How Much Does It Cost to Maintain a Pool?
Having a pool is wonderful: plenty of opportunities to relax with your family, invite friends and neighbors over, and just enjoy the summer—and even the whole year if you live in a southern state.
But unless you want your swimming pool to turn into a frog pond, complete with algae, debris, and cloudy water, you must maintain it properly to keep it in top condition and suitable for swimming.
Frequent and regular maintenance will protect your pool from problems and extend its life by several years.
At a Glance
While costs vary depending on a number of factors, here are some typical figures:
The national average maintenance cost of a swimming pool is around $130 per month but varies between as low as $80 to as much as $300. Some packages include the opening and closing of your swimming pool, or you might be asked to pay extra for that service.
- An hour of professional pool maintenance costs between $75 and $100.
- Weekly maintenance costs between $100 and $200 per month, depending on the size and material of the swimming pool.
- One-time cleaning costs $250 on average.
- Opening or closing your swimming pool costs between $250 and $500.
- An initial cleaning session can vary from $120 to $250.
- A yearly supply of chemicals costs between $500 and $800, depending on the size and the material the swimming pool is made of.
Your swimming pool will need maintenance, chemicals, and repairs. Regular maintenance will make sure your swimming pool runs smoothly, the water is clean, and the equipment is taken care of.
Let’s take a look at what is included in pool maintenance.
Imagine a gigantic fishing net, with a long pole and a mesh net at the end. Skimming is necessary to clean debris, leaves, insects, and any other floating dirt. It keeps the swimming pool water clean.
Maintenance also includes vacuuming the floor of your swimming pool. Dust, dirt, and fine particles cannot be caught by skimming. So they eventually end up at the bottom of your swimming pool. You can use an automatic or a manual vacuum to clean the pool’s floor.
You need to keep your swimming pool walls clean. Brushing takes care of that. It’s a good idea to brush first and then vacuum your swimming pool, so that any dirt that falls from the walls during brushing will be removed when vacuuming the floor.
There are various types of filters. Depending on your swimming pool construction, you will find sand filters, cartridge filters, and DE filters. These need changing on a regular basis to keep your swimming pool clean and well filtered.
Unless your swimming pool is an indoor one, water will evaporate with heat and people splashing and playing around. Maintenance will make sure your water level does not fall too low, otherwise you risk breaking parts and equipment of your pool.
Checking Water pH
Your water pH levels need to be just right. If your swimming pool is too acidic or alkaline, it will irritate the skin and damage your swimming pool equipment. You need to keep the water pH at the right level for people to swim safely.
Pool chemicals keep your water clean, the pH balanced, and bacteria and other unwanted intruders at bay.
Chemicals include chlorine, algaecides (to kill algae), clarifiers to keep the water translucent, and pool shock if you need to shock the pool with extra chlorine. When you brush the sides of the swimming pool, you also need a stain remover.
All these are necessary to keep the swimming pool clean and safe for swimming, which is why costs for pool chemicals can add up to $800 per year.
If you are installing a concrete swimming pool, expect around $750 for chemicals.
Regularly maintaining your swimming pool will keep it running smoothly. However, no matter how diligent you are, equipment does break down. At some point, you will inevitably need to consider equipment replacement costs, which are extra from weekly maintenance and cleaning.
A new vacuum to clean the water costs around $600.
If your swimming pool filter breaks down, you will need to pay up to $1,000 for a new one. Filters are necessary for keeping your swimming pool clean and safe.
Vinyl swimming pools will require resurfacing or relining every 5 to 10 years. This involves a cost of $3,000 to $5,000 for each resurfacing occasion.
It is advised to put aside $500 per year for repairs, broken parts, and other unforeseen replacement incidents. Of course, some parts are more expensive than others: a water heater can cost up to $3,000 if replaced, and a new swimming pool pump could cost between $200 and $800.
What Indirect Costs Should I Keep in Mind?
Pumps and swimming pool equipment run on electricity. A pump will be filtering your swimming pool for up to one-third of the day. This implies an increase in your monthly cost of electricity that can reach $100.
If your swimming pool is heated—and you are not using solar panels—then you will need to add an extra $100 per month for heating the swimming pool water.
You will need to fill up your swimming pool once you construct it. But you will also need to top-up the water regularly because of evaporation and people splashing water when swimming and playing.
It is estimated that, on average, your water bill will increase by about $20 per month if you have a swimming pool. Larger pools will require bigger top-ups. The cost also varies depending on your state and municipality. California charges more for water than other states, for instance.
Your insurance company will ask you to increase your liability insurance for injuries or accidents occurring on your property. Swimming pool areas are more prone to accidents since people can slip or hurt themselves. A swimming pool could increase your liability insurance by $20 to $25 per month.
An in-ground swimming pool will increase the value of your property, usually by an estimated 7%. While this is great news, it also means that your property tax will go up since your property is more valuable.
What Affects Maintenance Costs?
Maintenance costs depend on several variables.
Swimming Pool Size
The larger the swimming pool, the more expensive it will be to maintain it. The pumps will need to clean larger water quantities, while a big pool will need more chemicals to clean the water and maintain the water pH. Smaller swimming pools require less work and fewer chemicals.
Your Swimming Pool Age
An old swimming pool often demands costly repairs, since filters, vacuums, and other equipment need replacing with time.
Southern states have cheaper maintenance packages than northern ones, despite the fact that swimming pools are used for longer stretches of time. That’s in part because swimming pools in southern states don’t require winterization.
Some say that concrete swimming pools are more expensive to maintain than vinyl or fiberglass ones. However, they do not need relining while vinyl ones need to be relined every 5 to 10 years. That means emptying the pool, relining, and refilling the pool. When considering the maintenance cost of a swimming pool, you need to look at it long-term.
A weekly maintenance package will make sure that minor problems are dealt with quickly before they turn into bigger issues.
A monthly frequency could be cheaper at first but your technicians might miss a small problem that turns into a bigger one between visits. Repairing is always more expensive than maintaining.
Therefore, a maintenance package that seems expensive at first could save you money down the line.
What about Indoor Swimming Pools?
Amazingly enough, an indoor swimming pool can be less costly to maintain. There is less sunlight, therefore the chemicals in the pool remain balanced for a longer time.
Likewise, no leaves, insects, and debris fall into the swimming pool, so cleaning it is faster and easier.
And because the swimming pool is not in direct contact with sunlight, there is less evaporation, hence less need for extra water and water top-ups.
However, and bearing in mind that installing an indoor swimming pool can be significantly more expensive than an open-air one, the difference in maintenance may not make such a big difference overall.
What Is Pool Closing and Pool Opening?
Pool closing is when you prepare your pool for winter. This is necessary for northern states, where winter makes outdoor swimming impossible.
When professionals close a swimming pool, they shock the water with extra chlorine, lower the water levels, clean and wash the filters, clean and clear the water lines, and pull up the cover over the pool.
Conversely, pool opening is when you prepare your swimming pool for the summer season. It involves the reverse process, i.e. you remove the cover, top up the water level, run the filters, check the water chemistry, and turn on the pump to start cleaning the water.
The Average Cost of Operating a Home Swimming Pool
Some professionals estimate the overall cost of running a swimming pool as 10% to 15% of the initial installation cost per year. If your swimming pool costs $30,000 to install, it may cost around $3,000 per year to maintain and run your swimming pool.
Concrete swimming pools last longer than vinyl or fiberglass ones, as the latter require more frequent repairs and relining.
Larger swimming pools or heated ones are more expensive to maintain than simpler and smaller ones.
Hiring professionals to maintain your swimming pool will save you time and money as many of these expenses are included in the monthly cost. You will also have peace of mind that swimming pool technicians are taking expert care of your swimming pool, making sure it is safe and pleasant for swimming.
If you are looking for swimming pool maintenance packages, call now Waterside Poolscapes, the top U.S. Pool Builder, on 281-690-4810, schedule a free, no-obligation swimming pool design consultation, email us, or contact us online.
Should you wish to meet in person, visit our showroom at 25311 Kingsland Blvd #110, Katy, TX 77494. Office Hours: 8:30-4:30 Monday to Friday, CST.