North Carolina is a place that has (relatively) moderate temperatures. Sure, it can get chilly, but we’re almost never experiencing the sorts of winters that our friends further North have to deal with. This is mostly great (yay, we aren’t freezing our butts off!), but it does come with one major caveat: less intense winters means pests are able to be more active in North Carolina winters. This applies to one of the nastiest, grossest, most despicable pests out there: cockroaches. So what can you do to prevent winter cockroaches? Let’s find out!
What’s the Problem With Cockroaches, Anyway?
Before we get into prevention, let’s quickly talk a little bit about why cockroaches are such a menace. For the most part, they don’t pose a huge threat, despite their general creepy crawly-ness and tendency to end up everywhere you don’t want them to be–particularly in food cabinets and kitchens. But the worst thing that cockroaches do is related to people with asthma and/or allergies; they have been shown not only to trigger asthma and allergies but may even encourage the development of asthma in pre-school-aged-children.
Plus, cockroaches also may carry diseases that, according to the WHO, can cause:
- typhoid fever
- viral diseases such as poliomyelitis.
So basically, cockroaches can cause some nasty health issues, some of them peaking at very uncomfortable and others being outright dangerous.
Why Cockroaches Come Inside in the Winter
Cockroaches (sometimes known as Palmetto Bugs) will move indoors during the winter for a few reasons. For one, they’re looking for a warm place to take shelter in from the cold. While these bothersome bugs could allegedly survive a nuclear blast (which they can’t, by the way) they begin to die off in temperatures under 0 degrees Fahrenheit; in fact, when the temperature drops under 25, they get very uncomfortable. While North Carolina doesn’t typically get that cold, cockroaches are heat-seeking insects all the same, which means your home can quickly become an easy target.
Then, of course, there’s access to food and moisture. Cockroaches will usually hang out in places like kitchens and bathrooms, largely because these places have access to food, moisture, or both. So warmth, food, and moisture are the unholy trifecta that will bring cockroaches into your home during winter.
Preventing Cockroaches in Winter
So what can you do to prevent cockroaches in the winter? Chances are that you probably aren’t going to turn your home into a subzero tundra, but luckily there are alternatives to something that radical:
- Clean up
If cockroaches are attracted to food, nixing their opportunity to access a food source can make your house much less attractive to them. Try to clean up crumbs on the floor or on countertops as quickly as possible, and develop a good sweep, vacuum, and Swiffer routine. The more quickly you take care of food residue anywhere, the better.
- Keep a cap on trash
Literally. Make sure your outdoor and indoor trash cans are tightly secured to limit odors from wafting about and attracting cockroaches–and other types of pests, for that matter. Take indoor trash and recycling out regularly and put them in a secure outdoor trash bin, and you’ll be in much better shape, cockroach-wise.
- Plug leaks and mop up moisture
We covered food, but what about moisture? Bathrooms by nature tend to be wet spaces, so try to mop up any residual moisture from the sink and shower after use (no matter how tempting it might be to just let it air dry). If you have any leaky pipes, sinks, or even refrigerators, get them fixed!
- Seal potential entry points
Cockroaches have to get inside somehow, so one way to cut down on a cockroach presence is to seal up any holes or cracks that are around the home near windows and doors, in the foundation and attic, and even areas around utility pipes.
- Contact UsEven if you do everything that you can, roaches are crafty creatures, and sometimes you can miss an opening point or miss a leak. That’s what City Wide Exterminating is here for! With our Every Day Home plan, we’ll protect your home from not only those nuisance cockroaches but also 24 other common house pests.