If you see a roach in your house, be sure it’s not alone there. Well, if they settled with you recently, then you could deal with them quickly. But if they lived there for a long time, it could be more difficult to destroy them.
Anyway, now is the time to go in search of the best roach killer. To make it easier for you, I have compiled a personal top 6 great products list which will help you get rid of these pests forever.
Although roaches do not spread infections, unlike mosquitoes, their neighborhood is not without danger. Different bacterial species build upon insect bodies and can get onto your dishes, leading to food poisoning. Moreover, these pests can cause allergic reactions and asthma.
That is why it is essential to detect the problem on time and get the most effective roach killer. Cockroaches could’ve climbed up through ventilation or cracks in the walls to you, arrived with you from a trip, or a grocery store.
They are attracted to places with warm, moist areas to breed and hide in and tasty food such as crumbs on your table or unwashed dishes.
How to Kill Roaches with Most Effective Roach Killers
Today, stores offer products of different brands and price categories. But as roaches develop resistance to active ingredients over time, it is best to use an integrated approach by applying several insecticides that work differently.
Most often, experts and ordinary buyers who have encountered cockroaches choose baits. They can be made in gel, liquid, or solid tablet forms.
The working principle of such treatments is quite simple. Roaches eat the bait, partially apply it to their body and legs, and bring it to their nest.
There, the poisoned individual infects the rest and dies on its own. These pests are known for feeding on their relatives’ feces and corpses, which, of course, plays into our hands. It helps to spread the insecticide deep into the nest, where females and nymphs live, which neither forage for food nor go outside.
How and when to use roach killing baits
Baits regularly prove their effectiveness, but only if used correctly. It depends on the right location how many insects will absorb the applied product.
It is a known fact that roaches cannot distinguish smells at a distance of several centimeters. That means the bait should be placed in suitable places so that pests meet it on their way to food. Areas located in warm, damp, and dark spots will be the most effective.
Please note that baits cannot be used in conjunction with roach repellents as they have different effects. Also, I do not recommend using several tools similar in action at once in the same zone.
When mixed, the chemicals in their composition can form a mixture that will have the opposite effect. For example, it will not deter cockroaches but on the contrary, it will attract them.
If you have small kids in your home, the baits should be laid out very carefully and in hard-to-reach places so that children cannot reach them. If you have pets, make sure to pick a pet safe roach killer when purchasing the product.
Cats are known for their love of hunting insects and can eat poisoned roaches. If you cannot keep kids and pets away from the bait, opt for other safe means, like traps.
How to improve roach bait efficiency
In most cases, I recommend taking off any removable panels of appliances and furniture and applying the bait to the inside since roaches prefer to crawl in the dark and rarely go outside. To be sure that insects will eat the sprayed product, try to place it as close to the nest as possible. As it can be tricky to find out, put the bait in several places.
To make sure insects eat your treatment, try to cut down on alternative food sources as much as possible. Wipe your bathroom and kitchen sink dry, leave no food on the counter, and seal the trash can tightly. If there is enough food and water near the shelter, roaches may never find the bait located a few steps away.
Sprays & foggers
To minimize this disadvantage, manufacturers create items that remain effective for a long time after application. Thus, even newly hatched roaches will also be affected by them.
You will find the same chemicals in sprays and foggers as in baits: Tetramethrin, Cypermethrin, Cyfluthrin, and Pyriproxyfen (also known as Nylar). Any roach poison has a nerve effect on insects and also disrupts the reproductive function.
How and when to use roach killing sprays
These remedies’ significant advantage is that they kill cockroaches in just a few hours, getting into their respiratory tract and poisoning them.
It is also quite easy to apply them to hard-to-reach places, such as cracks in the walls, thanks to their elongated nozzles, which are often included in the kit. It allows you to see the first significant results the very next day. They are especially effective against large populations of roaches.
However, sprays and foggers require certain safety precautions to be followed during application. In no case should they be used indoors where there are people or pets.
Before spraying, you will need to remove food, tableware, and children’s toys and leave the treatment area for several hours. The packaging always indicates the time after which you need to ventilate the apartment and do wet cleaning.
How to improve efficiency
For these products to be most effective, I recommend using them with gel baits. I will not tire of repeating that a holistic approach is the best way to kill roaches. Spray cracks and crevices, and pests will have nowhere to run.
Do not forget to close all the windows and doors in a treated room tightly, and also take into account the area for which a particular product is designed. If you need to process several rooms at once, it is advisable to use several cans of a fogger.
Also, remember that cockroaches quickly develop immunity to commonly used chemicals. If your chosen spray or fogger isn’t showing the desired level of effectiveness, it may be worth trying a product with a different active ingredient.
Since these insecticides are sprayed, they fade fairly quickly. For them to retain their effect, it is recommended to periodically re-treat rooms. Roach sprays and especially foggers are sprayed and deposited all over the place, which can help you kill other insects like ants, flies, and mosquitoes.
Roach traps may look different but, generally, they have a similar working principle. The surface of a device is covered with a sticky solution that smells attractive to roaches.
A pest crawls onto the treated surface and can no longer get out of there. Over time, without food and water, it dies. To speed up this process, some manufacturers add an insecticide to the glue that kills crawling insects.
The simplest and most inexpensive traps do not contain poisons and are simply covered with a gummy substance containing attractants.
A person does not smell them, but it is an indicator of food or water for pests. More advanced models contain substances that are also found in other cockroach control products, such as Fipronil, Abamectin, or Nylar. Even if an insect manages to get out of it, it will bring poison to the nest and kill others.
How and when to use roach traps
Their use highly resembles using baits. You need to place them in areas of congestion and along the path of insects. For this, dark, warm, and humid places are perfect, e.g., the space under your refrigerator, furniture, near the joints of walls and pipes.
A sticky trap is the safest roach killer for apartments with small children and pets. Such a device is odorless, and you do not need to isolate a room to use it. However, since the adhesive surface area is small, they would be ineffective if roaches had time to breed.
Sticky traps are not only an effective way to control pests but also an excellent opportunity to assess the level of infestation and identify the most severely affected areas. Since such products are inexpensive, I recommend buying several of them, spreading them out in places of potential roach accumulation, and evaluating them in 24 hours.
You will see what kind of insects live here and will be able to determine their approximate number. It will allow you to choose the main method of pest control more effectively.
How to improve efficiency
Like other anti-cockroaches treatments, traps have a limited duration. It is because their sticky surface can be covered not only with dead insects but also with dust and debris, which significantly reduces the effectiveness of this method.
To prevent it from happening, check the production date when purchasing. A newly made trap will most likely have excellent stickiness.
They can be used along with baits. Place the traps where you want and connect them with dotted lines using a gel. It will significantly increase their effectiveness since roaches will follow the bait in search of food and will definitely fall into the sticky trap.
Products that contain IGR affect cockroaches at the genetic level. They are not as fast-acting as contact pesticides. It takes at least a week to notice the result of their work. But insect growth regulators are really effective, environmentally friendly, and do not affect other insects’ life cycle.
They have an impact on larvae and nymphs, which bodies still grow. When exposed to chemicals, processes such as molting do not work correctly, and treated roaches do not reach sexual maturity. It eventually leads to the extinction of a colony, making the IGR the strongest roach killer.
Various hormonal chemicals can be used to control the pest population. The most common active ingredients are Hydroprene, Diflubenzuron, Azadirachtin, and Pyriproxyfen (or Nylar).
How and when to use IGR against roaches
Since roaches are insects that reproduce all year round and very quickly (they lay oothecae every 2-3 weeks), IGRs can be used at any time. Their main advantage is their safety for humans and pets.
So, if you wonder how to get rid of roaches in places where there is no way to spray an aerosol or smear gel, pay attention to these treatments. Besides, since they work exclusively on pests with a chitinous shell, they do not harm beneficial insects.
Even if you called in specialists to exterminate cockroaches, there is always a possibility that new ones will creep up to you from your neighbors. That is why, after such cleaning, it is recommended to place products with IGR in dark places to prevent their reappearance.
How to improve efficiency
Although IGR reduces the cockroach population dramatically, it will take some time for you to notice the first results. It affects larvae and nymphs and does not kill adults who have already formed a shell.
Therefore, you better use additional methods for the complete destruction of pests, such as traps and sprays. Otherwise, there is a chance that adult cockroaches, which have not been exposed to IGRs, may build a nest elsewhere.
As practice shows, although these pests are less likely to develop resistance to such drugs, it can still occur. That is why they should be used in combination with other insecticides. If you want to get rid of a large colony, it is helpful to alternate several regulators to avoid building resistance to a particular drug.
As a finishing touch to cockroach control, it is recommended to use repellents to make them think the treated area is uninhabitable. So what are cockroaches afraid of?
You can find both repellent sprays for indoor and outdoor use and ultrasonic devices on the list of the most bought products. The latter have shown their low efficiency in deterring these pests. Roaches live in walls and between furniture that blocks the spreading of ultrasonic waves.
Therefore, the best repellents are natural or chemical sprays. The first contains essential oils of peppermint, rosemary, and catnip as active ingredients, the smell of which is not tolerated by cockroaches. The latter uses insecticides such as Diethyltoluamide, Bifenthrin, Tetramethrin, and Cypermethrin.
How and when to use roach repellents
When using repellents, you create an invisible barrier that roaches cannot overcome. Such products are either odorless at all or smell pleasant to humans. Since some of them contain substances toxic to humans and pets, they should be used in non-food places.
Their main disadvantage (especially natural repellents) is the need to reuse them pretty often since these products are quite easily washed off with water. But they do not leave marks, so you can apply them to the walls of your house and patio. Besides, they are effective in repelling not only cockroaches but other crawling pests as well.
How to improve efficiency
Of course, these insects will try to avoid strong-smelling areas. But my practice shows that, unfortunately, in conditions of a lack of food and water, roaches can still overcome an unpleasant barrier that repellents create.
Therefore, they should be applied exclusively in combination with other insecticides. I recommend using them only after killing insects indoors.
Try to apply the purchased repellent to the most difficult-to-reach areas: under your fridge, sink, between furniture walls, etc. Cockroaches can even enter the house through windows and doors, so a deterrent can be applied near them. And do not forget that such products fade and wash off rather quickly, so regularly re-treat rooms.
Homemade roach killers
A killing roaches strategy would be incomplete without DIY repellents and killers. Many of these products are truly excellent pest control aids and are much more budget-friendly than professional items. I’m sure you have baking soda and some essential oils in your home. If not, you can easily find everything in any store to make a homemade roach killer.
The simplest and most effective insecticide for roaches is boric acid. It damages their digestive system and shells, thus killing them. You can mix it with something sweet and spread it around pest congestion as bait.
You can also dissolve the acid in water and make a pest spray. Use this product carefully as it is not safe for humans and pets. Regular baking soda has a similar effect on roaches, but it is less toxic and can be used in food areas.
Diatomaceous earth is widely used for pest control as well. Since this product does physical, not chemical damage, roaches cannot develop immunity to it. You can sprinkle it around your home or mix it with sugar and spread it out in tight spaces. Also, you can add DE to fresh coffee grounds. Its smell attracts cockroaches, but caffeine is toxic to them.
A homemade essential oil spray is the best roach repellent you can do yourself. Tea tree, peppermint, catnip, lemon, clove, and laurel oils are the perfect deterrents.
You can take two or three of these fragrances, mix with water, and spray the product near windows, doors, ventilation pipes, etc. Neem oil is also extremely toxic to pests. It inhibits the development of young roaches effectively and suppresses their reproductive function.
Also, among the popular homemade remedies for dealing with roaches, you can find fabric softener, the smell of which these insects can’t stand. However, you will have to reapply it every day, as the fragrance wears off quickly. You can also use dry spices of onions, cayenne peppers, and garlic to treat your living spaces.
6 Best Roach Killers
In my top, I have collected the best remedies from several categories. Please note that they contain different active ingredients. You can safely buy several products from my list so that cockroaches do not develop a strong immunity to one of the treatments.
1. Best Cockroach Killer Bait: Advion Roach Control Gel
- Item Volume: 4.24 Fluid Ounces
- Item Form: Gel
- Number of pieces: 4
- Item Weight: 6.9 ounces
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 7.6 x 5.4 x 1.9 inches
The bait from Advion has long proven its effectiveness. The package comes with four 1.06 ounces tubes, which is enough to treat even large industrial spaces. Although the manufacturer states that it is primarily suitable for fighting German roaches, according to my experience, it works well against other species of these insects.
The active ingredient in this best indoor roach killer is Indoxacarb, which has a nerve effect. All other substances in the composition are needed to attract roaches to the bait. They are not repellent or deterrent.
Thanks to the convenient packaging (a syringe with an extended nozzle), this gel is easy to use and can be applied even in hard-to-reach places. Although this method is a little messier than using traps, it is effective at destroying large populations.
2. Best Roach Killing Spray: BENGAL Gold Spray
- Item Form: Spray
- Active Ingredient: Permethrin 2%
- Item Weight: 13.28 Ounces
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 10 x 2 x 10.5 inches
- Target Species: Roaches, Ants, Mosquitoes, Fleas, Ticks and Spiders
I think this one is the best among the sprays on the modern market. Although it has a rather higher price than other products, it is reasonable as it is highly effective. It leaves no residue and is odorless.
The spray contains two active ingredients that fight cockroach populations: Permethrin and Nylar. If the former kills adults, the latter prevents the full development of larvae and nymphs.
Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations regarding the use of such products since these substances are toxic in the composition to humans and pets. All residents must leave the treated room for a while.
Bengal roach spray is supplied in an 11-ounces can and is ready to use right from the package. Just apply it to the desired areas, and you will notice the result within a couple of hours after use. The effect can last up to six months.
3. Best Roach IGR: Gentrol Point Source
- Active Ingredient: Hydroprene 90.6%
- 1 Disc treats up to 75 sq. ft.
- Number of pieces: 20
- Item Weight: 5.6 ounces
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 3.55 x 7.45 x 2.85 inches
IGRs are the best roach killer products if you want a long-lasting effect. Gentrol Point Source is a powder that is packaged in special containers.
One piece covers an area of 75 square feet, so you don’t need to use all 20 of them from the kit at the same time. Install new containers no more than once every three months. Depending on your room area in which roaches breed, this package may be enough for a year of use.
You will find Hydroprene in the composition, which acts on nymphs and larvae at the genetic level and prevents them from developing into adults. As cockroaches stop multiplying, the colony dies out eventually.
Since you will see the first results after a while, you should also use baits to kill already formed adults so that they do not build a new nest elsewhere. For humans, this product has low toxicity, so you can use it safely in any room.
4. Best Professional Roach Insecticide: Viper Insecticide Concentrate
- Active Ingredients: Cypermethrin 25.4%
- Item Volume: 1 Pints
- Item Form: Spray
- Item Weight: 1.3 ounces
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 3.9 x 1.8 x 7.9 inches
If your house was invaded not only by roaches but also other nasty insects like ticks, scorpions, or spiders, opt for the multifunctional pesticide for roaches — Viper Insecticide Concentrate. It contains Cypermethrin, which has long been used in agriculture to combat a wide variety of pests.
Dissolve the concentrate with water and treat all places where cockroaches accumulate with the resulting mixture. It comes in 16 ounces containers, so one bottle will last for a long time.
Although many buyers use this tool as an outdoor roach killer, I do not recommend doing it. This insecticide is extremely toxic to beneficial insects (such as bees), fish, and crustaceans and can harm the local ecosystem. Therefore, apply it only indoors, away from food areas.
This concentrate has a characteristic petroleum scent, so after it completely dries, ventilate the treated area thoroughly.
5. Best Roach Trap: Black Flag Glue Trap
- Duration of action: for up to 4 monthsItem Form:
- Number of pieces: 8
- Item Weight: 10.2 ounces
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 13.39 x 7.28 x 3.9 inches
- Target Species: Roaches, Water Bugs, Palmetto Bugs, Spiders, Crickets and Scorpions
Traps should be used when bundled with various baits and IGRs. The product from the Black Flag company copes not only with catching cockroaches but can even trap small scorpions.
It is a small cardboard box covered with an adhesive solution from the inside. Even if pests, for some reason, do not stick to its surface, they still cannot get out due to the special design of the entrance.
The glue does not contain pesticides, other toxins, or fragrances in its composition and is completely safe for use in residential premises.
This kit comes with four packs, each containing two traps. You should change them as soon as they become dirty or every four months. I like that this product has a closed design, which means that dust and other debris will not settle on the adhesive surface.
6. Best Roach Fogger: Hot Shot Indoor Fogger
- Item Volume: 1 Fluid Ounces
- Item Form: Spray
- Contains: three 2-ounce cans
- Item Weight: 12.6 ounces
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 2.13 x 6.44 x 5.25 inches
If you suffer from a huge number of cockroaches, I recommend large-scale treatment of the premises with this Hot Shot Indoor Fogger. This set contains three 2-ounces cans. One container is designed to handle one room of 2000 square feet.
The effect of the sprayed insecticide lasts for two months. This product contains Tetramethrin and Cypermethrin, which kill insects by direct contact. However, it leaves no stains or sticky residue after spraying.
Since the fogger is toxic, you should treat only empty rooms. Open the can and leave your house for a couple of hours, and then ventilate all the rooms for another two hours. Only after that, you can return to the place. The tool copes with cockroaches, ants, ticks, fleas, flies, and other pests effectively.
Best Roach Treatment FAQ
Cockroach infestation is a problem faced by many. That is why there are lots of questions about the correct tactics of dealing with them. In this section, I have answered the most popular ones.
What do professionals use to kill roaches?
Typically, exterminators use an integrated approach. They carry out large-scale cleaning of the premises with foggers and professional sprays and then set up baits and traps if a few roaches manage to escape. In professional products, you will find ingredients such as Indoxacarb, Cypermethrin, and Permethrin.
What kills roaches and their eggs?
With adults, everything is pretty simple. They die from exposure to insecticides as well as natural remedies like coffee grounds and boric acid. The eggs are so tough that they can survive even the most effective treatment. That is why it is recommended to use IGRs, which affect the development of hatched nymphs, preventing the proper formation of their organisms.
Does baking soda and sugar really kill roaches?
Yes, baking soda has a similar effect to boric acid. Sugar serves as a bait for cockroaches, and soda kills them. After absorption of such a mixture, gas bubbles form in insect bodies, due to which they die. Such a product is harmless to humans, and due to its low toxicity, it can be used in places where you cook.
Does diatomaceous earth kill roaches?
DE (or kieselguhr) is a well-known natural roach killer. Products based on it are completely safe for humans and animals since they have a physical, not chemical, effect on insects. DE crystals absorb liquid from roach shells, dehydrating them, which leads to rapid death. Also, because of this feature, pests cannot develop immunity to it.
Fight Roaches Fully Armed
Now you know how to kill roaches with the best tools in their category. I will never tire of repeating that the key to successful pest control is an integrated approach. Therefore, you can safely choose remedies from my list since they all have proven their effectiveness in practice.
Cockroaches are quite tenacious creatures that quickly adapt to circumstances. Change gels, sprays, and baits periodically so that they do not develop immunity to the active ingredients.
Please share your experience in fighting roaches in the comments. What tools did you use? Which ones were the most effective?
- Cockroaches as carriers of bacteria in multi-family dwellings (Cambridge University Press):
- How Insecticides Work (Dr. Alan T. Eaton, Extension Specialist, Entomology):
- Indoxacarb C22H17CIF3N307(National Center for Biotechnology Information):
- Cypermethrin (National Pesticide Information Center):http://npic.orst.edu/factsheets/cypermethrin.pdf
- Fipronil (National Pesticide Information Center):
- Emulsifiable Concentrate for Fleas and Listed Roaches with Insect Growth Regulator (McLaughlin Gormley King Company):
- Insect Growth Regulators (Washington State University):
- How to Keep Roaches Away from Your Bed (WikiNow):
- Diatomaceous Earth (National Pesticide Information Center, Oregon State University Extension Services):
- 1 How to Kill Roaches with Most Effective Roach Killers
- 1.1 Baits
- 1.2 Sprays & foggers
- 1.3 Traps
- 1.4 IGR
- 1.5 Repellents
- 1.6 Homemade roach killers
- 2 6 Best Roach Killers
- 2.1 1. Best Cockroach Killer Bait: Advion Roach Control Gel
- 2.2 2. Best Roach Killing Spray: BENGAL Gold Spray
- 2.3 3. Best Roach IGR: Gentrol Point Source
- 2.4 4. Best Professional Roach Insecticide: Viper Insecticide Concentrate
- 2.5 5. Best Roach Trap: Black Flag Glue Trap
- 2.6 6. Best Roach Fogger: Hot Shot Indoor Fogger
- 3 Best Roach Treatment FAQ
- 4 Fight Roaches Fully Armed
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