Thankfully, roach infestation doesn’t happen often. In most cases, homeowners can solve the problem by stepping on the one or two stragglers they spot in the kitchen. But when things get out of hand, using one of the best roach foggers is the only option you have left.
Picking the right fogger or smoke bomb for the job isn’t as hard as you think. Not when you know a few key principles on how they work, what they’re made of, and how to use them.
Best Roach Foggers / Bombs for DIY Roach Treatments
- Best Roach Foggers / Bombs for DIY Roach Treatments
- Important Fogger Characteristics
- Why Foggers and Not Baits, Sprays, or Traps
- Deodorizers Are Nice but Not Mandatory
- Don’t Use a Wide Coverage Fogger in A Small Room
- Organic Foggers – Are They Real and Should You Use Them?
The Hot Shot Fogger6 is a Tetramethrin and Cypermethrin-based formula. Like most foggers, it’s fast-acting and easy to use. And it’s slow-release rate should give you plenty of time to set it off, get out of the room, and close the door behind you.
One top of having two active ingredients, the formula also contains an indoor odor neutralizer. This means that you won’t have to keep the windows open for hours to make a room habitable after the treatment.
The mist is non-staining and since its water-based it won’t leave a residue. It’s also very fine, which means that it will get into every crack and crevice in a room. Plus, it should reach the base of carpets and mats and remain active there for up to two months.
One Fogger6 smoke bomb will treat up to 2,000cu.ft. Note that’s the estimate for unobstructed space or empty rooms, and that the fogger won’t be as effective in rooms larger than 15.5x16x8 ft.
One pack of the Black Flag HG-11079 will get you six foggers. Each contains a simple Cypermethrin formula, albeit a concentrated one. Because of its potency, it should provide residual control for up to 12 weeks. As long as it’s resting on non-porous surfaces.
A single can should be enough to treat a standard 15.5x16x8 ft. room. Therefore, you’re getting plenty of coverage at a bargain price.
It’s also worth noting that the formula contains a deodorizer too. It won’t leave the room with the freshest scent, as advertised, but it will remove the foul odor of the roach killer nonetheless.
I like that these smoke bombs can be used to kill a variety of roaches, mosquitoes, fleas, and even some spiders, with the exception of brown recluse spiders. But I advise against using it in kitchens.
The mist has excellent penetrating properties which lingers for many weeks once it settles. Unless you can really clear out your entire kitchen of food, it’s best you reserve this for other rooms in your home.
Another quality roach fogger with long-lasting residual control is the Harris Indoor Fogger. One pack comes with three 2oz. foggers. Each can shoot out a fine mist that will keep on killing for up to 12 weeks after it settles down.
This is a standard Cypermethrin-based formula. Note that the concentration of the active ingredient is just 0.515% which makes it a moderately concentrated fogger.
That said, the smoke bombs are designed in such a way that they can treat up to 2,000cu.ft. each. In fact, this particular fogger disperses the mist at a faster rate, thus speeding up the treatment time.
However, since it doesn’t contain any deodorizing compounds, you’ll still need to aerate the room afterwards, if you want to use it.
The Raid Max Fogger has a potent formula as well as a superior quality dispersal system. Unlike most alternatives on the market, one of these roach killing bombs can treat a room of up to 7,000sq.ft. That’s unobstructed space, of course.
Available in three-packs, the Raid Max Fogger is also cost-efficient. But it’s overkill for small and medium-sized households, since it shoots out too much mist over greater distances.
The concentration of Cypermethrin is 1.716% – almost three times as much as some manufacturers use. Due to the high level of toxicity, I only recommend this in cases of heavy roach and spider infestations.
Although it can handle rooms of up to 25x25 ft. the Raid Max Fogger is a niche product. Surprisingly, perhaps, it’s residual control effect won’t last for over two months.
The Spectracide Bug Stop is an indoor fogger. It uses an effective formula with two active ingredients, Cypermethrin and Tetramethrin. The use of both compounds makes this a broad-spectrum roach and insect killer.
The formula is non-staining and kills most insects on contact. Therefore, it will get the job done very fast. I also like it because it’s almost odorless. Therefore, you’ll be able to enter any given room much sooner after the treatment. Plus, you’ll need less time to ventilate the room before any guests arrive.
In terms of damage to furniture or carpeting, there shouldn’t be any. The formula won’t react to fabrics; in fact, it won’t even leave a watery residue. That said, it doesn’t seem to bind too well with carpet fibers, which means that the residual control provided will only be short-term.
Here’s something very interesting for your roach infestation. The Kinzua Punch Bug Bomb has a formula that contains three active ingredients. Two are popular roach killers, the other an insect growth regulator, or IGR.
This is recommended in places where re-infestations are more likely to occur. It’s also recommended for large rooms up to 27x27 ft. with 8 ft. ceilings. The bomb works much faster than most other foggers because it shoots the mist out at a high speed.
Even so, the mist will penetrate hard-to-reach places. Because it’s not an oily-based substance, the higher dispersal speed won’t result in creating a film on hard surfaces, or stains. But you might want to prepare yourself for a very powerful odor.
The Hot Shot No Mess! Fogger comes in value packs of three fogger cans. The cans are small at 1.2oz but all contain the same formula with an odor neutralizer. I should point out that even though this is a water-based formula, the mist is much drier than most. Because of this, it won’t stain or create wet spots on any textile surfaces.
Although it won’t provide the same type of coverage as other similar but larger foggers, the No Mess! Fogger is still highly desirable. Especially when treating small to medium-sized rooms.
The formula contains piperonyl butoxide, which enhances the pyrethrin compounds and thus kills roaches much faster than expected.
Important Fogger Characteristics
Apart from needing a potent formula, there are other things you’ll need from your fogger if you’re hoping for an effective treatment.
First of all, I recommend choosing fine mists rather than dense mists. While the latter may be able to kill roaches faster, it won’t be as far-reaching. Coverage is everything, so a fine mist will perform better in rooms with lots of furniture.
A finer mist will also find its way into cracks and crevices easier, killing roaches that you can’t see with the naked eye.
Another important characteristic of any good fogger is residual control. A fine mist helps the fog or smoke settle between the fibers of carpets and bedding. In turn, the formula will remain active and provide residual control.
But some formulas remain active for days while others remain active for months. It’s up to you to decide which one you need. If the infestation is out of hand, then the latter type of roach killer will be a better option. However, when treating for roaches in kitchens or pantries, you may want to consider a lighter formula with less residual control effect.
Why Foggers and Not Baits, Sprays, or Traps
Although roach traps and bait stations are considered very easy to use, they’re not always suitable for set-it-and-forget-it type treatments. Think of it this way. If you’re not placing your traps in roach high traffic areas, chances are you won’t catch many.
A fogger, a good one anyway, will treat most, if not the entire room. They’re designed to release the toxic mist at a steady rate but with enough momentum to reach every corner of the room. The only thing you have to do is pack sensitive objects and set the fogger in the middle of the room, at an elevated position and let the timed trigger mechanism do its job.
So why are foggers more efficient than sprays? Well, look at it like this. When you spray for roaches you have to find them or at least their nest and concentrate that stream until you’ve doused the area sufficiently.
Essentially, a fogger is an omnidirectional spray that operates continuously until the can is depleted. Therefore, you’re treating larger areas at the same time without having to do anything. Furthermore, if you’re using a fine mist, this will reach places that you may not be able to target using a regular spray can roach killer.
Deodorizers Are Nice but Not Mandatory
You may have noticed that some fogger bombs feature an odor remover. This kind of formulation may end up costing you extra. But if you need to do a quick extermination job in the bedroom or living room, then it may be worth the extra dollars.
It’s no secret that most roach killer foggers have a potent and repulsive odor. That’s why it’s recommended to aerate the treated room for a few hours after a treatment. With this odor removal component, you can skip the whole opening windows part and go back into the room much faster.
This is useful if you’re prepping a room for guests to sleep in or plan on hosting a party. But it’s definitely not a must-have ingredient in all formulations. And remember, not all deodorizers work as well as advertised. The type of furniture, carpeting, and bedding you own is also a factor.
Don’t Use a Wide Coverage Fogger in A Small Room
You may notice that most foggers seem to be designed to spread the mist in 15x16x8 ft. rooms. This is around 2,000cu.ft. of coverage. If that’s the case, can you use this in a smaller room? Yes. Will it increase the lethal dose and kill roaches faster? Yes.
But I advise against it. You see, with fine mists, the penetration potential is through the roof. Even if you close the door and windows, chances are the mist will escape from a very small room and leak into the hallway or adjacent rooms.
Those may be rooms you don’t need to fog, or can’t fog because you may be storing food in them, or your pets or kids could be using them at the time. In my experience, it’s better to cover less of a room than too much of it with a roach killer smoke bomb.
Organic Foggers – Are They Real and Should You Use Them?
Organic fogger formulas are a relatively uncommon. The main issue is that these natural formulas tend to be oilier in texture and risk leaving residue on all surfaces and materials in a treated room.
Not only that, but there are better ways of targeting roaches with organic-formulated roach killers, so there’s no reason to use something as aggressive as a fogger with a delivery mechanism.
Baring Some Minor Downsides, Roach Foggers Are the Bomb
If you think about it, there’s no real downside to using a fogger other than having to remove dead roaches by hand. Given the ease of using such roach killers, it makes little sense not to at least give it a shot. Especially now that you know how affordable they are and how you can use them properly.