Getting Rid of Bugs You Can’t Reach

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You’ve got a bug that’s crawled onto your ceiling and parked there, possibly for the rest of its life. Or it’s in a tight crevice somewhere. You want to get rid of it, but you can’t reach it.

You could spray it, but then you have toxic bug spray floating down to where you have to breathe. There’s a simple way to get rid of bugs you can’t reach.

I figured this tip out after I was on crutches for a brief time, and realized they were perfect for this. But you can make your own tool.

Cockroach on tile floor by pillar

Your bug poking tool

You need something you can poke the bug with, but that won’t damage your ceiling or chip the paint off. And the bug might run away, so this could take a number of pokes. It would also be nice if there was a way to keep the bug from staining the ceiling with its, er, remains.

Take a dowel stick (or any type of stick) that’s not too skinny and not too fat. You want it thin enough to get into crevices, but not so thin that you could easily poke a hole in your ceiling by accident. You want a blunt tool – a bazooka rather than a twenty-two caliber, right?

Cover the end of the stick with several layers of paper towel or something similar. This forms a soft end, like the rubberized tip of a crutch. It’ll crush the bug, but it won’t poke holes or chip paint.

Bug poking dowel stick with paper towel and rubber band

Affix the paper towel with a rubber band or something so it’ll stay on. I’ve even been known to use a chip clip. Whatever works!

Completed bug poking tool

Now you’ve got a great bug-squishing tool. Just poke the bugs with the paper towel wrapped end of your stick – I find it’s sometimes better to knock them down and then step on them on the ground where you can easily clean up any smears their little carcasses leave behind.

Or, you can squish them with your stick, replace the paper towels on the end of it and use them to clean up the smudges (you may need a little water and/or mild dish washing liquid).

And there you go – no more bug, and no damage to ceilings or walls.