Roaches are a formidable home pest. Unfortunately, they can reproduce rapidly and are difficult to control. A single female German cockroach can produce up to 300 offspring throughout her life. If roaches establish themselves in your home, you may not know about their presence until their numbers have increased.


Seeing a roach running across your kitchen counter isn’t just unsettling – it’s also a cause for concern. They can carry bacteria that may cause illnesses such as food poisoning, and they may even aggravate allergies in some people.

Their unsanitary reputation has led many homeowners with roach problems to go online in search of do-it-yourself and quick-fix treatments. One of these is vinegar. But does vinegar actually kill roaches? Read on to find out more.

All About Vinegar

White vinegar is often recommended as a natural way to get rid of roaches. Unfortunately, it doesn’t actually kill these problem insects. It’s more of a cleaning tool than anything else, and it won’t actually help eliminate your roach problem. It can, however, help deter roaches and get rid of germs in the kitchen when used as a cleaning agent.

A clean house, especially a clean kitchen, is one of the best lines of defense against cockroaches. Our houses provide everything these pests need to live long, happy lives: food, shelter and moisture. Cockroaches will eat virtually anything, including garbage and feces, so the crumbs in your kitchen provide these insects with an easy and readily available meal. Maintaining a clean kitchen makes it less likely that roaches will be attracted by a food source and establish an infestation.

In addition to wiping down your kitchen counters, you can help keep roaches out of your home by keeping garbage tightly sealed and taking it out regularly, keeping drains clear and cleaning kitchen appliances, such as toasters, that can collect crumbs. You should also keep food sealed in airtight containers, avoid leaving dirty dishes in the sink and keep pet food stored securely.

Why Are Cockroaches in a Clean House?

Even if you keep your home virtually spotless, you may still see cockroaches, as some species are not related to sanitation. And food isn’t the only thing that attracts them to your house. The weather can also be a major factor. Roaches may find their way into your home when the temperatures begin to cool in the fall and they seek sources of warmth. They may also move inside during or after a heavy rain as they seek shelter from the water that could easily drown them.

Cracks and crevices in and around your home create easy roach entry points. And if you have a lot of vegetation or roach habitats, like wood piles, near your foundation, you’re providing a clear path inside. Keep your foundation clear of debris and use a sealant like caulk to close any cracks or openings to your home.

Professional Control is Best

When it comes to getting rid of roaches, contacting a pest control professional is your best bet. While do-it-yourself treatments like vinegar may seem affordable and convenient, the reality is that they’re relatively ineffective, meaning you may wind up spending more money in the long run.

Pest control professionals are trained to treat roaches and can conduct a thorough inspection of your home to determine the extent of your infestation. Often, a visible roach is just one sign of a much bigger problem, and more are probably hiding out of your sight. Roaches may often be found in less visible areas of the home, including crawl spaces and behind walls. Pest control professionals are trained to locate infestations in these areas.

Additionally, different species of cockroaches respond to different types of treatments. A professional pest control company can help identify the exact species of roach that is causing a problem in your home and can recommend the appropriate treatment method.

Finally, pest control professionals know how to look for all the signs of a roach infestation. Seeing a roach crawling across the floor is obviously a clue, but additional signs of a problem may include the presence of roach feces and egg cases, or oothecae.

If you’re experiencing a roach problem in your home, the professionals at Terminix® can help.


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