How to Make Sticky Roach Traps

Insect pests are annoying and dangerous to your family's health. Roaches leave droppings and bacteria that can contaminate food and cause serious food-borne illness, including diarrhea, dysentery and Salmonella. There are several effective do-it-yourself methods for catching and killing roaches and other insect pests. One of the simplest is to make and deploy sticky traps in areas most likely to attract roaches.

Things You'll Need

  • Double-sided tape

  • 4 coffee saucers

  • 4 jelly jars

  • Molasses, 1 cup

  • Vinegar, 2 cups

  • Petroleum jelly

  • Playing cards

  • An onion slice

Molasses Trap

Step 1

An old jam jar can be a good bug catcher.

Pour 2 cups of vinegar into a bowl and stir in one cup of molasses. This sticky mixture will attract and trap the roaches when they come to eat it.

Step 2

Pour some of the molasses mixture into the bottom of the 4 jelly jars. Pour in just enough to cover the bottom of the jar well.

Step 3

Pour some of the mixture into the 4 coffee saucers. The coffee saucers can be placed next to the cracks or holes where roaches like to live and trap them when they come out. Roaches hide in cracks and crevices because they like to have a surface touching the top and bottom of their bodies, according to the Illinois Pest Control Association.

Step 4

Rub some petroleum jelly around the inside rim of the jelly jar. Cockroaches have a hard time climbing up glass surfaces but the petroleum jelly will stop any that do from getting out of the jar.

Step 5

Place the jelly jars alongside baseboards and against the wall on kitchen counters so that cockroaches climbing down the wall can get into the jar. Once inside the jar, they will fall down into the molasses and be stuck. Place the saucers near any cracks or crevices in the walls to catch and hold bugs coming out of the cracks. The first bugs caught in the trap will lure others into it because they are cannibalistic and eat their dead.

Sticky Card Traps

Step 1

A playing card can be made into a roach trap for use in small spaces like drawers and cupboards.

Cut an onion slice into small chunks to use as bait. The onion will attract roaches to the trap.

Step 2

Place a strip of double sided tape down the middle of a playing card. If the tape is narrow, you will need to use 2 strips. Make sure that you buy tape that is really sticky to make the trap more effective.

Step 3

Remove the backing on the double-sided tape so that the surface is sticky. Any bugs walking onto the card will get stuck and die.

Step 4

Place a small chunk of onion in the center of the playing card. You can use a small piece of banana instead of onion if you prefer.

Step 5

Place the playing card trap in dark places like kitchen cupboards or underneath kitchen and bathroom sinks. Bugs like warm moist areas and the card traps are easy to place in cupboards or drawers.


A mixture of boric acid and honey placed into cracks and along baseboards will repel and kill cockroaches.


Be careful when using boric acid to keep it away from areas where children or pets can get into it. Colorado State University reports that less than 5 grams of boric acid can sicken or even kill a child or small animal.