If you’ve ever had to deal with water bugs, better known as cockroaches, you surely know they don’t give up easily. Water bugs tend to gather around the sources of water because they can live for as long as a month without food, but if left with no water for more than a week, they die. That’s where their common name came from and that’s why they can be found in the kitchen and the bathroom more often than anywhere else.
If you want to get rid of water bugs in your house, you can either use harsh chemicals or get a professional exterminator to do it for you. However, if you have small children or pets at home, it’s better to try some natural ways of water bugs extermination. These methods are safer for the health of your loved ones and are much more cost-effective than hiring a professional service.
What Is A Water Bug
The term of water bug may refer to a wide range of bugs. They all live close to ponds and lakes, but they have no gills to breathe and use the oxygen directly from the air. Some of the most common varieties of water bugs are: water scorpion, back swimmer, giant water bug, water boatman and water striders.
The actual water bugs can hardly ever be found in households, unless you live at a lakeside. However, cockroaches or palmetto bugs – commonly referred to as water bugs – enjoy the benefits a household can give them and they may appear in your house if you leave food outside and unprotected or if they can get open access to water in your household.
Before you decide to take any steps towards the extermination of water bugs, make sure you actually do a research online and check if the bugs you’ve found at home are actually cockroaches. Once you are positive, follow the steps we describe below in order to get rid of cockroaches from your household and prevent them from coming back.
Step 1 – Deep Cleaning
One of the first things you need to do if you want to get rid of cockroaches from your house is to clean it inside out. If possible – remove any containers with standing water and take the food off the tabletops and open shelves.
Always store food protected, preferably in the fridge or in airtight containers, so that it doesn’t attract bugs. this applies to pet food as well. Try to keep it in a closed bag or a container and only give your pet enough food for one meal, then wash the bowl so that there are no food remains left in it.
Speaking of food remains, it is very important that the bins you use have tight-fitting lids, otherwise cockroaches can get inside of them in search of food. Remember to empty the bins regularly, especially if they contain some organic matter.
Once your food is safely stored and you’ve taken away the rubbish, clean all the areas that you would normally skip during your regular cleaning. Move your furniture and clean behind it, check the clutter that you hardly ever use, like old cardboard boxes in your storage room or the garage. These make great hiding places for cockroaches.
Your next step will be deep cleaning of your kitchen and bathroom. Take a disinfectant and clean literally every square inch of these rooms. While cleaning the kitchen, pay special attention to the toasters, ovens etc., where you can find some bread crumbles or other remains of food.
Since cockroaches usually live outside, once you clean and disinfect your house, you should put screens in all the windows. This will not only allow you to protect your rooms against water bugs getting inside, but will also help ventilate damp areas so that they don’t attract more cockroaches.
Step 2 – Use Home Remedies For Water Bugs
Once you clean your kitchen and bathroom and secure the windows, you should try one of the home remedies we describe below to protect your home from the cockroaches.
Vinegar has antifungal and antibacterial properties and helps create an uninviting environment for cockroaches. It’s best to use a vinegar of a high concentration and to make it easy to apply, simply use a spray bottle.
Fill it with vinegar and direct the nozzle on the surfaces where you might expect the cockroaches to pass, like under the sink, on the window sills, at the entrance door, on the floor in the bathrooms and the kitchen.
Remember to spray it in the storage spaces and the garage, especially if those are connected directly to the house. Leave the excess of the liquid on the surfaces to dry. Don’t be tempted to wipe it off as this will reduce its effectiveness.