Poll Shows US Pest Controllers Slow in Switching to EVs

Although the use of electric vehicles has considerable potential for an industry that is based on routes, such as pest management, acceptance has been sluggish. No more than 25% of its fleet of cars, according to 96% of those who responded to a recent Pest Control Technology poll by readers, are electric.

While speaking during an interview conducted by PCT in May 2021, Bobby Leon, Akita Pest Control owner in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, had indeed bought an electric car — a Chevy Bolt — for the first time; Leon stated that his plan was to replace the company’s current fleet of vehicles with electric-powered ones once they became due for decommissioning.

However, Leon remarked that the company regrettably has only three electric vehicles within its 19-vehicle fleet. At this point, he had hoped for a 60% electrified fleet, but a demand-supply issue prevented that from happening. When the company went electric, there were a lot of options, and certain rebate offers made EVs even more alluring. Currently, there are quite large backlogs for newer electric vehicles that are being sold for more than the MSRP, and the cost of used vehicles has gone up as well.

Leon stated that, going forward, his objective is still “100% electric” and he plans to pursue additional EVs when the market stabilizes and further incentives are introduced. He claimed that Akita has personally experienced the advantages of utilizing electric cars, such as minimal time spent at filling stations, smoother rides, fewer demands on oil changes and the overall smoother quality rides that every technician loves.

The equipment required to construct charging points inside offices is among other issues facing electric cars that the largest pest management company specialists have pointed out. Around 75 service cars are now being used at All-U-Need Pest Control in Fort Myers, Florida. Kyle Selbach, director of operations at All-U-Need Pest Control, stated that he couldn’t picture using EVs inside their fleet due to the significant amount of power required to charge them.

Selbach further said that he sees EVs as being workable at a much smaller corporation, but a larger company would find the transition difficult. He also noted that he doesn’t believe reports are accurate regarding the lifespan of the battery.

While pest management companies haven’t made the switch to fully electric cars, the acceptance of hybrid cars is a movement that is becoming increasingly common. The sales and management teams at Bug Busters in Acworth, Georgia, have been using the vehicles for many years, said CEO Court Parker.

Automakers such as Atlis Motor Vehicles Inc. (NASDAQ: AMV) can tap this opportunity in the pest control field and win over this market segment for themselves.

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