The 11 Best Roach Killers on the Market in 2019

Roaches are without a doubt one of the toughest animals on the planet.

In one evolutionary form or another, cockroaches have been around since the time of the dinosaurs (approximately 350 million years).

That’s a lot of time to practice your survival skills. A cockroach can hold its breath for over 30 minutes, survive for over a week headless, and live for weeks without food.

Best Roach Killers (Top of page Image)

On top of all that, there isn’t much they can’t do; they can run, walk, jump, fly, swim, and even scream like a dying animal!

You did not misread, folks. Stephen King could learn a thing or two from whoever invented these creatures. It should be clear by now that we are talking about some next-level pests here.

Luckily for you, we have TONS of experience with roaches and in this guide, I’m going to share with you what I’ve found to be the best roach killers on the market as well as some natural ways to get rid of roaches for good.

Want to learn more about roaches before seeing the products? Keep reading! If not, simply use the navigation menu above to jump straight to the list of our favorite products and cockroach killing methods.

Picture of a cockroach

You need to start dealing with your cockroach problem as soon as possible. You don’t have time to sift through heaps of internet content while the roaches are busy hiding their eggs like its Easter Sunday.

In this guide, we will cover our favorite sprays, baits, motels, and even natural roach killers. Without further ado, let’s get into the list!

This guide will be your one-stop source for roach control strategy, lining up just about every method under the sun for would-be cockroach killers in need of a clean, peaceful home environment. Roach-free.

In this article, we’ll be exploring a huge host of roach killer options, including products, extermination strategy, and a bit of roach theory from your favorite Pest Control Gurus. Let’s kick things off with some helpful facts regarding the roach. After all, the more you know, the further your efforts go. And on that note…

Roach Killer: Your Newest Friends

Here we’ll cover a number of popular roach killer options, discussing the general function of each and how they are applied. This includes, very generally, sprays, gel, and powders. A word of warning to amateur exterminators: Be extremely careful in your use and application of these roach killer materials. The reason they can take down something as tough as a cockroach is that they are deadly to living organisms.

In small doses, a person exposed to roach poison can suffer some very troubling consequences like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or worse. Consumed in sufficiently large doses, roach killer materials can kill a human being or cause their bodies permanent, disabling damage. Readers with children must be especially cautious, as the various substances on our list may attract curious babies or toddlers who don’t know any better. A child’s small body is particularly vulnerable to the dire consequences of ingesting or touching any of these poisons.

Types of Roach Killers

Dead Cockroach

Roach Spray

Some of the most popular roach killers are sprays of one sort or another. These are often a handy sort of pest control to have around, allowing you to quickly address smaller-scale roach problems the moment they arise. For instance, when you happen to uncover a roach or two scuttling about your sink to investigate the old food that has accumulated in the drain. Grab a little roach spray and give those cuddly critters a healthy coat of insecticide. Apply two coats for best results.

Alternatively, roach killer spray can also be used as a predictive measure. Spray it on surfaces you are not at risk of touching or getting near on a daily basis, beneath fridges, in the back of your under-sink cabinet, etc. The toxic chemicals in some spray killers can last for weeks, making sprays a somewhat versatile answer to roach issues. Alone, however, a roach killer spray probably isn’t going to solve any but the mildest in-home roach issues.

Gel Traps

Roaches are highly susceptible to the bait-station killing model. Bait stations are tiny little housing units, just the right size for a cockroach to crawl into and explore. These tricky traps, known sometimes as “motels,” can be laced generously with chemical gels that give off delicious odors to roaches, enticing them to pop in for a quick sniff or bite to eat. Unfortunately for the roaches, motel chemicals are also profoundly poisonous and slowly lethal.

Instantaneous roach fatalities may seem optimal, but when looking to kill off an extensive infestation, the slow and careful method is more likely to prevail. Those roaches who are able to escape the motels’ powerful adhesive will extract bits of the poison gel, returning it to their nests for community access. Other roaches eat the poison, other roaches eventually drop dead.

Here’s the best part – remember how cockroaches are cannibals? A roach that has been laid low by slow-acting trap poison will be consumed by its friends, spreading the poison in a deadly chain-killing process that reaches well beyond the first roach to reach the poison. And since they like to take extra poison content home with them, the longer the poison takes to kill the roach, the more opportunities it has to spread the love.

Boric Acid Powder

This roach killer works similarly to poison gels, relying on the chain-killing technique to cleanse your home of disease-carrying bugs. The powder sticks to their bodies, coating their legs and abdomen. As they gradually and helplessly consume the powder, the roaches suffer a lethal attack on their nervous systems, dropping dead.

Just like roach gels, this stuff gets spread around. One powdered roach waltzes into the nest and they all get a good sprinkling of nervous assault. It’s another slow process that takes a little time to do its work, allowing for the powder to really make the rounds before its roach carriers finally succumb. Unlike plenty of other roach killers, boric acid powders are naturally occurring, but they are no less deadly for it. While boric acid is not nearly as toxic to humans as it is to insects, it is still toxic, so be sure to not ingest the powder and to read warning labels/recommendations before using the powder.

Product Reviews

Here we’ll be going through some common roach killer options for infestations of varying sizes, as well as actual roach size. Some roaches are bigger than others, and the big ones are mainly East Coast residents. But to cover all our bases, we’ll be listing a number of different types of pest control tools from within each general category, i.e. gels, powders, sprays, and traps. If your home is infested and you’re not certain where to start, take a look at our product list to get some ideas about what’s out there. In any case, you can be sure that if it’s on this list, roaches don’t like it.

Here Are the Best Roach Killers in 2019

Roach Traps

1. Black Flag Roach Motel (Trap)

Black Flag Roach Motel

Where to get it: We recommend buying the Black Flag Roach Motel here.

Black Flag’s motels are the kind you might see in a horror movie. As in, guests check-in – they don’t check out. While these traps are very effective roach killers, if you are dealing with a large infestation, you are better off using one of the gel products below because they have what is referred to as a “chain killing effect.” That means the roaches will carry the poison back to the nest and spread it to other roaches in a chain effect (see more details about this below).

These are a preferred roach killer for many because, like most adhesive roach traps, a good deal of the killing is done inside, so you won’t find any surprises when you lift up the couch. You’d think a roach would run in the other direction after approaching one of these coffin capsules and noticing that it is plainly stuffed with the exoskeletons of his 3rd-grade buddies. Luckily for us, that is not the case, and for some reason, they continue to flock to these things.

Compared to sprays and raw gels, traps like these are safer pest control answers for people with pets and children running around the house. Ideally, a child will never pick one of these things up, but you have a roach infestation and life is not ideal. Keep them hidden from very young kids, which shouldn’t be too tricky since roaches frequent dark, out-of-sight sections of the home anyway.

The motel interiors are lined with some very attractive bait and some very sticky surfaces. The lethally adhesive insides of the traps will cost struggling roaches their limbs and, usually, their lives.

This option, while satisfying in a twisted way, is not likely to address a big roach nest hidden in your walls. These are definitely worth trying and can be used as a stand-alone treatment for small infestation or as a supplemental roach killer for larger infestations.

Gel Baits

2. Advion Cockroach Bait (Gel) – Most Popular

Advion Cockroach Bait

Where to get it: We recommend buying Advion Cockroach Bait here.

Advion is easily one of the most popular roach killers on the market due to its “chain killing” effect. Here’s how it works. Some roaches eat the bait and end up taking bits and pieces of the bait back to the nest where they spread it to other roaches. This causes other nearby roaches to also be poisoned and to make things even better, since roaches feed on dead carcasses of other roaches, even more roaches get infected by eating their dead and the cycle just keeps on going!

Their gel bait is meant to address German, Australian, Smokybrown, Brownbanded, Oriental, American, and Asian roaches. In fact, it is specifically designed to target gel-averse roaches for customers who prefer this method of extermination.

This is just a straight gel product, meaning that it comes in a series of syringe tubes for household applications. While gel is definitely a core roach infestation tool, it’s possible you may end up walking over gelled spots or forgetting where the gel has been laid down. You can pretty easily remedy this with a nice little box in the corner or similar harborage areas. A visual reminder and a cozy roach cave too! A somewhat damp box with only a small enclosure can work really well, providing an enticing bait odor with a roach’s favorite real estate qualities

Most of the roaches will take the gel out of sight to their main nests, where the bulk of the actual bug deaths will occur. Just don’t be surprised if you lift up the box and a small collection of dead roaches rattle around inside.

3. COMBAT Max Defense System (Gel)

COMBAT Max Defense System

Where to get it: We recommend buying Combat Max Defense here.

With its heavy all-caps title, COMBAT has declared war on roaches in no uncertain terms. The Max Defense System kit contains 12 traps, which is probably more than you’ll ever really need. All the same, it’s nice to have the backup units in case of a roach emergency. It also contains a gel syringe with 12 grams of roach-killing gel. The idea is that you set the traps and squeeze the gel into crevices behind which you suspect roaches lurk.

COMBAT products boast a unique “protein-based formula,” targeting roaches, eggs, and nests through the standard chain-kill technique (roach brings the poison back to nest, shares poison, dies, gets eaten by friends who then become poisoned). COMBAt advertises hours-long life expectancies for roaches that get friendly with their poison. Plenty of time to share the food with other roaches.

The life on the active traps is about 6 months. During this time, they will target small roaches using bait that more closely resembles a little-roach diet than that of their big-boy cousins. If you’re dealing with some thick German roaches, you may want to bump up to one of COMBAT’s many other products, some of which tackle larger-sized bugs. All in all, this seems to be one of the more popular brands on the market, with this Defense System product representing COMBAT’s answer to core nesting areas within small-roach infestations.

4. Hot Shot Ultra Liquid Traps (Gel)

Hot Shot Ultra Liquid Traps

Where to get it: We recommend buying Hot Shot Ultra Liquid Traps here.

Hot Shot Ultra Liquid is advertised as a combined roach and egg killer, aiming for the long-term strategy in pest control. Killing roaches is all well and good, but if your poison doesn’t do a great job targeting the eggs, you may find that your infestation nearly goes through a little lull before picking up again. The hatched eggs will reach adulthood and your infestation will be renewed. They just grow up so fast, don’t they?

The traps that come in the box are pretty easy to set up and replace, which is handy for something that is full of poisonous chemicals — no worry about making a mess or getting anything on your hands. According to the company, this formula itself combines “an attractive food source with the water source [roaches] need.” These traps will work particularly well in dryer climates since roaches do need close access to water. They can go significantly longer without food, but water deprivation is nature’s own roach killer. In dry climates, roaches will be more eager for water, meaning that they’ll more readily approach your traps.

Some reviewers have indicated that this is a weaker formula, less likely to really bring the hammer down than some other poisons. Reviews are tricky to parse through because there’s a lot you don’t know regarding the reviewer experience. They might have gone up against some really tough roaches, or they might have mishandled the traps. Hot Shot’s product is on the cheaper side, so it wouldn’t hurt to give it a shot, especially if you live somewhere with very thirsty roaches.

5. Invict Gold Cockroach Gel

Invict Gold Cockroach Gel

Where to get it: We recommend buying Invict Gold Cockroach Gel here.

Readers will know by now that when we talk about gel, we do not mean Dapper Dan men’s pomade. When we say gel, we mean the kind roaches want to eat, and the kind that will give them more than a tummy ache. Invict’s Gold gel is designed for management of the German cockroach, a famously revolting species even among roaches.

These buggers are longer, uglier, and a couple of times more horrifying than, say, an American cockroach, which is rather compact and unassuming by contrast. The German cockroach is an absolute nightmare to find tip-tapping in your bedsheets, and it is no surprise that someone has come up with a poison catered specifically to its foul anatomy. The German roach is one of the most durable insect pests, withstanding chemical treatments and tugging free of adhesives where lesser roaches rapidly perish.

The gel comes in a syringe-style container to reach into roach dwellings and nip those little horrors in the buds. The recommended application includes pea-sized dollops around infested areas of the home, bite-sized accumulations of bug death waiting to be shared like gravy at Thanksgiving dinner. We will be cruel to the German (cockroach).

Boric Acid Powders

6. Zap-a-Roach Powder (Boric Acid)

Zap-a-Roach Powder

Where to get it: We recommend buying Zap a roach here.

Zap-a-Roach powder is one of our go-to boric acid powder. While this powder does not contain a lure like the one below, we find it to be equally if not more effective. Keep in mind that boric acid products to take some time to work. We usually start seeing results after 1 week of use, but it can take 2-3 weeks for the roaches to be completely eliminated. The better job you do spreading the boric acid in places where the roaches are living, the more effective it will be. Apply Zap-a-roach in all roaches’ favorite hiding places like under appliances, cracks, crevices, and along walls and baseboards.

7. Harris Roach Powder with Lure (Boric Acid)

Harris Roach Powder with Lure

Where to get it: We recommend buying Harris Roach killing powder here.

This is a mainstream boric acid powder in the world of pest control. Harris Roach Powder works well anywhere roaches tend to frequent, like in countertop crevices or baseboards. Like all boric acids, it is dangerous and toxic to people, meaning that it should be carefully applied only to spaces it won’t be casually touched by anyone. Conveniently, it can also be used to kill silverfish, water bugs, and some other pesky insects. It may be a tad unlikely that your home suffers more than one type of insect infestation, but the versatility doesn’t hurt, and it means your Harris Roach Powder is probably always worth keeping around.

This particular brand of boric acid comes with lure mixed into the substance, making the product naturally appealing to roaches. This ought to save you a little extra time and money otherwise spent combining the poison with something enticing. One issue with this stuff is the “puffer,” or long straw that comes with the bottle. It may be too large to really sneak into the tiniest crevices. This substance also should not combine with water, as this will ultimately reduce the powder’s working lifespan. Keep this product nice and dry for maximum impact.”

Roach Sprays

8. EcoSmart Organic Pesticide (Spray)

EcoSmart Organic Pesticide

Where to get it: We recommend buying this roach spray here.

This is an unusual product in a market dominated by toxic chemical treatments for pest infestations. It’s marketed as an “eco-friendly” substance, due to its derivation from natural plant oils. There is no available scientific research to confirm whether this stuff is actually non-toxic to humans and pets, although chances are that it couldn’t be much worse than a standard roach killer. Anything that can kill a roach, however, should probably be treated with some caution.

Producing an aroma derived from peppermint oil and clove oil, this is probably going to smell better than your average insecticide. All the same, be careful as you inhale and consider spraying just before you plan on exiting your home for a few hours. Even if the odor is truly benign, strong scents like this can be a really hit-or-miss deal, and customers may end up loving or hating it. The odor can be difficult to get rid of in the short term, so it’s advisable to first test this stuff outdoors and make sure you aren’t polluting your home with a bothersome aroma.

EcoSmart’s formula definitely kills bugs, although air freshener in a can probably do as well. Without the normal chemical agents that make standard roach sprays so potent, frequent reapplication to roach-infested areas may be required. As such, the function of this spray might be limited to nailing any unfortunate creepy crawlers that dare skitter in plain sight. Spray ‘em, kill ‘em, and avoid the standard chemical smells that often accompany products in this vein. But as a preventative surface-spray measure, maybe you’re better off with something stronger.

9. Raid Ant & Roach Killer Spray (Spray)

Raid Ant & Roach Killer Spray

Where to get it: We recommend buying this product here.

Raid may be the most well-known of all the insecticide options. Their signature lightning bolt is immediately recognizable, and it is featured on most Raid products, including the Ant & Roach Killer Spray. Like most insecticide sprays, this bad boy is mainly useful for direct contact, though Raid markets it as delivering “residual action” that can kill off nosy bugs for up to four weeks. Wherever it has been laid down.

An obvious issue with products like this is that very quality of endurance, meaning that after use, select areas of your home will be laced with Raid for weeks to come. Of course, unless you are crawling around the base of your refrigerator or getting cozy beneath the sink, you will likely not run into any issues there. Children and pets, however, are a different story. For that matter, a spray this potent has an odor to it.

Ant & Roach Killer is a catch-all, able to kill spiders, waterbugs, crickets, and indeed, ants. It’s always good to have a spray can like this on hand, and Raid is a reliable brand. But you’ll also want to select from available gel/powder trap options in order to really get a handle on large infestations.

10. Ortho Home Defense Spray

Ortho Home Defense Spray

Where to get it: We recommend buying Ortho Home Defense Roach Killer Spray here.

This product falls into a sort of gap within our established roach killer variants. Ortho’s Home Defense Spray is not intended for use in the way of Raid, though if you spray it directly on your target, that roach may at the very least rethink its life choices.

This spray is best used as a barrier to ward off unwanted bugs, which is really the whole point of pest control when you think about it. Most bugs don’t simply leave when you ask them to, so extermination seems to be the typical next step. Ortho’s product is one option that can be used to effectively supplement your primary roach killers by lining off doorways, windows, wall cracks, baseboards, and other areas through which you prefer roaches not to pass.

One of the reasons this stuff is worth mentioning is that it exudes minimal odor, and is safe for kids and pets to walk on after it has finished drying. If you have been using a can of Raid or similar contact spray to ward off pests, Ortho’s Home Defense spray is a must-have. It smells better, won’t harm children and animals, and it lasts significantly longer, up to three months. It doesn’t stain, so it can be used on carpeted areas as well.

The downside? It won’t work in wet weather, meaning that if used outdoors for zoning off patio setups or gardens, one rainy day is all it takes to wash your defense spray away.

11. Aunt Fannie’s Roach Remedy Spray

If your name were “Aunt Fannie,” you’d have to be tough. This roach killer is comprised of certain essential oils, boasting an all-natural makeup. This is an option for homes with pets and children, or inhabitants who are not interested in tolerating the intense chemical smells of standard sprays.

It smells okay, has a cute name, and doesn’t pollute your home. So far so good. But does it work? Well, Aunt Fannie isn’t good for roaches, and when sprayed directly, they will drop dead. Reviews support our contention, commonly citing roaches who have received a blast from Aunt Fannie and fled briefly before dying right on schedule. The smell may be offensive to some, but it is far superior to the odor of Raid or other sprays.

This comes at the cost of some potency, as do most inoffensive pest control chemicals. Don’t expect to use this product as a serious barrier spray or surface coater. But for very sensitive exterminators and family homes, this is a freely usable alternative to toxic sprays with a good chunk of positive reviews behind it.

Know Your Enemy

Group of Roaches

Cockroaches are a nocturnal bunch, foraging for food and searching for mates at night. Their versatile little mouths permit them to chew and digest various materials that we ourselves consume, excrete, or leave lying around.

They love starches, sweets, meat, grease, cheese, beer, glue, leather, dead skin, and dead animals. This latter mention includes their deceased fellow cockroaches, for whom the highest posthumous honor is cannibalization. That brings us to a key prevention technique for those who successfully overcome their roach infestations: Keep your home clean. Some of the favorite dwelling zones of the cockroach are garbage cans and sewage systems. Roaches are like nature’s little reminder that you forgot to clean your room.

If an environment is warm, humid, and unsanitary, it’s like an open invitation to roaches, which are a generally non-social pest, unlike ants or bees. Pest control tactics that rely on group behaviors will struggle to perform against roaches. Additionally, roaches can run very quickly, fly, crawl up vertical surfaces, and hide in dark containers, making them charmingly mobile.

As a bonus, their mouths are located toward the backs of their shiny, ovular bodies. So to recap, the roach is a night creep that devours your excrement in the dark; a speedy sewer dweller that eats with its rear end. Great. By now, even readers without infestations should be eager to snuff the things out.

Supplemental Tactics and Prevention

If your bait & trap game is on point, you may be making strides in the battle against roach infestations. However, without these critical supplemental practices, you will, as they say, be treating the symptoms without addressing the disease. Your roach-killer technique may be expert, but if you don’t truly and thoroughly address the roach issue, you’ll be killing them forever. Believe us, roaches will keep coming if you let them.

Practice our recommendations below and custom-manage your home to prevent a roach infestation from getting worse, returning, or remaining stable.

Sanitize

As it turns out, Mom was right about the value of a clean bedroom. Practice sanitation and give roaches as few reasons as possible to nest in your home environment. Thorough sanitation deprives the roach of what it needs to thrive — dirt, grime, dust, food remnants, and bodily excrements like skin flakes or similar minor discharges.

This places significant pressure on roach communities, which are then forced to scrounge more desperately for food and comfortable nesting. As desperation rises, roaches will seek your traps and poisons more eagerly, having little else to rely on for sustenance. Starvation plus poison is a combination to wield with deadly force, and it is done in part through a clean home sanitized with cleaning agents.

Rock control professionals can offer specific areas of improvement if you are willing to acquire their inspection services. They will be able to tell you from experience which segments of the home require sanitary intervention, where roaches are likely to nest, and which traps will provide the best results in your unique home setting.

Without sanitary measures, a roach infestation will have to be addressed with excessive application of poison. In controlled doses, insecticides and baits are a superb tool, but the more of them you leave around your house, well, the more poison you are living amidst. Double your chances of successful extermination with a good, solid scrub of the infested dwelling. That or concoct some fun jokes to casually dismiss the noticeable roach population when friends and family visit. Three roaches walk into a motel…

Barriers

This category emphasizes measures taken to reduce roach mobility. Mobility reduction serves the dual purpose of keeping the bugs out of your most valuable spaces while limiting their presence to more easily targetable regions of the home. Sticky materials such as rodent trap glue or even adhesives from insect traps can serve you well. A trapped roach is an eventually dead roach. Try to quarantine infestations to a single room of the house by installing a sticky barrier along the bottom of the room’s entryway. Place sticky barriers at the bases of likely access points to furniture, preventing infestations from developing inside couches or similar objects.

Roaches can also be turned away by Teflon aerosol substances, which can be applied to various surfaces for the prevention of easy roach traversal. If you prefer, trash bags can be used effectively as barriers in cases where chemical treatments are not an option. For instance, if you are sure that a grandfather clock, or a toaster oven, are infested with roach populations, these objects can be sealed inside large bags and left in settings under extreme temperatures. Intense hot and cold are both capable of finishing off a series of roaches without resorting to the sometimes-inconvenient practice of treating special items using hazardous chemicals.

Vacuuming

Specifically, we’re talking about the old flush & vacuum technique. Various sprays are quite good at targeting roach nests or other frequented crevices, causing the roaches to flee haphazardly from their hiding spots. When they do this, you will be ready with a vacuum cleaner to suck those little fellas up. This is a supplementary method because a flush & vacuum will not solve your infestation problem. What it will do is get you a head start, quickly sucking up loads of bugs and bringing the roach population under control.

This can be a major asset for homeowners with large infestations, bringing the numbers down to more reasonable levels and making the rest of the job significantly easier.

Keep an Eye Out

One of the most important things you can do to supplement existing roach control measures is also the easiest. Simply remain vigilant! Roaches mean business, and they are not going to go down without a fight. As the extermination process begins to go your way, it may be tempting to check roaches off your list and go on with life. But that is exactly the condition under which roach populations will re-emerge, flourishing in light of negligence.

As the overall extermination process continues, and even after it appears to be completed, continue checking up on all the old cockroach stomping grounds, peeking into dark cabinets and under the sink. Make sure that if the infestation has begun to reassert itself, you will be able to take quick action and reimplement the poisons and techniques that drove the little invaders out in the first place. Additionally, as you deploy your anti-roach arsenal, be sure that you are looking out for new spaces to which the roaches might relocate. A roach community will prefer to migrate a little instead of sticking around the haunts you have lethally modified for maximum bug removal.

Location, Location, Location

Just as important as the bait itself is the bait/trap placement. The locations in which you place your roach traps and baits ought to be smart, reflecting an analysis of where your roach friends are likely to gather and frequent. For starters, any traps or bait ought to be situated in close proximity to locations where roaches take shelter, also known as “harborages.” This means things like cardboard boxes, piles of clothing, cabinets, cupboards, and similarly dark and covered areas where roaches can take refuge and reproduce. Place your traps in locations that are likely candidates for harborages, or in places that you know are roach hot spots.

Utilizing Caulk

Caulk is an incredibly versatile filler and sealant, meeting a multitude of home-improvement needs. Well here’s one more. While hunting for roach harborages, take notice of little cracks in walls and other surfaces. Small roaches love to crawl through these tiny passageways, skulking in the dark behind your walls and waiting for you to turn the lights out.

Once you do, they will see fit to scavenge your home for grub. Don’t allow these creepy freeloaders to squat in your beautiful living space! When you notice cracks or other likely gaps through which roaches might pass, seal the gaps with caulk. Keep roaches out of your home by denying them as many access points as you can. This is the sort of technique that is best used after other efforts have been made. That is, flush and vacuum, dab poison gel in gaps, and caulk the gaps up.

That way, the roaches are first reduced, then hit right in the nest, then sealed off. Any further roaches who visit these poisoned, sealed-off nests will likely die, and those who don’t can’t use the nests as access points to reach your home.

Plan B

If you have devoted yourself to our sacred roach killer text and come up with nothing but live roaches who squeak at you in mockery, there is always Plan B. We’re talking bug bombing, which is about as intense as extermination gets. This is for homes that have truly attempted all of the other options, and continue suffering significant roach infestations. Sometimes known as foggers, bug bombs are a chemical pesticide that gets sprayed heavily into a confined area, hotboxing the bug population for an extended time until nothing survives. Surfaces get coated with the pesticide, crevices infiltrated, and nests choked. At least, that is the general idea.

There is some skepticism as to whether bug bombing actually works, with critics insisting that the chemicals do not properly access hidden-away spaces where bugs congregate. In fact, it is arguable that a bug bomb is worth the risk of slathering your furniture with actual poison to get rid of the roach issue. But living with pests, particularly roaches, amounts to an unsettling home life fraught with nasty discoveries and phantom crawling sensations – or worse, real ones. A bug bomb may, under these circumstances, start to look pretty darn good.

Consider consulting a professional if you are toying with the idea of a bug bomb. Some infestations are simply too much for laypeople to cope with in their busy lives. Pro exterminators can be an invaluable resource when you are at your wit’s end, and it may be worth inquiring about bug bombs with an expert bug killer. Always weigh your options and approach extermination with a solid plan informed by the facts. A loose pest elimination schedule can very well end up a failed one. Blueprint your process and follow through before attempting the next phase of your cleansing efforts.

In Termination – Final Takeaways

There are a great many options for homes infested with cockroaches, the meanest little fiends to grace dusty fridge undersides since… Well, roaches ate the other dark dwellers. To be summary, your weapons in the roach war include:

  • Sprays: Contact solutions designed chiefly to kill stray roaches and other insects on the spot. These are typically smelly, unpleasant substances that must be handled with caution to avert health crises. Keep them away from any exposed part of your body, especially when wet. There are less malodorous alternatives, including one spray (EcoSmart Organic Pesticide) that smells like mint and doesn’t harm human skin with exposure. But when you want that roach dead, this is the chemical you call on.
  • Gels: These may be used in combination with a trap, or as a standalone solution. Gels typically rely on the chain-kill theory of extermination, which posits that the best way to eliminate a bug nest is to allow individual bugs to do the work for you. One bug grabs the tasty gel, hauls it back to the nest, and the slow-acting poison puts him on his back while the others unwittingly feast on his acquired fatal chemicals. This is especially effective when it comes to roaches, because not only does a roach bring the gel home, it gets eaten by its comrades after it dies! The gel’s lethality is still potent enough to take down any roaches who nibble at the body, downing them like dominoes.
  • Powders: Another chain-killing substance, boric acid powders spread mainly through physical contact or close proximity. One roach gets coated in nerve powder, having enough time to stop by the ol’ nest, where it inadvertently powders its roommates. The powder is inevitably ingested by the roaches, causing extensive and ultimately fatal damage to the roaches’ nervous systems. Yikes.
  • Traps: Sometimes known as motels or bait stations, these units are filled with some combination of alluring roach treats, adhesive interiors, and/or poison in gel or powder form. The most effective traps are basically contained stations for roaches to access, retrieving their poisons and meeting up with the rest of the roaches to initiate the chain-kill process. This way, you can quickly, cleanly pop your traps on the floor without worrying that you are corroding your floors or walls by directly applying the poison. Alternatively, a roach trap can simply fulfill its namesake and literally prevent roaches from exiting.

Aside from the chemical roach killers, there are other methods of high value among our recommendations, revolving mostly around strategy and awareness.

  • Keep your home clean and sanitized, never allowing old food to collect for more than a day or so. Avoid maintaining piles of worn clothes or cardboard boxes, as these provide nice dark niches in which roaches love to gather and reproduce.
  • The cleaner the home, the more pressure you are placing on a roach population, forcing it to branch out and explore new options for food, including the yummy poisons inside your conveniently placed traps.
  • Cockroaches love the dark, the moist, and the warm. Extreme temperatures can finish them off, though this is not always a feasible way for homes to manage pest control.
  • Sticky barriers can catch traveling bugs on a little cross-home road trip, and you can effectively control the positioning of your pests with smart barrier placement. Set up your barriers and confine roaches to trap-laden spaces, forcing their final mistakes.
  • Flush roaches out of their rebel bases and vacuum them right up, cutting deep into the roach population and reducing their numbers to a manageable level.
  • Place your traps near harborages and in likely roach haunts (dark, dank spaces) to dramatically increase efficacy. Traps in the center of a clean, open, and well-lit space will probably not do much work for you. Think like a roach and imagine where you’d crawl to escape from those mean old humans.
  • Don’t let your guard down. Even when the infestation seems beaten back, make periodic checks of red-flag areas where a new infestation could start. This includes anywhere a roach might want to chill.
  • Seal up gaps and crevices that roaches might use to crawl into your home. Caulk is a perfect tool for exactly this.

As always, Pest Control Gurus are your number-one resource for pest control education, from roaches to rats and everything between. Follow our tips for smart pest management and you’ll likely have your infestation under control in no time. Good luck out there, exterminators.