7 Best Roach Killer for Apartments 2021

Are you looking for the best roach killer? – maybe for American, Oriental, or German Roaches? Well, you can try both DIY roach control or use the below and effective ready-to-use roach killers.

Below I’ve reviewed the highly effective and safe roach killers that’ll kill roaches in the house and their roach nests.

Top 7 Best Roach Killer for Apartments in 2021 

1. Combat Max 1-Year Roach Killer Bait Station

Set the discrete Combat Roach Bait Stations in your house to act as a virtual shield. The ingredients are highly lethal to roaches and start killing roaches from day one for up to 12 months.

Combat Max 1-Year Roach Killer Bait Station Check Price on Amazon

Do you experience regular infestation by small cockroaches? Well, shun the many insecticide cans and opt for a more discrete, effective, and compact solution – this combat Max 12.

This roach killer solution will be great if your home has a regular infestation of small cockroaches. With this trap, you won’t have to keep many insecticides in the house.

Highlights: Ease of use, budget-friendly, and highly effective for a long time, and discreet usage. But what is this trap really?

It’s made up of black discs that a homeowner can place in concealed locations such as under the bed, behind your toilet, under the fridge, in drawers or cabinets. Every package comes with 18 bait stations that can last you even about a year controlling roaches in your house.

As noted in the bait station name, these roach killers will be active to kill cockroaches’ eggs for about 12 months. Therefore, exterminators consider this roach bait to be one of the longest-lasting roach killing solutions available in the market today.

This bait station’s key advantages are that it’s both durable and cheap, and thus consumers consider them as great value for their money. I noted that after getting the bait stations to various house locations, I experienced a sudden reduction in the roach population.

The roaches will eat the Fipronil and transport them back to their nests, which will not kill just themselves but other roaches in the colony. Since the roaches carry the insecticide to their nests, this bait station will help kill even the cockroaches you can’t see and can’t reach with spraying.

One of a few of the roaches will feed on the bait station and spread the love to their counterparts who were left at ‘home’ in areas like under huge appliances or sinks.

Therefore, to kill a large roach population in your apartment, this Combat Max 12-Month is our top recommendation. But, Indoxacarb and Imidacloprid are great ingredients as they’ll trigger a secondary killing.

2. Best Food-Grade Lure Roach Killer

Harris Boric Acid contains 99% boric acid and 1% lure. It has a straw attached to the top, which makes it easy to use. For regular-sized kitchens, this powder can last for about a year.

Best Food-Grade Lure Roach Killer Check Price on Amazon

Therefore, you can pour the acid in the places that would be in general challenging to reach, such as cracks and crevices. The manufacturer notes that this formula will kill the roaches within 72 hours after the first contact – which is fast action time.

Despite having a higher price tag than other roach killers, this powder roach killer has a lure that will help you get rid of the roaches faster. Check the full review for Harris Boric Acid Roach Powder.

The roaches carry the killer powder on their bodies to the nest and help eliminate the whole roach population.

Pro Tip: But, good waste disposal and food storage away from roach nests will be your best defense against roaches.

Check this comprehensive review of the Bengal roach spray – Bengal products work.

3. Ortho 0196410 Defense Roach Killer – Best Perimeter Spray

In addition to killing roaches in the apartment, Ortho Home Defense will also help you eliminate those bugs off your perimeter walls. Luckily, this roach killer is also longer-lasting and fast-acting, which means that it kills on contact.

Ortho 0196410 Defense Roach Killer - Best Perimeter Spray Check Price on Amazon

Therefore, if you need a roach solution that you can use for defense attacks, the Ortho Home Defense will great for going around your house or apartment. But, for a massive roach infestation, you can start with applying the formula inside and under refrigerators, sinks, cabinets, or baseboards.

Create a lethal roach barrier with this formula in areas such as garages, crawlspace, door-frames, and windows. However, this roach formula is poisonous, and thus, you must avoid spraying in areas frequented by pets or kids.

But use this roach formula in floor areas that won’t be covered by carpets. It has the non-staining capability; it’s rain-resistant and has no odor in addition to being quick to kill roaches and other insects such as spiders.

Luckily, the barrier you’ve created will be active for a couple of months (about 12 months), eliminating even other insects such as spiders. 

4. Black Flag Roach Motel 61009 Best Roach Trap

Roach Motel 61009 roach trap will be great for moderate roach infestations – killing both cockroaches and various crawling insects – among the best cockroach killer.

Black Flag Roach Motel 61009 Roach Trap - Best Trap Check Price on Amazon

This trap (unlike the Raid Ant & Roach spray above) can kill even the roaches that you’ve not even seen. Roaches will check in and won’t ever get the chance to check out.

Using a strong adhesive (syrupy bait), the Roach Motel 61009 trap will get hold of the roaches on contact – but has some slight odor. Therefore, it’ll be a great alternative to using pesticides or poisons in roach killers. It’ll be functional for roughly 2-4 months.

The adhesive has some attractants for the cockroaches. However, avoid keeping the trap in areas with dirt and dust as it might cover the syrupy bait, which will significantly reduce its effectiveness. Some roach exterminators noted that this roach trap is highly effective for all roach types and sizes.

But, you might still require to employ contact roach killers such as those with Raid Ant & Roach Spray.

I noted that this Roach Motel 61009 roach bait would work for kitchen areas (like cabinets or cupboards) and food areas because it has no poisons. However, keep pets and children away from this bait as they might be unable to remove themselves from the sticky setup.

This Black Flag Roach Motel 61009 will clean a roach infestation and won’t leave carcasses spread all over the house like the roach sprays.

As noted above, the roach trap employs a sticky and sweetly smelling formula that will attract the roaches to the created cardboard box.

5. Rockwell Invicta Gold Cockroach GEL Bait

Invicta Gold Gel Bait, with 2.15% Imidacloprid as its active ingredient, is specially designed for roaches – the best roach killer indoors. Imidacloprid will cause a secondary kill effect on the stubborn roaches in your apartment.

Best Roach Killer for Apartments Check Price on Amazon

Equally, just like with the Advion gel, you’ll require to plunge the roach bait (about a quarter inch in diameter) on crevices on the skirting boards, floors, and walls.

Imidacloprid will disrupt the roaches’ nervous system and equally block its neuronal pathways, leaving fatal effects on bugs. This “best roach killer” by Bayer CropScience leaves no lousy smell behind.

I recommend Invicta Roach gel bait, too, for application in indoor and outdoor spaces. However, you’ll have to reapply the gel every three months and only apply it to areas away from kids and pets.


  • Safe for food-handling areas in addition to indoor and outdoor spaces.
  • Quick knockdown effect (24 hours)
  • Has eleven roach attractants


  • Only for German Roaches

6. Raid Ant and Roach Killer Spray, Lemon

To expel cockroaches and avoid re-infestation, I recommend this Raid Ant & pet-safe roach killer. This easy-to-use model kills roaches on contact and is effective for ants too. You’ll love the lemon scent that will attract the roaches but also leave the room fresh.

Raid Ant and Roach Killer Spray, Lemon Check Price on Amazon

Its residue is effective for about four weeks, killing all those hiding bugs, including bed bugs (beetles, spiders, water bugs, etc.) during summer and beyond. Besides, this spray will prevent roach infestation or re-infestation.

This spray is useful for areas that you know have roaches – particularly places they pass through. Check the comprehensive review for Raid and Roach killer. You’ll need to spray the Raid Ant & Roach Killer on visible crevices and crack where the roaches could be hiding.

Luckily, once you spray effectively around the critical areas around your apartment, you’ll get more extended protection against disturbing roaches. This Raid Ant & Roach Killer has a great lemon scent that you’ll love.

However, some homeowners hate that you sometimes have to chase the roaches to spray them since the insecticide kills on contact. It has excellent reviews, with some clients loving the lemon smell and fast action. Also, check the best drain cleaners.

7. Best Broad-Range Roach Killer

DuPont Advion gel contains (1) a bait to attract roaches and (2) indoxacarb, causing a secondary kill effect on roaches like American and German cockroaches. It contains carboxylate, which is super lethal to roaches but safe for pets.

Best Broad-Range Roach Killer Check Price on Amazon

So, plunge the gel from syringes onto basements, cabinets, baseboards, and kitchen countertops. However, take care if you’re using the roach gel on planes and boats, including areas such as trashcans or baseboards.

Advion’s active ingredients will change to new molecules inside the roaches’ body and thus won’t harm other useful insects like ladybugs. But Advion gel is great for outdoor and indoor applications, including holes or cracks.

The roach bait has a long residue effect. Also, the syringe allows you to drop the roach bait into small crevices and cracks. Luckily, the secondary kill effect allows the roach bait to kill both the visible roaches and those in hiding.


  • Long action range – 4 bait spots can attract roaches within 10 feet
  • Secondary kill effect (1 poisoned roach can infect over 35 others)
  • Safe for food handling areas and hospitals
  • Ease to apply compared to roach sprays


  • Can dry up when applied surfaces with constant airflow
  • Labor intensive

Related: What do Roaches Smell like?

How to Use the Best Roach Killer For Indoors 

Pet Safe Roach Killer

What’s the best way to will roaches? Traps, Baits, Sprays, and Growth Regulators (IGR). (1) Contact roach killers and Roach Repellents, (2) Roach killers with secondary kill effect and Gel baits (contain both an attractant and roach poison), and (3) diatomaceous earth powder (breaks the roaches’ exoskeleton and fatally removes its body fluid).

Side note: To control German roaches effectively, cut the bug’s access to water by cleaning clogged drains or repairing leaking plumbing work. Further, for roach prevention, you can use secure food storage and thoroughly clean your spaces daily.

1. Step 1: Use Glue Strips and Flashlight

(i) Flashlight – First, it’ll help do a roach examination at your house. For this, pick some flashlights to check the hidden places for roaches. Such areas include bathroom closets and cabinets, closet door corners, cracks in shelves and cabinets, under the kitchen sink, and behind your refrigerator.

(ii) Roach glue strips – Next, you can apply roach glue strips to determine if you have a massive roach infestation in your home. Considering the observation, you made using the flashlight, you’ll need to put the roach glue strips on the highly strategic places. So, maintain the strips in those areas while monitoring for 4-7 days.

Therefore, the strips that’ll catch more roaches will signify the highly infested areas in your house and thus must get more aggressive roach treatment.

2. Step 2: Seal any Crevices and Cracks with Caulk

The roach killers, such as traps, will help exterminate the bugs. However, these products won’t significantly prevent roaches that are outdoors from getting into your house.

Installing caulk on any openings that roaches might use will help limit roach re-infestation through areas like entry holes, tiny cracks and crevices, and gaps in your tiles and walls.

Further, you can install weather stripping on your operable trunks, windows, and doors.

3. Step 3: Set Up Roach Baits and Roach Traps.

a. Roach Baits

Roach bait is an indoor roach killer or poison that exploits cockroaches’ emetophobic, coprophagic, and cannibalistic trends. Gel bait stations will come in tubes that you can squeeze into crevices and cracks and under baseboards.

The roaches that’ll be poisoned go back to their roach nest, vomit, or even die. Therefore, the roaches in the nest will cannibalize (eat the dead roach) or eat their vomit, and hence this will pass the active bait poison to them.

There are different types of roach bait for various roach species you can use for indoor and outdoor spaces. But roach baits may make many roaches die in several areas of your house – and thus, you’ll need to vacuum thoroughly in 3-7 days.

Also, Granular baits are mainly used in outdoor spaces such as mulched areas where roaches hide and breed in the house. But they can also be used in wall voids and attic. To control the roach colony, the baits should contain Hydramethylnon 2% and Fipronil 0.05%.

Avoid using baits in combination with other insecticides. The insecticide can spoil the bait and thus would neutralize the domino impact/ secondary kill effect. Also, the roach would die before scattering the bait poison to the nests.

b. Roach Traps

Roach tarps of bait stations provide a no-mess method to control the roaches in your apartment. The baits attract the roaches with an enticing chemical smell, and thus they eat the bait and die.

Further, roach traps employ both a trap and a containment technique to control the roaches. The roach trap will also injure and contain the roach if it tries to escape if the poison bait does not kill it.

Bait stations are designed to kill the roach slowly. After consuming the bait, the roach carries the poison back to their nest and disperse it to other insects.

Equally, use the same principle while baiting insects. The foraging worker ants need to bait to carry the poisonous bait back to the ant nest.

4. Step 3: Sprinkle Boric Acid and Use Roach Sprays.

a. Boric Acid Powder

Boric Acid is created from boron plus water, making it extremely toxic to roaches but is safe for pets and humans. Normally boric acid occurs in toothpaste and washing detergent – but it’s in powder form for roach control.

Avoid placing the boric acid powder near places with air currents, and this would blow it away from roaches or onto places with pets and kids. Boric acid is naturally found in the ground, and they act through contact and ingestion. Borax will stick to the bug’s body, or they’ll eat it and damage its nervous system, causing a fatality.

Some of us sometimes need a product that’ll work with no complications, such as becoming toxic to kids and pets. If you’re anything like me, you’d thus go for some of the powdered roach killers such as Boric acid/ borax powder.

However, the interesting bit is that the roaches will carry the boric acid back to their nest, poison the other insects, and help wipe the whole roach population.

b. Roach Sprays

Most of the users love roach spray apart from some that have pungent smells. The sprays have D-phenothrin and prallethrin as the active ingredients. The roach sprays can be used on cracks, crevices, and furniture to effectively reach the roach nests.

The pyrethrum ingredient enters the roaches’ cuticle to bind the nerves’ sodium channels and thus stopping body activities such as heartbeat and breathing in the apartment. Despite being a very harmful nerve agent to roaches, the pyrethrum is nontoxic to human beings and other mammals.

c. Roach Killer Bombs

Roach bombs or foggers are effective in treating a large cockroach infestation. However, you’ll need to learn when to use the best roach bomb for the house as it can be less efficient in roaches hidden in voids. Place the roach bomb in the middle of the room and set it off to allow the insecticide to move up and settle down, killing roaches on contact.

5. Insect growth regulators (IGRs)

IGRs are categorized as insecticides that do not kill the roach instantly but adversely affect its ability to grow and mature naturally. IGRs block the cockroaches’ ability to reproduce or grow into an adult. The IGRs will ensure that the roaches in your house do not develop another generation in their population as it will decrease their capacity to grow or reproduce.

Some IGRs mimic the natural growth hormones and are thus named juvenoid IGRs. They affect the length in which the roach remains in the larval or nymphal stage and the time when it turns into an adult. When you expose the cockroach nymphs to the juvenoid IGRs, they develop infertile adults or will not molt into adults.

Also, the chemicals can affect the roaches’ adult life by blocking the creation of viable roach eggs. As a birth control method, the IGR will help prevent the development of roach babies or tiny roaches.

How To Choose your Cockroach Killers

Tip: You should choose the cockroach killer depending on where the roaches in your house are hiding. However, you might require more than just one kind of roach killer for a large apartment or a smaller house.

While you might enjoy catching some roaches roaming around the house, it is no secret that there is a whole colony hiding at some location in your residence. However, spray insecticides will kill the roaches only on contact. Therefore, you should target the roaches in the areas they breed and live, making Bait Strips, Gels, and Combat baits highly effective in roach elimination.

Cockroaches enjoy living in water and dark conditions that have water and food. Also, bathrooms and kitchens are excellent nesting areas for roaches. After creating a nest and accessing enough food and water, the roach population will increase rapidly.

Therefore, you will only see the roaches when they are looking for food, water, or when they are migrating to a new nest when their population has grown too large, or they are escaping from insecticides.

Roaches taste the food and other substances using their feet. German roaches love light Karo Syrup, brown sugar, protein carbohydrates, and sucrose. However, when you mix sodium borate or boric acid, food-grade Diatomaceous Earth baits; ensure to keep them out of reach of children and pets.

The active ingredients in your Roach Killers?

1. Fipronil and Hydramethylnon.

a. Fipronil

Some pesticides are highly toxic (and result in health complications) if eaten by pets or kids. This is because the kid’s kidneys, liver, nervous system, and brain are still underdeveloped and won’t easily handle the harsh chemicals.

For example, the Fipronil ingredient in roach-killing pesticides is highly toxic – they damage the insect’s central nervous system. If human beings and pets eat it, they’ll experience seizures, dizziness, headaches, and sweating.

b. Hydramethylnon

Practically, hydramethylnon works like a great stomach poison for roaches that hinder the bugs’ energy generation. This ingredient is common in Combat cockroach Baits. The main technique is to roach killers with this ingredient to work effectively to improve your apartment’s sanitation.

Thus, you’d need to clean any water pools and food debris that would be lying around your house. Therefore, also, to increase the chances of the bugs feeding on the hydramethylnon laced bait, your house will also attract fewer new roaches.

2. Indoxacarb and Zeta-Cypermethrin/ Bifenthrin

a. Indoxacarb

Indoxacarb is described as “low-toxicity” (doesn’t bring mutagenic or carcinogenic issues) and will control cockroaches and ants. This ingredient kills roaches through contact or when the bugs eat food or plants laced with the Indoxacarb.

A 2008 research reported that one insecticide treatment with indoxacarb kills three roach generations. Its mode of action is through preventing regular movement go sodium ions through the roaches’ nerve cells.

This causes paralysis and poor nerve function, and finally, death. Advion Roach Bait Gel is an example of a roach killer that contains the Indoxacarb ingredient.

b. Zeta-Cypermethrin and Bifenthrin

The Zeta-Cypermethrin and Bifenthrin ingredients that’ll eliminate crawling bugs, including cockroaches. For example, Bifenthrin damages the roaches’ nervous system, which results in paralysis and, eventually, fatality. Being people and pets safe, these ingredients is appropriate for home use in addition to their features of being odor-free and non-staining.

3. Bifenthrin and Cypermethrin and Imiprothrin

a. Bifenthrin

Bifenthrin is derived from the pyrethrum, and its mainly used against roaches and red fire ant. Like the hydramethylnon above, this Bifenthrin damages the bug’s nervous system.

The Bifenthrin is contained in Ortho Home Defense Max that we’ve reviewed earlier in this post on the products.

b. Cypermethrin and Imiprothrin

Cypermethrin and Imiprothrin ingredients are readily used in Raid insecticides that target roaches. I noted that these ingredients allow the spray to leave a great smell in your apartment – and thus won’t have a bad odor.

4. Imidacloprid and MetaActiveTM

a. Imidacloprid

Imidacloprid is an active ingredient in roach killers such as Invicta Gold Gel (about 2.15%), and it has features that make it almost similar to nicotine. Imidacloprid works through ingestion and contact.

Nicotine, found in tobacco that hinders stimuli transmission for the bugs’ nervous system. This ingredient is mainly used to target German cockroaches.

Imidacloprid will block the nicotinic (the neuronal pathway) that mainly causes acetylcholine accumulation, paralysis, and eventually, the roach dies.

b. MetaActiveTM

MetaActiveTM is a potent insecticide ingredient that’s great for many roaches, such as Asian, Australian, and German roaches. Its mainly used in the home, commercial, and industry roach control, mostly where the bugs have grown resistant to the available bug baits.

Therefore, it is critical to target the right places using the correct products while trying to control roaches in the house. Combat is created from carbohydrate-rich attractants, which highly attract roaches.

The roaches that roam in your house searching for food and water will eat Combat and spread it to the rest of the nests’ population. The roaches spread the poising through feces, sputum, and carcass.


Place the roach baits in areas that roaches frequent, mix peanut butter and boric acid to make a trap cake for roaches, pour diatomaceous earth in areas where roaches will be moving, remove all water sources or clogs in the apartment.

Combat Gel will help you control roaches in areas that are difficult to reach in the house. The gel’s characteristic feature will fit into crevices and cracks, which the roaches use as entry and nests.

Further, you may use the gel to fight roaches on pipes that act as an entry into your house. Bait strips will be useful to place under shelves and the garbage lids since they have an adhesive area to allow easy concealment from pets and kids.


  1. NCBI – Evaluation of Some Essential Plant Oils against the Brown-Banded Cockroach
  2. Cockroach Manual.indd
  3. Control of American Cockroach (Periplaneta americana) – NCBI
  5. NCBI – Transfer of ingested insecticides among cockroaches