Best Cockroach Traps

  • Written By Dan Edwards on August 2, 2018
    Last Updated: November 25, 2020

Finding a roach in your home can be unnerving. When one sighting turns into more frequent encounters, you may have a serious problem on your hands. If you’re concerned that you have a cockroach infestation in your home, you should invest in some roach traps as soon as possible.

An infestation can feel daunting to deal with and it might take a variety of different traps to have the most effective result. There’s no need to panic, however. Remember that even though these creatures are pretty disgusting, they prefer to avoid you. Read on to find out more about the best roach traps to help you keep on top of these gross pests.

How Do Cockroach Traps Work?

All roach traps work toward the same outcome—killing cockroaches. With that said, not all traps operate in the same way. Some will trap and kill immediately, while others play the waiting game and work towards eradicating the nest.

Gel & Bait Traps

This form of trap requires laborious effort to begin with, but the extra work is worth it. Gel traps are formulated out of a deadly, yet irresistible (to roaches), set of ingredients. The gel is to be applied anywhere you may have seen a roach around the house, or in any small cracks or openings that roaches may be getting through.

The ability to apply this gel all over the house makes it really versatile and effective. It can even be used on boats, in cars, or anywhere else you fear may be infested with roaches.

Once the gel has been applied, the waiting game begins. Cockroaches will be attracted to certain ingredients in the gels and will take a few bites. Some gels kill quite quickly as soon as the roach has made contact. In other cases, they may even take some back to the nest to share with the rest of the colony.

roach trap

The key is getting the poisonous and deadly gel into the colony, so that as many cockroaches as possible are exposed to it. The more roaches that the gel reaches, the more it is likely to kill. If this gel makes it back to the colony, it’s very effective at wiping out larger numbers of cockroaches.

Contain & Kill Traps

If you cannot face the prospect of cleaning up a mass of cockroach carcasses, a contain and kill trap may be your best option. These traps lure roaches into a confined space that they cannot escape from. They soon die inside from lack of food.

The beauty of these traps is that not only do they kill roaches, but they also keep them tidied away and out of sight. The traps simply need to be positioned in an area that cockroaches are likely to frequent. Within the trap is a sweet, sticky, and attractive substance that is simply irresistible to roaches.

When a cockroach gets the scent of what’s inside, it will wriggle its way in to feed. However, once inside, it’s trapped for good. You will never have to look at it again!

These traps tend to function well for a few weeks or months. Once their time is up, simply throw the trap in the trash.

How to Choose the Right Trap

Depending on your roach situation, one trap may be more effective at treating the problem than another. Some types of trap are best for a full-blown infestation, whereas you may not need something as thorough for a small number of roaches.

If you’re looking to supplement your cockroach traps with some extra killing power, we’ve also reviewed some of the best roach killers on the market.

When to Choose Gel & Bait Traps

Gel and bait traps work to take out the cockroaches at the source. They can effectively poison and kill the whole colony, as well as kill them on-the-spot. Once it has spread to the nest, it will not be long before the game is over, as other roaches are affected.

The fact that these particular traps kill in two ways is what makes them so effective. Especially if you think you have a large roach infestation in your home.

Cockroaches In House

Using gel and bait traps is great if you’re also not entirely sure where the roaches are coming from. This is because you can easily apply it to various areas around the house, and in small amounts.

However, proceed with caution when using gel and bait traps if you have children or pets. This gel is not safe for consumption, so may not be the best choice if you think your kids or pets are likely to go near it, particularly if you have laid any traps on the floor. Still, you may be able to use it if you are certain that you have placed the traps out of their reach.

Additionally, it is worth noting that this approach is effective within a week. Therefore, it may be worth considering removing any children or pets from the house for this period of time. Especially if you have a large infestation and think this option will be the most successful at eradicating your roach problem.

Just remember to remove all traps and thoroughly clean the areas where they had been placed before the children and pets return.

When to Choose Contain & Kill Traps

If you’re not dealing with a huge roach issue, a contain and kill trap may be the best option. These roach traps can be positioned anywhere around the house and generally don’t contain harmful chemicals. These are the better option for smaller numbers, as they trap the roach inside, where it dies, as opposed to spreading poison to the source, like the gel and bait traps.

As contain and kill traps typically do not contain harmful chemicals, they are safer to use around children and animals. However, I would not recommend leaving your pets or children unattended with one of these traps, as they are likely to contain dead or dying cockroaches.

These traps are also a great alternative if you don’t want to deal with dead cockroaches all over your house. Unlike gel and bait, contain and kill traps are tidier and allow you to avoid the uncomfortable task of disposing of a number of dead cockroach bodies.

While these traps will work for a few months before needing to be replaced, they do have a downside. Once the cockroaches are inside the trap and have died, they will stay there until the trap is disposed of. Roaches can emit a bad odor, which remains even after they die. Therefore, it’s probably best to replace these traps quite often, especially if there are a lot of cockroaches trapped inside.

Best Roach Traps

As there are different types of traps on the market, I have chosen a variety of them to review. Included below are some gel and bait traps, as well as a great contain and kill trap.

Advion Cockroach Gel Bait

Formulated to be irresistible to roaches, Advion cockroach gel is deadly and effective. This product comes in tubes and is designed to be applied in small amounts to various areas of the house. For the best results, the gel should be placed anywhere that you think the roaches are living, or where you often see them.

The formulation is great as it sticks well to walls and can be easily applied inside small cracks and crevices. Once applied, cockroaches are drawn to the gel and feed on it, so be prepared to face lots of roaches if you have an infestation. Once the cockroaches have a taste, it doesn’t take long for the gel to work its magic and kill them.

Ideally, this gel, or traces of it, may also be transported back to the roach nest. This will also help to wipe out any future cockroach generations and keep the population at the lowest level possible.

There are some key health and safety measures to take into account with this particular product. Do not apply it on or near work surfaces where food or drinks are prepared, as it is toxic to humans. Also, use this product with extreme caution if you have children or pets. Do not apply it to anywhere that could be accessed by them.


  • Versatile and can be used in a variety of obscure locations.
  • Effective at drawing out and killing roaches.
  • Helps to wipe out more roaches at the source if it is transported back to the nest.
  • Effective on all different kinds of cockroaches.


  • Not safe for use around children and pets.
  • Area must be cleared of roach carcasses and disinfected.

Invict Gold Cockroach German Roach Control Gel

Another brilliant and effective gel bait trap is the Invict Gold German roach control. The formulation of this roach trap is designed to specifically target German cockroaches, so only go ahead with this product if you’re sure that your problem is with this species.

Just like many other gel-based cockroach traps, this gel can be applied in a number of different locations to help draw the roaches out. With that said though, it is important to also take steps to make your living space less attractive to them. Make sure all surfaces are clean and dry, food containers are sealed closed, and never leave food exposed.

As this is a chemical-based product, it should also be kept away from food or food preparation areas of the kitchen. Consider this point if you have small children or pets also. Do not apply this gel in places that could be within their reach.

Choose carefully the locations you want to draw out and attract the roaches to. This gel can last for up to three months in one location, so be sure it’s in a place that you can easily access and clean up.


  • Effective at drawing out and targeting German cockroaches.
  • Can be applied anywhere you think roaches may be.
  • Lasts up to three months before reapplication is needed.


  • Only targets German roaches, may not eliminate other species.
  • Dangerous when used where pets or small children could reach.
  • Regular removal of dead insects is necessary.

Black Flag Roach Motel Cockroach Trap

If you cannot face the prospect of clearing away a number of dead roaches, or your roach problem is not that big, this cockroach trap is a great option. The Black Flag roach motel is discreet, yet very effective at keeping your roach population under control.

Using a trap and kill device to take out your cockroaches means you will not have to face the horror of clearing up the dead bugs.

This device contains a sticky substance that is very attractive to cockroaches. Once they catch the scent of it, they find their way inside to have a taste. However, once they get in, there is no way back out.

As the cockroaches have no way out, they die when inside the roach motel. However, as this kind of trap begins to build a small collection of dead cockroaches, you will have to replace the trap often to avoid any bad smells. Cockroaches can emit an unpleasant odor, which will only get worse as the number of cockroaches inside the trap grows.

Using a trap and kill device like this is great for a few reasons. First, you will not have to clear up hordes of dead bugs every morning. Also, this device is safer for use around children and pets. With that said though, I would still advise using these traps with caution.

Do not leave pets or children unattended near a trap and kill cockroach trap. After all, it is a small box filled with dead and dying cockroaches. While there may not be any particularly harmful chemicals involved, you would not want your pets or children to come into direct contact with these bugs.


  • Pesticide-free, so it is safer to use around pets and children.
  • Tidy and discreet; you will not have to clear away dead roaches.
  • Effective at attracting and killing all different kinds of roaches, as well as other pests too.


  • Has to be replaced regularly to prevent foul smells from developing.
  • Odor of dead roaches can cause allergic reactions
  • Cannot be used in as many diverse locations as gel baits.

Advion Cockroach Bait Station

If you think you’re dealing with a serious cockroach infestation in your home, then this product is the best option for you. It’s formulated with an active ingredient called indoxacarb, which is designed to release and react slowly. This slow release reaction allows enough time for this deadly ingredient to be transported back to the main colony.

Once the poisonous indoxacarb has reached the cockroach colony, it can successfully deal with the problem at the source. Advion cockroach bait station works to wipe out large numbers of roaches within their nests. Killing not only fully grown roaches, but also babies and eggs.

This product comes with a number of small pods inside that contain the poison. These must be placed around the house, anywhere that you think cockroaches will go. You could place the bait stations near drains, behind sinks, or by trash cans, for example.

However, this product contains harmful pesticides, so be very careful about using it around small children and pets. Do not place these bait stations anywhere that a child or pet may be able to access them or play with them.


  • Successful at wiping out entire colonies and infestations of cockroaches.
  • Targets cockroaches of all sizes.


  • Not suitable for use around small children or pets.
  • Dead roaches need to be cleared away and the vicinity sanitized.

How to Use Roach Traps Effectively

When it comes to the success of these traps, it really is about how effectively you use them at home. There are a number of things you must do in order to ensure that the traps work to their full potential. If you do not take extra steps, then the traps will merely decrease the population, but will not have any permanent results.

Follow the Instructions

This first one is a bit of a no-brainer, but can easily be overlooked. Before you use any kind of roach trap, read the instructions very carefully. This will ensure that you’re using the product properly and effectively.

Following the instructions will also give you better insight into how often the product needs to be reapplied or replaced for the most effective result. Dealing with roaches needs close attention and care, and consistency is key. It may take a little extra effort, but it will be worth it in the end.

Reading the instructions is also for your own health and safety. A product that contains harmful pesticides, for example, may warn against use on kitchen counters. If you had not read and followed these instructions, your health could be in serious danger.

Change Your Lifestyle

You could drown your house in cockroach gel bait and still end up with a cockroach infestation if you are not taking other steps to eradicate the issue. It is of vital importance that you keep on top of the cleanliness and hygiene of your home. If you make the place unattractive to cockroaches, they will not want to hang around.

Make sure that your kitchen counters are always free of food remains. Never leave food leftovers out overnight, this is providing an open buffet for these pests. It may take a little extra time and effort, but again, this is necessary if you’re serious about getting rid of the roaches. Ensure all of your food is stored in sealed and airtight containers.

Cockroaches will feed on any tiny scrap they can find. While they may not be able to access the main contents of a bottle or jar, they will gladly feed on any residue they find on the outside.

Why not spend an afternoon emptying out all of your kitchen cupboards and thoroughly clean and dry and store all your foodstuffs? Once this is achieved, not only have you eliminated another cockroach attractant, but your cupboards are also better organized.

Don’t forget to empty your trash can daily, or this can be another gold mine for cockroaches. Regular disinfecting will also help to keep the bugs away. Ideally, leave it clean and empty at the end of each day, to deter the nocturnal feeders.

Sweep, vacuum, and mop your floors on a regular basis, to keep them clear of any crumbs or spilled food. A clean house is not going to be as attractive to roaches, so it really is vital to make certain lifestyle changes to keep on top of the problem.

Remember, cockroaches like damp conditions. Any areas where there is a lot of water flow, like the bathroom, should be kept as dry as possible.

As we discussed, certain roach traps work by drawing out roaches in order to kill them. However, if a roach is lured out of its home and has the option between real food and the gel bait, it will always go for the food first. Make sure you aren’t giving it this option.

If at First You Don’t Succeed, Try Something Different

Combating a roach infestation is not easy. You may find that some products really are not working for you. If that’s the case, do not give up hope, just try another method. Some cockroaches have now evolved and adapted to become immune and unaffected to certain pesticides and chemicals.

If you feel a product is having no effect, try something else, until you find something that works. Or better yet, try a mixture of different traps at the same time. This will really increase your chances of success and hopefully speed up the process. However, do not mix different chemicals together, under any circumstances.

Also, remember to check that you’re using the right kind of product. For example, a roach trap designed specifically for German roaches is not going to work if you have an American roach problem. This may sound obvious, but it is something you may easily overlook. Not all cockroaches are affected by the same chemicals.

Risks & Precautions

Any product that contains pesticides is not safe for humans. It is essential that you carefully read the instructions and warnings on any roach trap that you purchase. This is particularly important if you have pets or children in the home. Natural alternatives are available.

While not all roach traps contain harmful chemicals, even the non-toxic ones are still attracting cockroaches. These bugs will literally feed on anything and are likely to be carrying traces of harmful bacteria and even pathogens. Even when they are dead, they are still dirty and potentially unsafe.

With that in mind, you must keep assessing the situation. Clear up the carcasses quickly and then thoroughly clean the floor around the area they were found. However, do take care not to clear away any of the anti-roach gel that you may still be using. Unless, of course, it is for the benefit of your family’s safety.

If you begin to feel unwell or experience any strange side effects from using a roach trapping product, contact your doctor immediately. While you may not be making direct contact with these products, they still contain poison. Take precautions to ensure your own safety when using them, as well as the safety of anyone else you share your home with.

It is also essential to be extra vigilant when using roach trap products around children and pets. Never leave them unattended within reach of roach traps and try to opt for more chemical-free alternatives, like the Black Flag roach motel.

If you feel that you have exhausted all options and stronger chemicals are needed, consider staying with friends or family, while the toxic pesticide takes effect. This may seem like an extreme measure to take; however, it will ensure the safety of your children or pets.


Roaches are real pests and if you see them in your home, you must act fast. If you don’t deal with a small problem quickly and effectively, things can—and will—soon get worse. Luckily, the traps I’ve mentioned above are all really effective and should give you some great results.

Cockroaches are very versatile and resilient pests, and will feed on pretty much anything. Remain vigilant of the situation at all times, to avoid drowning in roaches. Roach traps will help, but you may need to make other lifestyle changes too, in order to eliminate these pests for good.