroaches if the natural therapies fail. Put roach bait and traps in high-traffic locations such as in and around trash cans, in the kitchen, in the bathroom, near the front door, and anywhere else you’ve seen roaches.
Tip: Finding natural remedies with these active substances to help with roach avoidance is useful, but if there is a serious infestation, more powerful roach killers may be necessary.
Safety: Do not use boric acid or DE on countertops, in open or drafty places, or in any area where food is cooked. Thin layers should be applied, and any observable residue should be removed quickly.
5. Seal up and spray entrance points
Thinking about potential roach entry locations is an important first step in investigating effective extermination methods.
- Caulk can be used to seal off minor holes or gaps in baseboards and walls.
- Copper wool in a fine mesh can be used to fill up any gaps surrounding pipes.
- Ensure that any ripped screens are repaired and that there are no gaps or open fractures in the screens’ window-fittings.
- Apply roach spray or other pest control tactics like roach traps to any noticeable cracks and crevices you cannot easily close.
6. Keep your space cool
Warmer temperatures make cockroaches happier and more active. It will be less inviting to roaches if you keep your house at a cool temperature.
7. Get Rid of Newspapers and Cardboard Boxes
Newspapers and cardboard boxes are favorites of cockroaches because they may be used for both feeding and nesting. Eliminate or discard cardboard boxes and old newspapers right away to avoid pest problems.
Pest Prevention Tips
Using products to reduce roach populations is effective, but it won’t permanently solve the roach problem. It’s important to take precautions to ensure that the roaches won’t come back once you’ve treated the cockroach problem.
1. Clean the House
Start by getting rid of everything that could serve as a food source or breeding ground for the roaches.
Making your home as uninviting as possible before applying a DIY roach killer can increase its efficacy.
Some items to cross off the list are as follows:
- Do the dishes as soon as possible after using them and put them away.
- Quickly wipe away any dropped food or liquids.
- Empty pet bowls and other sources of standing water.
- Every day, before you go to sleep, you should take out the trash.
- Be sure to frequently sweep and mop the floor, paying special attention to the areas under and around major home appliances.
- Take care not to leave pet food out for long periods of time.
2. Clean Kitchen Appliances
Keep in mind that roaches adore fat and oil, and your kitchen is a fantastic area to obtain these delectable goodies. Keep the dishwasher, stove, and other kitchen appliances tidy in light of this.
Pay close attention to things like your garbage disposal, the backsplash, and the drip pans under your stove’s burners.
Additionally, every night when you finish cooking, you should wipe down the counters and tables. Some extra defense can be had by mixing a few drops of lemon oil into the cleaning solution. Cockroaches will not return after being exposed to the citrus aroma.
- Keep spills inside the microwave wiped up and thoroughly clean it.
- Each time you use a toaster or toaster oven, make sure you clean it thoroughly by removing the crumb tray, sweeping out the interior, and wiping down the inside.
- Clean indoor garbage cans both inside and out. Use can liners, and keep lids firmly closed.
- Frequently clean the floor behind large equipment like the stove or refrigerator.
- Spills or overflows on the stove should be cleaned up as soon as you can to prevent them from setting.
3. Fix Leaks Right Away
Roaches will congregate near a source of standing water. Do what you can to drain any potential water collecting spots.
- Every night, dry sinks and put a cap or stopper over the drain hole.
- Avoid overwatering indoor plants or keeping water in plant saucers.
- Maintain an empty and dried-out condensation drip pan underneath the refrigerator.
- Check around appliances and under sinks for leaks; if you see any especially moist spots, you may need to hire a professional for an evaluation and repair.
4. Rethink food storage
Eliminating roaches requires first removing their source of sustenance. Improving methods of food preservation is one technique to limit their access to resources.
- Store opened dry items with tight-fitting lids in airtight containers, such as cereal, grains, or sugar.
- Place bread and produce in the refrigerator as opposed to on counters.
- You should keep any extra condiments from your takeout meals in airtight plastic containers.
How to Get Rid of Roaches Outside Your House
Cockroach control begins outside the home, so eliminating outside nests is a good first step.
Here’s what to do:
1. Clean Up
Remember: Roaches require three basic necessities to be alive: nourishment, hydration, and protection from the elements. While you probably won’t be able to completely get rid of these outdoor nuisances, you can certainly make your landscaping less inviting to them.
Here are some tips:
- Do away with any clutter like woodpiles, leaf piles, puddles, or unkempt bushes.
- Place lids on outdoor trash cans securely.
- Back foundation plants away from the house.
- Reduce water sources by draining any unused water from planters and birdbaths.
Pros: Cost-effective and producing stunning results in landscaping
Cons: Does not eliminate roaches but rather reduces their interest in your yard.
2. Use Sticky Traps
Sticky traps can be used both indoors and out. Sticky traps should be placed in areas where cockroaches have been spotted entering the residence, such as near cracks in the walls or windows.
Place the traps in several areas and inspect them every day to determine the roaches’ most frequent travel paths if you have no idea where they are coming from.
Pros: A reliable method of locating roach pathways
Cons: Unattractive and time-consuming
3. Place Bait
You may reduce the quantity of roaches in your home by using bait to kill them outside.
If you want to get rid of roaches, you should put bait stations near walls, ledges, corners, fences, and the foundation of your home because that’s where they’ll most likely be since they generally keep the side or top of their body pressed on something as they walk.
Pros: Long-term, quick, and effective treatment
Cons: Poisonous; may be harmful to humans, animals, and pets.
4. Spray Pesticide
Applying a pesticide spray to the outside of your home and yard is a tried and true method for getting rid of roaches. In addition to being effective for an extended period of time (three months or more), these sprays also eliminate roaches upon contact.
Pros: Long-lasting, and efficient
Cons: Poisonous; may be harmful to humans, animals, and pets.
How do Exterminators Get Rid of Roaches?
What outcomes may you anticipate from using the services of a professional exterminator for roach control?
Our method at On Demand Pest Control is as follows:
Step 1: The Inspection
Specialists in cockroach extermination will visit your home or business to assess the problem, and figure out what is the cause for cockroaches. We will inspect your home for entry points, as well as any water or food sources that could be luring roaches inside.
We will also determine what kind of cockroach infestation you have and work out a solution.
Step 2: The First Treatment
Your home’s treatment plan will be based on the findings of our initial examination. Cockroach extermination is a two-step method because of the pest’s persistence.
Baiting, monitoring, capturing, and spraying the cockroaches, as well as offering cleaning and sanitization services, education, and insect growth regulators, are all potential first steps in our treatment plan, depending on the extent of your infestation.
Step 3: The Follow-Up Visit
Our first treatment will be deployed, and if more are required, we will send them out. As a result, your infestation will be completely eradicated as soon as possible.
Roaches are not easy
Due to their durability, roaches are famously difficult to quickly remove. The exoskeleton of an adult roach offers some protection from a conventional fly swatter, so it takes more force to crush the bug than it would to kill a fly. The average roach can survive without food for three months and without water for two weeks. A single roach can produce anywhere from 125 to 225 offspring over the course of its lifetime.
If you follow these methods for exterminating roaches and keep up with the preventative measures, you should be able to keep the pests away for good. If the cockroach infestation persists, it may be time to call in the pros.