There’s no doubt about it- roaches are one of the most disgusting things you can find in your kitchen. Yes, we get that they have their place in the world, and part of the ecosystem etc. But that doesn’t mean they have a place in your home. Given that roaches can cause all kinds of health and safety issues, including aggravating allergies right through to spreading germs and bacteria, it’s understandable that we’re not too keen on keeping them as housemates, once discovered.
They are, however, known to be quite the keen survivors and can therefore be a really tough intruder to toss out. This is especially true in the kitchen, where there are countless places for your new friends to hide and breed. It’s not impossible to get rid of cockroaches forever, though. If you’re looking for how to get rid of cockroaches without an exterminator, you’ve come to the right place. Here, we’ll give you tips and tricks as to how to get rid of cockroaches in the kitchen, without using any products that can be harmful to your family.
Identify your Cockroach
There are over 4,000 different species of cockroach but, luckily, you’ll likely only be dealing with the two types- American or German. German cockroaches are about an inch long and tend to be darker than their American counterparts, who are also larger by half an inch, and tend to have a red-ish hue to them.
You can usually tell the difference by their markings, as well. The German cockroach will have two parallel lines running down it’s back, that are lighter than the rest of it’s body. The German ones also have a knack for getting into smaller spaces, so are more likely to be indoors, while the American cockroaches will usually hang around the trash, outside.
Find the Source of Their Food
A cockroach can last up to 7 days with no head, because they absorb oxygen and nutrients via lots of minute holes all over their body- the only reason they die after this time is because they have no mouth to eat or drink with, therefore they starve. If you’re looking for a slightly faster and less gruesome way to take care of your roaches, however, you’ll probably want to find the source of their food and cut that off, instead.
Even crumbs can count as sustenance for these little survivors, so you’ll need to do a really deep clean of your kitchen, in order to get every bit of dirt out. It’s not a particularly pleasant task when you know that you’ll come across quite a few roaches- but it’ll also help you with the next task.
Cockroaches also love to come out and eat at night, so if you’re able, give your kitchen a good scrub before bed- so that, when these little creatures come out to play- there won’t be a feast of bits and pieces left out for them to gorge on.
Follow them Home
You’ll need to find out where the roaches are getting in- as well as what their favourite hiding places are. They especially like paper-based environments, so check your recycling, as well as any stacks of paper or cardboard- cereal boxes are a favourite hiding place, so be sure to get behind and into these as you clean.
You can also eliminate any hiding places they might find while you’re cleaning, so be sure to stop them coming back after all your hard work by leaving your kitchen nook and cranny-free. Getting rid of all your dark corners stops your home from being so deliciously enticing, so you can get rid of cockroaches forever.
Stop Them From Getting in
Once you’ve found their source, you’ll need to get to work on blocking up any entrance points to your home. Because they’re so good at getting into and all small spaces, you’ll have to be extremely thorough in checking for gaps into your house. Some common entry points include:
- Behind the washer/dryer
- Under the sink
- Screen doors
- Under the door
- Open windows
- On packages or delivered goods
In regard to that last point, you’ll need to watch what you’re bringing into the house. If you’re likely to have a package left around your house, in your bin or simply know it’s come from a warehouse, be wary about bringing it in straight away.
A good practice to get into is to check the parcel for signs of entry, before bringing it in to your house- or even opening up your boxes before bringing them in. This is because cockroaches make for excellent hitchhikers and love to jump into these warm spaces (we have mentioned how they love paper, right?), and can easily be brought into your house, unintentionally. They’ll then breed at a shocking rate (with each female carrying around 30-40 eggs) and grow rapidly (they become mature by 45 days), which shows how easily a single cockroach can lead to an infestation.
Bait your Hook
OK, so you won’t be using an actual hook to capture them but we’re sure you understand the metaphor here. The good news here is that you won’t need to spray any nasty chemicals around to do this part, so this method is still completely safe for your kitchen.
Cockroaches love the scent and taste of bait gel, which you can buy online. If you’re in a rush though, there are multiple DIY roach baits you can create from ingredients you’ll likely have stocked in your kitchen cupboard. One of the most common involves mixing together baking soda, bacon grease, sugar, flour and minced onions. Simply mix together until you can see and feel little clumps in the mixture and place them where they’re most likely to hang out- cleaning up the mix once they’ve one their job.