I’ve been in the swimming pool industry for 40 years and I’m now seeing some things I have never seen. Low cost pool guys who know almost nothing about the business. They are charging $100 a month for any pool. We were charging that 30 years ago. As we all know the dollar is worth a fraction of what it was 30 years ago due to inflation.
I can give you this $100 rate only if you have a very small pool with no spa, a large newer filter, perfectly kept back yard and a few other requirements. This only applies to 10% of the pools in the valley. To do the job properly you need the experience, the proper chemicals and time. Three things most companies don’t have. I know everybody would like the cheapest price but experience teaches most of us that the cheapest price most of the time can become the most expensive. I’m called 20-30 times a year to fix a disaster some low cost pool guy created. Most of these guys fall apart in the summer as the high temps put extreme stress on a cheap pool guy. This is when you find out what your pool guy is made of. Our chemical cost goes up ten times in July compared to December. Simply put, the cheap pool guy can’t afford to put in the proper chemicals and he has too many customers because he gave away his services. This is killing our industry.
In the spring of 2020 I met two customers who hired the cheap guy to acid wash their pools. These guys used just acid and water, burned the finish and destroyed the plaster. We add special soaps and stain removers to prevent this damage. Both these customers had to pull out $5,000 to resurface their pools and they were not happy to say the least. And guess what? Those pool guys are nowhere to be found. I understand we all have to start somewhere and I support new business owners, but let’s get real about what it really costs to properly maintain a swimming pool and spa. We are paying $4 per gallon wholesale for commercial grade acid and $120 for a 50 pound bucket of commercial grade chlorine tablets, and the price is going up monthly.
Proper 2021 pricing would be closer to $135 per month for a small to medium sized pool and spa combination, more for pools that have difficult situations like an unkempt yard or aging pool equipment.
Pools over 35,000 gallons might be properly priced $145-200 per month.
This is to give the customer a perfect pool where they could drink the water if needed, as the water enters the swimmers mouth, ears and noses during a fun day in the pool.
Improper chemical balance can cause intestinal viruses, Legionnaires’ disease and ear infections. In extreme situations, people and children die from improper pool and spa care. Warm water with no chlorine can become infectious in a short time especially if small children are involved.
I’m not trying to scare you but educate the public of the realitys of improper pool and spa care.
In summation, ask your pool service professional how much experience they have and what type of chemicals they are using. There used to be a saying in a commercial when I was growing up: “Pay me now or pay me later”