Pest Control Equipment - If Its Important, Back It Up

Posted by Andrew Greess on Nov 23, 2014

Weed Control Equipment | Pest Spray Equipment

Have you ever lost an important computer file that you really needed right now? I bet that each of us has experienced this situation. Hopefully we learn from our mistake and start backing up our critical files.

Spray professionals have the same issue with their pest/weed spray equipment. We rely heavily on our equipment, yet in many cases we have no backup.  If you have a piece of equipment that is critical to your pest management business then it is vital that you have a backup.

It doesn’t matter what the equipment is, truck, trailer, power sprayer, duster or compressed air sprayer, etc. If you can’t do your job without the item, keep a backup.  We see companies of all sizes, from owner/operator to huge national fleets that seem surprised when a key piece of equipment fails.

Converts your Birchmeier sprayer to fan tip spray. Allows use of many Teejet tips. Includes conversion base, tip & cap.

What happens when we don’t have the equipment we need to complete our jobs?

  • Missed & cancelled appointments
  • Unhappy customers
  • Lost revenue
  • Employee downtime waiting for equipment
  • Employee downtime running around town trying to find a solution
  • Overtime expenses
  • Higher repair expenses.

Here are some of the operating conditions that require backup equipment:

  • Equipment failure
  • Equipment down for maintenance
  • Equipment in the wrong location
  • Equipment contains the wrong product (chemical)
  • Equipment on a vehicle that was in a traffic accident
  • Equipment misused by a technician who causes damage.

It gets worse. Equipment fails during your busy season, when you can least afford downtime. This is also the time when your customer’s pest pressure is greatest so they may be less willing to tolerate delays. Demand for repair services is greatest – there may be a delay in getting a replacement.   Many vendors cut back on inventory during the recession, which could mean getting replacement parts takes longer.

What do we do about this problem?

  1. Identify critical equipment.

Review your equipment by vehicle, by service, by technician to identify the most important tools.

  1. Develop a backup plan for each critical item

For some items it may be easiest to buy a replacement. For more expensive items, you may have to get creative. Look through that pile of used equipment in the corner and see if you can create something valuable out of it. Keeping a trailer in reserve can be cheaper than keeping an extra vehicle in the fleet.

  1. Review your plan.

Review your backup plan annually to ensure it is still applicable. Test the backup equipment periodically to ensure it is functioning properly.   Don’t assume that equipment sitting in the corner for years is still going to work.

A little time spent identifying critical equipment and developing backup plans will save time, money and stress during your busy pest control season.