How To Get Rid Of Wood Roaches

Robert James
Pest Control Technician

Wood roach are a species of roaches which are very similar in appearance to the common household cockroach called the American roach, just smaller. They have a flat oval body appearance and are brown in color. The male wood roach appears tanner than the female with yellow markings around the thorax and on the front part of their wings. The mere presence of this pest inside one’s home is annoying enough.
Nonetheless, they’re known to be carriers of diseases which pose health threats to humans. Wood roaches will multiply when the female roach lays eggs during summer and deposits them on decaying organic materials. The life cycle of a wood roach lasts up to 2 years and their presence is often noted from May through October.


The wood roach loves decaying material. That’s what they feed on and it’s the same place they’ll reside in. It is therefore necessary to take precautions against decaying material immediately so as to avoid a wood roach infestation. Another interesting fact about the wood roach is that they’re active at night, which makes them nocturnal creatures.
This makes them deadly because they’ll only appear at night to cause destruction making it hard to detect them during the day and take action there and then. They are also attracted to light contrary to most habits of other cockroach species. Wood roaches barely thrive well inside homes since they require moist surroundings e.g. on loose bark, under wood piles and in decaying logs.


The female wood roach will often be spotted on the bottom floors of buildings most especially in the garages and basements. On the other hand, the male wood roach is often spotted near doorways and near lights outside. Positive identification of small nymphs is more difficult and usually requires microscopic examination. The best thing about wood roaches is that they rarely infest inside homes since they best survive outdoors. As earlier said, they reside on decaying materials hence will often be seen near firewood stored outside. When the firewood is moved inside the houses, that’s when one will start noticing their presence.

Step-by-Step Guide To Get Rid of Wood Roach

  • First things first, due to their flattened oval bodies, they can easily access the interior of homes through small cracks and crevices near the doors and windows. Therefore, seal any gaps using caulk and repair cracks.
  • Also, ensure that your windows and doors have tight-fitting screens as well as vents on the exterior of the house. Also don’t forget to turn off lights when not in use outside since the male roach is attracted to light.
  • In addition to that, inspect wood which you’re taking inside your home since wood roaches will invade the wood hence get access to your home.
  • As much as preventive measures will minimize the chances of experiencing a wood roach infestation, it doesn't really terminate or get rid of the roaches for good.
  • If the level of infestation is low, use of chemical pesticides, is not necessary. However, even though the infestation is high, chemical pesticides are also not advisable to use.
  • To completely get rid of wood cockroaches, one needs to do a thorough inspection identifying the areas which have been affected.
  • Then proceed to apply selected methods to apply in order to exterminate and keep the wood roaches out of sight. If the numbers of the cockroaches are small, you can sweep them out or rather, vacuum them up.
  • On the other hand, if the numbers are large, try some dire methods such as use of boric acid, food grade diatomaceous earth, baits and traps.

How to apply wood roach bait

  • Place small amounts of the bait (mixed with a poisonous substance e.g. gel) on places where the wood cockroaches are likely to pass by and leave it there.
  • The roaches will then locate the bait while searching for food and will ingest some and take the rest to their comrades.
  • The roaches will then die leaving behind their carcasses and shells which other roaches will feed on hence the bait is transmitted to the rest of the community resulting to its death.

How to apply wood roach traps

  • Setting traps to capture wood roaches is the easiest method to apply. On identifying areas where the cockroaches reside, place a few of the traps in several strategic positions.
  • Always keep an eye on the traps regularly so that you can empty out the trapped and dead roaches.
  • It is important to ensure that the roaches are completely dead so as to avoid a re-infestation. Properly dispose the dead roaches in a sealed plastic bag and throw it away.

How to use Boric acid

  • Boric acid is among the commonly used home remedies by many who have experienced pest infestation, wood roaches inclusive.
  • You can either sprinkle it in powder form around areas where the wood roaches dwell or rather prepare a solution which you can spray around using a spray bottle.
  • Alternatively, for effectiveness, you can use it as a bait along food sources which the cockroaches feed on. Just apply some on the food materials and place them strategically for the wood roaches to feed on and spread the plague to the rest of the colony.

How to use Diatomaceous earth

  • Thanks to its crystal-like microscopic algae’s, DE is one of the most effective home remedy in killing wood roaches.
  • When applying diatomaceous earth in wood roach infested areas, ensure that you put on protective clothes and using a dust sprayer, apply DE.
  • The roaches will die when they come into contact with DE which will cut through its exoskeleton, causing them to dehydrate and die.

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