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Does Salt Kill Cockroaches?

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You’re trying to get rid of cockroaches in your home and are looking for anything in your kitchen that can help.

You go online, and you read that salt will save the day.

You tried it, and it didn’t work.

And now you want some answers.

In this post, we’re going to go over salt and its relationship with roaches.

We’ll explain why salt doesn’t work and provide you with better alternatives.

Let’s dive in.

Will Salt Kill Cockroaches?

Salty foods will not kill cockroaches.

If this were the case, cockroaches would not be able to eat much human food.

But the opposite is true.

Roaches can and will eat nearly anything, whether it’s sweet, starchy, or salty.

Most foods are perfect meals for a cockroach.

Does Salt Cut Cockroaches?

No.

Salt is not fine enough to cut cockroaches.

Cockroaches have exoskeletons that protect them from sharp objects.

And salt is not sharp enough to cut through them.

Whether ground, flake, or crystal, no salt is sharp enough to cut cockroaches.

The idea that salt can cut cockroaches is likely a misunderstanding between a standard product used to kill cockroaches – Diatomaceous Earth.

DE is sharp enough to cut cockroaches, but this is not the primary way to kill them.

First, DE absorbs the oily and waxy outer cuticle layer found on a cockroaches exoskeleton.

Once the outer layer is destroyed, cockroaches lose water and die from dehydration.

Although to humans DE is just like any other powder, to insect, it has microscopic, razor-sharp edges.

Does Salt Repel Cockroaches?

While many will say that salt repels roaches, there is no scientific evidence to prove it.

In particular, many say that roaches will not cross a line of salt. As such, salt must be a repellant.

Experts argue that for cockroaches to stay away from a line of salt, it needs to be very thick.

And it’s not because roaches are repelled by salt.

Instead, it is more likely that they don’t want to crawl over a mountain of salt.

If you’re looking for a natural repellent for roaches, you’ll be much better off with garlic, essential oils, and cinnamon.

Do Salt and Vinegar Repel or Kill Cockroaches?

No.

Salt and vinegar will not kill roaches, whether separately or combined.

In studies, vinegar had no repellency effect on cockroaches.

And adding salt does not make it any more toxic or repelling to roaches.

However, wiping distilled vinegar on surfaces will help keep roaches away by keeping your kitchen clean.

Does Epsom Salt (magnesium sulfate) Kill Cockroaches?

No. 

No type of salt, including Epsom Salt, can kill roaches.

It is also unlikely that it will repel cockroaches, either.

That said, the magnesium found on Epsom salt may disrupt the roaches’ biological systems, causing them to lose appetite.

This effect may discourage roaches from eating Epsom salt entirely.

Where Do Myths Regarding Salt and Coaches Come From?

Likely, much of the belief regarding the use of Salt on roaches come from the theory that Salt repels or can kill other insects.

For example, there is proof that Salt can be effective against certain species of ant and snails.

Salt can be effective against certain insects because of its dehydration properties.

When tiny ants and snails walk through Salt, it absorbs all the moisture from them and causes them to die.

Another reason people believe salt can kill roaches of its fine texture.

Many believe that salt can be sharp enough to cut roaches.

While that may be true for certain compounds such as Diatomaceous Earth, it’s not valid for salt.

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