Will Steam Cleaning Kill Roaches?

Cockroaches, or roaches as most people call them, are dark-brown scavenging insects that feed on garbage. They’re ubiquitous household invaders across several regions of the world.

If you have a roach infestation, the consequences range from unsightly walls and allergic reactions to food poisoning and various illnesses.

If you’ve been pondering over what kills roaches and their eggs instantly, one of the possible ‘magic bullets’ that must have crossed your mind is a steam cleaner. The broad-spectrum, environmentally friendly pest control machine uses heat to kill many microorganisms, deodorize surfaces, and loosen dirt instantly.

Will Steam Cleaning Kill Roaches? 1

So, will steam cleaning kill roaches, too?

Will Steam Cleaning Kill Roaches?

Yes, steam cleaning kills all types of cockroaches and their eggs using hot steam at or above 130°F. We describe how to steam clean your home effectively to get rid of cockroaches.

How to Know If You Have a Cockroach Infestation

Before you start working on removing cockroaches from your carpet, walls, cracks, doors, and other areas, you must be sure that they’re indeed present. Here are ways to determine their presence in your home:


Cockroaches usually leave black droppings that are around 1mm large. The droppings resemble black pepper specks; the more the droppings, the larger the infestation.

Unusual Odor:

A large infestation of roaches is usually accompanied by a musty smell. Coupled with one or more signs on this list, you can immediately know that you have an infestation.

Egg Capsules:

Cockroaches lay eggs inside egg capsules that contain up to 30 nymphs. If you notice such capsules, you’re likely dealing with an infestation.

Sightings of The Insects:

You may also see roaches walking on walls, doors, ceilings, and other places. When the sightings are made in the day, there are likely more roaches around.

Shed Skin:

Roaches shed their skin between five and eight times in their lifetime. They often do so where they live. So if you suspect their presence somewhere, look for shed skins around that area.

Disadvantages of Roaches Inside Your Home

They’re a Source of Diseases:

Cockroaches do nothing to clean themselves despite spending a significant amount of time in sewages and other dirty areas. Therefore, their bodies are home to several germs and bacteria.

You’ll find them walking around food preparation areas, which means they can easily contaminate food and cause various types of diseases.

They Lead To Respiratory Issues:

Cockroach droppings cause allergic reactions. Long-term exposure to them may cause serious respiratory illnesses like asthma. Likewise, their shredding skin is dangerous to the respiratory system as it causes allergic reactions in children.

They Can Cause Physical Damage:

Roaches also feed on adhesives, paper, wallpaper, organic fabrics, and the likes. While this isn’t instantly damaging, it may be a problem in the long run when the insects increase in number. You may start to notice damages on letters, certificates, books, and other stationery.

Their Presence is Embarrassing:

No one would love to see roaches moving around their walls during the day because it’s embarrassing. It gives a show of poor house maintenance. Therefore, you need to get rid of them as soon as possible.

How To Get Rid of Roaches Overnight Using a Steam Cleaner

While these insects are known for their survivability, including adapting to modern pesticides, they aren’t resistant to heat. Hot conditions at or above 130°F kill them. And the higher the temperature, the less time it takes roaches to die.

Here is how to steam clean your house effectively to get rid of roaches:

Use The Right Steam Cleaner:

To begin with, it’s important to choose the right machine with the ability and features required to kill roaches. We recommend one with a capacity of at least a gallon. This is a commercial type. So if you can’t afford one, we advise you to rent one. We also advise you to use a triangular nozzle.

Prepare The Machine:

Next, attach the nozzle, fill the machine’s water tank with pure water, and plug it in. Turn on the switch and leave the water to heat up to around 180°F. Pull the trigger until you see steam jetting out of the nozzle.

Apply Steam on Cracks And Crevices:

Apply the steam to cracks and crevices where you think roaches live and lay their eggs. Also, apply it to other hidden areas and directly on visible roaches. Avoid applying it on delicate devices that may get damaged under high temperatures.

Do It Slowly But Thoroughly:

Roaches have a hard exoskeleton that protects them in case of harsh conditions. However, the exoskeleton will be compromised under high heat, especially when the contact time is increased.

Therefore, we recommend that you steam clean slowly to increase the contact time but thoroughly to ensure that all areas are covered.

How Do I Get Rid Of Cockroaches By Other Means?

You can use the following expert-endorsed products to kill cockroaches overnight:

  1. Essential oils like eucalyptus and lavender oils (to repel them)
  2. Boric acid (to attract and kill them)
  3. Sticky traps (attract and trap them)
  4. Insecticides with a base dichotomous earth (kill roaches without posing danger to humans)

Note: Do not squish any cockroaches as you may release their eggs and encourage multiplication.

Preventing Roaches From Invading Your House After Killing Them

You can put some precautions in place to ensure that cockroaches do not come back to your house after you’ve gotten rid of them. A few hacks to get going include sealing any entries and breeding areas that could encourage their stay.

Also, remember to get rid of any food sources and clean hidden areas like below the sinks regularly. Varnish wooden furniture, too.


So, will steam cleaning kill roaches? The answer is yes, and we’ve also explained how it works and how to do it correctly. So, take up your steam cleaner and start exterminating these stubborn insects from your home today.

Leave a Comment