How to Help Prevent Bringing Cockroaches to Your New Home
Cockroaches are not just unsettling – they’re also unsanitary. These common household pests often live in or near sewers, drains and garbage, bringing them into contact with a variety of germs, and they’re known to carry pathogens that may cause disease. Needless to say, they’re unwelcome visitors in the home.
Cockroaches have slim, flat bodies that allow them to hide easily. They can also run fast, and because they’re usually active at night, they can often escape detection. If you’re getting ready to move, you’ll need to take special care to ensure you don’t bring any unwanted guests with you to your new house.
Keep the following tips in mind as you prepare to move to ensure that cockroaches don’t tag along for the ride.
Take Preventive Measures
Before you begin packing up your belongings, check your house for common cockroach entry points. Be on the lookout for cracks and crevices near doorways and windows that can allow the insects to enter your home. Use caulk or another sealant to close these gaps and prevent new roaches from finding their way inside your house.
Be Roach Aware
You should also be aware of some of the most common cockroach hiding places in the home. As you pack, carefully check these areas for signs of an infestation, including egg cases or feces. Places you may find roaches include kitchen appliances, cabinets, electronics, furniture and nooks and crannies. Electronics are especially attractive to roaches because they produce heat and, in the case of a laptop or computer keyboard, can catch food crumbs. Shake these items out, and as you pack your electronics, place them individually in sealed plastic bags to prevent roaches from infesting your other belongings.
Use the Right Packing Materials
Cockroaches are notorious for hiding in cardboard boxes. They can easily maneuver their bodies between the corrugation and crevices inside the cardboard. If possible, use another type of container, such as a plastic tub, to pack your belongings. These come with lids that allow them to be securely sealed, and they don’t provide areas for roaches to hide. If you have to use – or reuse - cardboard boxes, shake them out and inspect them before you place items inside, especially if you got the boxes from an outside source, such as a grocery or liquor store.
Wash Your Clothes and Linens
While it isn’t terribly common for roaches to be found in clothes and linens, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Before you move, wash these items in warm water to remove any insects or eggs that may be present. Like your other belongings, they should be packed in sealed plastic containers. You may even consider placing them inside vacuum-sealed plastic bags. If you are moving furniture or other upholstered/fabric items like curtains, you may want to vacuum them as well.
Check Your Mattress
Again, it’s uncommon for roaches to be found on mattresses, but they can hide in or near furniture, including your bed. When you remove your mattress and dismantle your bed to move, check everything for signs of roaches and remove or sanitize items as necessary.
Clean Your Kitchen Items
Kitchens are one of the most common places roaches are found in the home. For these insects, it’s like paradise. It has moisture, dark cabinets and plentiful sources of food in the form of crumbs and even garbage. When you pack, take out your pots and pans and wash everything thoroughly. Keep in mind that kitchen appliances, like toasters, microwaves and toaster ovens, may also attract roaches. If possible, place these in plastic bags and pack them separately.
They say that the best offense is a good defense. If you’re worried about accidentally transporting pests when you move, contact a professional. To take prevention a step further, have an inspection done before you move into the new home. A pest control professional can inspect and treat both your current residence and your new home to help prevent cockroaches from complicating your move. You’ve got enough to worry about, and you shouldn’t have to add roaches to your list.
Call Terminix® to learn more and kick cockroaches to the curb.