Having any type of pest infestation is never a good thing and means you have to go through the painstaking effort of locating the source of the problem and addressing it promptly to prevent the infestation from getting worse. But there is one infestation that many agree would be among the worst: a cockroach infestation. 

A resilient pest that many people fear and for good reason – these pests tend to be very sneaky and turn up in places you’d least suspect when you turn your back for just a second. If there wasn’t enough to fear from how they look and how resilient they are to methods that would easily exterminate other pests, they can also fly, making them a pest no one wants in their home.

While cockroaches can be extremely troublesome and sneaky if they start an infestation, they also tend to leave very clear signs that they have decided to take root in your home. Below, you’ll find tips and early signs that cockroaches have set up a nest in your home and how catching these clues early on will help you end it before it snowballs out of control.

Finding cockroaches in your house is not indicative of a dirty house. Even if you regularly clean and maintain a tidy home, cockroaches can typically find trace amounts of food and water without much trouble. Because cockroaches can live off very little resources, they can thrive in many environments.

Due to cockroaches’ ability to squeeze their bodies through the smallest of cracks and crevices, it doesn’t take them much effort to find their way into your home. Being the nocturnal pests they are, typically sightings happen at night. But it can be easy to notice signs of cockroach activity during the day as well, making it important to learn what to keep an eye out for and where you should look first to determine if you have a cockroach-infested house. 

The Most Likely Places an Infestation Can Occur

The most common places to look for signs of cockroach infestation are kitchens, bathrooms and basements. Cockroaches prefer to shelter in narrow cracks and crevices. The best places to start your search for where an infestation can occur are behind refrigerators, under sinks and in dark drawers or cabinets since the nocturnal pest prefers cool, damp areas away from sunlight. 

They forage for food at night, looking for various food and non-food materials, allowing them to survive even in clean homes. But it’s not all bad news if you have a cockroach infestation. Prevention and monitoring go a long way in preventing an infestation from becoming more serious. Here are a few measures you can take to prevent infestations and prevent infestations from growing if they already exist.

  • Store food in sealed containers
  • Keep pet dishes covered
  • Keep stove tops, counters and floors clean of grease and food
  • Repair plumbing leaks promptly
  • Seal any and all cracks and holes you find near doors, windows and other areas of the home that can be easy entry for pests
  • Monitor your home for signs of cockroaches, droppings, shed skins and eggs.

How to Spot an Infestation

While cockroaches can be very elusive during the day, there are ways you can determine if you have a pest infestation on your hands. Here are 5 things to look for if you can’t find the elusive pests:


Small roaches produce droppings that look like coffee grounds or black pepper. Larger roaches produce cylindrical droppings. A large amount of droppings is a clear indicator of an infestation.

Foul & Unpleasant Odors

Some pests emit unpleasant smells and a strong oil or musty odor may be present in the event of serious infestation. The bodies of dead cockroaches can also be found throughout the house if odors are present. 

Cockroach Eggs

While there are many different species of cockroaches, there are many different packages for their eggs. Some will carry their eggs with them and others leave eggs lying around until they hatch. The latter makes it much easier to detect as they will leave behind an oblong, brown, or red case or several of them. 

If you notice these peculiar shapes around your house, call Terminix and they will rid the infestation before it gets out of control. 

Shed Skins

Despite their resilience and durability, cockroaches don’t have any bones. Instead, they rely on a hard case to hold themselves together. As the pests grow and develop, these cases must be shed off. If you believe you have an infestation on your hands, then you may be able to find these shed skins in dark, moist places in your home. 

Smear Marks

Since cockroaches prefer moist, dark areas of your home, roaches will leave behind brown, irregularly shaped smear marks on horizontal surfaces and wall-floor junctions. These stains are difficult to clean and while they can be mistaken for food stains, if you find them in areas where food is nonexistent, then it is a sign that an infestation is present. 

While these are the five most common signs to look for, there are many other signs you can use to detect even earlier signs of an infestation. A few other signs to remember for the earliest detection of pest infestation are signs of new allergy symptoms and signs of feeding.

Allergy Symptoms

If you’re suddenly experience allergy symptoms after being in certain rooms in your home or are having allergies for the first time while indoors, it’s a good idea to monitor the house for any pests in those areas where you are experiencing problems. This is because most people experience allergic reactions to things that cockroaches leave behind, like feces and exoskeleton sheddings. 

Signs of Feeding

Roaches are extremely indiscriminate eaters that will consume food and non-food-related items, which means it can be an easy sign to determine if an infestation is present. Cockroaches will even feed on wallpaper. If they are able to get access to actual food products, they will eat through the packaging and consume pet foods that are left out, as well as eat off dirty dishes on the sink or stove. If you find any signs of feeding, take those signs seriously and contact Terminix.

It’s never wrong to be overly cautious and prepared if you believe these pests have invaded your home. Here is how Terminix can help determine and eliminate a roach infestation

Terminix Can Get Rid of The Resilient Pest

When an infestation, no matter the scope, is present, it’s best to rely on a professional to get the job done. This is especially true with the resilient pests that are cockroaches. Eliminating an infestation in your home by yourself, while doable, is a difficult and tricky task to undertake. 

DIY sprays and other home remedies can be largely ineffective because roaches hide in places that are difficult if not impossible, for them to penetrate. Instead, a good first step is to make the environment uninhabitable by removing all food and water sources.

Cockroaches are drawn to high moisture areas such as sinks with leaky pipes or drains or humid locations like basements. By checking these locations and removing any source of moisture, you can eliminate what makes them habitable for the pests. Even if it means installing a dehumidifier or replacing the under-sink plumbing, taking any and all steps is well worth keeping these pests out of your home.
But if you are still facing difficulties or if the infestation has grown out of hand because roaches can fully mature within 35 days, making infestations a rapidly developing situation, then call on Terminix, your professional pest control and pest exterminator and we’ll happily deal with the situation for you.

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