Australian Pest Control Association


Pest Control Association

Ring the Experts Consumer Advice 1300 660 200 > consumer guide > pest control Australia > termites > termite control > termidor > exterra > sentricon > find a pest controller

APCA Members are
required to possess
Control Certificate
and extensive field
work experience in
the pest control
service industry
CHOICE Magazine Article  October 2005  Finding a Good Pest Manager
PDF click here for Choice Article on Pest Controllers
The Oct 2005 CHOICE Article provides some excellent guidelines for Selecting a Pest Controller. However the CHOICE Article make some questionable comments, such as noted below:

One important omission is that termites can cause severe structural damage to a home in a short period and Home Insurance does NOT cover the repair costs which could easily surpass $50,000.

The CHOICE Article notes "Licensing requirements for timber pest inspectors vary from State to State" BE CAREFUL in fact here is no State Govt licensing in Australia of timber pest inspectors other than in Queensland.

The CHOICE Article notes "the average cost of a termite treatment estimated at around $1,500". In fact average cost of reliable termite protection using safest, most effective products is around $2,000 to $4,000 - in most cases $1,500 may not even cover the chemical cost.

BE CAREFUL not to pick the cheapest price - this may indicate the pest control business that uses poorly trained staff and the cheaper old fashioned toxic solvent based (less effective) pesticides.

The CHOICE Article notes "triflumuron dust ( very effective) . for termite colony elimination" This is INCORRECT. Our feedback from its use in the field since 2000, is that the IGR chemical triflumuron (brand name: Intrigue) is NOT very effective as a termite control chemical.

In most cases, using Intrigue dust provides at best only a low level of confidence of termite colony elimination. More importantly, there are much more effective IGR chemicals available as used in the Exterra, Nemesis & Sentricon termite baiting systems.

Another important ommission is the the CHOICE Article fails to cover the inadequacies of the various State pest control licensing system.

In the last few years, the policy of such Licensing systems allows pest control businesses to engage Private Assessors to assess unlicensed pest control field-staff and in effect award them a State Govt pesticide applicators licence, as they see fit.

APCA is definitely against this policy. The independent TAFE Pest Control certificate plus at least 2 years practical experience should be mandatory for a full licence.

The Private Assessor system to obtain a full licence is a major problem and the source of consumer rip-offs in our industry.

Cloaked in secrecy - we do not know who all these such Private Assessors are - there is no public register - no set educational syllabus - no set standard across all Assessors - each Private Assessor can make up their own written test, if any.

There is no compulsory written test, it can be solely oral, culminating in a full State Govt issued pest control licence. Unfortunately feedback abounds throughout the industry of (1) assessments occurring over the phone, and (2) from the general public of State Govt licensed pesticide applicators who obviously do not know what they are doing.

Inadequate testing - Private Assessors can gain this title with scant practical experience in urban pest control. It is common for them to charge more than $1,500 for each field-work pest control technician, partly subject to Government subsidy. So there is a big $$ incentive for an "easy" assessment which is not audited and largely unaccountable.

Unlimited trainees - inadequate supervision required by State Govt Pest Control Licensing System, a pest control business can employ ONE licensed pest controller with many (no limit) trainees that use pesticides in people's homes without the requirement for any direct supervision.

APCA was incorporated in 1987 pursuant to the NSW Govt Associations Incorporation Act and through a pro-active media campaign, lobbying State MPs etc was successful in obtaining the introduction in 1988 of the NSW Govt WorkCover Pest Control Licensing Regulations.

APCA Community Service - APCA provides speakers for various industry seminars, radio and TV interviews and provides an effective voice for the benefit of consumers as well as the interests of professional and ethical pest controllers. In addition, many of the APCA Members contribute countless unpaid hours in providing FREE advice to consumers and government departments.
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Australian Pest Control Association - Phone 1300 660 200