Few bugs send a shiver down your back like a giant cockroach scuttling across your kitchen floor. And sure—they don’t bite or sting, but they’re really, really gross, infamous for spreading all sorts of germs and grime throughout our homes, right around our loved ones and pets. All of which is to say, if you have roaches, you need to get rid of them ASAP. Whether you’re currently struggling with roaches or just want to avoid them in the future, we have your back.
Here’s how to prevent and get rid of roaches naturally in just 3 steps:
Preventing roaches can save you lots of time, money, and effort. Here’s how to do it:
- Basic housekeeping and cleanliness is without question the most important element in roach control. The smallest amounts of food debris and drink spills can feed a roach population for weeks. Regularly dust, clean, and vacuum flooring, appliances, cabinetry, sinks, dishes, back splashes, moldings, trash cans and recycling bins, etc, paying special attention to kitchens, bathrooms, and food preparation areas.
- Trash cans are a buffet for roaches. To prevent and repel these pests, you’ll need to take out the trash often, daily if you’re already seeing roaches. Your trash cans and recycling bins should also remain firmly sealed when not in use.
- Unsealed food is a welcome invitation for roaches. Whether it’s leftovers, dry cereal, pet food, or your kitchen’s fruit bowl, seal all food in hard plastic Tupperware containers.
- Before recycling bottles and cans, rinse them to remove any residual sugar to avoid attracting additional roaches.
- Like most pests, roaches love clutter, using it to both breed and nest. Limiting all indoor and outdoor clutter will do wonders for helping prevent roaches, and is absolutely essential for controlling active roach problems. For outside, focus on wood piles, brush, yard clippings, moist mulch, and unused lawn equipment and furniture
- Roaches can go weeks without food, but need water almost every day. In other words, the less excess moisture in your home, the better. Avoid letting water sources sit out for prolonged periods of time, this includes pet bowls, dirty dishes, potted plants, leaky plumbing, and appliance drip trays. With serious roach problems, you might need to towel-dry showers and sinks after each use.
- If there are roaches in your area and your home offers easily accessible entry points, you’re almost surely going to get indoor roaches at some point. To avoid this fate, thoroughly check your home, both inside and outside, for potential entryways, such as cracks or holes in cabinets, weatherstripping, door & window seals, countertops, piping, walls, ceilings, attics, basements, crawl spaces, under sinks, floorboards, etc. For heavy roach problems, using stoppers to seal drains might also be necessary.
Making an effective and natural roach trap at home takes almost time at all. Start by baiting the bottom of a bottle with an attractant like sugar or bread and then ensure it’s easy to enter the trap but difficult to escape. This can be achieved by lining the walls of the bottle with something slippery like petroleum jelly. Then, position these traps wherever you’re experiencing the worst roach issues and leave them overnight. Check each trap in the morning and empty and replace as needed.
Natural DIY roach bait is another family-safe and effective approach. Fill shallow dishes with a 50/50 mixture of baking soda and sugar and place them near known trouble areas like countertops, flooring, or trash cans. Continue this method until your roach issue improves.
Bugs tend to lead to more bugs and this is particularly true of roaches, which frequently feed on dead, decaying organic matter, including other pests. To kill common household bugs like fleas, ants, mites, and more, spray them directly with family-safe Cedarcide Original. To help prevent bugs from coming back, spray known trouble spots and entry points weekly or more as needed.
And don’t worry, unlike old school, chemical-based bug sprays, plant-based Cedarcide Original is family and pet-safe, and won’t fill your home with poisonous chemicals.
For outdoors, spray your entire lawn and all shrubbery with PCO Choice monthly to both kill and repel unwanted bugs. For warmer regions, this should be done every month unless the temperature drops below freezing for more than a few weeks. If you live in an area known for cold winters, start spraying monthly in late February and then taper off in November as winter sets in.
For additional pest prevention, spread Cedar Granules throughout your yard, especially along your home’s foundation and those areas with the most bug traffic.
No downtime required! Because PCO Choice is non-toxic, you, your family and pets can safely enjoy your lawn immediately after application.
Sooo you might not want to hear this, but there are definitely bugs hiding in your home, whether you see them or not. Normally it’s no big deal, a few beneficial bug-eating spiders here or there. But sometimes you’re not so lucky, and your hidden bugs are a costly problem just waiting to happen. Food, water, and shelter—these are the reasons bugs move indoors, and because our homes provide all three, every household has at least a few critters crawling around somewhere.
But if we don’t see them, where could they be hiding? Here are some surprising but also common places bugs hide in our homes.
Three things bugs really like: moisture, warmth, and a dark place to hide. Whether it’s your basement or a designated closet, your hot water heater provides all three. Periodically check around and under your water heater tank for signs of millipedes, centipedes, pillbugs, silverfish, spiders, crickets, and ants. If you notice any leaks or unexpected moisture, clean it up immediately and correct the issue to avoid future problems.
Solution: To kill any bugs you find, give them a quick spray with Cedarcide Original. To repel future bugs, spray baseboards, shelving, and known trouble spots with Cedarcide Original every other week.
Bathrooms not only provide water but also warmth, and that added humidity really helps draw in the creepy crawlies. Thoroughly check your bathroom’s cabinetry and drains for signs of cockroaches, crickets, silverfish, and ants, and if you’re currently struggling with roaches or ants, make sure to dry both your bathroom and your shower’s flooring after each use. Entire populations of roaches and ants can often sustain themselves on just this water alone.
Solution: If you’re experiencing heavy pest traffic, hand drying your shower and sinks after each use may be necessary. For less severe problems, simply spray any bugs you spot with family-safe Cedarcide Original. Spray suspected entry points and known hangouts every other week to repel bugs from the area.
The next time you’re doing a deep clean, make sure to pull your appliances out from the wall. Not only does grime collect here that can cause pest issues later, but there’s a good chance bugs have already set up shop there. Crumbs, darkness, privacy, and often moisture are in great supply behind and under appliances like fridges and dishwashers, making them a common hideout for roaches, flies, ants, and other hungry insects.
Don’t be surprised if you find bugs inside your fridge, too—yep, you read that right: inside! It’s not uncommon for fruit flies and roaches to crawl inside your fridge, feast and breed for a few days, and then sneak out when you’re not looking.
Solution: Cleanliness is key. Periodically clean inside, outside, behind, and under your appliances to limit bug attractants like moisture, dirt, and food debris. A quick spray of non-toxic Cedarcide Original will take care of any bugs you come across in the process.
It should come as no surprise that trash and recycling bins are a popular gathering place for all sorts of bugs. The abundance of food and shelter brings not only expected visitors like flies, roaches, and ants, but also predatory bugs, such as spiders, sometimes even scorpions.
What might be more surprising, though, is that not only do bugs hang out in your garbage, they can thrive there, too. In other words, your trash and recycling might not just occasionally feed bugs, it could be the very source of your home’s pest problems, sustaining entire populations of hungry bugs hidden inside.
Solution: Taking your trash out often, switching to bins with sealable lids, and cleaning those bins weekly should take care of any trash or recycling-dwelling pests you might have.
You know what bugs enjoy almost as much as food and water? Clutter. And your junk drawer is crammed full of it. In addition to cleaning your junk drawers at least annually, check it periodically for signs of spiders, roaches, ants, silverfish, and other unwanted guests.
Solution: Do yourself a favor and just finally get around to cleaning out your junk drawers. Recycle or donate duplicate items and throw all those sauce packets and disposable utensils you should have dumped years ago. Keeping things organized and clean should do the trick.
Your dirty laundry and even clean piles of clothes could be concealing some unknown roommates. Carpet beetles, silverfish, firebrats, roaches, crickets, and moths commonly hide out in disorganized clothing and bedding. The scent of sweat, skin oils, spilled food and drinks attracts a wide array of interested insects, which can ultimately lead to hundreds of dollars of damage.
Solution: Stay up on your laundry and avoid piling clothes, bedding, and other textiles, even if they’re clean. Check fabrics for signs of bugs before storing them for the season and wash as needed. Using bags or bins with airtight seals should shield your clothing from pest damage during the offseason
Your electrical outlets and outlet covers might be hiding more than just wiring. Ants, several types of beetles, and more are known to take up residence in these surprising locations. Look for small wood shavings and other signs of subtle wall damage—these are common symptoms of infested outlets.
Solution: Remove any covers you suspect might be hiding pests, carefully clean out the space, and repair or replace parts as needed
Before bringing home any new plant babies, inspect them for signs of bugs, like webbing, eggs, larva, and of course any adult insects. Surprisingly, houseplants are a common avenue for bugs to enter our homes. It’s a smart practice to quarantine any new houseplant additions apart from your other plants for at least a month after bringing them home. Not only will this save your other plants in case the new one contains damaging bugs, but it will also make it easier to monitor it for any hidden pests.
Solution: Check out these quick reads on killing and repelling common houseplant pests:
This one gives us chills. Who would have thought that the cute stuffed animals we grew up sleeping and cuddling with might have been host to a whole range of yucky critters? Carpet beetles, silverfish, firebrats, roaches, crickets, spiders, moths—any of these could be hiding inside or on the outside of your favorite teddy bear.
Solution: Wash frequently used stuffed animals at least once every few weeks and apply family-safe Cedarcide Original repellent as needed.
New and old cardboard is a huge attractant for countless insects, arachnids, and other crawling things, including scorpions, crickets, silverfish, and roaches.
Solution: Make the switch to sealable plastic boxes or bins and you should be covered.