Most people can agree that cockroaches are a disturbing pest that needs to be gotten rid of. There are several approaches to eliminating cockroaches, which we’ve covered in a previous article. But how can you prevent cockroaches from returning once you’ve made them vacate your home? Read on for an overview of common cockroach characteristics and the best prevention methods.
Preventing roaches from returning
Once you eliminate a significant roach population, your battle is not over. It’s next to impossible to completely get rid of roaches, especially when you live in close quarters with other—potentially less sanitary—individuals. Preventing the return of roaches takes just as much work as getting rid of them in the first place. Fortunately, like any animal, however, roaches want to live in a place that’s food-filled and conducive to their nocturnal, small-space oriented lifestyle. The harder you make it for roaches to live in your house, the less likely they’ll be to return after you eliminate them from the area.
Keep it clean… and keep them hungry
Cockroaches may migrate to another area if food and water are not available in your home, but they may also just become more daring and resourceful in their quest to find sustenance. Keeping your home as clean as possible is definitely the first step toward keeping cockroaches out, but remember that it’s only the beginning. Sweep or vacuum often, especially after meals and under appliances or furniture. Seal all your food in plastic containers and keep it shut up in cabinets or the refrigerator. Monitor your cabinets for any sign that pests have gotten in. Keep a lid on your trash. And don’t forget that your pet’s food is attractive to roaches, too, so it may help to clean or remove your pet’s food bowl between feedings or at least at night. Absolutely any food-related item can be attractive to a cockroach, so there’s no such thing as being too careful when working to keep these bugs out of your house.
Water water everywhere… but not where they can get at it
The kitchen and bathroom are the main trouble spots for roaches because they involve both food and water. Many cockroaches are attracted to living in damp spaces, and all varieties need water to survive—as noted, water is even more crucial than food to roach survival. Avoid leaving standing water out anywhere, whether in bathtubs, stopped-up sinks, or soaking dishes. If your apartment is particularly damp, consider investing in a dehumidifier or ask your landlord if anything can be done about the moisture. Since plumbing systems are damp, be sure your faucets and pipes don’t have leaks, and spray or put traps under your sinks on a regular basis.
Close up shop
Cracks, crannies, and corners are cockroaches’ favorite hiding spots—and therefore your worst enemies. You’ll want to caulk them shut (ask for maintenance assistance if you don’t feel capable of doing it yourself) and spray them carefully. Even if you get rid of your cockroaches, they still may be present in your building—very likely in your messy neighbor’s apartment. If roaches can get in, they will; and even if they can’t, they can sometimes enter anyway. They almost seem magical in this regard, but it just takes “thinking like a roach” to find and secure the spots where roaches might enter your apartment.
Since cockroaches are so hardy and so difficult to detect, it’s important to spray your home regularly, even if you don’t see any of the critters running around. The more diligent you are about anti-pest upkeep, the less likely it is that roaches will return to your humble abode.
We’ve seen that stomping and screaming just aren’t the way to get rid of those pesky—and diligent—roaches. A well-thought-out program of elimination—ideally completed with a professional’s help—and regular treatments and upkeep are the only ways to achieve success in your crusade against the cockroach.