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How to Get Rid of Cockroaches

Cockroaches prefer to live in warm, dark, and damp areas. Finding roaches in your home is not a sign that it is dirty. Your home may be very clean and tidy, and they will still show up if they can get in. They often spend most of their time in the cracks, crevices, and wall voids around your home.

Roaches can become a problem in all different kinds of homes, in all types of climates and seasons. They can survive in just about any environment and are able to withstand extreme and severe conditions. Check out these tips and tricks on how to get rid of roaches in your home and kitchen.

Before You Use an Insecticide

  • Clean up your kitchen, and home, being careful to wipe up all spills, grease, and crumbs on countertops and underneath/between appliances, in cupboards, etc. 
  • Get rid of roach hangouts like empty boxes, newspapers, magazines, etc.
  • Repair any leaky plumbing/pipes/faucets indoors and outdoors
  • Seal up cracks in your home’s foundation, make sure screens and weatherproofing are in good repair, cover vents with mesh, seal gaps between windows and doors and outer walls, and seal areas where utility hardware enters your house.

This may take some time, but in the long run, it will help with your roach problem.

How to Get Rid of Roaches Naturally

How Does Roach Gel Bait Work?

Once you’ve done everything you can to keep your house clean and dry, you may still find it necessary to use some sort of pesticide. You may try a roach killer spray, but for any spray to be effective, you need to be able to see and reach the roaches, which are not always visible and out in the open. Some roach species reproduce fast, so even if you spot treat and kill a few roaches, sprays are NOT effective at eliminating an infestation.

Insecticide dusts are really good for residual protection and control of roaches and other pests. They can also be puffed into the hard-to-reach places where roaches like to hide out. There are two types of insecticide dusts, one that is a stomach poison that roaches eat, and another that clings to the body and legs of passing roaches, killing them by desiccation (dehydration). If left undisturbed, insecticide dusts can remain effective for years.

Then there’s bait, which is often the most effective way of eliminating the source of the problem, the nest. Roach baits are typically gels (geared for indoor applications) or granules (geared for outdoor applications. Baits are made of food attractants that the roaches are hungry for combined with insecticide.

For indoor applications, once an area is clean, bait can be applied in small pea-sized spots from the application tube in places where roaches will find them, including in cracks and crevices, voids under appliances, under sinks and other inaccessible areas for children and pets. Roaches live in their nests and go out exploring for food. They will be attracted to the bait, consume it, and then return to their nests where they die. Other roaches consume the dead roaches and their feces, and also die in turn.

What Is the Best Roach Gel Bait to Use?

A good bait gel will be made with an ingredient blend that roaches are very attracted to, that stays palatable for several weeks, and that can be used indoors and outdoors.

How Do Roach Gel Baits Work

Will Roach Bait Kill Roaches Instantly?

No, baits are not designed for instant kill. Baits work by allowing the cockroach that consumes it time to get back to their nest to share it with other roaches. Roaches often eat one another’s feces, and many species eat dead roach carcasses. Once a cockroach eats the roach bait (or feces left behind by a roach who ate it, or the corpse of a roach killed by it), it will typically die within 1-3 days.

How Long Does It Take for the Gel to Work?

As stated above, a roach killer gel bait typically kills in 1 to 3 days. The more important question is, “how long will it take to eliminate the nest”? That depends on several factors:

  • The size of the nest
  • How old your house is (older homes typically have more hiding places)
  • How clean/tidy you keep your home – if roaches have lots of food choices, bait can be less effective and take longer

But you should start seeing fewer roaches within several days. Complete elimination typically takes about a week for small nests, and a couple weeks for larger nests.

How Long Does It Take to Get Rid of Cockroaches?

How long it takes to get rid of a cockroach infestation depends on several different factors, including:

  • How many roaches there are
  • How old your home is (older homes mean more cracks/crevices/wall voids)
  • How clean/tidy you keep your home

Cockroach infestations typically take anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks to eliminate. Keeping up with prevention methods and consistent treatments is key for making roaches feel unwelcome in your home.


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1 comment

  • Extremely well written synopsis about roaches. Maggie has done an outstanding job describing roach habits and prevention. Outstanding! They are only outside now and o ly a few. Hope to get them in nest before they get in the house. Thank You.

    Michael Garozzo

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