Roach Killers: The Best Products of 2019
There are an estimated 4,000 species of cockroaches in the world, and some experts believe that there are as many as 36,000 cockroaches per building in certain areas of the United States. Those numbers are intimidating, but they’re nothing compared to the survivability stats of the average cockroach, which can live for up to seven days without water and weeks without food. The average female cockroach can also produce 300 to 400 offspring in just a single year. On top of it all, some roaches can move up to 40 of its body lengths in just one second.
They’re fast, they’re tough, they multiply quickly, and they know how to hide. It’s no wonder that they’re among the most annoying pests in the world, and it’s no wonder that so many people are looking for effective roach killers designed to rid them of one of the more annoying insect menaces that the world has ever known.
With so many roach killer options out there, it can be overwhelming trying to find the one that will finally get rid of that roach infestation. While there may not be one universal solution, you should definitely consider one of these popular (and effective) roach-killing solutions.
Advion Cockroach Gel Bait has been generating a lot of buzz amongst those who have tried many of the other popular roach killer solutions out there and have come up short. It’s gained a bit of a reputation for being a minor miracle when it comes to eliminating the toughest roaches in just about every environment.
Advion is designed to be applied to a variety of surfaces via the included tube and plunger or by purchasing a separate gel gun. You just apply a small amount in cracks, crevices, or in other areas where roaches may congregate. From there, the gel should start attracting any nearby roaches who will soon eat it and share it with the rest of the nest.
Advion estimates that one roach carrier who consumes a sufficient amount of gel can kill up to 54 more roaches in the nest. This makes it an incredibly effective option for larger infestations.
Advion is also designed to take care of some of the more stubborn breeds of roaches out there that are otherwise resistant to popular forms of poison and other trap options.
The bad news is that you will need to properly prep an area that you intend to apply this gel to, which means that you can expect some longer than normal prep time. You’ve also got to be careful to not apply too much of the gel or cockroaches won’t even be able to fit it in their mouths.
Those drawbacks aside, Advion really is one of the best roach killers on the market.
- Gel formula
- Specially designed bait matrix
- Easy-to-use plungers and tubes
- Product Form: Gel
- Package Size: 4 tubes
- Effectiveness Time: 3 months
- Brand: Advion
- Works in just about any environment
- Incredibly effective
- Designed to target the toughest roaches
- Tougher to apply to larger homes
- Overkill for smaller infestations
- Requires some upkeep
There is no shortage of sprays, powders, traps, and toxins out there designed to kill roaches, but what happens when a spray, powder, trap, or toxin won’t do? What happens when you’ve got to find a safer and more discreet alternative?
You can save yourself a lot of time and trouble having to answer that question by just turning to Gentrol Point Source.
Gentrol Point Source is a disc-based solution to roach problems that utilizes Gentrol Insect Growth Regulator to curb the growth of roach populations. What does that mean? It means that these discs spread a substance designed to target cockroaches from up to 75 square feet from the starting point. Once it comes into contact with roaches (particularly nests) it helps to prevent their breeding and growth.
Unfortunately, Gentrol Point Source doesn’t work incredibly well as a standalone roach killer. That’s not really the point of the product, though. The point is that it is one of the most effective ways to control the cockroach population in your home or business over a longer period of time. It also so happens to be an incredibly discreet way to accomplish that same goal.
Having said that, this isn’t the product for people who want to instantly kill cockroaches or anyone who isn’t particularly bothered by more toxic solutions. However, it is the product for anyone who does have to account for the safety of the products their using and perhaps wants a long-term cockroach solution that doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb.
- Safe to use
- 1 disc for 75 sq. ft. area
- Designed for sensitive locations
- Product Form: Disc
- Package Size: 20 discs
- Effectiveness Time: 3 months
- Brand: Gentrol
- Safe for a variety of situations
- Designed for long-time prevention/control
- One disc controls a large amount of space
- Better options if you're not worried about toxins
- Not the quickest solution
- Overkill for smaller homes
If you’re looking to capture most of the benefits of popular powder solutions without having to actually spread powder across your home, then you might want to consider trying these tablets from Harris.
The same company that makes one of the best powder roach killers on the market also make an effective tablet alternative. These tablets feature roughly the same formula featured in the company’s powder, but you simply have to place these little pills wherever you think they’ll be most effective and watch as cockroaches start to eat them and spread them back to the nest.
The small size of the tablets means that you can place them virtually anywhere, and there’s virtually no mess to worry about cleaning up afterwards. You will need to cover quite a bit of ground with them in order to ensure that they’ll be truly effective, but they’re so easy to place and hide that you probably won’t have to worry about that too much.
The unobtrusive nature of the tablets is a big part of their appeal. In fact, this is just about the subtlest way of dealing with larger roach infestations that you’ll find on the market.
Unfortunately, these tablets can take a little while to work, and there’s some debate as to whether or not they attract roaches as effectively as pre-built traps. You also can’t really cover as much ground with them as you can with powder.
Still, these tablets are a gift to anyone who doesn’t want to turn their home into a giant roach trap.
- EPA product
- Easy to place tablets
- Discrete design
- Product Form: Tablet
- Package Size: 145 tablets
- Effectiveness Time: 2 years
- Brand: Harris
- Easy to hide and place
- Incredibly effective
- Relatively mess free
- Can break apart
- Not the best option for small infestations
- Can take a little time to work
Combat’s Max roach killing bait is one of the more popular options out there for those who prefer to use bait and trap methods to get rid of roaches.
The bait and trap method works like this: you set a trap where roaches are known to traffic, you let them take the bait they hold back to their nest, and the poisonous bait soon spreads to all the other roaches.
It’s an appealing option for those who don’t like spraying chemicals or laying powder around their homes. It’s also great for anyone who just wants to set some traps and forget about them while they go to work. That’s especially true for anyone who is dealing with roaches in hard-to-reach areas. These traps are incredibly easy to place just about anywhere.
Because they are designed to target nests, these traps are also great when you’re dealing with a larger infestation as opposed to just a few rogue roaches. They can be an incredible way to get to the heart of a nest even when you don’t know where that nest is.
The downside of this method is that it really works best for indoor environments as opposed to outdoor infestations. Also, while these traps do work fast, they’re not exactly the quickest way to kill roaches as you see them. Finally, Combat says that these traps can prevent infestations for up to 12 months, but realistically, you’re going to have to keep an eye on the situation over that time.
- No activation required
- 12 months prevention time
- Easy to place
- Product Form: Trap
- Package Size: 18 traps
- Effectiveness Time: 12 months
- Brand: Combat
- Great for indoor use
- Easy installation
- Targets the nest
- Not as effective outdoors
- Not a contact kill option
- 12-month prevention time may be optimistic
For some time now, powder roach killers have become quite popular among homeowners who are dealing with larger infestations. Powder roach killers allow you to cover as much space as you need to while resting assured that any roaches that come in contact with the powder will soon be gone.
This powder from Harris isn’t the only option out there, but it’s quickly becoming one of the most trusted among those who opt for this roach killing method.
First off, the nozzle you get with this powder ends up being an incredible way to save yourself some time and frustration. Usually, one of the biggest downsides with these powders is that they can be hard to fit into small areas or even just apply properly without using too much. The nozzle included with this Harris powder allows you to quickly and easily apply the powder in a variety of areas while avoiding some of the hassle.
Once you have the powder down, you should find that it will start killing roaches in just a few days. More importantly, it will start to kill a lot of them in that relatively short amount of time. By laying a fine sheet of the powder down in various places, you can attract and trap nearly every roach in your home.
With powders, though, you do have to accept that they are a little more difficult to apply than other options and that you are going to have to clean it all up at some point. Otherwise, this is just a tremendous solution.
- Long-lasting formula
- Lures in roaches
- Kills within 72 hours
- Product Form: Powder
- Package Size: 16 oz Cannister
- Effectiveness Time: 5-6 weeks (as long as powder is dry)
- Brand: Harris
- Great for large infestations
- Effective over a long period of time
- Lure makes it hard to resist
- A bit messy
- May be overkill for just a few roaches
- Harder to apply than traps and spray
Ortho is another recognizable name in this field thanks again to the years the company has spent putting out quality products designed to eliminate some of the most common household pests (which certainly includes roach killers).
This spray is one of the top products in the Ortho line, and it’s easy to understand why that is the case. The Ortho Home Defense spray not only kills roaches and other pests, but it creates a layer of protection designed to dissuade them from returning to your home.
Unlike other sprays like the popular one made by Raid, this Ortho spray is actually intended to be used over large surface areas. Each container features quite a bit of the solution and the included wand makes it remarkably simple to apply it to common indoor and outdoor areas.
Ortho works best if you put it on the perimeter of your home or any room where roaches may be a problem, but that’s mostly due to the fact that it’s primarily designed as a deterrent against future infestations. Spraying it elsewhere may not be quite as effective over a longer period of time.
That does bring us to a couple of potential problems with this spray. As it’s not designed specifically for roaches, you may have better luck with some other options that are. You might also have more luck with powder options for larger indoor infestations while traps could be better for infestations largely limited to a smaller area.
For complete home protection, though, this is a top-tier option.
- Odor and stain free
- Steady spray stream
- Little application effort required
- Product Form: Spray
- Package Size: 1.1-gallon container
- Effectiveness Time: 12 months indoors, 3 months outdoors
- Brand: Ortho
- Great prevention method
- Works indoors and outdoors
- Not the quickest option
- Not specifically designed for roaches
- Works best for prevention
Did you know that roaches can live a month without food? It’s one of the reasons why they have such a notorious reputation for being survivors. However, a roach can only last about 7 days without water. This is usually why you find them congregating around sources of water.
These liquid traps from Hot Shot are designed to exploit that need for water. Unlike other traps which offer poison in the form of food for roaches, this trap appeals to their needs for both food and water. As a result, they are much more likely to be attracted to the liquid formula in this trap than they are to some of the alternatives on the market.
While these traps may utilize liquid bait, they’re actually perfectly safe to use and won’t leave behind any liquid residue. You don’t always get that with some of the liquid alternatives out there, so it’s hard to overstate the appeal of that particular feature.
Like other traps, these liquid traps from Hot Shot are also easy to place in a variety of locations, so you shouldn’t have to worry too much about your set-up and how you’re going to get to some traditionally hard-to-reach places.
Unfortunately, the nature of this design means that these traps aren’t quite as good in larger areas (including outdoor spaces). There’s also some debate regarding whether or not liquid traps are as god when it comes to targeting the heart of nests.
For minor infestations, though, these traps will more than get the job done.
- Targets roaches and eggs
- Liquid bait technology
- No residue traps
- Package Size: 6 traps
- Effectiveness Time: 3 months
- Brand: Hot Shot
- Works as both water and food
- Works in hours
- Great for individual roaches
- Less effective for nests
- Works best indoors
- Not great for larger areas
You’ve probably heard of a roach motel before. The idea (and name) may sound strange, but trust us when we say that there’s a good reason why roach motels have been one of the most trusted roach killer options for years.
Roach killers are designed to attract multiple roaches. Their interior consists of an incredibly sticky substance that prevents even larger roaches from leaving them.
The adhesive is certainly the star of this show. While certain poisons and sprays can disappoint by failing to be effective against every kind of cockroach, there isn’t a common cockroach breed that is able to easily escape these traps. It can even hold and contain multiple larger roaches.
As you can imagine, this makes it a perfect solution for apartments and smaller homes that are suffering from a minor infestation. These work especially well in the kitchen where they have the ability to attract multiple roaches even if they’re currently interested in food, trash, or other more appealing options.
As you can also imagine, the nature of roach motels means that they don’t really offer prevention protection against future infestations (especially since you probably don’t want to keep a box of dead roaches around for too long). Owners of larger homes will probably want to look elsewhere in the case of more widespread infestations as roach motels work best in smaller areas.
However, roach motels really are one of the roach killers that work pretty much exactly as the manufacturer promises they well. These are highly recommended for people in the right situation.
- Traps roaches
- Keeps dead insects out of sight
- Works on various sizes of roaches
- Product Form: Trap
- Package Size: 2 traps
- Effectiveness Time: 4 months
- Brand: Black Flag
- Fantastic for smaller areas
- Specifically designed for roaches
- Discreet roach killer option
- Doesn't work as well for larger homes
- Not really an outdoor option
- Larger infestations may require other solutions
For years, Raid has been synonymous with roach killers. You’ve likely seen their various commercials that promise to kill roaches and other pests quickly, but the fact remains that the Raid name remains strong because of years worth of positive buzz regarding the effectiveness of their products.
This spray (and variations of it) is the cornerstone of Raid’s various roach killing options. It’s a simple contact kill solution that allows you to spray roaches as you see them and usually just wait a few seconds for the problem to be taken care of.
It’s a simple, if not elegant, solution to a problem that many people want taken care of as quickly as possible. Few roach killers out there work as quickly as Raid, and fewer still actually work like they’re supposed to quite like this spray does.
This spray’s lemon scent option also cuts down on the harsh chemical odor left by other models of this spray. We wouldn’t recommend using it as an air freshener, but the infused scent certainly does its job.
Due to the nature of this option, though, you do have to accept some practicalities. First off, this spray works best for smaller roach problems unless you’re comfortable just having a lot of sitting spray laying around your home. Second, the spray itself is actually more of a liquid stream, which can cause an additional mess.
For the most part, though, this spray is a tremendous product to keep around in case you encounter the odd roach that you need to kill right away.
- Contact kill solution
- Lemon scent
- Effective up to four weeks
- Product Form: Spray
- Package Size: Two cans
- Effectiveness Time: Four weeks
- Brand: Raid
- Quick kill formula
- Little chemical odor
- Fantastic for small infestations
- Spray is more of a liquid stream
- Not good for large infestations
- Can be a little messy
Diatomaceous Earth is the product with a strange name that’s become increasingly popular in recent years due largely to the product’s effectiveness against bed bugs. However, it turns out that DE is also an incredibly useful roach killer.
Diatomaceous Earth is a natural ingredient that may look like a poison but is actually just a powder. However, this powder is made up of tiny crystals which so happen to be dangerously sharp to roaches and other insects. If the roaches climb over this powder, they’ll be cut and will soon dehydrate.
This product’s popularity is almost entirely due to how shockingly effective it is. Whereas roaches and other insects can theoretically resist certain poisons and formulas, there’s no real way to resist the natural way that this product eliminates a variety of troublesome insects. Even better is the fact that DE is safe to use around pets and people and won’t harm the environment.
Applying DE can be a little tricky, though. Ideally, you will lay down a fine film of powder in problem areas, but it can be hard to avoid laying down larger chunks of powder without buying some specialty tools designed to cleanly spray the powder.
Also, you may have to leave Diatomaceous Earth laying around for a few weeks until you’re sure the problem is solved. While it’s safe to use, it can be a little annoying leaving powder on your floor for a prolonged period of time.
It may be a final option, but Diatomaceous Earth may just work when nothing else will.
- Environmentally safe
- Works on a variety of insects
- Starts working in 48 hours
- Product Form: Powder
- Package Size: 4 lbs.
- Effectiveness Time: Indefinite if left dry
- Brand: Safer Brand
- Incredibly effective
- Safe for pets and people
- Impossible for insects to resist
- Can be messy
- Difficult to properly apply
- Best for larger infestations
The key to battling any roach infestation doesn’t just require you to have the best roach killer available; it requires you to come armed with the knowledge of how to properly treat an infestation.
Here are a few things to keep in mind before you begin your battle against the roaches.
Why Roaches are attracted to Filthy Conditions
Roaches have needs fairly common to our own. They seek food, water, and shelter. The difference between us and roaches is that they’re not picky about where they get these resources. They’ll eat the food you drop, they’ll live near a wet carpet or leaking pipe, and they have no problems making a nest in a tiny corner in the dark. Roaches are born to scrounge and survive.
As such, the first part of any fight against a roach infestation means keeping your home as clean as possible. Even if you already have roaches, you can help contain an infestation by ensuring that all sources of excess water and all crumbs that may be lying on your floor are taken care of. Also, be sure to regularly take your trash out.
Since cockroaches can survive in just about any season, it’s vital to keep a clean home year-round in order to minimize (or prevent) infestation chances.
Why Even the Best Roach Killers Require Patience
There are some top-of-the-line roach killers out there, but one of the best weapons against roaches is time and patience.
While it's understandable that you want to get rid of roaches as fast as possible, the fact of the matter is that roaches were born to survive. That being the case, you have to accept that even the best roach killers may take a few days to begin to really take effect. From there, it’s a matter of ensuring that you maintain a hostile environment to roaches over the long-term if you’re going to keep roaches at bay for an extended period of time.
The message is that you shouldn’t give up the fight against roaches too early.
Don’t Be Afraid to Use Multiple Roach Killers
We’ve shared some incredible roach killers with you, and you shouldn’t be afraid to use a combination of them.
Again, roaches are tough, clever, and elusive. It’s hard to find one way to get rid of all of them, but a combination of approaches will likely prove to be too much for most roaches to deal with.
While you may want to consider calling a professional in cases of extreme infestations, a combination of top-of-the-line roach killers should do the trick.