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How to Get Rid of Cockroaches in Singapore - The Pest That Everyone Dislikes



Part I: Cockroaches: Facts & Identification

  • Most Common Types of Cockroaches in Singapore
  • The Life Cycle of Cockroaches

Part II: How to Control Cockroaches in Singapore

  • Signs of A Cockroach Infestation
  • Natural Ways to Repel Cockroaches

Part III: Why Should You Hire a Cockroach Control?

  • The Challenges in DIY Cockroach Control
  • The Potential Implications of A Cockroach Infestation to Your Business
  • What Does A Pest Control Company in Singapore Do?

Part IV: How to Keep Cockroaches from Coming Back?

  • Cockroach Control by Rentokil Singapore

Cockroaches - The pest that everyone dislikes

There are but a few things more frustrating than a cockroach infestation. These pesky pests can make themselves at home, scuttling through the kitchens and hiding well in the bathrooms where their antennae are the only ones showing.

Unfortunately, not only are these pests an eyesore, they can cause quite a stir too, not to mention they multiply fast which can result in a cockroach infestation—for each that you see, there will be more in hiding and breeding. They can contaminate your food and spread bacteria, which overall can compromise the health and safety of your household.

The good news?

You do not have to share your home with cockroaches, and you can always call for cockroach control in Singapore.

Part I: Cockroaches: Facts & Identification

cockroaches facts and identification

Cockroaches are insects with a flattened body and often and have two sets of wings. They are thought to have existed on earth for over 350 million years, pre-dating some dinosaurs. Being a common household pest, they can be found anywhere and there are at least three common cockroach species you can find in Singaporean homes.

Most Common Types of Cockroaches in Singapore

1. American cockroach (Periplaneta Americana)

The largest species of the three, American cockroaches thrive in warm, humid, and undisturbed environments—in and around drains, sewers, trash bins, and damp woodpiles. However, there are cases when these cockroaches will venture inside your home in search of food, moisture, and shelter.

2. German cockroach (Blatella germanica)

Do not mistaken German cockroaches as a little less annoying for their smaller size, because these pests prefer the indoors where it is warm and humid. For the most part, they seek shelter within homes and businesses, particularly in the kitchen, bathroom, and inside the cabinets. There are cases of food businesses that is required to shut down or suspended due to them.

3. Brown-banded cockroach (Supella longipalpa)

These cockroaches get their name from the two light brown bands across their darker brown bodies. Like American cockroaches, they prefer to live in warm and humid environments like the drains and sewers, but they often venture indoors for food and water. You will usually find them in basements, garages, wall voids, and crawl spaces.

The Life Cycle of Cockroaches

Most cockroaches undergo three life stages: egg, nymph, and adult. They usually live about 6-15 months in favourable conditions, but it can also vary based on the species.


Female adult cockroaches lay cases of 10-50 eggs in warm, humid, and undisturbed areas such as under the sink, bathrooms, ceilings, or walls. They lay multiple egg cases during their lifetimes and these eggs take about 1-2 months to hatch.


Nymphs hatch and undergo a series of moults, growing a little larger and getting darker in colour each time they shed their skins—from white to tan, brown, or grey. This phase lasts about 1-3 months.


Nymphs reach adult size in their final moult. In this stage, the cockroaches start to reproduce and restart the cycle over again. They can live for approximately a year, a period in which they can multiply quickly and cause serious infestations.

life cycle of cockroaches

Cockroaches adapt very well. They can live and breed anywhere there are warm, humid, secluded areas including in homes, offices, restaurants and many other business establishments. They can also eat almost anything from food to non-food—leftover food, food crumbs, spills, and waste—thus, illustrating the value of good housekeeping. In addition, they are also quite resourceful, finding many opportunities to get into your home:

  • They crawl inside through cracks, gaps, and holes in the structure.
  • Cockroaches can hitch a ride on grocery bags, cardboard boxes, suitcases, etc.
  • They venture their way into your home from drainage and sewer systems.
  • These pests move from one apartment to another through pipes, outlets, and other holes in shared walls.
  • Understanding the cockroach life cycle can give insight into how fast an infestation can spread and become a serious problem. It should also help you realise why you should not ignore the first signs of a potential cockroach infestation.

    Part II: How to Control Cockroaches in Singapore

    how to control cockroaches in Singapore

    Cockroaches are nocturnal creatures, scattering at night to search for food in the kitchens, trash bins, drains, and sewers. They pick up germs and bacteria along the way and eventually come into contact with food, utensils, and food preparation areas, thus causing cross-contamination. They spread pathogens that cause intestinal diseases like diarrhoea, typhoid fever, dysentery, gastroenteritis, and cholera.

    Moreover, exposure to their droppings, saliva, shed skin, and other excrements can trigger allergic reactions such as dermatitis, itching, asthma, and respiratory conditions.

    dangers of cockroach infestation

    Pest control is necessary to prevent the health risks cockroaches carry. While it is hard to keep them completely out of your home, taking proper precautions can go a long way to suppress an infestation.

    Signs of A Cockroach Infestation

    The first step to address an infestation is to keep them from happening in the first place. Below are some tell-tale signs of a cockroach presence to look out for:

    • Smell - A distinct, pungent, musty or oily odour that gets worse the longer the infestation goes unaddressed.
    • Droppings - Small, brown to black cylindrical pellets that can be found on surfaces such as the floors, shelves, and in areas where cockroaches often hide.
    • Egg Cases - Brown to black egg cases, called oothecae. They are usually found in their hiding places, particularly drawers, cupboards, and other furniture.
    • Shed Skin - Cockroach-shaped shed skin that can also be found where these pests are hiding.
    • Cockroaches - The pests themselves. Cockroaches are nocturnal and prefer to live in the dark. They do not usually show themselves during the day, but when they do, it may be a sign of a severe infestation.

    In addition to these, also keep an eye out for grease marks on surfaces and corners, which may indicate where cockroaches scuttle along. Read for more signs of cockroach infestations in your home.

    signs of cockroach infestation

    Natural Ways to Repel Cockroaches

    There are plenty of ways to repel and get rid of cockroaches in your home, ranging from natural home remedies to pest control hacks, and practical methods that are meant to make your home as unattractive as possible to these pests.

    Natural Cockroach Repellents

    • Essential oils (peppermint, spearmint, lavender, citronella, etc.)
    • Pandan leaves
    • Bay leaves
    • Citrus peels
    • Cucumbers

    One thing these natural repellents have in common is that they are thought to have specific smells that drive cockroaches away. You can grind or crush these ingredients individually and place them in cockroach-prone areas to repel them.

    Keep in mind, however, that while these ingredients have some form of repelling effects, they do not necessarily eliminate cockroaches. Instead, they merely drive cockroaches from one point to another, thus rendering these home remedies ineffective in addressing the root of infestation.

    What you can do instead is take proactive housekeeping efforts to prevent cockroaches from overtaking your space. Here, we divided these steps into the following categories.

    Practical Steps to Get Rid of Cockroaches

    Remove Food Sources

    • Store food in airtight containers.
    • Clean your stove tops and countertops of any scraps, crumbs, spills, and grease.
    • Rinse out empty cans, bottles, and containers before disposal.
    • Empty trash bins regularly.
    • Remove pet food and water bowls

    Practise Good Housekeeping

    • Vacuum regularly.
    • Store items in plastic containers.
    • Discard old newspapers and magazines.
    • Clean storage areas often.
    • Use a trash bin with a tight-fitting lid.
    • Get rid of any clutter that cockroaches may use for breeding.

    Eliminate Cockroach Harbourages

    • Seal cracks and crevices in walls, under kitchen sinks, electrical outlets.
    • Seal gaps around door and window frames using expanding foam.
    • Fix leaky faucets and pipes and check them regularly for damage.
    • Dry out the bathroom as often as possible before bed.
    • Hang wet dishes to dry out overnight.

    Taking these steps should help reduce, if not completely remove, the things that attract cockroaches into your home: food, water, and shelter. In addition to these, a regular cockroach control program is necessary to keep an infestation from getting out of hand.

    Cockroaches reproduce fast and an integrated pest management program that includes gel baiting and residual spraying are targeted to put an end to the cockroach life cycle.

    Part III: Why Should You Hire a Cockroach Control?

    why should you hire a cockroach control

    Much like any pest infestations, the presence of cockroaches can damage your property, create an unsanitary environment, and put your family’s health at risk.

    You may think that managing the infestation may seem like a smart way to save on professional pest control costs. A single pair can breed as much as 2 million cockroaches a year. They are adaptive and can survive a month without food and a week without water. What is worse, while self-help measures may help to some extent, they rarely fully eradicate the pest problem.

    The Challenges in DIY Cockroach Control

    • Pests multiply faster than you can control them with self-help measures. What’s more, the improper use of pesticides could expose your family to chemicals, putting their health and safety at risk.
    • DIY pest control solutions often only address pests in contact and do not include solutions to remove the source of infestation or even barriers necessary to prevent reinfestation in the future.
    • Pest infestations can be quite difficult to identify, locate, and control for non-professionals. A pest control company has the necessary tools and equipment to do the job safely and effectively.
    • It may be more time-consuming to do pest control yourself, not to mention potentially more expensive, factoring in the money and effort wasted in an attempt to DIY only to end up engaging professional help anyway.
    • Self-help measures may not always be the most eco-friendly pest control solution, which is unlike integrated pest management (IPM) techniques that focus on pest prevention and the use of pesticides only when necessary.
    why you should avoid DIV pest control

    The Potential Implications of A Cockroach Infestation to Your Business

    In addition to the risks associated with DIY pest control, there are several reasons why you engage cockroach control for your business.

    Negative First Impressions

    If someone is dining in your restaurant for the first time, the last thing you would want is a cockroach scuttling in the corners. It is not good for a first impression, is it? That probably could discourage repeat business better than a cockroach sighting.

    Negative Reviews

    Bad impressions are one thing but negative reviews are another. If a customer complains about getting sick from your food, they are not likely to come back—worse, they may even publish negative reviews online and in today’s digital age, it will not take long for everyone to see.

    Penalties and Business Closure

    What is worse than a negative review? Penalties, suspension, even potential business closure. As said earlier, there have been cases of businesses being shut down for cockroach sightings reported online, which is often an indication of sanitary issues.

    Firstly, even if an inspection does not lead to suspension, at the very least, you could be subjected to penalties, frequent health and sanitary inspections. Secondly, your organisation should call in professional help is that it could save you from business interruptions, customer inconvenience, and the costs associated with repeated pest infestations and dealing with them. Thirdly, even if you assign your employees to perform pest control, it may not be the most productive use of your time as it may take attention away from the key responsibilities that generate money for your business. This goes to show that engaging professional pest control remains the most effective way to address and prevent infestations in the future. Above all, these factors could hurt your bottom line.

    With all these said, what should you expect in a cockroach control service?

    What Does A Pest Control Company in Singapore Do?


    When you first contact a pest control company, expect to answer a few questions about the suspected infestation: What type of pest do you believe is in your home? Where have you seen it?


    The best pest control companies in Singapore offer a free consultation where a specialist would visit your home to check which areas of your home are possibly infested. Some of the factors they will inspect are the following:

    • Entry Points: windows, doors, frames, basement, and crawl spaces
    • Storage Spaces: cabinets, drawers, storage rooms, piles and cartons
    • Outdoor Area: garden, woodpiles, gutters, etc.
    • Sources of Moisture: water leaks, pools of unnecessary water, and damaged pipes.


    Afterwards, they will discuss with you the findings as well as the necessary steps you should take to address the existing problem and prevent future ones. Depending on your pest control provider, they may conduct the treatment on the same day.

    Understanding what your professional pest control will do during the visit allows you to prepare your home for the treatment—whether it is moving your furniture away from the treatment area or vacating the premises while the procedure is ongoing. In addition, with some advice from your specialist, you will be better prepared on how to keep your home pest-free in the future.

    Part IV: How to Keep Cockroaches from Coming Back?

    how to keep cockroaches from coming back

    What can you do to keep them from infesting your home again? It is pretty much the same as taking practical steps to get rid of cockroaches—limiting their access, cutting off their resources, maintaining a sanitary environment, and performing regular inspections.

    Aside from pest removal, your pest control operator may also play their part in pest prevention by performing regular checks to look for signs of infestations as well as for any household issues that may promote pest harbourage. These include damaged plumbing that creates warm and damp areas that cockroaches love.

    They would also help monitor potential hiding places for any cockroach activity and advise some steps to make your home as less habitable as possible for the insects.

    The truth is, no matter how tempted you are to try and control the pest problem on your own, cockroach control is a job that is better left to professionals. The same goes for most pests from bed bugs and ants to rodents and termites.

    At Rentokil Singapore, we take pride in having a team of pest control specialists who have the skills, knowledge, training, tools, and equipment to safely and properly address pest infestations.

    Cockroach Control by Rentokil Singapore

    Getting rid of cockroaches is a standard pest control program. Our solutions to manage cockroach infestations include the following:

    • Residual Spray - an essential cockroach control step that involves the application of a residual insecticide in cockroach hotspots including ceilings, internal walls, and under the sinks where the pests may come in contact with the active ingredient that would eventually kill them.
    • Cockroach Gel - insecticide-laced gel baits work by making cockroaches think they are a source of food, thus effectively killing them. Small dots of this bait is applied into cracks and around other areas where they frequent.
    • Cockroach Baits - In addition to gel baits, other forms of baits are used. They allow the pest get some effect from the active ingredient and eventually eliminate them as a result.
    what is involved in cockroach control

    The time it will take for baits to control cockroaches depend on several factors involved such as the type of species in question as well as the size of the infestation.

    Keeping cockroaches out of your home is a multi-step process that involves a long-term commitment. Understanding your options in cockroach control is crucial to its success. For the most comprehensive solution to cockroach control, contact our pest control operators at Rentokil Singapore.

    Ready to get rid of cockroaches for good? Contact us today at  (65) 6347 8138 or visit our website to start.

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