The last thing you want during the cold winter months is a roach infestation. Roaches are troublesome all year, but especially during the winter months. Here we’ll explain why they’re a problem during the winter, and what you can do to prevent them from getting into your home.

What Do Cockroaches Do in the Winter?

Cockroaches are cold-blooded, which means that their body temperature changes along with the outdoor temperature. They won’t survive in extreme climates so they’re constantly on the lookout for warmth during winter. Unfortunately, roaches happen to thrive at the same temperatures we do, which is what makes them a common household pest during the colder months.

If they don’t find warmth right away, their body has a defense mechanism called diapause. Diapause is similar to hibernation in that metabolic rate slows and growth stops. They’re just trying to survive. Our homes provide the perfect place for roaches to set up camp in the winter because they provide warm shelter, food (crumbs), and water (basically any moisture).


The best way to deal with a roach problem is to avoid it all together. To keep cockroaches out of your house in winter (and all year-round), take a few simple preventive measures.

  • Seal all cracks, crevices and other entry points with caulk, foam, or weather stripping.
  • Store pantry items in air-tight containers
  • Store pet food in air-tight containers
  • Vacuum crumbs as soon as possible
  • Clean liquid spills immediately
  • Empty your garbage cans and wastebaskets often, daily if possible
  • Avoid leaving pet food out overnight, this is when roaches are most active
  • Reduce excess humidity by using your bathroom vents and checking for leaky pipes
  • Avoid leaving dirty dishes in the sink overnight, doing so is like leaving out a buffet and expecting pests not to indulge

The adage is true, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. Keeping up with these small routine tasks will save you and your home from an infestation and give you peace of mind.

Looking for other ways to winterize your home? Our Winterize Your Home Guide can help get you started.