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Finding a cockroach in your home is always an alarming sight, but finding one in your car is even more shocking. And while you might think that simply cleaning your car will rid it of roaches altogether, it won’t. Cockroaches are attracted to any food left in the car, but they also like to hide in random places and even multiply. Here is how you can rid of those pesky little insects if you find them crawling around in your car.

Getting rid of roaches in your car

Cockroaches eat feed at a roach farm.
Cockroaches eat feed at a roach farm. | WANG ZHAO/AFP via Getty Images

The first step to getting rid of roaches in your car is to thoroughly clean the inside of your car. According to Orkin, the primary reason that roaches exist in your car is due to leftover food in the seats, carpet, and other small spaces. Remember those fries that you love so much that you just had to eat them on the way home? Well, roaches love them too.

After thoroughly cleaning your car’s interior, it’s a good idea to put out some commercial-grade roach traps in various spots in the car. Believe it or not, roaches can duplicate under your car’s seats, in the door panels, and in even in the speakers. So it’s imperative to put out as many traps as possible to get rid of them and their brood.

Speaking of their brood, during your process of cleaning your car, you may end up finding some roach eggs. In that case, you may want to call an insect exterminator or another professional to successfully rid the car of roach eggs since they can be resistant to some treatments.

Otherwise, one good homemade remedy is to combine water and vinegar in a spray bottle (a 2:1 ratio) and then add about 10 drops of peppermint oil to it. The peppermint scent tends to repel insects, so be sure to spray it all over your car. Remember to spray it in the vents, between the seats, and any other nook and cranny that you can find. Afterward, vacuum up all the roaches and get them out of your car for good.

Identifying that your car has a roach problem can be tricky

Other than a nasty little roach crawling on your arm while driving or seeing one in plain sight, it can be tough to identify whether or not your car has a roach problem. Again, they like to hide in the most random places, especially when people are inside the car. So by putting out bait, you should see a lot more roaches in your car and identify that there is indeed a problem.

Why would roaches want to inhabit your car?

A man cleans his car
A man cleans his car | TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images

Roaches need food and shelter, just like any other insect or animal, so if your car can provide that then it can become a roach motel. Roaches are always looking for a source of food and a good place to hide and lay their eggs, so it’s important to keep food out of your car whenever possible.

It’s also important to keep in mind that roaches aren’t as harmless as other insects as they can spread more than 30 different types of germs and even bite you. Don’t worry, they’re not poisonous, but considering roaches like to hang around garbage dumpsters and other people’s apartments, you can certainly bet that they’re dirty.

Knowing this, we can see why it’s of the utmost importance to keep your car’s interior as clean as possible. Roaches tend to stick around as long as there is a food source, so get rid of that, lay some traps, and spray some peppermint. Those steps should help the issue, if not, then call an exterminator.


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