Fall is a favorable season for many reasons – nice weather, pumpkin spice, fall festivities, Halloween, and spending more time outdoors. However, fall often brings a disgusting pest seeking shelter into your home for the colder months: cockroaches. However, we have a few tips for you to do to help fight back.
Why Is A Roach In My House?
First, let’s cover why cockroaches might be in your house in the first place. Most cockroaches prefer living outdoors during spring, summer, and early fall. However, as outdoor temperatures change, so do the cockroaches’ behaviors. The common culprit for invading homes this time of year is the American cockroach, the largest house infesting cockroach. You may have experienced people calling them Bombay canaries, water bugs, or Palmetto bugs, but ultimately it’s the American cockroach.
American cockroaches are known for spreading all kinds of bacteria, including E.coli and salmonella. They tend to pick up bacteria from crawling through decaying debris or sewage systems and spread those same germs into sanitized living spaces. They naturally eat decomposing leaves and other organic waste, but their food of choice is the same foods we eat that might have been left behind.
Tips on How to Control Cockroaches This Fall
Now that we know why they are here, let’s talk about how to control cockroaches from coming into your home this fall. Below are several tips we recommend.
Deep Clean Your Kitchen
To help control cockroaches, be sure to wash your dishes every night. One of the easy ways for roaches to survive in a home is to leave dirty dishes in a sink overnight. If you use a dishwasher, try to clean the inside at least once a month to remove food that might get stuck between wash cycles.
Along with a clean dishwasher, you want to have a clean garbage disposal. It’s common for garbage disposals to retain food even though they do a great job grinding most food up. Baking soda and vinegar are the safest way to clean your disposal – just pour a half cup of baking soda into the garbage disposal and add a cup of vinegar.
You also will want to move your kitchen appliances away from the wall, wipe down the sides of appliances, and clean the debris under those appliances. Wipe down the grease around the stove, clean out the inside of the microwave, toaster, or any other item used to cook. In addition, most pantries in homes can be a buffet for roaches when cereal boxes, chips, flour, cookies, etc., are not appropriately sealed once opened. Use Tupperware or ziplock bags to store opened food products to help keep the pest away. In short, deep clean your kitchen and appliances so pests can’t live off your food.
Vacuum Once A Week
We recommend vacuuming once a week to control cockroaches in your home. This will help pick up some of those loose crumbs that might have been dropped from having a snack on the couch or just having kids running around the house.
Thoroughly Inspect Your Home
Do a thorough inspection around your home to seal cracks that may be used as entry points for cockroaches this fall. Check for worn-out weather stripping at doors and windows, window screens that might need to be replaced, plumbing penetrations, exposed gaps in the wall, etc.
You will also want to inspect your home for any potential water leaks that may have gone unnoticed. Check around water hookups at your refrigerator, dishwasher, washing machine, and sinks. Also, inspect crawlspaces, as they are the perfect living environment for cockroaches.
Rearrange Your Storage and Garbage Cans
Storage in a home can be limited at times but focus on organizing garages, basements, or any area that stores personal items or boxes. Shelving is an excellent way to keep items lifted off of the floor and will cut down for potential pest breeding sites.
Outside trash can maintenance is just as important as the inside. Trash cans need to be stored at least 20 feet away from the structure at all times. The trash may be emptied once a week, but most cans are left full of food debris and odor that attracts cockroaches (and other pests). We also recommend rinsing the inside of the can out once a month to help eliminate any waste that was not emptied.
Maintain A Healthy Landscape
One of the best ways to help cut back on pest activity is to maintain good landscaping practices around the exterior of your home or business. Focus on weekly mowing, cleaning the gutters twice per year, keep firewood stored away from the house, and keep shrubs and bushes trimmed from the foundation.
Being Proactive is Best When Controlling Cockroaches
The above information is just a few tips that a homeowner can do to help prevent cockroach activity around their home this fall and throughout the year. However, our team at Nature’s Turf always recommends a proactive approach to keep those bugs out.
Quarterly pest control programs around the exterior can help protect the health of your home. Our team is dedicated to protecting your home throughout the year and is just one phone call away.