Cockroaches and Drains

Did you know that cockroaches can live in drains, feed on the gunk that builds up, and enter your home or business? It’s no secret that Cockroaches live in the sewer system. The dark, damp, sewer system provides an ideal breeding ground for American and Oriental Cockroaches. They feed on the organic matter in the pipes and drains. American and Oriental cockroaches tend to be the most problematic species in relation to drains but German cockroaches can also use drains to find food debris to feed on and as a harborage area.

In homes, unused or rarely used drains can provide a highway for these large cockroaches to get inside. Although they are able to sort of swim, it’s more of a float, they rarely do. When a sink, shower, or toilet is used regularly the plumbing trap (sometimes called U-Pipe or S-pipe) stays full of water. This keeps smell and cockroaches from coming from the sewer and up into your home or business.

If a drain is used less frequently than every few days, it’s possible for it to dry out or for the water level in it to become low enough to allow cockroach entry. Also, the lack of water flowing throw the pipe regularly can cause curious cockroaches to start wondering up the pipes. It’s important that drains not being used regularly either be used weekly or plugged up to prevent cockroach entry. In the summertime, when these cockroaches are more active, this is even more important.

As cockroaches move across food contact surfaces from drains and sewers they can spread pathogens, dangerous bacteria, and disease. The FDA estimates that 48 million people are struck with food-borne illness each year, some of which is caused by cockroaches.

In addition to making sure all drains are being used the following options are additional tools, we can use to reduce cockroach problems in drains.

Drain Cleaning. Scrubbing, steaming, pressure washing, etc. Bio-sanitation products can effectively clean drains by digesting organic build-up in which both pests and pathogens can harbor. Maintaining drain cleanliness and using foam cleaners also can provide continued pest suppression. Regular use of any cleaner is very important, as even those that don’t kill the insect will remove the conditions conducive to insect breeding. This helps eliminate fruit fly and drain fly breeding in drains as well.

Sink traps

Drain Traps. Traps in drain lines need to be installed and working properly to help prevent roaches from entering drains and coming into the facility through the sewer or outdoor water treatment facilities. The water trap seal valve sits in the drain, letting water flow out, but not allowing insects to move up into the facility. The traps also can eliminate gasses and odors that can come up through drains and attract insects.

Drain Treatments. Some pesticides can be used in and around drains in certain environments. Although this should be used as a last resort if sanitation and traps aren’t controlling the problem.

If Cockroaches are a problem in your home or business contact us for a free inspection.