How To Shortout Of Roaches

1. Banish potential bug food
Cockroaches don’t crawl into your home with the express purpose of creeping you out. They’re just looking for a comfy place to get a snack or a sip, explains Eric Hoffer, president of Hoffer Pest Solutions in Coral Springs, Florida. So find ways to make your space less hospitable.

Wipe up stray crumbs and avoid leaving food out, and keep your eyes peeled for potential water sources as well. To cockroaches, pet water bowls, standing water in flower pots, leaky pipes, and even wet sponges or towels are all perfectly acceptable places to get a drink, Hoffer says.

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This won’t just help keep new cockroaches from coming in. Denying food and water can eventually kill invaders that are already inside, says Chad Gore, PhD, entomologist and market technical director for Western Exterminator, Ehrlich, and Presto-X. Or at the very least, make them weaker, so they’re more susceptible to insecticides. (More on those in a sec.)

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2. Clear the clutter
Despite myths about cockroaches and messy homes, you don’t need anything close to a Hoarders-level situation to attract the bugs. A pile of newspapers, a stack of boxes, or even a full trash bin can serve as a cozy cockroach home, according to the National Center For Healthy Housing.

3. Scope out your space
Cockroaches don’t need an open door or window to get inside. “Roaches can fit through a crack only a fraction of an inch wide,” Hoffer says. Yup, they’re pretty wily critters. Do your best to inspect your home for possible entry points, particularly dark or damp areas like under the sink, inside cabinets, or behind the fridge. Tuck glue strips into any areas that seem suspicious, like these from Tred-Not. The adhesive strips will trap any cockroaches that try to creep in, so you know which areas need to be bug-proofed.

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4. Plan your attack
Boric acid and bait traps are two good tools worth trying. Both are known to be effective against cockroaches and are safer than sprays and fogs because they limit your exposure to pesticides, according to the National Center for Healthy Housing. (They’re not Crayola-level safe, though, so still take care to keep kids and pets away.) You can apply boric acid powder directly to cracks or crevices where you suspect roaches are sneaking in or like to hide. (Try Harris Boric Acid Roach and Silverfish Killer Powder.) Or set bait traps nearby. “When a roach eats the bait, they’ll travel back to their hiding places, die, and be eaten by the other roaches to pass the poison along,” Hoffer says.

And for extra insurance, seal up as many of the crevices as you can with caulk (like Flex Shot Rubber Adhesive Sealant Caulk), recommends Gore. That’ll keep new cockroaches from coming inside.

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5. If all else fails, call a pro
Hopefully, your DIY efforts are enough to stop your home from turning into a cockroach haven. But if the problem doesn’t seem to be getting better within a week or so, don’t hesitate to call in the big guns. “In general, cockroaches are nocturnal,” Gore says. “If you see them out and about during the day and frequently, then the chances are pretty good that a population has become established and it’s time to call a professional.”

how to shortout of roaches

Often, an exterminator can identify and block entry points that you might have missed—and help get your home back to a pest-free state ASAP. Look for a pro specializing in integrated pest management, the National Center for Healthy Housing suggests. These experts will aim to try less harmful pest control methods before opting for potentially riskier options like pesticide sprays. Search the National IPM Database to find one near you.

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How To Minimise Fleas

1. Pest Control Services – Works best for extensive infestations. Cost can go up to $100 or more if multiple sessions are required over a few days. Complete eradication of fleas in your house. Pest control services do not offer long-term protection if you have pets, as they’ll tend to attract fleas over time, so make sure you use flea sprays and tablets as well. After a pest control session is over, use some flea spray and flea tablets for your pets right away before letting them back into the house.

For pest control services, click here.

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vet’s best flea home spray2. Flea Sprays – Flea sprays can be used on both pets and furniture (carpets, rugs, couch, bedding – both your pet and yours, blankets, pillows). These sprays will kill most types of fleas, including their eggs, upon contact.

TIP: For sensitive areas of your pets i.e near its face, spray on a comb and brush it.
Use this in combination with flea tablets so that any new adult fleas that hop onto your pet will die off almost immediately too. If you kill off all the eggs and adult fleas simultaneously, the flea cycle will be broken.
If you have pets, you can use this on them in addition to flea tablets for optimal results.

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This is the flea spray I used and personally recommend: Vet’s Best Flea Home Spray. It costs a mere 9 bucks and is apparently made of natural ingredients, which is great for those averse to chemical products.

Novartis Capstar Flea Tablets3. Flea Tablets – Flea tablets are pills fed to your dogs or cats. Any fleas that are biting your pets will start dropping like flies. Results are quick and extremely effective, often within 30 minutes. Please note however that flea tablets only last for a day, only kills adult fleas and is not a long-term preventative measure. So, if you feed your dog one of these pills today and decide to bring it to the dog park tomorrow, you’ll have to feed it another pill once you’re back from the park.

Once you have a controlled flea-free environment, you really only need to use flea tablets, if and when needed, such as when your pet returns from a vet clinic, a pet grooming salon, a pet hotel or a pet park.

Use this in combination with flea sprays to kill off eggs too, since tablets only kill off adult fleas.

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These are the flea tablets I used and personally recommend: Novartis Capstar Flea Tablets. A 6-dose package for small dogs costs around $25, while for bigger dogs, it costs around $30. Make sure you pick the appropriate dosage based on the size of your dogs or cats.

flea fogging4. Fogging – Fogging is very effective because even the hard-to-reach places will be cleared of fleas. This technique is often used by pest exterminators themselves too, but only for really bad infestations because of the inconvenience it puts you in. You might have to do this more than once too.

You’ll have to cover up exposed food, utensils and dishes, disable your smoke alarms temporarily, shut all the windows and doors, and leave your house together with your pet (if any) for a couple of hours. After the fogging is over, you’ll have to re-open all the windows and doors and air your house for about 2 hours before going in again. You’ll tend to see many other dead bugs all around your house as they leave their nests in their attempts to escape the fog and die.

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IMPORTANT: After fogging, you MUST remember to also treat your pet before letting it into the house. Spray your pet down with a flea spray and feed it a flea tablet to be safe.
This is the fogger I’ve used and recommend: Hot Shot No-Mess Fogger. It should only cost around $10 for a 3-can fogger. If you live in a bigger house, you’ll probably need more than that. Although 1 can supposedly covers 2000 cubic feet, I used 1 can per room just to be safe. Be prepared to come back to a looooooot more dead bugs than just fleas.

vacuuming5. Vacuuming – If fogging sounds like too much of a hassle, vacuuming works to a certain extent as well.

If you have a strong enough vacuum, you can actually vacuum up even the eggs wherever it passes over. Just make sure you cover as much space as is possible. Vacuum the carpets, curtains, under your furniture, beds and also any cracks or crevices in the floorboards and baseboards. Attach a vacuum nozzle for areas that are harder to reach into.

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IMPORTANT: If you have a pet, make sure you feed it a flea tablet about 30 minutes before you start vacuuming your house. Also, make sure you use some flea spray on your pet as well. This is so that any adult fleas that hopped onto your pet while you’re vacuuming will simply die off (from the tablets), and any eggs residing on it will be eliminated (from the spray).
After vacuuming, carefully detach the vacuum cleaner bag and discard it, preferably into a bin outside your house to prevent any risk of re-infestation.

After the vacuum session, use flea spray on all the vacuumed areas just in case you missed some of these bugs and their eggs.