How To Get A Cockroach Out Of Hiding And Kill Them? 3 [Easy] Ways

Are you on a mission to make cockroaches extinct? I bet you’re.

But cockroaches are sneaky creatures. No matter how clean your home is, they tend to appear from nowhere. 

how to lure a cockroach out of hiding

Sometimes you even plan to squish them under your boots. But when you try to do it, they run away and hide in places where you can’t reach.

Is there any way to lure cockroaches out from their hiding places and kill them?

Yes, there is.

In this post, we’ll tell you how to get a cockroach out of hiding in 3 easy ways and murder them. 

Let’s check them out.

Where Do Roaches Hide Inside Your Home?

How To Attract A cockroach Out of Hiding

Roaches are nocturnal creatures. During the day, roaches hide in different areas of your home like the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and even inside soft furnishings like the sofa.

So, you need to get roaches out of these hiding places before you get rid of them? 

But, first, let’s get into the specific places in these rooms where roaches hide. 


If there’s any perfect place in your home for roaches to hide, it’s your kitchen. 


There are three reasons for it. First, your kitchen has enough moisture, food, and gaps for the roaches to hide, nest, and breed. 

Inside your kitchen, roaches can be present in any possible place they can sneak into. 

Roaches can easily squeeze their bodies and pass through apertures that are as thin as 1/16th of an inch. 

But cockroaches have some favorite hiding places in your kitchen. 

The first is underneath the kitchen sink. 

There’s enough moisture and dampness underneath the kitchen sink that makes it comfortable for roaches. 

If there’s a leakage in the plumbing area of the sink, it’s even better. Roaches have got a good water source to survive. 

Add a few gaps and cracks, and you’ve got a perfect home for roaches. 

Plus, there’s always some food waste lying around underneath the kitchen sink. That’s all that roaches need. 

The second is the kitchen cabinet.

Kitchen cabinets are dark from the inside, unfrequented by anyone. There are enough tiny gaps inside the cabinets for the roaches to hide. 

Poorly washed utensils with food stains inside the kitchen cabinets add to roaches’ luxury. The roaches will feed on the food stains on these utensils to keep themselves alive. 

All these attributes make the kitchen cabinets a suitable hiding and nesting place for roaches.

The third place is in the food pantry.

If you’ve got a separate food pantry inside your kitchen, then that’s a place where roaches, and pantry pests, hide. 

Food pantries with loosely packed food storage jars and food crumbs lying around attract all kinds of bugs and pests. 

The fourth hiding place and, the most unlikely, inside the kitchen for roaches are electrical appliances.

Cockroaches can hide in dishwashers, microwaves, toasters, coffee makers, refrigerators, and even in kitchen stoves.

The gap between the refrigerator and the refrigerator stand is their favorite place. The gap has darkness and an ample amount of space for the roaches to live and breed there.

Some roach species, like German roaches, prefer warm hiding places near their food source. 

The heat from electrical appliances makes it an ideal hiding place for them. 

The above four are the most common places where roaches hide. 

But roaches can be anywhere in your kitchen. They can be hiding inside the kitchen drawers, underneath kitchen countertops, and even on the kitchen floor if there are gaps and cracks on it.


How can roaches hide in the bathroom? They don’t get food there!

Well, you’re mistaken. 

If there’s any place in your home, after your kitchen, where you’ll find roaches is in your bathroom.

The bathroom has enough dampness and water sources to keep the roaches alive. 

But what do they eat there?

Your broken hair, nails, and the trash inside the trash bin of your bathroom are all food for the roaches. 

Inside your bathroom, roaches hide in the bathroom tower, medicine cabinet, even in the flush sink above the toilet seat. 

Not to mention the plumbing section of your bathroom vanity and toilet sink is their favorite places too. 

Bathroom drains are also a great hiding place for roaches, especially sewer roaches. 

A bathroom drain clogged with organic waste like hair is a perfect nesting place for sewer roaches. 


Can roaches hide in your bedroom? Yes. 

Any dark place with gaps and cracks can be a potential hiding place.

And your bedroom has many of them.

Talk about drawers, closets, bookshelves, and beds; these are all hiding places for roaches. 

But there’s a catch here. 

Roaches can hide in the bedroom, but not for long, especially when there’s no available food and moisture source.

If your bedroom is close to the kitchen, then roaches can take refuge in your bedroom. That happens mostly when the hiding places in the kitchen are all occupied by other roaches.

If that’s the case, then why do so many people see roaches in the bedroom?

There are two reasons for it. The first reason is a messy and dirty bedroom. 

And the second reason is that there are food crumbs and oil stains in your bedroom, especially on your bed. 

So, the best way to keep roaches and other bugs like crickets that feed on food crumbs and oil stains away from your bedroom is by keeping your bedroom clean. 

Couch And Other Soft Furnishings

Upholsteries like the couch, accent chairs, soft floor furnishings like rugs and carpets needed special mention in this post.

Roaches love to hide in your comfy sofa or couch.

They will sneak into the couch from the undersides of the sofa to lay eggs and hide inside the couch.

Couches provide softness and warmth to the roaches’ eggs. 

Dirty carpets with food and beverage stains also attract roaches. They can hide under the rugs. 

The typical place where roaches, and other bugs like carpet beetles, hide in soft floor furnishings is at the junction between the floor and the walls.

Many people miss out on cleaning the corner areas of the carpets that touch the walls. 

That area accumulates a lot of dirt, making it both a food source and a hiding place for roaches.

So, never ignore any soft furnishings like accent chairs, sofas, and ottomans when you’re trying to lure the roaches out of hiding.

Other Hiding Places For Roaches To Hide

Apart from the places mentioned above, there are other places where roaches hide.

Cardboard boxes, storage units, and bookshelves are the places where roaches can hide. 

Cardboard boxes and books provide roaches with enough cellulose and fibers that they can feed on to remain alive. 

If the cardboard boxes are damp, then roaches will get enough moisture too. 

Messy and cluttered places in the home like the basement, garage, and attics are ideal places for roaches to hide. 

Signs Of Hiding Roaches In Your Home

Now that you know exactly where roaches hide, its time to ascertain that there are roaches.

How would you know that roaches are hiding in your home?

Well, that can be a difficult task unless there’s a physical sighting of roaches. But what if you haven’t seen a single cockroach in your home? Not even dead roaches?

There are 4 telltale signs of roaches hiding in your home. 

These are –

  1. Roach poop
  2. Roach smear marks
  3. Cockroach nests
  4. Cockroach smell

Roach poop and roach smear marks are the same. They’re roach feces. The only difference is that poop is more solid, and the smear marks are liquified roach poop. 

Sewer roaches that live and hide in wet areas consume the filth in liquid form. That’s why their poop is in the form of swear marks. 

Cockroaches are indiscriminate “poopers,” and they can discard anywhere, including on your food.

We’ve dedicated posts on both cockroach smear marks and cockroach poop

If roaches hide in your home, you will find roach poop or smear marks in places like walls, floor, kitchen cabinets, and underneath sinks.

Next is the cockroach nest. 

But, how to find cockroach nests?

You’ll have to actively look for roach nests in the places where roaches hide. 

Any tight corners, gaps, and cracks in your kitchen, bathroom, basement, garage, and laundry room, are places for roaches to make nests.

Why? Because these places have enough moisture and food supply for roaches to survive. 

Roach nests aren’t like nests of birds.

Roach nests are like a pile of broken roach wings, baby roaches, roach egg cases, and roach feces all together in one place. 

Cockroach nest

Roaches emit smell from their secretion glands. The odor comes from pheromones, a chemical substance that insects discharge from the glands to communicate or attract a mate. 

When these pheromones mix with the dampness and filth, it smells oily and musty. 

That musty odor is very typical of roach infestation. But initially, when the roach infestation level is low, you might not get this smell. 

When there’s a heavy roach infestation in a home, then the cockroach smell is quickly detectable. 

Roach nests also emit the same musty odor that cockroaches emit. 

Now that you know the signs of hiding cockroaches inside your home, let’s get into how to lure roaches out of hiding in your house.

How To Get A Cockroach Out Of Hiding – First, Give The Roach What It Wants.

Lure the cockroach with food

What does a cockroach want? Food. 

And what’s the best place in your home it can find food? Your kitchen. 

To get the cockroaches out of hiding, you’ll need a strip of sticky cockroach traps, a small bowl, and some leftover food like meat or bread. 

Take the cockroach traps and keep it in the bowl. Put the food leftovers on the sticky paper.

Keep the bowl at night near the roaches’ hiding places – kitchen sink or inside the kitchen cabinet.

The smell of the food will attract roaches. And when the roaches get inside the bowl, they will stick with the roach traps. 

Next morning, take the bowl and exterminate the roaches mercilessly!

Another way is mixing cockroach baits, that roaches eat, with food.

Roach baits contain fipronil, indoxycarb, dinotefuron, abamectin, and hydramethylnon that are lethal to roaches.

Keep it in places where roaches hide.

The baits will brings the roaches out of hiding. They’ll eat it and go back to their hiding places.

Once the roaches are inside in their hiding places they’ll either die because of the poison. Some roaches may even discard feces.

The other roaches will eat the feces (yes, roaches eat each other’s poop). This feasting on poop mixed with roach bait poison will kill the roaches that ate it. 

When you use cockroach bait, make sure to check their hiding places for their corpses the next day.

If you don’t clean it, then the roaches’ dead bodies will attract ants.

The Second Way – Spread A Mixture Of Onion And Boric Dust

A mixture of onion and boric acid attracts roaches. But it’s lethal for them.

And it’s one of ways to get roaches out of hiding and killing them.

Take one onion and finely chop it. Add some water, flour, and boric dust to make a fine paste of the mixture. Boric dust is readily available in pharmacies. 

Spread this paste in the areas where cockroaches hide. Or you can keep the paste on a piece of paper near their places of hiding. 

The roaches will come out of hiding to eat the paste.

You can either squish the roaches or let them get back to their hiding places.

Boric acid is a slow roach killer. The roaches will die in their hiding places.

The Third Way – Spread A Mixture Of Borax And Sugar Near The Roaches’ Hiding Places.

Borax is used to make laundry detergent and household cleaning products. It’s a natural compound that is available in any grocery store. 

Mix one cup of borax with half a cup of sugar. Mixing borax with grounded sugar is better as the borax mixes well. 

Spread this mixture near the hiding places of the cockroaches. 

The roaches love sugar, so they’ll come out of hiding and beat the mixture. 

But wait, you don’t have to murder them. Let the borax do its magic. 

The borax gets to stick with the cockroaches’ leg.

But the roaches are very hygienic pests! They tend to clean themselves often.

So, once they go back to their hiding place, they will clean themselves of the borax stuck on their legs by eating them. 

Borax is a poison for the roaches. Once the roaches eat them, it dehydrates them from inside, causing an agonizing death.

Borax also inflicts massive damage on the cockroaches’ shell, causing it to get brittle. The same thing happens when you use borax against carpet beetles.

So, do the roaches die instantly after consuming borax? No, they don’t. They take a day or two to die after consumption. 

If you want to take revenge by inflicting a slow, painful death on the roaches, this is the best way. 

Do Cockroaches Hide In Clothes?

Cockroaches can hide in clothes if the fabrics are dirty and have oily stains that cockroaches can feed on. Plus, the clothes should also lie in dark and moist places for the roaches to hide.

That’s why roaches can hide in beds, too, especially when the bedsheet is dirty with food crumbs and oil stains.

Cockroaches are unlikely to hide in clean clothes kept in clean closets and wardrobes with mothballs or cedar balls.

What Smells Keep Cockroaches Away?

Smells of white vinegar, cinnamon, peppermint oil, and eucalyptus oil keep roaches away. These are effective roach repellers.

The smell of cedar balls also keeps roaches away. Many homeowners keep cedar balls in places like kitchen cabinets and closets to ward off roaches. 

Cedar balls repel not only roaches but also fabric pests like cloth moths.

Another trick to keep roaches away is to mix equal portions of white vinegar and water. And spray it on the places where roaches hide.

Roaches cannot tolerate the severe acidic smell of white vinegar, and they’ll move out from their hiding places. 

When it comes to using the smells of essential oils to keep roaches away, it’s an easy task too!

All you’ve to do is mix 3-5 drops of any one of cinnamon, peppermint, or eucalyptus essential oils with half a gallon of water. 

To add more punch to it, add a few drops of Dawn dishwashing soap. 

Rinse the mixture well and pour it on a spray bottle. 

It’s a proven fact that essential oils like peppermint, cinnamon, and eucalyptus have insecticidal properties that repel pests and bugs. And roaches are no exception. 

The smell from essential oils is too strong for them to handle, and, on spraying these oils, they come out of hiding. 

But there’s one key point to remember. Essential oils, white vinegar, and cinnamon do not kill roaches or bugs. They repel roaches.


Here’re the three ways you can get a cockroach out of hiding

  • Give the roach what it wants – food and moisture. Put some roach bait on the food or place the food on a sticky cockroach paper.
  • Spread a mixture of minced onion and boric dust.
  • Spread a mixture of sugar and borax. 

In this guide, you’ve got to know where roaches hide and what are the common signs of roach infestation hiding in your home.

Outside your home, your yard and garage are the places where roaches can hide.

To know more, read our posts on killing roaches in garage and the reasons for roaches in your yard.