Keeping cockroaches out of your home is probably already a big part of your Orange County pest control plan – as it should be. These unsanitary pests can do more property damage than you think. Even worse, they spread dozens upon dozens of different pathogens, many of which can make you incredibly sick.
Potentially the worst part of a cockroach infestation is the fact that they are so hard to get rid of for a variety of reasons. The good news is that you have an ally in the war against roach incursion. When it comes to getting rid of these pests, the experts here at The PEST Group are the best group!
Clear Signs You Have A Cockroach Problem
The thing about cockroaches is they are very good at avoiding people. Some of that is just natural, as humans are diurnal and cockroaches are nocturnal. This means the two species are active at different times of the 24-hour cycle. Roaches crawl around mostly while we're sleeping, so it's understandable that we might not see them.
Not only are cockroaches more active when we are less active, but they are also highly motivated to stay out of our way. Cockroaches might unsettle you, but you are much larger than they are and can crush them. This means they have some serious motivation to never let you spot them. They are incredibly good at hiding and can scurry fast when they feel the vibrations of human feet on the floor.
All this means that you might not ever see a live cockroach, even if you have a significant problem. Thus, you will have to look for other signs of cockroach infestation, including:
A musty or foul odor
Smear marks from roaches crawling in water
Cockroach exoskeletons or bodies
Cockroach egg capsules, which look like tiny pills
Cockroach feces, which look like fine coffee grains
Roaches are excellent at staying out of our way, but they sometimes don't succeed. If you see a live roach crawling around in the open or find one when you lift some item or turn on a light, you likely have a significant infestation. Seeing actual living cockroaches crawling around is one of the surest signs that you have a severe problem that needs to be dealt with as soon as possible.
Here in Southern California, there are several cockroach species you should look out for in your home. American cockroaches are particularly visible because of their size. They can grow up to two inches long, which is massive for a cockroach. Some people call these cockroaches "palmetto bugs," but this is incorrect. If you see something that looks like a giant cockroach, it is a giant cockroach — an American one.
Another major species we have here in California is the German cockroach. These tiny cockroaches are light brown and have two parallel stripes near their heads. These are some of the worst cockroaches you can get because they are even more difficult to eradicate than other cockroach species in our area, like the brown-banded or the oriental cockroach. If you see a German cockroach crawling around your house, you need to act immediately to prevent further spread of the infestation.
How Cockroaches Are Harmful To Human Health
Everybody knows cockroaches are gross, but most people don't understand just how gross they are. Cockroaches are known or suspected to spread almost 50 different human pathogens, from bacteria to viruses to protozoa and even parasitic worms. This means roaches, more than any other pest, have the potential to make you very sick.
Just a few of the illnesses cockroaches spread are:
Some of the illnesses on this list might do nothing more than give you some unpleasant symptoms for a few days, but some of them are serious global perils that pose a threat to human life even in the 21st century. This is why home pest control for cockroaches is so incredibly vital to your health.
Cockroaches are so riddled with disease because of their unsanitary habits. These scavengers love to hang out where they can have easy access to all the nasty things they love to eat. This is why you'll find them in places like rotting animal corpses, open sewage, and dumpsters. They regularly eat out of locales like this, so they are full of germs on the inside and covered in them on the outside.
When they come into your home, they track these germs all over your surfaces with their dirty legs and underbellies. They also have no compunction about leaving feces in your food stores, which further contaminate them. This is why if you find roaches in food packaging of any kind, you will want to throw out all food inside the package. Every surface that cockroaches have touched will need to be cleaned, as well.
Useful Cockroach Prevention Tips
Unfortunately, once you get an active cockroach infestation inside your home, it is extremely difficult to eliminate it. This is partially because roaches are so tough and partially because they reproduce so fast.
Everyone knows about cockroaches' legendary toughness. They can go a week after being decapitated. They can withstand high levels of nuclear fallout. They are able to withstand compression forces up to 900 times their body weight, so even crushing them can sometimes seem a challenge. This durability also makes them incredibly resistant to many cockroach control products.
Not only are cockroaches hard to eliminate in comparison to your average pest, but they are also very good at replacing themselves before being eliminated. Cockroaches can produce hundreds and sometimes even thousands of offspring during their lifetimes. This means that eliminating a few adult roaches isn't going to cut it. You will accomplish nothing more than temporarily reducing the cockroach population in your home, if that.
This is why it's much better to deter cockroaches than it is to try to get rid of them after they've already infested your home. Making your property less attractive to them can encourage them to move on and infest something else or maybe even stay outside where they belong.
Fortunately, it's quite easy to make your home much less attractive to cockroaches. All you need to do is make a few simple lifestyle changes. Even better, many of the best practices that help keep cockroaches at bay can also work with other pests, like ants and silverfish.
The best way to prevent a cockroach infestation is to keep a clean house. This doesn't just mean vacuuming frequently and wiping surfaces to eliminate crumbs that cockroaches could feed on, but it also means properly storing trash and food. A lot of people don't realize they are laying out cockroach attractants by failing to store these things appropriately.
For instance, many people like to leave fruit bowls or cookie plates out in the open, but this is a bad idea because cockroaches can easily crawl up on your counter and eat them. They can even chew right through certain types of fruit peels. This is why it's important to keep all pantry foods in airtight containers. That goes for trash, too. You'll want to keep your indoor and outdoor garbage cans tightly sealed.
Don't forget about your pet foods, as these are commonly left out for dogs and cats to graze on during the day. However, cockroaches can graze on them too. So it's better to feed your pets and put their food and bowls away when it is not mealtime.
Once you have removed all food sources from cockroaches, you will want to do the same thing with moisture. This means fixing any issues you have with condensation, leaks, or poor drainage. It's also a good idea to seal up cracks and holes in your home's exterior so that roaches cannot enter. You'll want to ensure your window screens are well-fitted and free from rips and tears, as well.
The Safe And Effective Way To Get Rid Of Cockroaches
A lot of times, you can keep your home free from cockroaches by following the best practices we listed above. However, sometimes, even these measures cannot keep out roaches. This is especially true during droughts when roaches can become almost entirely dependent on human habitations for their moisture needs.
The good news is that even if your best efforts to prevent a cockroach infestation fail, we have your back here at The PEST Group. We are familiar with all of the species of cockroaches endemic to the Orange County area, and we know all the dirty tricks they use to evade eradication. But it doesn't matter how tough they are. They can't stand up to us.
We always stay on top of the latest and greatest cockroach elimination technologies and techniques to ensure that whatever resistance they develop in the future, we stay one step ahead of them. So don't waste your time and money to only get rid of a few cockroaches. Let us eliminate your entire infestation. Don't wait. Contact The PEST Group today!