Did you know that the cockroach is the “Computer Geek” of the insect world? Most cockroaches prefer to congregate and lay their eggs in places that are dark, secluded, warm and close to sources of food and water. Unfortunately, the interiors of many electronic appliances, including TVs, radios, clocks, cable boxes, video game consoles and computers, fit that description, and cockroach infestations of these kinds of appliances and devices are common.
Infested electronics are a common avenue by which roaches travel from one home to another. or a warehouse to your home. Cockroaches maybe introduced into a home through used electronics or kitchen appliances that have come from an infested area and you may transport roaches to a new location, when you move, by carrying infested items with you. Even new electronics and appliances can be infested if they come from stores or warehouses with insect problems. Even infested delivery vehicles have been known to deliver more than just that new TV or game console.
New electronics are expensive and getting a “good deal” on “gently used” or “like new” electronics or appliances may bring you more than the ultimate satisfaction. They may bring you the beginning of the worst infestation of roaches your world has ever seen. Your dreams may be shattered by malfunctions and glitches, and at worst, the death of that long sought after dream machine.
So, what can you do to keep your electronics, appliances and your living spaces, roach free? Here’s what the experts recommend:
Inspect and detect. Anything you bring into your living area should be thoroughly inspected for hidden invaders. This includes new, store boxed and packaged, devices and products. If not in the device itself, roaches can hide out in the packaging. They can hitch rides from warehouses, stores and delivery trucks. Be especially vigilant when bringing home that “good deal” from garage sales and online sales sites.
Keep it clean. Maintain good sanitation practices. Don’t leave food (last week’s pizza or yesterday’s fries and potato chips) sitting around your computer work areas or your game consoles. Wipe up spilt drinks and don’t let unfinished beverages accumulate around your electronics. Don’t feed the Bugs!
Blow’m out and Suck’m up! Vacuuming cockroaches and egg cases is a simple non-toxic control method. Be sure to frequently use your can of Air, to remove dust and other creepy crawlies from inside computers and appliances.
Trap’Em. Under certain conditions, sticky traps can be used to control cockroaches. Not a good idea to put them inside any device, but placing them where roaches can walk across them (and get stuck) is desirable.
above 115° F). If a small item can be wrapped in plastic and subjected to freezing, it can be placed in a freezer for several hours (or overnight) to kill the cockroaches. If you are dealing with small appliances or electronics be sure to read their users’ manual to make sure these methods are safe. Heating is probably the most risky solution, since most appliances and electronics react adversely to high temperatures.
Make’m, Bite the Dust! There are substances, called desiccants, that literally dry out any item or animal that contacts them directly. Roaches have a waxy, protective coating on the outside of their bodies which prevents moisture loss. Desiccants kill cockroaches by destroying this waxy layer and effectively turning these roaches into “Roach Mummys”. The three most effective desiccants for cockroach control are diatomaceous earth, silica aerogel and boric acid. Never dust the inside of your electronic equipment. Dusts can be spread behind, alongside or under suspect or infested devices.
Grab the Spray Can. Pesticide sprays can be effective when an infestation is minimal, but with roaches, the situation can fast become a nightmare. Never spray any liquid product into your electronic devices or appliances. It’s a surefire way to ruin what you are trying to protect and you may even start a fire. The same advice goes for spraying anything into an electrical outlet.
When all else fails, call a professional!
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