As more and more pest management companies reinvent themselves as solution providers, the role of service technician has changed. Technicians are no longer simply product applicators, but rather technologically proficient service professionals whose true value is their knowledge of pests, structures and the latest technology.
This paradigm shift is especially evident when it comes to liquid termiticide applications thanks to BASF’s introduction of the revolutionary Termidor HP Precision Injection System. What once was a laborious job that involved manual trenching, drilling and rodding now relies more on technicians who understand technology and how to apply it in and around structures.
The Termidor HP II High Precision Injection System includes the Precision Injection Device (PID) and the base unit. The base unit pressurizes the water. The PID, equipped with a small tank to hold the Termidor HP II termiticide and tethered by a 300-foot hose to the base unit, enables PMPs to conveniently move the portable unit around the perimeter of a building. The system delivers precise and accurate Termidor HP II termiticide, BASF’s highly effective non-repellent termiticide.
LESS Preparation TIME. The benefits to pest management technicians begin before the product is even applied. With traditional liquid termiticide treatments, considerable time is required loading and mixing chemical in a conventional rig and then preparing the jobsite for treatment. With the Termidor HP II High Precision Injection System, water and Termidor HP II are mixed inline.
“I like that you don’t have to mix and agitate the termiticide. You hook the hose to the side of the machine and turn the water on. It is way simpler and takes out the possibility of human error so that we can focus on the treatment,” said Joe Argo, a termite technician from Breda Pest Management, Loganville, Ga.
Added Breda technician Jamie Bowen, “It’s a little less hands-on, which is good. We’re able to put the chemical into the reservoir and it goes into the ground properly mixed.”
Ray LeTourneau, a termite technician from Turner Pest Control, Jacksonville, Fla., said that in Florida an average home can take anywhere from 1 to 3 hours just to prep for treatment. “With Termidor HP II, it’s a simple matter of uploading the service order, hooking up the water, and then beginning the treatment. After everything is all done you just have to roll up the hose and put the PID away, no more patching holes or cleaning up mounds of dirt and mulch to look like how they originally were.”
Much of the prep time required with traditional liquid termite treatments was devoted to trenching, but with Termidor HP II, “There is no more digging a 6-inch by 6-inch trench around the perimeter of a house then treating with 80 to 100 gallons of chemical; depending on the size of the structure it could be more,” said Bobby Mansfield, a technician with McCauley Services, Bryant, Ark.
The fact that Termidor HP II doesn’t require the traditional trenching method “makes using it much easier in comparison to other termiticides, especially on homes with well-established grass in the treatment zone,” added Joshua Comer, a technician with Superior Service, Ocala, Fla.
Brian Dickinson, a termite technician with Brandon Pest Control, Jacksonville, Fla., said customers also appreciate that Termidor HP II jobs are more efficient and require little or no drilling. “What used to take us five hours can be as little as two hours now. [Customers] don’t have to wait around their house for a service person to do a lot of work, and then verify with them. Some of them even like watching us work this ‘jackhammer-like’ piece of equipment.”
MORE EFFECTIVE TREATMENTS. The integrated system injects termiticide dilution pressurized to approximately 4,000 PSI to a depth of 12 inches, the primary termite activity zone, and it’s all done in one step.
To ensure accuracy and consistency, the injection system is equipped with a digital onboard computer that prevents over or under usage of termiticide by providing treatment readings within one-tenth of an ounce.
“I like Termidor HP II because the human error is pretty much eliminated. Everything is very much calculated,” said Breda’s Argo.
McCauley Services’ Mansfield shared similar sentiments. “It takes all the guesswork out of the application. You find the linear footage of the structure and it places the right amount of chemical into the ground. Now instead of digging, all you have to do is push down on the device and it does all the work, making my job easier.”
Technicians, such as Superior Services’ Comer, like this and other technology aspects of the Termidor HP II High Precision Injection System. “Everything from the Termidor app that I use on my tablet, the online database where I create individual work orders for each job and store treatment data for each client, and the real-time information on the screens of both the PID and the base unit, make the task of performing a termite treatment more of an experience than just spraying for bugs.”
THE ‘WOW’ FACTOR. In areas of the country with high termite pressure, many customers have an understanding of (or have observed) traditional liquid termiticide applications. The Termidor HP II High Precision Injection System leaves a favorable impression on them, technicians report.
“Customers these days tend to know more about pests from doing their own research or past experiences,” said Turner’s LeTourneau. “Being able to provide an alternative treatment method really impresses them and it shows that we are always trying to be on the front lines of the industry.”
McCauley’s Mansfield says he tells customers that “the application is a lot like fracturing the ground. We inject the [termiticide] around the base of the structure with about 4,000 PSI to a depth of 12 inches into the soil. This is right where the termites would be if they came up to the structure. Customers love the new cutting-edge technology.”
LeTourneau said Turner reps will show customers a brief video explaining how the Termidor HP II system works. “So far everyone has been really impressed and they love how the treatment doesn’t tear up their yard or patios like the traditional methods do.”
Customer appreciation of the less invasive benefits of Termidor HP II also was noted by McCauley’s Mansfield. “Gone are the days of digging up your customers’ flower beds, drilling into the brick of their homes and drilling holes into their slab driveways. When you tell them you don’t have to do that anymore, they love it.”
Added Breda’s Argo, “Customers who spend their own time, on their hands and knees digging and planting, like the fact that you aren’t going in there and trenching everything up,” he said. As Argo’s coworker Bowen added, “Before we were drilling in places where customers might not have been thrilled about like inside garages, so I think they appreciate the new technology.”
BETTER JOB QUALITY. While termite control still requires a lot of elbow grease to get the job done correctly (e.g., crawling in difficult-to-access areas to inspect), with the Termidor HP II High Precision Injection System, much of the repetitive and taxing bending and squatting has been reduced.
“I’m not spending time digging in the soil, but instead injecting directly into the soil,” said Breda’s Bowen. “Because we are not disrupting plants and rose bushes, the customer is happy. And when the customer is happy, I am happy.”
Breda’s Argo said he likes using the injection system because it’s like working with a power tool. “Maybe it’s a guy thing.”
Efficiency is one of the greatest benefits technicians reported. “The Termidor HP II treatment makes my job easier because instead of only having time to do maybe three jobs a day, now I can finish six jobs in one day. The application is much quicker which means more production for me and more money for the company.”
Superior’s Comer said Termidor HP II has made his job better in numerous ways, from the shortened treatment time to the confidence in the reliability and accuracy of the treatments he performs. “It also has created more of a professional feeling for me individually. I recently graduated college in June of this year with a bachelor of science in environmental science and, although a few years ago my plan was to work in the pest control industry for a few years then move on to something more specific to my degree focus, the technology behind the Termidor HP II system, and the training and experience I have gained in working with this system, has helped to change my mind.
“I feel very confident that I can and will have a fulfilling career in this industry. Termidor HP II gave me insight into the scientific and technological areas of this industry that I had previously overlooked. I view my position as Superior Services’ termite technician as more than simply another job; a view I may not have if I were not using the Termidor HP II system.”