It might be hard to believe that electronics like your television, gaming console, microwave, laptop, and more could be a nesting place for a roach infestation, but unfortunately, they are.
Cockroaches love to nest in electronics. Here’s how to get roaches out of electronics. You can use pressurized air, cold, bait, sticky traps, or boric acid. If there are too many – or you don’t want to deal with it – you can call a professional exterminator to get roaches out of your electronics.
Cockroaches can easily inhabit your devices and wreak havoc. If you notice any cockroaches in appliances and electronics, you have to take action immediately to stop them from ruining your items.
After you’ve figured out how to get roaches out of electronics, you’ll also need to keep your devices and area clean, so they don’t return.
7 Primary Methods of Removal
Here are some of the simplest methods to get roaches out of your electronics:
1. Blast Them Away Using Pressurized Air
Try a canister filled with pressurized air as a basic technique to physically get the roaches (and any debris) out of your electronics.
Purchase a can that has a narrow spray tip so that you’ll be able to reach the crevices inside the device.
Perform this task outdoors because the roaches will start to scatter as soon as you begin, and you don’t want them to run and hide somewhere else in the house.
And always unplug the device before using pressurized air to remove roaches. And if you aren’t sure, check your user manual – specific electronics have sensitive components that might be damaged with this treatment.
2. Freeze Them Out
Cockroaches can’t survive freezing temperatures. They will die relatively quickly, so this method is effective if your electronics can withstand the cold.
Wrap them in a plastic bag and seal them tightly. Leave the bag in the freezer for three to five days.
Note that any devices with LCD screens, for example, will incur damage if you try this method because of the low temperature.
3. Roach Bait
Using poison bait is one of the easiest ways to kill cockroaches in your electronics.
Lay a gel bait close to the devices you believe have cockroaches inside. They will be drawn out by the smell, consume the poison, and die. You can continue to do this method by refreshing the bait until the roaches are gone.
4. Manually Remove Them
If you’re handy and have the instruction manual for the device, you can try removing the roaches by disassembling the device and taking apart the main components.
You should only attempt this method if you’re sure you can reassemble the device afterward. And always unplug before attempting.
After finding all of the roaches, remove them with a paper towel and gloves. Do not touch them with your hand directly.
5. Glue Traps
The roaches will eventually need to come out of the electronics searching for food. A glue trap is an effective solution to catching them when they emerge from the device.
They’ll walk over the trap and get stuck.
Place them around the infested devices and they should neutralize your problem within a few days, depending on how many devices you need to clean.
6. Boric Acid
A popular option for killing cockroaches is boric acid.
It is one of the best pest control methods available for roaches. Sprinkle a small amount around the affected electronics, and wait for the insects to exit. It won’t take much time for them to die from the poison.
For safety details, here is a fact sheet by National Pesticide Information Center, Oregon State University.
7. Call the Professionals
While all of these methods work when figuring out how to get roaches out of electronics, they might not be effective enough on their own.
You can always consult an exterminator if you have a large appliance infestation or if it seems like the roaches keep coming back.
This is the more expensive option, but they’ll know exactly what to do and which electronic-friendly methods will be most beneficial. You’ll likely also receive the best tips for keeping them away.
Remember: If you see one roach, there are probably many, many more.
Learn about the 3 types of roaches known as palmetto bugs.
Why Are Roaches Attracted to Electronics?
Anywhere there’s water, food, warmth, and shelter, you run the risk of attracting roaches.
Cockroaches will quickly make their way into the following appliances and devices:
- Computers and printers
- Washing machines
- Coffee machines
- Ceiling fans
- Kitchen mixers
- Air conditioning units
- DVD and Blu-ray players
- Gaming consoles
Remember that roaches seek solid, small places to encapsulate their bodies. They enjoy touch, so tight spaces are warm and ideal for survival.
Cockroaches have the uncanny ability to flatten out their exoskeletons while splaying their legs out to the side to fit into tiny spaces that are about 1/4 the size of the insect’s standing height.
Inherently, electronic devices have many gaps that are tight enough for all roaches to feel secure and safe.
Personally, we’ve had the most problem with roaches in microwaves. I think a combination of heat, moisture, and food is irresistible to them.
Why Do Roaches Like Electronics? 6 Reasons
There are additional reasons that cockroaches are drawn to electronics.
Cockroaches are known to live in electronics that provide the following:
- Heat: Electronics equipment tends to give off heat. This is particularly true if the device is plugged up regularly.
- Security: Cockroaches will choose to live in electronics that are stationary and rarely disassembled.
- Quiet: Typically, electronics do not produce a loud threatening noise to startle the insect. Electronics generally make low-humming noises.
- Darkness: The small spaces do not allow light inside of the device. These conditions are perfect for them to remain undetected.
- Access to food: Electronics close to the kitchen allow roaches to make quick and regular runs for water and food.
- Room to breed: Cockroaches need enough space to lay their eggs and enough room to protect themselves from predators.
It is pretty evident just how much utility an electronic device has for any number of cockroaches.
You often won’t know that your device is under siege until it is wholly overrun.
Can Roaches Mess Up Electronics? (5 Risks)
After cockroaches have made a home out of your device and have breached the electronic circuitry, there’s a good chance that they can ruin it altogether.
Although they don’t eat wiring, they will gather together in areas that cause problems by:
- Overheating or blocking vital components because of shed exoskeletons
- Overheating appliances because of blocked air vents
- Making the interior malfunction and jam due to stacked up dead cockroaches
- Short-circuiting the device because they’ve laid eggs on essential parts
- Burning out circuit board because of smear droppings
Smaller devices are more susceptible to breaking, such as DVD players and game consoles. This is because they have smaller parts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are the answers to the most commonly asked questions concerning roaches living in electronics:
Can you spray Raid on electronics?
It is not advisable to use raid products to spray inside of your electronic devices as this can lead to many problems.
Such problems include computer damage, fire, and explosion. Never use bug spray on your electronics; they are flammable when near electronics.
Can roaches damage a refrigerator?
Roaches are unlikely to break your refrigerator. However, they can cause other unwanted problems. Some of these are listed above.
And it can be pretty gross to see scurrying roaches around your fridge.
How long can roaches live in a plastic bag?
Cockroaches are very resilient and can survive in a sealed plastic bag for 3-5 days.
This is because they possess unique respiratory systems. They can process oxygen more proficiently. Additionally, their small size means they need very little oxygen for survival.
Can you freeze roaches out of your house?
Cold temperatures can be used to kill cockroaches; however, to kill their eggs, it takes prolonged exposure to low temperatures to do so.
For instance, if cockroaches remain in a place with a temperature of 45 degrees Fahrenheit, the chances that they die increases significantly after 10 hours have passed.
More Reading: 11 Essential Oils for Repelling Cockroaches
How did you do? Did you manage to clear cockroaches from your electronics? Let us know below!
- About the Author
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Bryan Haines is a co-founder and writer at The Buginator. And is working to make it the best resource for taking back the outdoors from biting, stinging pests.
He also blogs about travel at Storyteller.Travel and photography at Storyteller Tech. Bryan is a partner at Storyteller Media, a publishing company he runs with his wife, Dena.