Pyrethrin and Pyrethroids
These poisons cause the ion channels in nerve cells to remain open too long, which makes neurons fire repeatedly, resulting in paralysis and death. Pretty vicious given where they come from: Pyrethrin is obtained from flowers of the asteraceae family (including daisies and chrysanthemums); pyrethroids are just synthetic pyrethrin. While both are especially toxic to insects (alas, even bees) they are supposed to be among the least deadly pesticides to mammals. Still, keep Raid away from kitty: Cats’ livers can’t process pyrethrin fast enough to keep from, you know, dying.
Piperonyl Butoxide or N-Octyl Bicycloheptene Dicarboximide
Not poisons on their own, these so-called pesticide synergists block the enzyme that breaks down pyrethrin in insects. Basically, bugs don’t have a chance.
Isoparaffinic Hydrocarbon Solvent
The patent recommends Exxsol D60, a proprietary goo concocted by ExxonMobil Chemical and described as an “aliphatic hydrocarbon”—a hydrocarbon without aromatic ring molecules. Here it serves as an oily poison delivery system that coats the insect’s exoskeleton, helping to get the toxins into the pest’s pores.
Unscented Raid smells like a kerosene spill in a nerve gas factory. Lemon Scent Raid smells like a kerosene spill in a nerve gas factory with a hint of lemon.
Older spray pesticides were up to 80 percent hydrocarbons, toxins that aren’t the greatest chemicals to be spraying around your house. Raid’s current formula cuts the amount of hydrocarbons in half, replacing it with water. Surfactants like sorbitan monooleate help the H2O and hydrocarbons stay mixed properly.
Sodium Nitrite or Sodium Benzoate
These substances (particularly sodium nitrite) can be toxic in high doses, but the amounts present here are only enough to prevent the metal can from corroding.
Liquefied Saturated Hydrocarbons
Raid uses a mix of propylene, butanes, and butylenes as propellant. These are flammable and can cause breathing difficulties; you might want to stub out that Marlboro Light before spraying indoors
via What’s Inside Raid? Watch Out, Kitty! .