It's common to find bugs around the dishwasher, fridge, and under the washing machine — so we often get the question, can bugs live inside appliances?
It's gross to think about, but the odds of finding roaches or other insects in your dishwasher are relatively high. Fortunately there are a number of solutions to keep your dishwasher, fridge, and other appliances from hosting a variety of small critters. Read on for tips!
Why are pests attracted to appliances?
Appliances usually have crevices that are good homes for pests because they are dark, warm, and provide food in the form of spills and crumbs. Bugs like ants and roaches can fit in such small cracks, so these are the types of pests that we're likely to find in appliances.
How do I keep pests away from my appliances?
The first disclaimer is to never spray pesticides on appliances since that could damage them or even make contact with your food, depending on the appliance.
But there definitely are some steps you can take if you're seeing signs of pest activity in or around an appliance. First, make sure everything is unplugged before cleaning. If you can, have the dishwasher's motor housing taken off and the motor cleaned. This might be a job for the pros if you've never done it before.
Whether or not you've had the motor cleaned, you can use the same sticky tape that professionals use around the outside of the motor housing. It works like fly paper, catching the bugs as they go out on foraging trips.
Finally, remove all the dishes, place a bowl of vinegar on the top rack and run the appliance on its hottest setting.
For ovens, laundry machines, and microwaves, you can use a stick vacuum to clean all the crevices inside and outside. Then go in with a water and vinegar solution to wipe down the surface.
If you can, pull your fridge out from its normal space. Sweep any crumbs or dust that may have built up behind or underneath. Then, you can use that vinegar/water mixture to wipe it down. The moulding that surrounds the inner door is a hot spot for roaches, so spray the moulding and wipe it clean. At this point you'll be ready to slide the fridge back into its normal spot.
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