Water bugs can be a nuisance, especially if you live in an area with a high population of bugs. These creatures are often called by different names, such as roaches or palmetto bugs, and they are common in humid areas. If you’ve come across these bugs, you may be wondering how to get rid of them. In this article, we’ll provide you with easy home remedies to banish water bugs.
Identifying Water Bugs
Before you can start getting rid of water bugs, you need to make sure that you’re dealing with the right pest. Water bugs have a few key features that make them distinguishable from others. Here’s what to look for:
- Oval-shaped body: Water bugs have an oval-shaped body that can grow up to 1.5 inches long.
- Dark-colored body: Most water bugs have a dark brown or black-colored body.
- Flat body: Water bugs have a flat body that helps them move quickly in the water and on land.
- Long antennae: You can easily spot water bugs by the long antennae protruding from their heads.
Why are Water Bugs in my House?
Water bugs are attracted to moist environments, which is why they are often found near water sources such as drains, sewers or stagnant water. Your home could become a breeding ground for water bugs if there is stagnant water around or if there are leaks that create moist conditions.
Home Remedies to Banish Water Bugs
Boric acid is an effective home remedy that can kill water bugs by dehydrating them. It’s also safe to use around pets and children. Here’s how to use boric acid:
- Sprinkle boric acid along the areas where you’ve seen water bugs, such as cracks, corners, and crevices.
- Leave the boric acid for a few days so that the water bugs come into contact with it.
- Vacuum up the dead bugs and leftover powder.
Vinegar and Baking Soda
Vinegar and baking soda is another effective home remedy that can help banish water bugs. Here’s how to use it:
- Mix equal parts of vinegar and baking soda in a spray bottle.
- Spray the mixture in areas where you’ve seen water bugs, such as under sinks or along baseboards.
- Leave the mixture to dry and vacuum up the dead bugs.
Diatomaceous earth is a natural powder that can help kill water bugs by slicing through their exoskeleton. Here’s how to use it:
- Sprinkle diatomaceous earth around areas where you’ve seen water bugs.
- Leave the powder for a few days so that the water bugs come into contact with it.
- Wipe up any dead bugs and vacuum any leftover powder.
Essential oils have natural insect-repellent properties that can help keep water bugs away. Here are some essential oils you can use:
- Pennyroyal oil
- Lavender oil
- Peppermint oil
Mix any of these essential oils with a carrier oil, like olive oil or coconut oil, and apply it to areas where water bugs are likely to come in.
Preventing Water Bugs
Preventing water bugs is just as important as getting rid of them. Here are a few preventative measures you can take:
- Fix any leaks around your home: Addressing leaks can help prevent water accumulation that may attract water bugs.
- Seal cracks and crevices: Water bugs can crawl through small spaces, so it’s important to seal any cracks and crevices that could be an entry point for them.
- Clean regularly: Keeping your home clean with regular dusting, sweeping, and mopping helps prevent water bugs from making themselves at home.
- Remove clutter: Clutter provides hiding places for water bugs, so it’s important to keep a tidy home.
The Bottom Line
Water bugs can be a big problem, but you can solve it with simple home remedies. By identifying and preventing the entry of water bugs, you can keep your home free of these unwanted pests.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Q: What are water bugs attracted to?
A: Water bugs are attracted to moist environments, stagnant water, and food residue.
- Q: Are water bugs harmful?
A: Water bugs are not harmful, but they can be carriers of bacteria that cause disease.
- Q: How do I know if I have a water bug infestation?
A: You’ll likely see them in moist areas, such as near drains and sinks. They may also leave droppings or shed skin behind.
- Q: Can water bugs fly?
A: Yes, some species of water bugs can fly.
- Q: How can I keep water bugs out of my home?
A: Seal any cracks, fix leaks, keep your home clean, and remove clutter.
- Ajayi, O., &Fawole, O. (2016). Exploration of Chemical Composition and Insecticidal Properties of Essential Oils Derived from Plectranthusamboinicus L. and Coleus aromaticus Benth against Palmetto Weevil Rhynchophorus cruentatus F.(Coleoptera:Curculionidae). Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine: eCAM, 2016.
- Blumberg, R. (2011). Clean, Green, and Lean: Get Rid of the Toxins That Make You Fat: Get Rid of the Toxins That Make You Fat (p. 205).
- Hadley, D. (2020, June 8). How to Get Rid of Waterbugs Naturally. Treehugger; Treehugger. https://www.treehugger.com/get-rid-waterbugs-naturally-4797225.