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Ant, Roach and Other Insect Infestations

Ants, roaches, and other insects come indoors looking for food, water or shelter. Find out what you can do to prevent them, and thousands of their relatives, from moving into living and workspaces.

Store food appropriately.

Proper food storage helps prevent infestations:

  • Store food in metal coffee tins, glass mason jars with rubber seals, or airtight containers.
  • Put away leftover food. Do not leave any leftover drinks in your cup or glass at the end of the day.

Keep areas clean and uncluttered.

Take these actions to prevent problems with insects:

  • Keep sinks and counters wiped clean. Clean up crumbs and spills immediately. Remember to clean inside, outside, and underneath countertop appliances like toasters and microwaves.
  • Keep refrigerators clean inside and out. Make sure the gasket on the door fits tight. This saves energy and prevents ants from getting in.
  • Eliminate standing water in catch basins of water coolers, planters, or equipment.

Remove recycling and trash immediately.

  • Rinse all recyclable cans, bottles, and plastic containers. Store them in a bin with a tight-fitting lid. Wash the inside and replace the liner each time the recycle bin is emptied.
  • Keep trash cans tightly covered. If possible, move all trash, especially food scraps, to an outside dumpster at the end of the day.

Check for entry points.

Contact Housing Maintenance, (858) 534-2600 or Facilities Management, (858) 534-2930 if you discover insect entry points:

  • Make sure that doors and windows seal airtight.
  • Look for cracks in foundations, holes in walls, openings around plumbing or vents, or damaged areas leading into attics.

Get rid of the pests.

Use these instructions to eliminate the problem yourself.



  • Environment, Health & Safety:
    (858) 534-4534 weekdays, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
  • Campus Police: (858) 534-4357 after business hours

Non-emergencies (Typical response time: 1 working day)

HDH Residential Housing (HDHfixit) ticket system, or Customer Service Center (858) 534-2600.
For more information, contact EH&S Pest Management, (858) 534-4534.
Notice: Environment, Health & Safety does not provide pest control advice or help to individuals or agencies outside UC San Diego. Area residents should contact their local animal control agency or exterminator for assistance.