Can Cockroaches Live in Carpets?

cockroach walking on a carpetOut of all the hard-to-reach places, cockroaches can surprise you from under the carpet. These nasty creatures build nests in, under, or around the carpet since these areas are damp, dark, and out-of-sight.

Not only that, but carpets also contain lots of food crumbs, hair, skin flakes, and other organic waste that roaches love to munch on. If your living room has a carpet, it’s more likely to provide several entryways for roaches to come and nest from every corner of the home.

However, most cockroaches don’t nest underneath the carpet. Instead, they pick a point somewhere nearby and assume the carpet is a point for scavenging. In fact, they could even lay eggs there and let their babies benefit from the warmth, food, and shelter.

So is there any way to end this nightmare? This post will answer all your questions about cockroaches living in the carpet. So let’s get started.

Can Roaches Live Under the Carpet?

Cockroach-Egg under a carpetYes, cockroaches can live under the carpet with a continuous supply of food, water, and shelter. That’s mainly the case when the carpet is:

  • Placed in a less crowded area
  • Having lots of food crumbs or organic waste
  • Damp
  • Dark

No matter how clean you keep them, carpets usually contain food droppings, skin flakes, nails, hairs, and drink spills. Since cockroaches can literally eat anything organic, the carpet is the best place for these bugs to survive.

Also, many people don’t clean the underneath areas of the carpets for weeks. This also makes these places the best roach nesting sites. Even if the roach doesn’t nest in or under the carpet, they may consider it a scavenging point.

Research Found Cockroaches and Dust Mites as Primary Sources of Indoor Allergens

Having cockroaches in your carpets isn’t just a nuisance but a health threat. A group of researchers found that dust mites and cockroaches are the biggest sources of allergens in many households. These tiny pests can worsen allergies in humans and even cause breathing issues, such as asthma.

Both dust mites and cockroaches can live in multiple places in your home, including carpets, bedding, mattresses, curtains, and upholstered furniture. They are also super-adaptable to many conditions.

The researchers also found a connection between cockroaches and increased asthma symptoms.

If you suspect cockroach or dust mite infestation in your home, it’s better to get your allergy checked by a doctor as soon as possible. Many treatments, such as antihistamines, inhaled steroids, and immunotherapy (tablets or allergy shots), help people cope with cockroach and dust mites-induced asthma.

Do Cockroaches Reproduce in or Under Carpet?

Cockroaches instantly reproduce in favorable conditions. When they nest in or under the carpet and become comfortable, they begin laying eggs and keep them out of sight of humans.

The most common places for roaches to lay eggs are under a worn carpet or its tight, narrow edges that meet the wall.

If you’ve placed the carpet near or underneath furniture, the roaches will have more space to hide their eggs or ootheca. When the eggs hatch, the baby cockroaches seek warmth from the soft carpet and food from the crumbs and organic waste.

Do Cockroaches Prefer Living in Carpets?

Cockroaches like to live in neglected and dirty rugs and carpets as they contain many food sources. However, these bugs rarely nest in or under carpets since these spaces don’t have enough room to form a colony or let roaches track outside activity.

The location of the carpet plays a major role in making it attractive to the roaches. For instance, if you have placed large appliances or cardboard boxes on the carpet, roaches would love to live in such places. Similarly, if the wall is close to the carpet and has many gaps, cockroaches would prefer living in the carpet.

A study published in the Journal of Experimental Biology reported that the bug’s antennae are very powerful. They help them quickly estimate distances and find predators living near or far away. This way, they stay close to their hiding spots to be safe.

You can conceal the edges of your carpeting to make it harder for roaches to spot an access point. Also, regularly vacuum the carpet to remove all the food crumbs and organic waste. While at it, don’t forget to keep the carpet dry and clean to make it less appealing for these bugs.

Can Cockroaches Damage the Carpet?

Cockroaches don’t damage or eat through the carpet. But when they have nothing else to feed on, they may eat the carpet and many other types of fabric, primarily made of organic materials. So it’s all about their survival!

Roaches love to eat organic matter. So whether it’s the cardboard box or organic waste in the carpet, these bugs won’t shy away from damaging your carpet when munching on their favorite foods.

However, if you have a carpet made of synthetic material, roaches may not eat or damage it since the fabric is inedible to these bugs. But if you have eliminated all the food sources, roaches may chew on the carpet out of hunger.

How Can You Identify Cockroaches Living in the Carpet?

If two or three roaches are roaming in or under your carpet, you may not notice it unless an entire colony is formed. To identify a cockroach nest, you must look for signs that the bugs leave behind.

The most common signs of cockroaches living in the carpet include:

Fecal Droppings

Roaches are nasty enough to leave their fecal droppings anywhere they visit. So, bugs living in the carpet will definitely poop near, over, or under it. Their feces are dark, similar to ground coffee or black pepper. You may also find thin or cylindrical dark brown or black droppings in different lengths.


Cockroach eggs are present within a capsule-like sac called ootheca. They are brownish-black with unique lines running through their sides. Roaches mostly lay eggs underneath the carpet to keep them hidden.

So look for cockroach eggs underneath the carpet. If you spot a few eggs, act as fast as possible to prevent the infestation from growing.

Shed Skin

Cockroaches shed their skin during developmental stages to reach their complete size, called molting. Typically, these bugs molt approximately 5 to 8 times in their life. Since roaches typically live for years, you’ll likely see many shed skins everywhere.

How To Eliminate Cockroaches From the Carpet?

Even when living underneath or in carpet, roaches may not be visible as you think. Since they are nocturnal, they’re likely to be seen when there is less activity at night. But if you have identified signs of a roach infestation, you must gather your tools as soon as possible.

Here are some effective roach-eliminating methods you can try to eliminate roaches from your carpet:

Vacuum Cleaning

Vacuuming the carpet is the easiest and most effective way of removing roaches eggs. Within a few minutes, your carpet will look clean and new as before, without any signs of bugs or other pests.

Insect Growth Regulators (IGR)

IGRs work wonders in inhibiting the growth of roaches, especially in the developmental stages. These sprays interfere with the bugs’ molting process, affecting the bug’s reproduction process and killing their eggs. If the eggs are hatched, you can also try insecticides to eliminate the bugs.

Natural Remedies

Some natural remedies also work wonders in eliminating roaches and their colonies. You can try a few of those, especially if you’re allergic to chemicals. Here are some options:

  • Boric Acid. It is the most toxic ingredient for roaches. You just have to sprinkle the powder on roaches to poison them. Remember that the bugs won’t die immediately but will carry boric acid back to their nest and poison the entire colony.
  • Baking Soda and Sugar. The baking soda and sugar mixture also works amazingly in killing roaches. The sugar lures roaches in, while the baking soda makes them explode from the inside. So mix a 1:1 ratio of both ingredients and sprinkle it all over the carpet.
  • Diatomaceous Earth (DE). DE dries out the cockroaches’ exoskeleton and makes them dehydrated.


Are Roaches Attracted To Carpets?

Roaches are especially attracted to those carpets made of organic material. Also, the food crumbs and drink spillage on the carpet attract roaches. In emergencies, when there is no food or water source available for these bugs, they chew on any type of carpet (synthetic as well) to satisfy their hunger.

Will Shampooing Carpet Get Rid of Roaches?

Shampooing the carpet with hot water can help eliminate all the bugs and insects living inside, including roaches.


Cockroaches can live everywhere where they find food, water, and shelter. Unfortunately, the carpet is the perfect place for these bugs to nest and lay eggs. While most roaches live underneath or in the carpet, others consider it a scavenging point.

Roaches live in carpets because:

  • It comprises sufficient food sources, including hair, nails, crumbs, water spillage, and other organic waste.
  • They provide a better place for these bugs to hide from predators. Their legs can easily hold onto the carpet’s fibers, allowing them to run as fast as possible.
  • It is an out-of-sight, dark, damp place for roaches to live and thrive.

Look for the common signs of roach infestations under or near your carpeting area to treat them as soon as possible.