Cockroaches are a nuisance, but they also spread germs and can trigger allergies in some people. If you see cockroaches or find signs of them in your home, it’s time to call a professional.
The exact treatment methods used will vary, but most pest control operators follow certain guidelines. Before your PCO arrives, clean the areas they need to treat.
Cockroaches thrive in kitchens where food is prepared and crumbs left on surfaces. It’s important that spills, crumbs and garbage are cleaned up daily to keep cockroaches away from surfaces where they may cause diseases. Discarded packaging, paper and cardboard should be kept in sealed containers. Pet food, litter trays and water bowls should be removed before nightfall to prevent cockroaches from looking for sources of food and water in the home.
Cracks in the kitchen floor, behind cabinets and in shelving should be caulked to reduce cockroach entry points. Expanding foam spray is also helpful for reducing gaps where pipes and cables enter the house from below.
Knockdown sprays are an effective method to rapidly decrease cockroach numbers in kitchen areas, but these sprays must be avoided on food preparation surfaces, since they will contain residual insecticides and may contaminate foods. A knockdown spray should be used only as a last resort in a serious infestation.
Cockroaches are a common problem in the bathroom. Like kitchens, cockroaches seek out food and water, and bathrooms are a great place to find both. Spilled soap and toothpaste, food and crumbs on countertops, overflowing trash, stacks of paper bags and cartons, and used sanitization items can all attract these pests.
Cockroaches also breed well in damp places, and bathrooms are the ideal environment. Showers, toilets, sinks, and drains provide a warm, steamy atmosphere, and roaches can scurry from one damp spot to the next thanks to their flat bodies that can squeeze through holes 1/6th their size.
Your cockroach exterminator will check for entry points in the walls, around plumbing, and behind the fridge. Your exterminator may suggest that you install drain covers (especially for Oriental cockroaches), or that you seal cracks and crevices with silicone caulk. They’ll also inspect cabinets, drawers, and under sinks. They might even pull appliances like stoves away from the wall to look inside and underneath them.
Cockroaches can carry pathogens that can make people and pets sick. Seeing one cockroach is enough to know it’s time for professional cockroach control, especially when at-home treatments are not working.
An exterminator will vacuum and clean all utility closets, exploring cracks and crevices for infestations. They’ll also check ductwork and piping, and repair any major damage to walls or windows.
They’ll also inspect storage areas, and bedrooms, examining every corner, crack and crevice for bugs. In multi-family dwellings, they’ll check for signs of roaches in neighboring apartments or units.
A professional ant control will use insecticides that penetrate and kill cockroaches quickly. They’ll also take measures to keep pesticides out of reach of children and pets. They may install tight-fitting mesh covers, seal gaps around doors and windows, and remove vegetation that’s touching or hanging over a home’s roof. They’ll also use wet-and-dry vacuums to suck up dirt and debris. They’ll also advise on reducing food and moisture sources that attract cockroaches, such as countertop crumbs and overflowing trash cans.
Cockroaches live in cracks and secluded areas, so your pest control technician will look for them in the upper corners of ceilings, walls and closets; behind picture frames or wall decorations; and inside of furniture. He may also use a vacuum cleaner or bait to get in those hard-to-reach spots.
Your pest control professional will also check kitchen cabinets for signs of cockroaches. He might even take the refrigerator out to get a closer look at its interior. American cockroaches concentrate around sinks and drains, so your exterminator might ask you to install drain covers.
Roaches thrive in dirty environments, so keeping your room and home clean is essential for successful cockroach control. Sweep or mop your floors regularly, and empty trash cans often. Don’t let food accumulate, and keep dirty dishes, utensils and pet dishes away from the bedroom. Store any food in containers with tight lids. Also, toss out newspapers and cardboard boxes and switch to plastic storage containers.