How To Know If Roaches Are in Walls (& Get Rid of Them)

Cockroach climbing on a wall

The two favorite places of cockroaches in a home are the kitchen and walls. Of course, they can find abundant food and water in the kitchen, but why walls? That’s because these tin bugs prefer dark, damp, and narrow places to hide and reproduce, and what’s a better place than wall cracks?

Cockroaches living in walls usually mean you have a huge infestation to deal with. To get rid of these annoying creatures, you must confirm whether they’re nesting in the walls or elsewhere.

You can know roaches live in walls by hearing a chirping sound from behind the walls. You may also see poop marks on the walls and many dead roaches’ bodies lying near them.

Let’s explore roaches living in walls and the best action plan to deal with them.

How Do Roaches Get Into Walls?

Roaches get into walls through cracks and crevices caused due to excessive water usage or leakage.

The walls of your home’s bathroom, kitchen, and basement are more likely to have leakages. This can increase the overall moisture in your home, leading to several cracks in the floor, ceilings, and walls.

Unfortunately, these bugs love such dark and humid places, and these cracks provide an ideal pathway for roaches to get into walls.

Roaches also enter your house through other ways, such as windows, doors, and garbage, searching for food and shelter. Just as they succeed in entering, they find cracks in damp places to sneak inside easily and reproduce.

Mostly, roaches get into the walls of two places:

  • Kitchen. The kitchen has a sufficient supply of food waste, crumbs, and stains. Cockroaches hide in kitchen walls during the daytime and then get out at night for forage.
  • Bathroom. The bathroom is one of the dampest places in your home. It contains different types of organic wastes, such as toilet paper, broken nails, and hair, all of which cockroaches love to eat. These pests usually target the crevices under the bathtub or sink to hide during the day.

Therefore, to know if roaches live in your home’s walls, start with your kitchen or bathroom.

How To Identify Roaches Colonies in Walls?

Cockroaches are nocturnal creatures, meaning they are more active at night than day. However, they prefer being hidden in the morning to stay safe from predators and humans.

The ideal places for roaches to hide are crevices, cracks, and narrow spaces in your home. That’s mainly because these areas are hard to reach for predators. So the best time to spot roaches on walls is during the day.

Here are four signs to look for to confirm the presence of roaches inside walls:

Cockroaches Crawling In and Out of the Wall Cracks

Seeing roaches moving in and out of the walls is the most obvious sign of these bugs living in your home’s walls. So once you see multiple cockroaches crawling in and out of the wall cracks, know that your home is heavily invested with these annoying creatures.

Different types of roaches choose to hide in other rooms’ walls. For example:

  • Oriental and American Roaches. These roach species prefer living in the walls of your kitchen and bathroom since they have high dampness. Oriental and American cockroaches love to thrive in super moist areas.
  • German Roaches. These cockroaches drier places, so they move into the walls of your bedroom and living room.

Smear Stains on Walls

Smear stains are the poop marks that cockroaches leave behind. So when you see wet smear marks on your walls, understand that roaches are successfully living and breeding inside them.

The cockroach stains are primarily visible on the walls of damp rooms, such as the bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, and basement.

Since American and Oriental roaches live in these places, they discard wet poop on the walls because they feed on filth.

Baby roaches and some adults consume their feces when they don’t have any other food source available. Disgusting, no?

At this point, you may think, “But roaches defecate everywhere, so how can we know they’re particularly living inside the walls?” Yes, cockroaches defecate randomly, but most of the time, it’s near their nests or hiding places.

Chirping Sounds Inside the Wall

Roaches living and moving inside the wall sometimes produce a chirping sound that humans can barely hear. But at times, it is audible enough. That usually happens when an entire roach colony is nesting behind the wall.

The chirping sounds of roaches are audible in areas like false walls and ceilings. In houses with heavy roach infestations, these places are ideal for cockroaches to hide and reproduce.

Piles of Dead Roach Bodies on the Floor

Even if you haven’t used any roach-killing method, you may still see many dead roach bodies lying on the floor. Cockroaches die in their nests due to various reasons.

So if you find roaches lying dead on the floor near walls, it strongly indicates that these bugs are living in the wall cracks, ceilings, or behind wallpapers.

How To Eliminate Roaches in the Walls?

Getting rid of cockroaches requires a lot of effort. It’s relatively easier to get rid of them if only one or two roaches roam in your home. But roaches in the walls mean you’re dealing with a huge infestation.

Here are 5 steps to get rid of roaches from walls:

Fix Water Leakages

Your bathroom, basement, and kitchen usually stay damp since water usage is higher in these places.

If the plumbing in these areas has a water leakage, things may get more difficult for you, as Oriental and American cockroaches love to hide in damp places. They thrive on the water in these areas to survive.

So fixing any leakages will reduce the water supply to these pests, leading to dehydration.

Clean Your Entire Home

If you have identified roaches in your bathroom or bedroom walls, this doesn’t mean that your basement or kitchen is safe from them. Thus, clean your entire home to steer clear of roach colonies.

Cockroaches typically feed on organic waste and garbage. Any room with a sufficient supply of food, water, hair, or nails is the prime location for these pests to live and nourish. So clean these places as soon as possible and leave no food stains behind.

It’s recommended to wipe your rooms with a disinfectant. You can also mix a few drops of any essential oil in the cleaning solution, preferably:

  • Peppermint
  • Tea tree
  • Eucalyptus
  • Cypress
  • Clove
  • Citronella

Roaches hate the smells of these essential oils, so they stay away. Cleaning your rooms will deprive the cockroaches of food and water supply in your walls.

Use an Anti-Roach Spray in the Wall Cracks

Now that you have laid the groundwork, it’s time to get aggressive. Take out your anti-roach spray and spray it on your walls. Make sure to cover all the gaps and crevices in the walls to leave no roach alive.

While using an insecticide, always read the instructions before using it. It may contain some harmful chemicals that may cause irritation or allergies.

Place Baits for the Remaining Cockroaches

Of course, you can’t kill every single roach with an anti-roach spray. You’ll still see a few cockroaches crawling alive after emptying half the bottle. These pests have existed for more than 300 million years, and here is the perfect proof.

Cockroaches know how to escape from danger. So there must be a couple of roaches that you may have overlooked in the first three steps. If you leave them alive, they will soon find a new place to live and reproduce.

So leaving them isn’t an option!

That’s when cockroach baits can help you. These ready-made poisons lure the remaining roaches in. Place the baits near the:

  • Gaps on the walls
  • Food source of roaches
  • Sinks
  • Oven and stove
  • Kitchen countertops
  • Bathroom vanity
  • Bathtub
  • Toilet basin

If you still see roaches crawling freely, squish them immediately or spray an insecticide.

Seal the Cracks on the Walls

At this step, you’ll see a lot of dead roaches lying on the floor and inside the cracks in the walls. Consider this your victory.

But the process isn’t completed yet; you have to get rid of these corpses before they release oleic acid and attract other bugs.

You can use a fork or a pointed object to pull out the dead roaches from the wall cracks. Once you pull all of the dead bodies out, discard them. Then, seal those cracks and gaps with a sealant through a caulk gun.

Silicone-based sealants work wonders on walls as they are long-lasting and powerful, and cockroaches can’t eat through them. Bring your ears close to the walls, and you’ll hear no chirping sounds.


How Do I Know If I Have Roaches in My Walls?

You can know if roaches are in your walls by standing close and listening to the chirping sounds. You may also see poop stains on different areas. If the infestation has gotten out of control, you may also see numerous roach dead bodies lying on the floor near the walls.

How Do You Get Roaches Out of Your Walls?

You can get roaches out of your walls by fixing water leakages, cleaning your home, using an insecticide, and sealing the cracks.

Can You Hear Cockroaches in Walls?

Yes, you can hear roaches in walls if the infestation gets uncontrollable. But it’s not common in some cases.


Whether it’s your kitchen or attic, there is no place on earth safe from cockroaches. No matter how clean you keep your home, you still can’t guarantee it’s safe from these nasty creatures. Roaches living in walls is a serious problem, which you can identify through:

  • Physically sighting these bugs moving in and out of the walls
  • Listening to the chirping sounds
  • Poop stains on the walls
  • Dead bodies of roaches lying near the walls

Once you’re sure, you can get rid of these roaches by:

  • Fixing your home’s water leakages
  • Cleaning every room of your home with a disinfectant
  • Using an anti-roach spray in wall cracks
  • Sealing the gaps with a silicone-based sealant