Cockroaches raid our cars the same way they raid homes. As such, this publication explains the ways to get rid of cockroaches in car naturally.
You do not want roaches in the car, especially with their oily, musty smell. Their presence alone irritates, not to mention the reaction of a visitor/passenger riding in the car with you.
How to get rid of cockroaches in car naturally
It may not be a walk in a park, but you can almost easily get rid of roaches in your car naturally in the following ways:
1. Use borax and powdered sugar mixture
Borax powder is commonly used in households as a cleaning agent, and available in grocery stores—it is referred to as Sodium Borate scientifically. Borax is gotten from areas where periodical lakes have continuously evaporated, such as in Death Valley and other desert plains.
Mix borax with sugary bait such as honey or sugar to eliminate cockroaches in your vehicle. You just have to place the mixture in the area of your car where you have found roaches. You could even place them in openings around your garage or beneath the car undercarriage.
Some people prefer to put the mixture in a little container, instead of spraying it around the car interior. However, spraying it can make your interior messy, including the engine bay and trunk or boot.
Read also: can you heat cockroaches off your car?
An even more effective method is by mixing boric and powdered sugar. Boric acid is a more refined form of borax and is recommended if you suspect cockroach infestation in your car. Combine the mixture the same way you combined Borax with a sugary substance or powdery sugar. Place the mixture in dark parts of your car where cockroaches will make contact.
2. Apply baking soda and sugar mixture
Another way to get rid of cockroaches in car naturally is to mix equal portions of baking soda and sugar.
Spray the mixture in areas you want to bait the roaches. Note that the juice of sugar is quite acidic as it emits a gaseous discharge, so avoid spraying the solution on metal. Although baking soda may not be as quick as borax to react as bait, it still works with repeated application.
3. Apply diatomaceous earth
Diatomaceous earth is an agent used by gardeners to fight snails and slugs. When it is sprayed on insects like cockroaches in the car, it penetrates their body, causing them to shrink and die.
Diatomaceous earth contains fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton. According to WebMD, diatomaceous earth powder contains about 80-90 percent silica and is thought to kill insects like cockroaches by dehydrating or drying them out.
Diatomaceous earth doesn’t work if you just spray it around the flooring of the car—it particularly needs to have the cockroaches immersed in it to work. According to some gardening experts, diatomaceous earth works best when it covers the ground and plants with it.
4. Extract essential oil spray
Like citrus oils used as a natural agent to kill pests in plants, substances extracted from essential oil in herbal remedies like rosemary, mint, oregano, eucalyptus, and yarrow are potent and capable of naturally getting rid of cockroaches in your car. Even the essential oil from bay leaves will eliminate roaches. You just have to sprinkle the essential oil in the car to repel roaches or irritate ones making contact.
You may want to get different essential oils and mix them to produce your vehicle roach solution. There are also a couple of organic insecticides that can do the job just fine. They are safe for pets and children but you may have to find and remove dead roaches from your car.
You can make essential oils by steaming or pressing a part of the plant to produce its oil. Flowers, bark, leaves, or fruit of a plant can be used for creating the oil, depending on the type of essential oil you need.
Where do cockroaches hide in your car?
Cockroaches, like many other insects, prefer to wobble their way inside and under car seats following food crumbs. Food crumbs and other wastes like wrappers, straws, plastics, pieces of paper, and dirt. They also find their way into the opening between the rear of the front seats. Even blankets and pillows left or abandoned inside the car could provide the needed shelter for cockroaches.
Cockroaches prefer to hide in dark and warm parts of the car—they are nocturnal after all. Aside from car seats, you will find them in door interiors, under foot mats, and even under the carpet and ventilation system. Other places roaches can hide in a car include:
- Glove compartments
- The center console and other storage units
- Stereo system speakers
Cockroaches can also hide in car door panels. This spot provides not just safety but also the space to lay eggs, causing an infestation.
Killing roaches in the car
You might want to eliminate cockroaches from your car as soon as possible, but it is best to perform an effective job rather than an ineffective quick that fails to remove the roaches from the interior of your car. Ensure you strictly go through each of the following steps, to make sure you properly get rid of roaches in the car:
a. Carefully inspect the interior of your car
The first thing to do is to carefully inspect the interior of your car for cockroaches and other insects, as well as their larvae and eggs.
Focus on the areas they would prefer the most. Look for roach evidence such as nesting materials, feces, and wings to trace such areas in the car. Don’t forget to check the tiny spaces between the seats and the fabric along the glove area.
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Inspect the doors and other parts where you are likely to find them. Look also for dead cockroaches. You can as well track their nest through their oily, musty smell and feces, which looks like coffee stains.
b. Clean the interior
Take away pieces of paper, bags of food, crumbs, hairs, and other remotely organic stuff—these are food sources for roaches.
Make sure to remove blankets and any form of item that can potentially serve as hiding for roaches.
c. Vacuum the car interior
Vacuuming will help you take out food crumbs, hair, irrelevant organic material, and tiny food particles that cannot be easily seen but that can lure roaches. If possible, take out your car seats to easily reach the carpeting.
Vacuum every part of your vehicle interior, paying attention to possible areas with food remains. Your vacuum cleaner should be long-nosed so it can easily reach inside the seats. Also, look for a model with HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter.
d. Exterminate roaches
Choose between commercially prepared solutions or natural ones as mentioned in this article to get rid of the pesky cockroaches, as well as their larvae and eggs.
Don’t use bug bombs—they do not work against roaches, especially if you have an infestation in your car. Instead, use a clean, bait, spray, method (according to popular opinion).
Preventing cockroaches from returning to your vehicle
a. Keep the interior tidy
Do your best to stop eating in the car. Otherwise, always clean and vacuum your seats and floor to take out food particles and clean up spills. When you take away every food source from your car, you starve the roaches.
Regularly take out the foot mats or carpeting and thoroughly clean them with a vacuum cleaner.
b. Give your car some TLC
Like your home, your vehicle requires TLC (tender loving care). When you clean the interior of your car, make sure to also inspect and clean the exterior. A clean exterior can discourage roaches.
Consider putting your car on a regular cleaning schedule in a car wash. You could get a professional to do the detailing or do it yourself.
c. Mind where you park
During summer, parking your car under a tree may seem like a good idea because it keeps your car cooler. Leaving your car under a tree can expose it to roach entry.
Also, thoroughly inspect any foreign object you introduce into your car trunk for cockroaches. Remove any roach you find and take preventive measures to eliminate potentially more roaches.
d. Close the windows
Opened windows are one major reason you have cockroaches in your car. Keep the windows closed window, especially when parking in areas with visibly dirty stuff.
Finally, if you have tried everything possible to eliminate these little bugs and they keep coming back, consider professional fumigation with the right tools.