How to Get Rid of American Roaches

American cockroaches are the largest of the cockroach species (1.

American cockroaches feed on plant and animal material.American cockroaches feed on plant and animal material.
5 to 2 inches long). The American cockroach prefers warm, moist areas. Thus, they often accumulate near hot-water pipes, boilers and in basements. In addition to being unsightly, the American cockroach transmits diseases and can contaminate your food. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to get rid of roaches and prevent them from returning.

Place or spray cockroach poison -- bait, dust or spray -- where cockroaches are likely to wander, including near plumbing and corners of baseboards, and around doors and windows. Often, cockroaches will leave fecal matter (small dark spots or smears) and cast skins around your home. Place poisons in these spots.

Seal open food containers, vacuum crumbs, and throw away expired food. American cockroaches prefer decaying organic matter, but will eat anything. Thus, by removing food sources accessible to pests, you can discourage cockroaches from living in your home.

Stop water leaks, screen overflow drains, and get rid of any sitting water. American cockroaches require water to live and thus removing excess water will cause cockroaches to die or leave your home.

Seal cracks and crevices that lead to the outside with caulk, and apply weather stripping to doors and windows. This will prevent future infestations. In addition, inspect food deliveries and other items before bringing them inside.

Call a professional. In most cases, a pest control professional is not necessary. However, if your cockroach problem is out of control, you consider bringing in an expert. You can find more information about pest control professionals at the National Pest Management Association website (see resource).

Things You Will Need

  • Cockroach poison

About the Author

Thomas King is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law where he served as managing editor of the "Pittsburgh Journal of Environmental and Public Health Law." He currently lives in Aberdeen, Washington where he writes and practices law.