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Best Overall: Orkin
Founded in 1901 by 14-year-old Otto Orkin in Walnutport, Philadelphia, Orkin began as a door-to-door business selling rodenticides and has evolved to include at-home treatment against all kinds of pests.
Now headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Orkin boasts more than 400 locations worldwide, serves more than a million customers, and advertises pest control service for roaches, ticks, crickets, bed bugs, moths, earwigs, centipedes, fleas, hornets, scorpions, silverfish, carpenter ants, mice, and spiders.
Homeowners can also invest in preventative termite care, and should your home become infested, Orkin will treat the problem free of charge. Each Orkin specialist receives 160 hours of training before going out into the field, and the offices use route consolidation software to lessen the overall environmental impact of each visit.
Orkin maintains a commitment to the communities it serves, too, working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help educate consumers about the health risks surrounding pests at home, and responding in the wake of natural disasters, like hurricanes or tick infestations, to keep individuals and their homes safe.
Orkin offers customized pricing, so it's best to contact your local branch to get a quote.
Best for Termites: Terminix
Termites cause more than $5 billion in damage to structures every year, and unprotected homes cost an average of $8,000 to fix once an infestation has run rampant.
Terminix, which was founded in Memphis in 1927, pioneered the first insecticide specifically engineered to kill termites and remains a leader in the field today. With Terminix’s termite protection plan—a pest control model the company began offering in 1955—homeowners receive a yearly inspection for termite damage or signs of an infestation, with any preventative or maintenance measures included with the annual cost.
As long as the customer keeps their plan active, any future termite treatments or repairs are covered by Terminix—which provides serious peace of mind, especially for clients in coastal regions. Terminix's services have now expanded to include treatment for ants, cockroaches, mosquitoes, rodents, ticks, spiders, and other pests, too.
Terminix offers free inspections and free estimates.
Most Inclusive Plans: Rentokil
Rentokil is one of the largest pest companies in the world, with operations in more than 60 countries and a history that dates back to treating the U.K. Parliament House for deathwatch beetles in 1914.
A parent company to many other pest control brands around the world, Rentokil offers services throughout the United States under several different names: Ehrlich on the East Coast; Western Exterminator Company on the West Coast; Anderson Pest Co. in Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, and Wisconsin; and Presto-X in the Midwest and Southwest.
Rentokil’s subsidiaries offer pest control for single-family homes as well as larger and more complicated projects, including businesses like hotels or food processing and manufacturing facilities. And in many markets, Rentokil companies offer year-round plans for residential customers that include pest control for a wider range of pest problems than its competitors.
Ehrlich’s Pestfree365 program, for example, provides regular inspections, unlimited service calls at no extra cost, and coverage for 36 different pests—including bed bugs.
The cost of your service will depend on the type of pest, size of the property, and the type and number of treatments, so you will need to contact the company directly for a quote.
Best Customer Service: Bulwark Exterminating
Founded in 1999 by three brothers and their father, Bulwark Exterminating remains family-owned and now serves 25 different areas in 12 states. The company offers general residential pest control plans that spray for 16 different bugs, including cockroaches and ants, in addition to specialty termite and mosquito plans.
Bulwark describes the products used on your home as “less toxic than toothpaste”—which is reassuring for any parent or pet owner. All techs receive background checks and drug screenings, and if customers find live pests in their homes within 60 days of a treatment, Bulwark will return at no extra cost.
Bulwark values customers’ time in other ways, too: If you’re scheduled for a visit and the technician doesn’t show up, the next service appointment will be completely free. Some of the services of Bulwark’s larger competitors, like bed bug eradication, are not offered, but Bulwark’s cost structure, which takes into account the size and degree of infestation in a structure, allows plenty of room for clients to find the right price and plan for their budget and circumstances.
To find out the cost for your particular needs, you can request a quote.
Best for Large Structures and Businesses: Ecolab
Ecolab is hardly just a pest control outlet: The Minnesota-based corporation, founded in 1924, provides water, energy, and hygiene services to regions all over the world and employs more than 45,000 people.
The company’s pest control division began in 1984 with the acquisition of Lystads, Incs. Now, it offers plans tailored to several different kinds of businesses, based on the unique challenges their fields may hold.
There are a few different options: HotelProtect plans specifically help guard against bed bugs, and use a Thermal Enclosure system to eradicate existing populations; GuardianPlus plans focus on the specific problems faced by restaurants, preventing issues caused by rodents, ants, or cockroaches; HealthcareProtect turns an eye toward nursing homes and long-term care facilities, ensuring proactive solutions for flies, common pests, and bed bugs and helping train staff to recognize signs of a nascent infestation.
Unfortunately, Ecolab’s specialization in commercial pest control means it doesn’t offer residential options, so single-family homeowners should look elsewhere for regular service.
You can get a customized quote by calling Ecolab.
Best for Mosquitoes: TruGreen
Yes, TruGreen is a lawn care service—the most popular lawn care company in America. But keeping your greenery healthy is only part of the equation in creating an outdoor sanctuary at home, and the Memphis-based business is just as well-versed in staving off biting, swarming pests.
TruGreen offers treatments for many different kinds of lawn pests, but it stands out most for its mosquito treatments, which strategically target the shrubs and greenery where biting summer pests take shelter. The company suggests a minimum of four treatments each year to keep the pesky bug at bay, and there’s little risk in getting started: The first mosquito application is roughly $40, and TruGreen guarantees its work with free, re-treatment if biting mosquitoes return in-between visits.
Other outdoor plans include flea and tick yard treatments, for biting insects that plague pets as well as humans, and grub control and prevention services for insects that damage your lawn. TruGreen can help prevent indoor pest problems, too: For additional help, check out the company's Perimeter Protection Program, which sprays windows, doors, and your home’s foundation to stop bugs before they make it inside.
What Services Does Pest Control Include?
Pest control services include removing unwanted creatures, such as roaches, mice, rats, ants, bedbugs, and termites, from homes, buildings, and surrounding areas. They typically inspect for signs of pests, investigate the source or cause, and determine the treatment or solution needed.
How Much is a Pest Control Service?
The cost of pest control services varies, depending on the type of pest, size of the property, and the type and number of treatments. Most companies offer free estimates, so you can contact them directly for a quote.
Is a Pest Control Service Worth It?
Although some pests can be controlled using do-it-yourself methods and products, if you have a recurring problem or a big infestation, it’s worth calling in the professionals to deal with it. Not only will using pest control services save you the time and hassle of dealing with it yourself, but it will also keep your home healthier and well-maintained.
How We Chose the Best Pest Control Services
In making this list, we looked at pest control services that serve a wide range of areas around the country, focusing on outlets that listed locations in at least 10 states spread across the U.S. We narrowed the list down by looking at reviews and customer service policies, paying special mind to guarantees, like Bullwark Exterminating’s 60-day window for free return service, and thinking about how those might add value to one-time visits or annual plans.
Some companies, like Terminix, stood out for long-standing specialties in terms of specific pests like termites. Others have built a niche in certain industries: Ecolab, for example, offers specialized solutions for businesses in the hospitality and food service spaces, and TruGreen uses its lawncare expertise to help clients eradicate outdoor bugs like mosquitoes.
Versatility weighed heavily, too: Orkin, for example, can handle more than a dozen different kinds of pest problems. And, we noted when routine coverage included particularly expensive and nightmarish pests—like bed bugs, which Rentokil covers in many of its annual protection plans.