How to Get Rid of Cockroaches at Home
How would you feel if someone called you a “cockroach”? I’d be irked and, probably, incensed. Why? It all boils down to what we connect cockroaches with.
We find them nasty, obnoxious, repulsive, and downright dirty. No one wants to be a cockroach.
With that said, if you wouldn’t react well to being called a cockroach, you most certainly wouldn’t want an actual cockroach, or hundreds of cockroaches, for that matter, living in your space.
Unfortunately, those sly, filthy insects have made their way into your home, and you’re looking for ways to get rid of them, and in record time.
You’re in the right place. In this article, I look at the nuts and bolts of how to get rid of cockroaches at home quickly, so that you can stop being housemates.
How to Get Rid of Cockroaches at Home
You likely already know how formidable cockroaches are. They are stubborn enemies that keep coming back. Since they reproduce quickly, you have to be willing to work thrice as hard to rid your abode of them.
This translates to always looking out for cockroaches and implementing consistent measures, even after you think you’ve gotten rid of them. Here are some suggestions on how to get rid of cockroaches at home and fast.
My apologies in advance if you’re someone who’s opposed to using chemicals in and around your home. Using bug sprays isn’t always a homeowner’s first option, but it’s a necessary evil.
I employ this method. This is because it’s quick and gets the job done when you need to significantly chop the population of an infestation down.
Most people prefer to use the services of a pest control expert, but you may not have the luxury of soliciting the expertise of one.
A quick option is to use a pesticide spray. These are readily accessible and easy to use aerosols or liquid sprays.
I usually go for aerosols. These pesticide sprays normally have one of the following active ingredients.
Before using pesticides, always consult the label and follow instructions. How you use your pesticide spray hinges on where you live.
Some people find that using aerosols in an apartment is counterproductive, as cockroaches may simply disperse to other apartments in the building.
This may well be the case, so caution is needed if you live in an apartment building. If you live in a home that’s not adjoined to another building, you won’t have to worry about giving your neighbors cockroaches.
As I’m a heavy aerosol user, here’s my routine.
We’ve (husband and myself) found that cockroaches are mainly concentrated in specific areas of our home—mainly our bottom kitchen cabinets.
Dishes are washed in this area and cockroaches have all the privacy they need in the world. I usually douse all my cabinets with the aerosol, then walk around the house and spray widely in the air.
As my bottom cabinets are areas they flock to, that’s where most of the spray is used. Once I’ve doused the cabinets and house, I normally shut the windows and leave. If only the cabinets are sprayed, we keep them shut, and most times stay indoors.
This method works for us.
Most cockroaches drunkenly crawl out in the open where they die off and are then discarded.
If you use this method twice throughout the day and on a regular for about a week, you’ll feel great about how many roaches you’ll be able to kill fast.
Some people are avid cockroach stompers, so once they drowsily crawl out of concealed areas into the open, they are killed. Of course, you’ll need to disinfect the floors afterward and clean your feet or shoe thoroughly. (By the way, don’t forget cockroaches stink once crushed).
Note: If you have animals and children, be prepared to spend quality time outdoors with them if you’ll be using this method, especially if the aerosol is applied all over and not just dispersed in cabinets.
Insecticidal Dust and Powders
As mentioned before, cockroaches are prolific breeders. Don’t expect your problem to go away by using just aerosols. The best control method always includes an integrated pest management system. This is one of the best suggestions you’ll receive on how to get rid of cockroaches at home.
Along with cockroach pesticides, learn as much as you can about inorganic dust like boric acid and silica gels.
These are great options for long-term control, as they can be placed in hidden areas, away from children and pets. For example, dust can be utilized in crevices, cracks, beneath sinks, behind refrigerators, stoves, baseboards, cabinets, electrical outlets, and other areas.
- Boric Acid:
This is a toxicant or poison. Not only does it kill cockroaches but deals a deadly blow to ants and other domesticated pests. As boric acid is a poison of the stomach, it can kill cockroaches that scamper over it.
Like cats and other animals, cockroaches groom themselves. Since boric acid sticks to their cuticles when they walk over it, it’s later ingested during the grooming process.
While boric acid can be used alone, some homeowners have found ways to entice cockroaches.
Along with the toxicant inorganic dust, they use bait such as sugar to lure cockroaches to feed. Soon after ingestion, the cockroach dies, and there’s also the strong possibility of it taking back the dust to its pals.
Overall, boric acid can have a ripple effect when used consistently to get rid of cockroaches because of its residual effect. Plus, it’s a natural way to get rid of cockroaches.
- Silica Gel:
This is a thinly pulverized sand-like product that sticks to and soaks up the protective waxes of a cockroach’s cuticle. This results in desiccation/dehydration which later kills the cockroach.
As a part of your integrated pest management system to get rid of cockroaches quickly, you ought to be using cockroach traps. These are non-chemical battle strategies that you can call on to work overnight while you sleep.
These can be bought in your local stores or on Amazon if you prefer the convenience of staying home and have it shipped to your door.
- Sticky/Glue Traps
Sticky traps work the same way they do for rats. These are used indoors and placed in areas where cockroaches frequent, like a garbage receptacle, underneath the sink, cupboards, and cabinets, and other areas you reckon cockroaches travel.
By the way, don’t underestimate placing these traps behind the refrigerator. Cockroaches seem to love these areas.
Do not use these traps outdoors, as other insects and some small animals might land on them. You don’t, for example, want to pick up a small snake on your sticky trap.
- Baited Jars:
If you’re one to try DIY projects, this is one to undertake. A baited jar is simply a jar that contains something to lure cockroaches. This could be a jar baited with a quarter slice of bread. Cockroaches seem to love beer, so it’s more effective to soak your slice of bread in it.
What if you don’t have beer and bread in your pantry? No problem. Other food items are just as effective. These might include apples, your dog’s food, and other readily available items.
Since it’s difficult for cockroaches to scale certain surfaces, wrap your jar with a paper towel to allow them to crawl up. Even before adding a lure inside the jar, coat it with vaseline to prevent them from climbing out once they get in.
When you’re satisfied and want to replace the baited jar, simply mix a concoction using detergent and water and pour inside the container to kill them. Some people get an overwhelming feeling of joy using hot water, instead of regular temperature.
This process should be carried out every 2 to 3 days. Always place your baited jars in the same areas you’d place your sticky traps.
You may also choose to use a pre-made bait station.
Insect Growth Regulators (IGRs)
If you want to disrupt the productive cycle of cockroaches (which is another great arsenal to use on your quest to get rid of cockroaches at home), you need to try insect growth regulators.
These are generally low in toxicity to mammals, as they are made to throw off the hormonal processes of insects.
Since cockroaches go through various stages, stopping them while they’re nymphs prevent a vicious breeding cycle.
IGRs work by creating “handicapped” cockroaches. They are typically called “adultoids (sounds like something from a movie where robots are taking over the world, right?). Adultoids are adult cockroaches, but these aren’t able to reproduce as they are sterile. Some also have warped wings.
If cockroaches aren’t able to reproduce to bring destructive babies into the world, their population will drastically decrease over a period.
This is more of a long-term method, as IGRs do not kill cockroaches that already exist. The slow-acting process may also need a few months (4 to 10) to achieve the success you want.
To accelerate the process and get rid of cockroaches quickly, again, integrated pest management is your friend. Residual insecticides work best with IGRs.
Ultrasonic Pest Repeller
Use this method at your discretion.
I’ve never used an ultrasonic pest repeller to fight my battle against cockroaches, so I cannot substantiate or corroborate its efficacy.
However, I have seen in forums where people swear by its effectiveness. Either way, the research information I found reported that ultrasonic repellers were ineffective against German cockroaches (the type of cockroach that normally infests homes).
While research shows that it is not effective in killing or repelling cockroaches, it’s always a good thing to look at what homeowners are saying. They are the people using these devices afterall, right?
Neatmaster Ultrasonic Pest Repeller, for example, has over 20, 000 reviews with 4 of 5 stars. Granted, people use these devices for other insects, so you may want to scour through the comments to determine if people have had success using them for cockroaches.
How to Get Rid of Cockroaches at Home, Conclusion
To conclude this article on how to get rid of cockroaches at home, there’s only one suggestion I’d like to reiterate. Remember, pest control strategies work best and more speedily when combined. Don’t expect to use a single method and find success overnight.
Use an integrated pest control strategy and be consistent. Cockroaches breed quickly and bring forth hundreds of offspring when they do.
Your efforts need to match their breeding cycle, so you have to watch out for them consistently.
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