If you’ve ever seen a fat, seemingly fearless cockroach march across your kitchen, you know the disgust this sight causes in us humans. This intolerance is not mere prejudice — these insects are notorious for their ability to cause food poisoning-like symptoms as well as trigger chronic conditions such as asthma. This article explores how to get rid of roaches in kitchen areas that are the most susceptible to cockroach invasion and what steps you need to take to prevent the problem from becoming recurrent.
How to Get Rid of Cockroaches: Easy Control & Prevention Guide
- Remove Any Open Sources of Food That Might Attract Roaches, Including Those in Cupboards
- Set Up Baited Traps in Potential Entrance Points
- Caulk Any Holes and Cracks
- Use a Roach Spray to Kill Remaining Roaches
- Always Keep Your Kitchen Clean
What Attracts Roaches to Your Kitchen
Just like most insects pestering us in our homes, roaches come looking for three main things: food, moisture, and a place to hide. Even a tidy kitchen can attract some roaches due to condensation and other sources of water as well as breadcrumbs in hard-to-access nooks. Here’s a quick checklist for you to make sure you don’t have a huge welcome banner at the door of your kitchen inviting the insects to come and visit you:
- Never keep food leftovers except in tight containers
- Empty/remove your pet’s food and water bowls for the night
- Check the kitchen regularly for leaky faucets and pipes
- Make sure condensate doesn’t collect under air conditioning units or refrigerators
- Wipe your counters and kitchen table after every meal
- Vacuum the kitchen regularly
- Don’t put up with holes and cracks in your walls or floor
- Don’t delay taking out the trash
- Don’t clutter your kitchen with cardboard and other potentially edible materials (yes, roaches will eat cardboard when left with few alternatives); it’s best to avoid clutter overall.
Generally, tidiness is the key to a roach-free kitchen. This is not to say that you are to blame if you are suffering from a cockroach infestation, however. Air vents and other cozy nooks can be inviting enough on their own. Just make sure the unwelcome guests won’t have extra motivation to stay if they do come.
Getting Rid of Roaches Step by Step
Here’s the procedure for sending roaches away from your kitchen.
- Identify all potential roach attractions according to the list above.
- Eliminate the risks you can remove altogether and mitigate those you have to put up with, such as condensate (consider using and regularly emptying trays to keep the amount of water down).
- Research the market and invest in quality baited roach traps. Ideally, such traps are easy to use and designed in a way to prevent children and pets from getting poisoned. Place them in areas such as under the sink and other high-risk parts of your kitchen.
- You will likely have to wait for about a week or two until you can say the invasion is over. Expect signs of improvement in the nearest days, soon. Otherwise, you might need to revisit your tidiness practices or check for remaining entrance points.
- Speaking of entrance points, caulk these straightaway to prevent new roaches from coming.
- Use a roach killer spray to make sure there are no remaining roaches. Always follow the instructions to make sure you won’t harm those who live with you since not all sprays are pet or kid-friendly.
How to Prevent Roaches from Returning
In an ideal situation, where your kitchen is speckless with no sources of food or water accessible to roaches, a comeback is highly unlikely. Your best bet would thus be to do your best to keep it clean. Don’t put off washing the dishes or cleaning the surfaces for too long, and keep inspecting the joints for signs of leaking. Take stock of what you have in your cupboards at regular intervals to avoid excessive clutter that will attract more roaches.
Scents are no alternative to roach prevention but deserve to be part of your general pest control strategy. Add a drop of citrus essential oil to the water next time you mop the floor — even if roaches come to visit, they’ll likely change their mind because they hate the smell. The same applies to peppermint.
Kitchen Roaches: FAQ
This section deals with some common questions when it comes to how to kill roaches in kitchen. Here, I only answer them in a nutshell, so be sure to read the guide section above for more details.
What causes roaches in the kitchen?
Cockroaches are attracted by plentiful water and food sources, especially when combined with hiding areas. Possible roach attractions in your kitchen include food leftovers, your pet’s bowl, or even dirty dishes.
What smell will keep cockroaches away?
Like most pests, roaches aren’t big fans of minty or citrus smells as well as cedarwood. This is now the answer to how to get rid of roaches overnight, but consider adding a drop of lemon oil in the water when mopping the floor as a prevention technique.
Does killing a cockroach attract more?
Technically, it does. Dead cockroaches emit chemicals that serve as death signals to their kin. Some species have the gross habit of eating their dead relatives’ bodies, which might look like an even heavier invasion. However, this is temporary.
Keeping Roaches at Bay
If your kitchen has turned into a cockroach hub, this usually asks for lifestyle changes as well as some serious caulking. Try keeping the space as clean, dry, and impenetrable as possible, and rely on human-safe specialized baited traps for exterminating the ones that are already there. Be prepared to wait, too, as it might take around a week.
Have you been able to identify the place in your kitchen that attracts roaches? Where is it? Share it in the comments so others can check their kitchens too.