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A word from UGA Extension
Making your home no place for a roach
Ingram Sam
Sam Ingram

What do roaches need to call your home their home?

We have all seen the commercials of the Orkin man wiping out the bad bugs in the home. Having a pest control operator spray for insects in your home is great, but there are also some things you can do to prevent heavy infestation. The one essential item any insect needs is water, and you can deter them by following the bullet points below.

Water – Excessive, persistent moisture is the most important condition allowing many types of pest infestations to establish and persist. Not only is water critical to the health and normal metabolism of all forms of life, its abundance leads to the growth of various molds, fungi, and other microorganisms which are the primary food source for numerous insect species.

Homeowners should limit the occurrence of persistent moisture in and around their home. Moisture problems can only be remedied by correcting the underlying cause(s). Some common sources of excessive, or persistent, moisture that may lead to a pest problem include but are not limited to:

• Leaking faucets or water lines;

• Condensation, for example on pipes, in walls and under insulation;

• Improper ventilation of walls, attics, crawlspaces, or basements;

• Roof leaks, especially those that are the result of improperly installed flashing around pipe penetrations, sky lights, and chimneys;

• Improper landscape grade resulting in poor surface water drainage patterns;

• Misdirected sprinkler heads;

• Gaps around windows (especially bay windows) and doors that allow water behind the structure’s exterior sheathing;

• Clogged gutters and downspouts;

• Downspout and air conditioner drain lines that deposit water within five feet of the structure.

Property owners should ensure that:

• Rainwater flows away from their home by examining the grade or slope of the landscape to make certain it is appropriate;

• Gutters, downspouts, roof, and air conditioner condensate drainage patterns are operating properly and depositing water away from the foundation;

• Attics, crawlspaces, and basements are properly ventilated;

• A vapor barrier is in place in the crawlspace;

• Sprinklers are positioned properly;

• There is no standing water or persistent wet spots next to the foundation or in the crawlspace.

For more information or questions, contact Effingham County Extension Agent Sam Ingram at 754-8040 or