How to get rid of sewer roaches from home


We all hate creepy crawly bugs. One of the worst ones out there to deal with are cockroaches. People often refer to cockroaches as sewer roaches or water bugs. There are 4,500 species of these insects on Mother Earth. For some of you, that’s more than what you were properly expecting to hear about, but don’t totally freak out yet.

Out of the 4,500 species of cockroaches only 30 of them are considered pests and out of those 30 only 4 of those species are the most common and invasive. The four most common roaches are German, American, Australian, and oriental. These are the main ones we have to worry about infesting our homes, apartments, and restaurants.

Cockroaches are one of the main pests we deal with today because they have completely adapted to living with people, and love eating just about anything we love eating.

Unfortunately, the insects also reproduce very rapidly making any kind of infestation sometimes difficult to get rid of. With this being said, here is some information for you on how to differentiate between the four most common cockroaches so you can find a solution to help rid them away, or at least prevent them from invading your home or business.

Video showing a man cleaning a sewer filled with sewer roaches

All About the German Cockroaches

These cockroaches are well-known indoor roaches. German roaches are light brown or tan with two black stripes located behind the head. They grow in length from 13-16mm. Young German roaches that are not adults yet are darker in color almost black. They will still have the stripes behind the back of their head. These roaches do have wings but prefer to run then fly. These roaches tend to be found in kitchens and bathrooms. They are usually brought into your home in bag, boxes, containers, cardboard, and appliances from outside sources. If you live in apartments or a multi-family home they can move from one area to another by using plumbing pipes as their so-called highway.

German cockroaches tend to eat really anything from food to toothpaste, soap, and binding on books. Some signs of these roaches are their droppings tend to look like pepper. They are small and dark looking. If the colony is large enough it has been known to have a musty odor.

Prevention Methods

  • Remove indoor trash frequently.
  • Keep dumpsters clean.
  • Make sure not to leave left over food in sinks and use your garbage disposal often if you have one.
  • Keep your dishware clean make sure there is no residue of food on them.
  • Keep all of your kitchen appliances clean of grease and clean of food.
  • Make sure to keep your pet food in sealed containers.
  • Make sure you vacuum and or sweep up food particles that get onto your floors or carpets.
  • Be sure to clean food crumbs out of your cabinets and pantries.

Places that Sewer Cockroaches live

  • Cracks and crevices.
  • Behind and under stoves, refrigerators, microwaves, and toasters.
  • Check behind and under tables and sinks.
  • Switch boxes and electrical outlets.
  • Under and behind cash registers, telephones, vegetable bins, and recycling bins.
  • Meat counters/ Meat boards.

Effective Sewer Roach Baits

  • Gel baits
  • Insect growth regulators
  • Dust baits

All About the American Cockroaches

These cockroaches are reddish-brown. They tend to be 1-2 inches long. These roaches are also winged they rarely fly unless the conditions are right. They like to fly if it’s 85 degrees or above and tend to fly from building to building. American roaches are often found in steam heat tunnels or any institutional buildings with the right conditions for them to survive and thrive. They can also be found near accesses to sewers, garbages, and near sump pumps. These roaches live outside, but sometimes will find their way inside due to extreme weather or to find water and food. While inside they can be found in basements, crawl spaces, floor drains, and around the bathtub. As you can tell these roaches like dark damp spaces to live. They tend to eat decaying organic matter. They also like sweet things to eat and things that are starchy such as potatoes, bread and crackers.

Prevention Methods

  • Sprinkle caulk on ground level walls.
  • Clean out gutters and window wells of old rotting leaves.
  • Prevent water leaks such as screen drains, and remove excess water away from buildings as well as keeping all drain traps full or covered.
  • Keep firewood in a storage area far away as possible from your home.
  • If you can keep your firewood off the ground that would be ideal less chance of infestation.
  • Remove old boxes and old paper where roaches like to hide.
  • Make sure you have a proper tight fitting lid to your trash can.
  • Do note store your garbage cans in a wet/moist environment.
  • Clean all kitchen appliances well.
  • Do not leave out any kind of pet food always keep it in a sealed container/bin this goes for outdoor animals to
  • Ventilate damp/wet areas.


  • Insecticide sprays
  • Insecticide granulates
  • Granular insect baits
  • Insect baits
  • Dust

All About the Australian Cockroaches

These roaches are reddish-brown in color and have an area behind their head which is called a thorax that is colored yellow, and yellow stripes along the outer front edge of their wings. They consume plant material and decaying material. If they are located in your home they will most likely feed on book bindings, glue in boxes, and sometimes clothing. These types of cockroaches are typically found in tropical regions. They love temperatures of 80 degrees and above. Australian roaches are excellent fliers.

Places the Insects Live

  • Wall voids
  • Tree holes
  • Leave piles
  • Bark
  • Mulch
  • Wood stacks
  • In/ Around shrubs and greenhouses
  • Attics
  • Kitchens
  • Garbage cans
  • Garages

Ways to Prevent

  • Seal off all openings with caulking or putty.
  • Keep pet food that is outside in a concealed bin.
  • Make sure your screens are fitted correctly to doors and windows.
  • Stop water leaksDon’t keep trash in humid/moist areas.
  • Air out humid/moist spaces.
  • Remove decaying leaves from gutters and window wells.


  • If you find one here and there you can vacuum them up.
  • Insecticide sprays
  • Insecticide granulates
  • Granular insect baits
  • Insect baits
  • Dust

All About Oriental Cockroaches

These roaches are shiny and black and about 1.25 inches long. The roaches do have wings but do not fly. You can find these insects feasting on decaying organic matter, mulch, and garbage piles. They mostly like to consume starchy foods and will consumer water mainly through their food source or living space.

Places the Insects Live

  • Basements
  • Crawl spaces
  • Kitchens
  • Below ground level in yards
  • Under leaves
  • Under the edges of stoops/ sidewalks
  • Mulch around the flower beds
  • Sewers
  • Between the soil and a foundation of a building
  • Water meters
  • Basement floor drains
  • Dumpster

Prevention Methods

  • Sprinkle caulk around entranceways.
  • Prevent water leaks.
  • Remove excess water away from buildings.
  • Keep drain traps full or cover them.
  • Air out moist areas.
  • Keep garbage away from damp areas.


  • Residual sprays
  • Lambdastar Ultracap 9.7
  • Cyper WSP
  • Demon WP
  • D-fense SC
  • Bifen Granulars

Bottom Line for Sewer Roaches

You now have a quick breakdown of the four most common roaches that will infest your home and some methods to prevent them and rid them away.

By David Jackson

I enjoy learning about new pest control strategies and sharing what I learn at I aim to create a reliable resource for people dealing with all sorts of pest issues.

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