Ewww! There simply can’t be a better word to describe the sensation as you step into the shower at night and feel crunchy bodies scurrying away under your bare feet! Yup, you have a roach problem.
They love your bathroom and especially your shower drain, but what can you do about them?
Learn how to deal with cockroaches in the bathroom and shower drain in this guide.
Why Are There Roaches In My Bathroom?
For starters, roaches love damp spaces, and if your bathroom is like most people’s, you probably have a problem with humidity too. A damp bathroom is heaven to a thirsty roach.
They crawl up your shower and bath drain systems or along exposed pipes and electrical outlets, finally emerging at night to have a ball all over any surface on which they can crawl—all that while spreading disease and contamination.
They can also crawl out of the walls and from small cracks under the window. They even follow the wiring from the ceiling in some cases. Usually, they will then migrate to the public roach pool, aka your shower drain. It almost seems like roaches love a warm shower as much as you do.
What Do Roaches Do To My Bathroom And My Health?
Cockroaches are germ carriers, and if you are experiencing a bad skin allergy or eczema on your feet, you may just have found the cause if you have roaches in your shower drain. Having a roach infestation affects your health, and having a severe colony in your bathroom can cause asthma and lead to other problems due to all the bacteria they carry around on their legs. They also spread worms, worm eggs, and other unhealthy contaminants.
Do They Prefer Coming Out At Night?
Cockroaches are nocturnal creatures, and they become more active during the hours of darkness.
That’s why most often, you will see roaches at night. Switching on the light tends to send them scurrying off in waves, and it can be quite an embarrassment when you have a visitor staying over.
This means that the roaches will crawl into any dark, cozy space during the day, including your folded towels, toilet paper, any pots or objects in your bathroom, and also down your drains.
The coarse plastic of drain pipes is ideal for these terrifying cliff-hanging creatures that effortlessly scurry out of reach when you try to smack them into nothingness.
What Does It Mean If I Find Baby Roaches In My Bathroom?
If you have a few medium to large-sized roaches in your bathtub, you are understandably upset.
Baby roaches indicate that a roach infestation is occurring and roaches are breeding!
So when you spot some tiny roaches that are softer and younger than the other roaches, it’s time to take matters more seriously.
If left untreated, each female cockroach can produce a pouch of 16 eggs at a go, which can add up exponentially when there are a couple of dozen females already living in shower-city (aka your bathroom). Before you know it, you will have several dozen little roaches running about. How do you get rid of them now? What can you do?
Tips For Effectively Dealing With Roaches
There are a number of ways in which you can ensure roaches move out instead of into your home.
What Not To Do
If you think that a good dose of bleach will sort your problem, guess again. While bleach will kill roaches on contact, it won’t exterminate a nest of them, and you will have more little visitors to contend with soon enough.
- Avoid overkill. You may want to overdose and do a “good job” of pouring the most potent chemicals you can find down the drain, but this is not advisable either. Strong and corrosive chemicals will damage your pipes, causing more crawl spaces where roaches can nest, and you could end up with a plumbing problem that will set you back hundreds of dollars.
What To Do
There are several ways to ensure you don’t have a continuing roach problem in your bathroom and the rest of your home.
- Use Traps To Determine the Type of Roaches In Your Bathroom
You need to figure out the kind of roach you are dealing with by using bait stations. These will trap roaches so you can be sure you are using the right chemical or pesticide to deal with the particular roach you have in your home.
In the U.S., the usual cockroach types are the German cockroach and the American cockroach, which is the usual brown type with wings. While they don’t really fly and scurry all over, they can leap higher with the assistance of their wings. And they love to hide in humid places such as wet towels and under bathroom mats. Wherever they go, they will spread disease-causing bacteria, which is not good for you or your family.
- Dry It Up
Chances are that your bathroom has become a roach-roadhouse due to being damp and humid. These two are prime ingredients for roaches, and you should start by drying off all surfaces, wiping all surfaces, and removing any damp or wet towels.
Next, clean all surfaces with a heavy-duty disinfectant surface cleaner while carefully checking all hiding places where the roaches may have spread to. Use an aerosol spray roach killer that is safe for your family but which will penetrate surfaces, cracks, nooks, and crannies where roaches can hide.
You can also remove the drain cover of your shower to better spray the aerosol into the drain. Leave the bathroom closed for a few hours while the spray fumes do their tricks, but be sure to air out your bathroom thoroughly before using it again.
When you start using your bathroom again, you can get into the healthy habit of rinsing your drains with boiling hot water and cleaning out the drains with a drain cleaner once a week. Wipe your bathroom down as soon as it has been used to dry up any water spills or damp deposits from condensation. A dry bathroom is a clean bathroom.
- Seal It Up
I would also recommend you close up any roach entry points by using a caulking gun to seal up any possible gaps where future roach populations may enter. Check that windows seal tightly, follow up around the areas where pipes enter through the wall as these usually become roach highways into your home.
- Keep Roaches Away With a Repellent Device
Now that you have removed the more obvious avenues for roaches to enter your bathroom and home, it’s time to get serious. Roaches are sound sensitive. Fortunately, their hearing far exceeds our own, and they hear in the subsonic spectrum, so you can easily install a subsonic or ultrasonic insect repellent device to keep the crawlies away.
Since you have already killed off most of the roaches with the aerosol spray, you will not have to suffer through such a dramatic increased roach display as these products normally provoke in the first week or so. The aim is now to keep the roaches from coming back.
Be sure to keep your bathroom dry and limit humidity to prevent it from becoming a prime environment for roaches again. If you find the surfaces are prone to water formation due to condensation, be sure to open a window after showering or bathing. If that still doesn’t help, you can invest in an exhaust fan or a portable dehumidifier to help you control your bathroom atmosphere.
Remember: Roaches love damp and dirty places. If your bathroom starts to take on a musty, stale smell, be sure that roaches have already packed their bags and are ready to move in. Clean up your bathroom, dry it up, seal it up, and you will be ensuring the roaches lose interest in the space.
Wipe surfaces daily with a good quality disinfectant cleaner, drying up any spills, airing out damp bathroom rugs, and throwing damp towels in the washer. If you have bathroom plants, be sure these aren’t damp or creating hiding places for roaches. If there is mold anywhere in your bathroom, you can be sure the roaches will follow.
- Develop a Step-by-Step Plan Of Action
When you know which form of roach you are dealing with, you can better decide on the appropriate treatment or chemicals to take care of the whole infestation. You can also consult with an expert if you choose, though exterminators tend to be pricey, and it may be worth it to try and fix things on your own first.
Finally, Roach Free
Now that your bathroom is roach-free, be sure to keep an eye out for any recurring infestations that may crop up from time to time. Roaches are tenacious creatures, and if you are not vigilant, they will easily reclaim your bathroom as their territory.