Roaches are one of the most common household pests in Florida. Roaches can be hazardous to both your and your family’s health, spreading diseases, contaminating surfaces, and triggering allergies and asthma. Chances are if you see one roach in your home, there are several others lurking nearby. You can help protect your family with these 6 tips to keep roaches under control.
1. Inspect Before Bringing Inside
Roaches will hitch a ride into your home on items you bring inside. Carefully inspect anything before bringing it indoors. This can include storage boxes, packages that are delivered, grocery bags, used furniture, appliances, and even luggage. Once you bring something inside, put it away immediately. Promptly dispose of any packaging materials once opened.
2. Clean Up
Cockroaches need minimal food and water to survive. Your home provides an abundance of food and water sources for them to thrive. Maintaining good housekeeping practices is vital to keeping these pests out of your home. It is important to keep both the inside and outside of your home clean. Cleanliness in the kitchen is especially important as this is the main area where crumbs and spills occur. Routinely vacuum your home to help eliminate discarded body parts and egg sacs. Regularly clean and disinfect surfaces, especially in your kitchen. Wipe down countertops and stove nightly. Clean any residue or grease from appliances daily. Sweep or vacuum your kitchen floor after dinner each night. Empty your trashcan before bed. Keep the area under the kitchen and bathroom sink clean. Make sure outdoor trashcans have tight lids and don’t keep them near any exterior entryways. Roaches also like to hide in vegetation. Keep plants and trees trimmed back from exterior walls. Don’t let weeds or vines grow against the side of your home. Don’t stack firewood against the house or the porch.
3. Limit Where You Eat
If possible, try to limit your eating to one room, preferably the kitchen or dining room. This makes it easier to clean up and less likely for crumbs and spills to occur throughout the house. This also helps prevent a house-wide infestation. It is important to try and avoid eating in the living room and bedrooms.
4. Utilize Proper Food Storage
Cockroaches are highly adaptable and able to flatten their bodies to squeeze into the tiniest of openings, even those of food packages. Store your food (even pet food) in sealable containers when possible. Try to empty pet food and water bowls at night, as well, as this provides an easily accessible meal to these household pests.
5. Seal Them Out
As stated above, roaches can squeeze into small openings, cracks, and crevices. Inspect the exterior of your home and seal up any cracks, around pipes, and wall junctures. You should also inspect baseboards and crawlspaces for holes and gaps. Consider crawlspace enclosure to help seal them out of these spaces. Secure your doors and windows and install weatherstripping.
6. Declutter Your Home
Cockroaches love cardboard, glue, paper, and other items that collect around your home. These provide the ideal place for them to hide during the day. Get rid of any piles of old newspapers, magazines, books, etc. Replace your cardboard storage with plastic if possible.
Roaches can multiply rapidly, infesting your home in what seems like no time. If you have a problem with cockroaches or other pests, contact your local pest control company for a free evaluation.