If you’ve ever had a roach infestation, you know just how troublesome and annoying they can be. Even if you managed to handle your problem quickly, let’s say using insecticidal traps (TIP: among all the insect pests, roaches are MOST susceptible to poison because they cannibalize their dead, allowing one poisoned roach to spread the poison to its compatriots), you would still have to deal with extra costs, inconvenience, and dead roach disposal (this is a must because paradoxically, due to the aforementioned cannibalization, dead roaches will actually attract more live roaches).
You know the saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”? Well, whoever came up with that one must have been very wise indeed because that is one axiom that we can apply to the vast majority of problems we face in life, including that of roach infestations. That’s why in today’s article we will be giving you some actionable tips to prevent roach infestation in the first place, prevention, and concluding with some ways of getting rid of them if you already have them; the cure.
Prevention Step 1: Food Source Elimination
This is whether the unending battle against the roaches begin. If you are just unsanitary in general, guess what, roaches are probably going to be paying your home a visit sometime soon, if they aren’t already there. And while changing one’s habits can be extremely difficult, this is simply something you HAVE to do if you don’t want to be sharing your home with roaches. Do the following:
- Make sure your kitchen appliances are clean and not just the visible surfaces either. Check behind and under your appliances, basically wherever they meet the wall or the floor. Roaches can easily live off grease buildup and old food spills.
- Check the kitchen cabinets as well, roaches love those cabinet crumbs!
- Practice proper dining habits. Do you allow your children to eat in their room while watching Netflix? No more of that. Limit eating to one area of the house.
- Vacuum the kitchen floor daily, preferably at night before you go to bed. This is because roaches are nocturnal and come out at night to feed. Other areas of your home can be vacuumed 2 or 3 times per week.
- Keep all your food in sealed containers (don’t rely on the cardboard packaging) and make sure your pets food is not left out overnight.
- Use a disinfectant spray on your kitchen counters each night after vacuuming.
- Take the trash out daily before bed, and make sure your trash can’s lid is tightly fitted.
Prevention Step 2: Water Source Elimination
Even disgusting bugs need water! While eliminating every water source is an impossible task, the least you can do is greatly limit their access. Some quick tips:
- Fix any leaking pipes or faucets.
- Empty your pets’ water dishes at night.
- Stop up your sinks before bed and also wipe your sinks and bathtubs dry.
Prevention Step 3: Habitat Elimination
They can run but they can’t hide! Take away their nesting spots using the following tips:
- Using a caulking gun, seal up cracks and crevices.
- Entrance points or holes above a quarter inch in diameter that are too big to caulk should be stuffed with steel wool.
- Make sure your windows and door frames are tightly fitted; even the smallest displacements could be an entry point for roaches.
So now that you know some steps you can take to ensure that your neighbor’s place looks much more inviting to the roaches instead, what can you do to make sure you kill off the roaches that are already in your home? The main thing you should be aware of is that when it comes to roaches, poison is THE best way to kill cockroaches, even more so than other insects. If you are wondering why that is the case, it is simply because roaches being the ultimate scavengers, eat other dead roaches and their other feces as well. This allows poison to have a powerful multiplier effect, making it the best way at eliminating the roach populace.
As such, we would recommend stronger pesticides like fipronil or hydromethylnon if you have a serious infection, or a less toxic pesticide like boric acid for more moderate cases. The most effective use of these poisons is to make a roach bait and trap; you can either make your own or buy one directly at the store. IMPORTANT: In order for the poison to be maximally effective against the entire roach population, the roaches must be able to leave the trap and go back to their nest. Remember the slogan of the old ‘Roach Motel’ trap: Roaches check in, but they don’t check out? Don’t get those type of traps, remember you want them to leave!