Out of all of the common household pests, cockroaches are some of the most feared. Each year, millions of homeowners discover cockroach infestations, and once these pests make their way into your home, it can feel almost impossible to get rid of them.
Knowing how and why cockroaches enter residential homes in the first place is the first step to preventing these dreaded pests from moving into your space. Here are seven easy tips to keep cockroaches away for good, as well as some telltale signs to look out for.
Why Cockroaches Enter Your Home
Cockroaches most often enter residential properties in search of food and water, so they are more likely to be drawn to your home if you provide these resources for them. Unsealed trash bags, dirty dishes in the sink, and leaky faucets can all attract cockroaches to your home. Additionally, these pests are also known to enjoy feasting on pet food that is either left out in a bowl on the floor or not stored properly, so be sure to keep an eye on your furry friend’s food and seal any bags of kibble when not in use.
Signs of Cockroaches
Cockroaches can be sneaky, which is why many homeowners don’t realize they have an infestation until it’s already gotten out of control. However, knowing the signs to look for can help you recognize a cockroach infestation and get the problem under control promptly. Some telltale signs of a cockroach infestation include:
- Cockroach droppings
- Foul, musty odors
- Cockroach eggs
- Smar marks on walls and surfaces
- Chew marks on household items and appliances
- Live or dead cockroach sightings
- New allergy symptoms
7 Tips to Keep Cockroaches Away
1. Seal All Entry Points
Cockroaches are known to be able to squeeze through even the smallest cracks and crevices, so be sure to seal any possible entry points to keep these pests out. You can do this using a store-bought caulk or sealant and applying it to any cracks in the walls and floors of your home.
2. Keep a Clean Home
One of the best ways to combat any pest infestation is to keep a clean home, especially when it comes to cockroaches. These pests thrive in dirty or damp conditions, so tidying up as much as possible will prevent cockroaches from wanting to stick around. Getting into a regular cleaning routine of washing your floors, not leaving dirty dishes in the sink, and clearing any clutter off of your floors is a great way to prevent cockroaches.
3. Keep a Clean Yard
Overgrown grass and poor landscaping outside of your home can create the perfect breeding group for cockroaches and can eventually lead them indoors, so staying on top of your lawn care can be an effective way to prevent these pests. During the summer months, be sure to regularly mow your lawn and pick up any weeds and overgrown vegetation around your home.
4. Eliminate All Standing Water and Leaks
Cockroaches are particularly attracted to damp areas, so having any leaking faucets or standing water in or around your home could draw these pests in. Be sure to inspect your home for any leaking or standing water, and take care of these issues for your best chance at keeping cockroaches away.
5. Plant Strategic Herbs
There are several plants and herbs cockroaches are known to hate, and planting them in your garden or keeping potted plants in your house can effectively ward off cockroaches. Catnip, lavender, citronella, and mint are all known to deter cockroaches, so consider planting these herbs if you are dealing with a cockroach problem.
6. Apply an Organic Insecticide
Applying an organic insecticide in or around your home can also be effective in getting rid of cockroaches. There are many different options available to homeowners, from diatomaceous earth to neem oil. When choosing which insecticide to use, be sure to carefully read the instructions to ensure you are applying the solution safely and effectively.
7. Enlist In a Local Pest Prevention Program
When dealing with a serious pest infestation such as cockroaches, your best bet is to contact a pest control expert at the first sign of trouble. Cockroaches are notoriously difficult to get rid of, and you could end up making the problem worse if you try to tackle it on your own. A local and trusted pest control professional will be able to inspect your home to determine the severity of the infestation and create a unique treatment plan to get rid of these pests once and for all.
What are the health risks of cockroach infestations?
There are several different health risks associated with cockroach infestations, with the most prominent being allergies. Cockroaches can be an allergen trigger for many people and can even cause asthma attacks for some. Additionally, cockroaches are dirty insects that carry bacteria that can be harmful to humans.
Can cockroaches infest clean homes?
Contrary to popular belief, cockroaches can infest clean homes, too. There are many ways cockroaches can make their way into a home, from squeezing through tiny cracks in the walls to hitching a ride on cardboard boxes and packages. The best thing homeowners can do is create an environment that would prevent cockroaches from wanting to stick around, so keeping a clean house and eliminating any possible food sources is imperative.
What is the best method to kill roaches instantly?
When it comes to getting rid of cockroaches for good, your best bet is to enlist the help of a pest control professional. However, there are things you can do in the short term to instantly kill any roaches you may see around your home. There are several store-bought chemicals that can be sprayed directly onto cockroaches to kill them, as well as DIY methods, like dousing a cockroach in a combination of dish soap and water.