The best defense against cockroaches is to keep them out of your home in the first place, such as sealing potential entry points, eliminating food and water sources, and reducing clutter where they can hide . But cockroaches are resourceful creatures, having survived this world for hundreds of millions of years, so the occasional infestation is inevitable. In fact, 63% of homes in the United States contain cockroach allergens, according to the National Pest Management Association.
Good Housekeeping Institute experts work closely with entomologists and pest control professionals to provide best practices for controlling all kinds of pests, including ants, mice, silverfish and more. For this report, we focused on the best types of cockroach killers: gels, powders, and bait stations. We didn’t look at sprays and bombs because, as Dr. Changlu Wang of Rutgers University’s Department of Entomology says, “Bug bombs are totally ineffective. Sprays can kill some cockroaches, but they aren’t very effective and can easily contaminate surfaces.
Our top picks:
Once you’ve read the winners roundup, stick around for more info on how we pick the best cockroach killers, what to keep in mind when shopping, and the answers to common questions about cockroach infestations.