Orkin and Terminix are two of the biggest names in the pest control industry. Over the years, these pest companies have built their brands and expanded their knowledge and skills. They are each solid options for pest control, whether you’re dealing with common household pests or trickier insects like termites and bed bugs. To determine which company is the right choice for you, read on to find out how each compares.
Terminix has more consistent ratings, serves more customers, and offers an online chat. However, Orkin has more experience and a higher Better Business Bureau rating than Terminix. Both Orkin and Terminix offer comprehensive pest control services, a century of experience, and satisfaction guarantees.
Orkin vs. Terminix Overview
Orkin and Terminix each have extensive histories in the pest control industry.
Terminix has over 90 years of experience and was the first company to ever obtain a termite control patent. Its pest specialists include PhD-level entomologists, ACE- and BCE-accredited technicians, as well as ACE members of the Entomological Society of America. Terminix serves over one million more customers than Orkin, with a total of 2.8 million residential and commercial customers.
Terminix rises above the rest in terms of customer service. Unlike its top competitors, Terminix offers an online chat function. Customers can communicate with Terminix representatives in real time, asking questions and receiving immediate answers. We chatted with Terminix several times and found the representatives to be prompt, informative, and not pushy about sales.
Orkin has been in the business for over 100 years. Its pest control specialists have to undergo a rigorous, 160-hour targeted training program, and they serve over 1.7 million residential and commercial customers. Orkin is incredibly transparent about its services online, breaking down the steps and even noting specific products and treatments.
Orkin stands out for its huge array of online resources, in keeping with its commitment to give suggestions and recommendations to its customers. Online, customers can find a thorough pest library, bug bite photo gallery, and many links to blog pages the company has written about specific pests.
Below, you can find a table that compares Orkin and Terminix on key metrics:
*N/A signals inconsistent accreditations and ratings
Orkin vs. Terminix Plans
Orkin and Terminix each offer general pest control services, as well as termite control and bed bug removal. Each company also offers other specific plans for mosquitoes and ticks.
General pest control—pests covered
There’s a lot of overlap over the common household pests that Orkin and Terminix protect against in their general pest control plans. The companies identify these particular pests online and over the phone, but note that some others may be included.
- Clothes moths
- Rats and mice
- “House” ants
- Spiders (non-dangerous)
- House crickets
- Paper wasps
For both pest control companies, the treatment plan starts with an initial visit and inspection, and is followed up by incremental scheduled visits, either bi-monthly or quarterly, depending on the plan and company. Different plan breakdowns are offered in different locations.
Additionally, both Orkin and Terminix offer service guarantees. The Orkin 30-Day Money Back Guarantee and the Terminix Promise™ both ensure that a technician will return to your home at no extra cost if pests return between scheduled appointments. Orkin will refund your last payment, so long as you stay a customer.
Orkin and Terminix each offer comprehensive, targeted termite treatment plans.
Orkin follows a systematic Points of Service approach. This process involves an initial, extensive inspection of your woodwork and a custom-tailored plan to protect your home from existing termites and help prevent future infestations.
To combat termites, Orkin uses Termidor liquid treatments, dry foam and Orkinfoam, and Sentricon bait and monitoring.
If termites return, the Re-Treatment Program guarantees Orkin will eliminate them at no extra cost.
Terminix also breaks down its termite tackling process into a trio of steps. First, Terminix conducts a thorough inspection of your interior and exterior, paying close attention to potential access points. Your service professional will then develop a customized treatment or protection plan and conduct annual reviews.
Terminix’s termite methods include its OnGuard® Protection System bait systems and other curative solutions.
For qualifying homes, Terminix offers the Terminix Promise Plus™, ensuring you never have to pay for treatments or repairs from new termite damage, as long as you keep your plan.
Bed Bug Removal
Orkin and Terminix both offer targeted bed bug removal options. Here’s how they stack up.
As with its termite program, Orkin utilizes its Points of Service approach for bed bugs, subbing beds, furniture, rugs, and linens for woodwork. After your treatment, Orkin will come back for follow-up visits to make sure that bed bugs won’t return.
For bed bug removal, Terminix starts with an extensive inspection before removing visible bed bugs and eradicating hidden ones and any eggs before they hatch, using a variety of methods, including steam, encasements, and monitoring devices, as well as its non-toxic RapidFreeze® solution.
The company notes that, “backed by the Terminix Bed Bug Guarantee, if you see evidence of bed bugs in your home within six months, Terminix will return and perform an inspection and additional treatments at no extra cost.”
Depending on where you live, mosquito services can be extremely useful.
Orkin protects against Zika, Chikungunya, and West Nile by implementing several treatments to interrupt the mosquitoes’ life cycles in either monthly or one-time applications. These applications include microbial insecticides, traditional insecticides, and insect growth regulators.
Terminix follows an Inspect, Eliminate, Protect, and Maintain protocol through monthly applications of a targeted treatment. This treatment includes an insect growth regulator, as well as a key active ingredient with a special polymer layer that keeps it from washing away due to weather and lawn watering, allowing for several weeks of protection.
Ticks can turn your yard into a nightmare. Luckily, Orkin and Terminix have a solution.
Orkin offers its Points of Service process, inspecting ideal tick hiding spaces like tall grass and heavily wooded areas before creating a treatment plan and performing follow-up visits.
Terminix follows an Inspect, Prevent, Treat, and Maintain protocol, including a monthly service. After a thorough inspection of your yard, Terminix makes recommendations to make your yard less appealing to ticks and applies liquid and granular treatments to eliminate existing ticks and create a protective barrier.
Orkin and Terminix are both available in 47 states. Orkin is available everywhere except for Alaska, South Dakota, and Wyoming. Terminix does not service North Dakota, South Dakota, or Alaska.
Orkin vs. Terminix Cost
It’s hard to estimate the exact cost comparison, because what you’ll pay ultimately depends on the type of pest you’re dealing with, the degree of your pest infestation, the size and location of your home, and how many individual treatments you’ll need. To get the most accurate quote, Orkin and Terminix will need to perform an inspection of your home.
Orkin’s general pest control cost for a 2,000-square-foot home in Houston, Texas, would be $575. Terminix’s general pest control plan for a home of the same size in the same area would range from $550 to $700.
Orkin and Terminix Customer Reviews
Orkin and Terminix both have mixed reviews online. Each has multiple pages with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) for different branch locations. Orkin’s BBB ratings vary from page to page, while Terminix holds an C+ rating.
While Orkin has some inconsistencies, its owner Rollins’ headquarters page is BBB-accredited with an A+ rating. Here’s a sampling of Orkin reviews.
Christopher W. said:
“Shreveport Louisiana Office Inspector Damien M******* came out at my request to perform a termite inspection. Mr. M******* was very professional. He completed a thorough inspection of my home. After the inspection, Damien presented me with a diagram of my home and termite prevention options. I elected to go with the baiting system. On the day of installation, I met with Damien and Josh. Josh performed the baiting system and was very knowledgeable and did an excellent job. Kudos to the Orkin Shreveport office!! The Termite Team is jam up and jelly tight!!!”
Elmer H. said:
“I had them come out to do an initial rat termination service for me, and before they performed the service they had me sign a contract for a one-year service agreement without providing me with detailed information about the one-year plan. They told me my initial service would entail at least four follow-ups without a charge. However, when I later cancelled my year service contract within the 72-hour ( Washington State law gives a consumer the right to cancel a contract within 72 hours) period allowed by law; I received a call from Orkin inquiring why I canceled, and I told them why. I was informed by Orkin that I would still receive 2 free follow-up visits as part of Orkin initial service. Orkin then scheduled an appointment for me and did not keep the appointment at the appointed time. I called them the next day to find out and they told me since I cancelled my service I was getting my promised free follow-up as promised.”
Terminix’s headquarters page shares the A- rating and has mixed reviews, as well.
Lisa F. said:
“Terminix is a company you can depend on for quality service, professional employees, and great products that really work to kill pests around your home. I highly recommend them to anyone who needs pest control. Our technician, Ronald***** R****, has been amazing! Very courteous, informative, always explains what is being done. I was concerned about having treatment with our animals, but he assured me that it is not going to hurt them. I have never been told that with any other company and it actually is true. We had an ant issue that was not on our scheduled service month and Ronald **** R**** came out as soon as possible. He was not only able to get rid of the ants but keep them away. I will always use Terminix because of the kindness and respect I receive from my technician. The service is affordable and it works!”
Eric B. said:
“Terminix customer service is nonexistent. I had an appointment for [a] termite inspection on 3/16/2020, and when nobody showed up, I called the service center and was rescheduled for 3/17/2020 between 8 and 10 am. Again, nobody showed up so I called again and asked for a supervisor and was told there were no supervisors at that location, they would take my information, and I will get a call in the next 48 hours. (Really) I guess that Terminix thinks it’s no problem for people to miss work two days in a row just waiting to see if they may show up if they feel like coming. They can’t even make a phone call to let the customer know they will not be coming. With no supervisor at the call center, I guess that they just don’t care about customer service.”
Orkin vs. Terminix Verdict
As you can see, each company offers comprehensive services, over a century of experience, and money-back, satisfaction guarantees. Their general pest control plans and approach to pests like termites, bed bugs, mosquitoes, and ticks, appear similar.
In terms of differences, we do find that Terminix skews cheaper, has more consistent ratings, serves more customers, and offers a very efficient online chat function. Orkin, on the other hand, has more experience and a greater number of customer resources.
Terminix vs Orkin Comparison
|Our Overall Score out of 100||98.5||94|
|Superlative||Best Customer Service||Most Customer Resources|
|Annual Cost for General Pest Control||$550–$700||$575|
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