Are Cockroaches In Chicago Easy To Deter?

We present an interesting question today. If you know anything about cockroaches, you know that they are notoriously hard to deter. But not all roaches are the same. Some are easier to prevent than others. Join us today as we examine three cockroach species every Chicago resident should know. We'll discuss how each is different, the health risks associated with them, how they enter homes, and what works to control these cockroach pests. If you have a cockroach infestation and you want help with cockroach identification or a solution to get rid of cockroaches, reach out to us! The service team at Aerex Pest Control is more than happy to help. We offer innovative solutions for eco-friendly pest control in Chicago. When you have pest control questions, we have answers.

The Types Of Cockroaches That Invade Chicago Homes

We have a handful of roaches in Chicago that commonly enter our homes. On the top of the list are oriental, German, and American cockroaches. In terms of how easy they are to control, they fall in that order. There are a few reasons why. 

Oriental cockroaches are entirely black and look like armored beetles. They are the easiest to control because they prefer dirty and damp environments typically not found indoors. While they certainly can infest a home permanently, they don't generally choose to live where it is clean and dry.

American cockroaches are pernicious pests. They're the chestnut-colored cockroaches with the yellowish figure eight on their backs. They're also the largest roaches that invade Chicago homes. An adult cockroach of this species is several inches long. Often called water bugs or Palmetto bugs, these roaches are attracted to damp habitats, so a dry home may drive them outside.

German cockroaches are the worst of all cockroaches, and some believe the worst of all insects that invade human domiciles. They can tolerate clean conditions and dry habitats. They're also able to deal with food scarcity better than other roaches. These are the tan-colored cockroaches with the black equal sign on their backs.

Cockroach identification is essential as it can help you determine what you're up against and whether or not it is time to contact a professional. If you have oriental or American cockroaches, you may try sanitation and moisture control first and see if those roaches vacate your premises and move away from your exterior. We'll tell you how to get rid of cockroaches naturally in a moment. First, let's discuss how these three cockroach species differ in their ability to make you sick.      

Are Cockroaches Harmful To Humans?

Cockroaches are unsanitary pests in general. It isn't good to have any cockroach species in your home. But some are worse than others. It is helpful to know which and to understand why. Once again, let's look at our three common roach pests. 

Oriental cockroaches are the worst. They breed in foul places, and you can tell. If you have these roaches in your home, you're going to smell more than the pheromone scent associated with insects. They often have a trash smell.

American cockroaches are in the middle again. While they'll climb in sewers, trash receptacles, and other dirty places, they also slide underneath leaves and feed on natural organic detritus. As they squeeze under moist vegetation, it cleans them off slightly. They're never fully clean, but certainly cleaner than oriental roaches.

German cockroaches are the best. We say that tongue in cheek. It is terrible to have a German cockroach infestation, and we strongly recommend a professional German cockroach treatment if you have these roaches in your home. But there is one good point we can share. German cockroaches prefer to live indoors. If you keep a spotless home, you may have a low health risk. The reason is that newly hatched roaches may never get exposed to harmful bacteria, parasitic worms, and other harmful microorganisms found outdoors. Unfortunately, cockroach exoskeletons, saliva, and waste are a source of disease and can create respiratory distress for those with asthma.

How And Why Cockroaches Invade Homes

It isn't easy to deter cockroaches from getting inside your home. The more you understand how and why they invade your space, the greater your chances of keeping them out. Let's break it down.

Why do cockroaches enter your home? Several factors determine whether or not cockroaches will find their way indoors. Some may surprise you. Here's how they get in, why they get in, and how to keep them out.

Entry Points: Cockroaches will likely enter your home through tiny gaps, cracks, and holes. They are highly mobile insects. They can scale walls, run across your ceilings, and squeeze through a gap of more than half their height. Here are a few common entry points:

  • A gap under your door will give quick entry to a cockroach. Ensure that all exterior doors have working sweeps.
  • A gap around your door can let a roach squeeze in. Cockroaches walk across walls and defy gravity. It is nothing for a cockroach to slip through a horizontal gap. Ensure that all weatherstripping around exterior doors creates effective seals. If you see light leaking in during the day or leaking out at night, you have gaps a cockroach may use.
  • A gap around a window or door frame can be used by a cockroach, even if it is barely visible to you. A caulking gun can make sure your frames are properly sealed. 
  • A gap around a pipe is like a superhighway for roaches. They are attracted to moisture points. It is critical to seal exterior cracks, inspect where pipes come in underneath your kitchen and bathroom sinks, and seal gaps there as well.

Seal every gap, crack, and hole, no matter how small. Doing so will not only deter cockroach pests but a long list of other, potentially harmful, Chicago pests.  

Attractants: Cockroaches often enter homes because they are first attracted to the exterior. There are a few things that attract cockroaches. By controlling those attractants, cockroaches may not give you trouble.

  • Clean your trash receptacles to remove the scent of decaying organic matter, and get your receptacles to the curb weekly to prevent smells from developing.
  • Pick up food sources around your home, particularly food near your grill or soda cans left on the back deck. Sweet condiments and sugary drinks are strong attractants.
  • Pick up yard clutter and remove all objects cockroaches may hide under.
  • Do you have a dog? Stay on top of the waste cleanup in your yard. It is an unsavory thought, but cockroaches feed on feces.
  • Do you have compost? Make sure to mix it properly and remove the odor. When properly mixed, cockroaches won't be as drawn to it. 
  • Clean your gutters and fix broken splash blocks or downspouts. A damp perimeter is ideal for all cockroach pests.
  • Cut tall grass, remove weeds, rake leaves, and trim landscape vegetation to remove preferable environments for cockroaches.  

Fixing and removing the above items will go a long way to help prevent cockroaches.

Hitchhiking: German cockroaches sometimes hitch a ride from one location to another. If you buy used furniture or other household items, you may acquire a roach infestation. You can prevent this by inspecting used items. Look for these warning signs:

  • Look for black fecal pellets or fecal spotting.
  • Look for shed skins. These skins may appear in hollow cavities, inside pockets, or within seams. 
  • Check for insects. Keep in mind that cockroach babies are nymphs. They look like adult roaches, but they don't have wings and are black on the sides with tan in the middle. An immature nymph may look like a black roach with a tan spot in the middle of the back. 

It is far better to prevent a cockroach infestation than to deal with applying a cockroach treatment. DIY cockroach control products often fail, and residents find themselves in a bitter battle with these frustrating pests.  

What's The Best Way To Get Rid Of Cockroaches In Your House?

When cockroaches are in your home, contact a licensed home pest control professional. A professional will apply the scientific method to handle a cockroach infestation during each step appropriately. 

  • An inspection is performed to determine where roaches are active, their entry points, conducive conditions, and potential routes.
  • Exclusions are applied to limit the ability of roaches to get around your home and keep them out of your home.
  • The pest roaches in your home are properly identified.
  • Control materials are selected to target the specific species. Each species is somewhat different.
  • Once your home is cockroach-free, a service provider can help you keep them outside your home by providing ongoing perimeter protection and crack and crevice treatments.

Are you in Chicago? Do you have questions about common cockroaches not addressed in this article, or would you like to request service for your Chicago home or business? Our service team members can guide you toward a solution that provides the exact level of control you want. We have highly trained and experienced service technicians with the problem-solving skills to provide impeccable service. Connect with Aerex Pest Control for a free over-the-phone estimate today. With over 70 years in the pest control industry, our family-owned and operated company is ready to help you permanently remove cockroaches.


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