How To Keep Cockroaches Away At Night

by Derrick | Last Updated: February 4, 2023

Cockroaches Can Be A Serious Problem

Cockroaches are considered one of the most troublesome nocturnal insects, as they thrive in outdoor and indoor conditions. These creatures are not just a nuisance; they can contaminate food and spread bacteria, posing a severe health risk to humans.

If left unchecked, they can reproduce quickly and take over a house. It is not uncommon for cockroaches to cause allergic reactions and potentially spread bacteria, leading to food poisoning and other illnesses.

Therefore, taking measures to control and prevent cockroach infestations is essential.

Goals Of This Article (High-Level Summary)

Cockroaches are insects that belong to the order Blattodea. They have a distinct flattened, oval-shaped body and six legs ranging from about half an inch to several inches long.

Understanding Cockroaches

Cockroaches are nocturnal creatures that are most active at night, scurrying around in search of food and shelter. They are fast runners and can easily climb smooth surfaces like glass or metal, and cockroaches crawl through small openings or cracks.

Cockroaches use their strong sense of smell to find food sources and moisture, feeding on various things such as rotting organic matter, sweets, and grease. These pests seek out dark, damp places like basements, kitchens, and bathrooms for these resources.

More alarming is their rapid reproduction rate — female roaches have a large quantity of egg production; they can lay up to 50 eggs at a time and produce up to eight egg cases in a lifetime!

Cockroaches can last for several months without food but require water for survival, so it is easy to go from a small to a large infestation.

Why Do You See Cockroaches At Night?

Cockroaches are nocturnal insects, meaning they are most active during the night.

Cockroaches prefer to come out during the dark and quiet, so they can scavenge for food and water without being disturbed. They also like to hide in warm, tight places close to humans, such as behind kitchen appliances or inside cupboards.

Cockroaches have specific activity rhythms that become more active when the sun sets and slow down their activity as the sun rises. This is why you will rarely see them during the day.

It’s important to prevent cockroach infestations in your home by keeping it clean and free of clutter. You should also ensure all cracks and crevices around windows and doors are sealed off properly to prevent these pests from entering your home.

Prevention Measures (Avoid A Cockroach Infestation)

  1. Seal the entrances – Ensure all windows and doors are properly sealed so that cockroaches cannot enter your home.
  2. Go on crumb patrol – Vacuum regularly and wipe down surfaces to remove any food crumbs or residue that may attract cockroaches.
  3. Focus on the kitchen – Keep food stored in sealed containers and ensure all dishes are washed immediately after use.
  4. Store food in sealed containers – Keeping food stored in airtight containers will help prevent cockroaches from accessing it.
  5. Dry up moist areas – Cockroaches need moisture to survive, so make sure any damp areas in your home are dried up quickly with a dehumidifier or fan.
  6. Declutter – Clutter provides hiding places for cockroaches, so keep your home tidy and organized as much as possible.

Natural Remedies

Bay leaves

Bay leaves can be used as a natural remedy to repel roaches. Roaches dislike the scent of bay leaves and will avoid areas where they are present. To use bay leaves as a roach repellent, place whole or crushed bay leaves in areas where roaches are commonly seen, such as near food sources, in pantries, or under appliances. You can also place bay leaves in drawers, cabinets, and other storage areas to help prevent roaches from entering. It’s important to regularly replace the bay leaves as they lose their potency over time.


Borax can be used as a natural remedy to control roaches. To use borax for roaches, you can mix it with sugar or jelly and place it in areas where roaches are commonly seen. The sugar or jelly will attract the roaches, and the borax will kill them when consumed. Here’s how to make the mixture:

  1. Mix equal parts of borax and sugar or jelly.
  2. Place the mixture in small, shallow dishes where roaches are commonly seen.
  3. Make sure the dishes are placed in areas that are easily accessible to roaches and are not disturbed by pets or children.

It’s essential to be aware that although borax is a natural pest repellent and often viewed as safe for home use, it can be dangerous if swallowed. Children and pets should not have access to the borax solution and ensure to wash your hands after handling it to prevent accidental ingestion. It is advisable to exercise caution when using borax and adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Essential Oils

Essential oils have proven to be an effective natural insect repellent for cockroaches. They work by masking their hiding spots, making it harder for them to detect food sources, and creating an unappealing smell or taste that discourages roaches from feeding on surfaces. Essential oils such as eucalyptus, peppermint, tea tree, geranium, cedarwood, citronella, lemongrass, and lavender can make a homemade insecticidal spray safe for use around pets and children. Simply mix the essential oil with water in a spray bottle and lightly mist the areas where you’ve seen the roaches.


Vinegar is an effective natural repellent for cockroaches. Similar to essential oils, it works by masking their hiding spots, creating an unappealing smell or taste, and making it difficult for them to detect food sources. To use vinegar as a roach repellent, mix equal parts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and lightly mist the areas where you’ve seen the roaches. You can also soak cotton balls in vinegar and place them around your home to keep roaches away.

Baking Soda and Sugar

Baking soda and sugar can be used together as a homemade roach killer. The sugar acts as bait to attract cockroaches, while the baking soda is poisonous when ingested. To make this mixture, combine equal parts of baking soda and sugar in a shallow bowl or cup and place it near areas where you have seen the roaches. The roaches will be attracted to the sugar and then ingest the baking soda, leading to their death.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice can help repel roaches and make your home less attractive to them. The strong citrus scent of lemon juice is unpleasant for roaches and can help keep them away. Here’s how to use lemon juice as a roach repellent:

  1. Squeeze fresh lemon juice where roaches are commonly seen, such as near food sources, pantries, or under appliances.
  2. Spray lemon juice in cracks and crevices to prevent roaches from entering your home.
  3. Use lemon-scented cleaning products to clean your home, which can help make your home less attractive to roaches.

It’s important to note that while lemon juice can help repel roaches, it may not be a complete solution for a roach infestation. Professional pest control may be necessary to eliminate a roach problem in your home . Additionally, it’s best to use caution when using lemon juice and follow the manufacturer’s recommended usage guidelines. 

Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth, also known as diatomite or kieselgur/kieselguhr, is a naturally occurring, soft, siliceous sedimentary rock. It is composed of the fossilized remains of microscopic aquatic organisms called diatoms. These single-celled algae have skeletons made of a natural substance called silica. When these organisms die, their skeletons settle to the bottom of bodies of water and accumulate over time. Diatomaceous earth can be crumbled into a fine white to off-white powder with many uses in home and garden settings.

Diatomaceous earth has many beneficial uses around the home and garden. It can be used as an insecticide to control fleas, bed bugs, ants, and other pests. It can also be used as an internal cleanser to promote skin health and support heart health. Additionally, it can be used in gardening as a soil amendment to help retain moisture in the soil and improve its structure for better aeration and drainage.

Overall, diatomaceous earth is an effective and safe way to control pests in your home or garden without using chemical insecticides. It is also a great way to promote skin health and support heart health from within the body.

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, keeping roaches away at night is essential for maintaining a clean and hygienic home environment. Several natural remedies, such as bay leaves, borax, essential oils, vinegar, baking soda and sugar, lemon juice, and diatomaceous earth, can be used to repel roaches. While these remedies can effectively deter roaches, they may not eliminate a roach infestation, and professional pest control may be necessary in some cases. When using natural remedies to control roaches, it’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s recommended usage guidelines and to take necessary precautions to avoid accidental ingestion or other harm. Using these natural remedies and taking preventative measures can help keep roaches away from your home at night and maintain a clean and healthy living environment.