Cockroaches are crawlers and as long as there is warmth and food, they will flock to that area. Going by these requirements, the kitchen makes the best spot for roach infestation but the bathroom seems to be just as popular.
Roaches in the bathroom, as disgusting as they are, are unfortunately quite a common sight in many households. But it is quite unsanitary as cockroaches literally crawl through filth for survival and then if a bunch of them also attack your bathroom every night, the whole place becomes a breeding ground for germs and bacteria that cannot be seen with the naked eye.
But the thing is you won’t see cockroaches in the bathroom at all times and may spot one or two creeping away from one corner to another as you use the bathroom. The majority of the infestation occurs during nighttime, as the place is left without being used for a long time and also happens to be dark and damp.
But where do these roaches come from and why? Let us find out.
Why Are There Roaches In My Bathroom?
The first thing that you need to know about cockroaches is that they can survive in almost any condition. Even if you flush one of them down the drain, it will come back using the same path as long as it can cling to the solid side of the drain and save itself from the water.
Moreover, the bathroom offers roaches a combination of factors that just makes it the perfect spot for their habitation.
That the bathroom will have plenty of moisture is not new information at all. The bathroom is supposed to be damp for as long as you are using it. But that’s just it, it should not be damp all the time because roaches love damp places.
More important than a damp place, cockroaches also need water to survive and they do not begrudge drinking your residue bathwater from the tub. They will die if they do not drink water for a week or so.
This is probably the reason behind the infestation of bathroom cockroaches as they have marked your bathroom as a spot where they can come to and quench their thirst. This is why the bathroom is best kept dry when not being used and water should not be left accumulated anywhere without a cover.
During winter seasons and in generally cold counties, the pipes and drains become very cold for the cockroaches to keep hiding in them. That is why they move toward the source of warmth which is, the mouth of these pipes and drains.
The temperature inside the bathroom is much warmer as compared to the outside and this is why the roaches enter the bathroom through the pipes and drains during nighttime and hide in the cracks and crevices where it can remain warm.
On top of this, we all love a hot shower after a tiring day at work and the steam from the hot shower hangs inside the bathroom even after you are done showering. This creates a perfect condition for the cockroaches to thrive as they get both warmth and water.
Favorable Hiding Spots
Cockroaches are not exactly what one would call brave insects who like to stay out in the open without fearing for their life. This is because people try to kill cockroaches whenever one is spotted. This is almost like second nature to us and even cats and dogs who will chase after a cockroach to kill it.
Thus years of evolution have made cockroaches into creatures who survive by hiding. The bathroom has plenty of spots where it can hide. This could be the pipes and drains, behind the bathtub, under the garbage bin, on the wall behind the cabinet, and cracks or crevices in the wall.
They only come out to feed and drink when their senses tell them that there is no imminent danger to their life. So if you see a whole lot of roaches in the bathroom at night on turning the light off, it means that they were not expecting your arrival and came out of their hiding spots to look for food.
The bathroom is not the first place which we think of when we want food. It is not a place that can have food but that is true only by human standards. Cockroaches can survive feeding on whatever, even waste and filth.
The bathroom just happens to be a great spot for them to feed. As disgusting as it may sound, feces are a rich source of nutrients for cockroaches and if your pet animal or baby is leaving behind their feces and you have not yet cleaned it away, cockroaches will feed on it.
There are other things such as soap and even waste toilet paper that can be consumed by cockroaches as food. Some soaps contain animal fat and if you are leaving them out in the open, then chances are that the resident cockroach in the bathroom has already taken a bite out of it.
Where Do Roaches Come From In The Bathroom?
Contrary to what some might believe, cockroaches do not enter the bathroom through the other parts of the house. There are plenty of places inside the bathroom where cockroaches may enter from.
Sewer Lines and Cracked PIpes
We already know cockroaches thrive in damp, dark, and dirty places. What better than a sewer line that matches all these conditions perfectly? But since this place cannot supply them with warmth, they crawl through the pipelines and enter the bathroom through the drains.
If one or two cockroaches crawl through the drain, it can be easily dealt with. The problem starts when they lay eggs and like any living being cockroaches too want to find a safe spot before the eggs are laid. So if you see a cockroach, you must deal with it immediately.
It will only take a cracked pipeline for the cockroach infestation to spread to the other ends of the building pipe systems.
If you are living in an apartment or condo where even if you are keeping your bathroom clean and dry, cockroaches may still enter because of a cracked pipe between the channels of your bathroom and your neighbor’s, where the problem initially began.
Cracks in the wall
With time the construction of any building is bound to disintegrate and the tell-tale signs are cracks and fissures on the exterior walls of the building. It begins with those and the cracks expand under continuous exposure to nature until the whole thing falls apart.
Thus, buildings need maintenance especially if they are old. Cockroaches, however, do not need to wait until the whole structure comes down and can just slip through when a tiny crack forms. Once it gains entry into the crack, it can crawl through until it finds another cracked end and in this way, it can enter your home.
Even if it does not get to enter the bathroom, it can easily do so by passing through the rooms from under the doors.
Cockroaches can crawl through cracks as tiny as 3mm and can cling to the sides of the wall until they find a source of water and warmth and a cracked wall is absolutely perfect for them to go in and come out of as they please.
The cockroaches that you keep seeing in the bathroom may be coming from the small gap between the window and the window frame.
It is quite common to leave your bathroom windows open after taking a bath to let the steam and odor escape and cockroaches can easily come in through the window.
This is a rare situation because roaches cannot usually crawl out of toilets as toilets are equipped with water traps, which form an airtight seal at the base of the toilet to stop the bad fumes from entering the bathroom. If a cockroach does try to enter the bathroom using the drain and then tries to access the toilet, it has to swim a lot and is unlikely to succeed.
If you do see a cockroach inside your toilet, there can be three chances. It may have entered from the outside and just happened to be on the toilet when you spotted it, or the toilet may be blocked or it may not have a water trap.
A blocked toilet will allow the cockroach to get around the water trap and that is the most likely situation if you see cockroaches inside the toilet.
However, a cockroach cannot stay submerged for long and if it does not succeed in swimming to the surface then it will drown and die. Therefore, nine out of ten times the cockroaches that appear in the toilet are dead ones and if you see one then you should check whether the toilet is blocked or not.
Although you do not have to panic when you see a cockroach inside your bathroom, you must not let the problem fester.
Try to identify the spot it is coming from and take steps to eliminate the problem immediately. A bathroom is a place of hygiene and the presence of cockroaches can lead to the breeding of germs and bacteria leading to skin infections and even gastrointestinal problems.
So, make sure that the steps you are taking in removing the cockroaches are permanent and will ensure that such a problem will not arise again.