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Ugh... roaches

Arch Guru XXArch Guru XX Registered User regular
edited April 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
So, roaches. Ewwww.

My wife and I have lived in our current apartment (upper floor of a duplex, building was built in or around 1929) for three years. We have started seeing some roaches:
  • Over a year ago I encountered a huge roach in our kitchen. It escaped under the refrigerator before I could kill it.
  • About two months ago we found a dying roach lying on its back in the bathroom. It died before I could question it.
  • About two weeks ago I found another in the bathroom; it tried to escape but I crushed it.
  • Last night I found another huge one in the kitchen. It was big enough that maybe we could have signed a treaty with it, but instead I crushed it with a vase. And then a hammer.

As the frequency of contact is increasing my comfort with the situation is decreasing. I always assumed they were around, given the age of the building, but if they don’t come out I’m pretty okay with the situation. When 2”-long (not counting antennae) roaches start showing up I have a problem with it. These things are way bigger than my threshold for tolerating them; I’m getting slight goodebumps just thinking about them. So, three questions for H/A:
  1. As luck would have it, we should be moving out in about a month. What do I need to do to ensure we don’t take any stowaways with us to the new place? So far I’ve only seen them in the bathroom and kitchen, would they have any reason to get inside old clothes or dressers?
  2. Since we’re moving I don’t really care about full-on extermination efforts (our landlord can handle that when we’re gone), but I would like to dissuade the fuckers from showing themselves. Any suggestions for this, aside from spraying possible entry points with RAID?
  3. We’ve been living in Southern California for 5 years at this point, and this is the only time we’ve had any kind of insect issue. We haven’t changed our habits, and we don’t leave food out – is there anything else that might be attracting them?

Also, there are a number of entry points – large, old holes around pipes and whatnot. There is no feasible way of sealing them off without radically remodeling the whole apartment.

Suggestions? Thanks in advance.

Should have been a rock star.
Arch Guru XX on

Posts

  • VisionOfClarityVisionOfClarity Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Can you pack in plastic boxes/rubber maids instead of cardboard? They are attracted to cardboard I think. Get raid and get roach motels.

    VisionOfClarity on
  • L Ron HowardL Ron Howard The duck MinnesotaRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Move.
    You can't ever kill roaches, only make them less visible to you for a short period of time.

    L Ron Howard on
  • MetalbourneMetalbourne Inside a cluster b personalityRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    not even nuking the site from orbit that's the only way to be sure will help

    Metalbourne on
  • Arch Guru XXArch Guru XX Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Can you pack in plastic boxes/rubber maids instead of cardboard? They are attracted to cardboard I think. Get raid and get roach motels.

    This is a good idea, we're moving close enough that we may not really need boxes at all... I will look into this.

    Arch Guru XX on
    Should have been a rock star.
  • PirateJonPirateJon Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    1) They lay eggs anywhere they can get to. There are chemicals that kill the eggs, but you might not get them all. Eggs look like little brown squares

    2) Raid / contact poison the entire perimeter, indoors and out. Use multiple bug bombs indoors. dry everything - they love wet.

    3) Dirty-ass neighbors gave me my infestations. Monthly poisoning the area kept them at bay, but probably shortened my lifespan.

    4) open holes in walls are bug spawn points. Get a can or two of expanding sealant foam and fill em in.

    PirateJon on
    all perfectionists are mediocre in their own eyes
  • MetalbourneMetalbourne Inside a cluster b personalityRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Can you pack in plastic boxes/rubber maids instead of cardboard? They are attracted to cardboard I think. Get raid and get roach motels.

    This is a good idea, we're moving close enough that we may not really need boxes at all... I will look into this.

    They like stuff like the inside of computer cases and other electronics, so be sure to double check everything.

    Metalbourne on
  • VisionOfClarityVisionOfClarity Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    PirateJon wrote: »
    4) open holes in walls are bug spawn points. Get a can or two of expanding sealant foam and fill em in.

    I didn't even think of this. If you can do this it can definitely help.

    VisionOfClarity on
  • adytumadytum The Inevitable Rise And FallRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Boric acid. Everywhere. It works.

    adytum on
  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Welcome to civilized society. They cannot be gotten rid of. You can't really get rid ants, mice, roaches, mosquitoes no matter how hard you try. Learn what causes then to prefer you over your neighbors and stop the habit. Free standing food/filth/etc.

    Roaches are pretty clean insects (they actually bathe after coming into contact with humans), but they're probably looking for food. Start protecting food (resealable containers) and place traps. Eventually they'll start diminishing and probably just eat out at your neighbors instead.

    This actually helps with ants as well.

    bowen on
    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
  • CabezoneCabezone Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Roaches also will go to dripping water, so make sure you don't have any leaky faucets.

    Cabezone on
  • FunkyWaltDoggFunkyWaltDogg Columbia, SCRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    adytum wrote: »
    Boric acid. Everywhere. It works.
    Boric acid is more effective for roaches and ants than almost any other treatment you could try, and it's virtually harmless to pets and children. Get a squeeze bottle of powdered boric acid and put it down along cracks and crevices and anywhere else you think they're getting in. Don't leave big piles of the stuff that the roaches can just walk around; try to "poof" it so it settles into a fine coating.

    The suggestions to make your house a less attractive habitat by eliminating their food supply are good as well, but if you're in a duplex and your neighbors aren't tidy you may still get occasional visitors.

    FunkyWaltDogg on
  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Yeah pests are a bitch to get rid of once they get settled. But chances are if you clean up the random occurrence isn't so bad. It's just like getting a fly or bee every now and then, you can't prevent them completely.

    bowen on
    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
  • Liquid HellzLiquid Hellz Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    adytum wrote: »
    Boric acid. Everywhere. It works.
    Boric acid is more effective for roaches and ants than almost any other treatment you could try, and it's virtually harmless to pets and children. Get a squeeze bottle of powdered boric acid and put it down along cracks and crevices and anywhere else you think they're getting in. Don't leave big piles of the stuff that the roaches can just walk around; try to "poof" it so it settles into a fine coating.

    The suggestions to make your house a less attractive habitat by eliminating their food supply are good as well, but if you're in a duplex and your neighbors aren't tidy you may still get occasional visitors.

    Repeating for truth. I put down boric acid about twice a year. The first time you will find dead roaches occasionally. When you start to see them come back in about 6 to 8 months put some more of it down. Rinse and repeat.

    Liquid Hellz on
    What I do for a living:
    Home Inspection and Wind Mitigation
    http://www.FairWindInspections.com/
  • stahstah Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    adytum wrote: »
    Boric acid. Everywhere. It works.
    Boric acid is more effective for roaches and ants than almost any other treatment you could try, and it's virtually harmless to pets and children. Get a squeeze bottle of powdered boric acid and put it down along cracks and crevices and anywhere else you think they're getting in. Don't leave big piles of the stuff that the roaches can just walk around; try to "poof" it so it settles into a fine coating.

    The suggestions to make your house a less attractive habitat by eliminating their food supply are good as well, but if you're in a duplex and your neighbors aren't tidy you may still get occasional visitors.

    Repeating for truth. I put down boric acid about twice a year. The first time you will find dead roaches occasionally. When you start to see them come back in about 6 to 8 months put some more of it down. Rinse and repeat.

    When I was in high school we got a pretty bad infestation @ my parents home (some less clean members of our family brought over a bunch of boxes of clothes to store at out house). Boric Acid is one of the things that would get rid of them for a while! My dad also had this stuff that looked kind of like peanut butter. I don't remember much about it except that. It worked REALLY great, but he hasn't been able to find it since then.

    Personally, I'd clean and do the boric acid thing. Also, be sure to bug bomb your furniture and wash all of your clothes, etc. before you move. It'll keep from bringing them along.

    stah on
  • NotYouNotYou Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I'd also consider moving. There is no solution that will be completely permanent. They will always eventually come back.

    NotYou on
  • NoxyNoxy Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    PirateJon wrote: »
    1) They lay eggs anywhere they can get to. There are chemicals that kill the eggs, but you might not get them all. Eggs look like little brown squares

    Actually, this is not always true. Many species of roach keep the egg sack inside their body and give live birth.

    Noxy on
  • adytumadytum The Inevitable Rise And FallRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Just to follow up on my boric acid advice, when I moved into my current house the landlord forgot to mention there was a really bad roach infestation. Oops.

    I'm skeeved out by roaches, so I got RAID traps and put boric acid around every seam in the kitchen, along the baseboards, everywhere. I haven't seen a roach in like 5 months.

    And my kitchen is a fucking disaster thank to my 4 nasty roommates, so that should say something about the power of boric acid.
    Yes I know they're still out there, but as long as I don't see them..

    adytum on
  • DjCalvinDjCalvin MARegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Bomb the apartment before you get ready to pack.. (not literally.. that would be against code or something liek that..) one of those pestiside/leave your house and not come back for a day/kill em all sprays.. And like another person said.. clear plastic.

    DjCalvin on
  • Arch Guru XXArch Guru XX Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Thanks for all the advice. My wife is bringing home a 5lb. bucket of boric acid from work (smallest size they had), and I plan to go to town with it. If it backs them off for six weeks we should be gone, and I won't care anymore.

    I hope the roaches find the effects of boric acid excruciating.

    Arch Guru XX on
    Should have been a rock star.
  • FyreWulffFyreWulff YouRegistered User, ClubPA regular
    edited April 2010
    It tries out their bodies and they pretty much dehydrate to death.

    So "yep".

    FyreWulff on
  • DhalphirDhalphir don't you open that trapdoor you're a fool if you dareRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I had a roach problem due to my typical first-time-out-of-home-single-male-living-alone habits, but i eventually wised up and just bought a bunch of roach traps (those plastic things with the poison in them) and just chucked them all over the house, 10 or 11 of them in total. Haven't had a problem since, and i put those down a solid 7-8 months ago. probably time to re-do them, but haven't seen more than the odd roach (one every month or something). Possibly due to living in a block of apartments and i'm sure there are some very disgusting ones around the place as its full of single dudes.

    Dhalphir on
  • DiscoZombieDiscoZombie Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    yet another person in support of boric acid here. Used to see plenty o' roach. Sprinkle some boric acid around all the cracks and corners I could see, and now I haven't seen one in months.

    DiscoZombie on
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