Swimming Pool Maintenance Cost

In this guide

Health risks
Types
Labor
Enhancements
Additional Considerations

How much does it cost to maintain a swimming pool?

Swimming pools are a lot of fun in the summer months, as well as a great way to cool off. Unfortunately, if not properly maintained a swimming pool can become a breeding ground for bacteria such as E.coli as well as protozoa, fungi, and viruses within just two weeks. Swimmers introduce a variety of contaminates into a swimming pool with each entry, including lotions, cosmetics, urine, fecal matter, and dirt. Left alone, your pool can quickly become a toxic soup that no one will want to enter.

This is why maintaining your pool on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis is so important. There are numerous methods for pool maintenance, and the size of your pool and the amount of use it gets will factor into how much and what type of maintenance you’ll need, all of which can affect the cost. The average homeowner spends at least $250 monthly on DIY pool maintenance costs, with some homeowners paying an additional $100 to $200 monthly on professional maintenance as well.

Health risks

The World Health Organization (WHO) has published a report on recreational swimming pool maintenance. WHO recommends daily and weekly treatment of swimming pools to avoid a number of different health risks that can be associated with all types of pools. Standing water, such as a swimming pool, can become the breeding ground to a number of different bacteria, viruses, and pathogens. People with lowered immune systems, children, and the elderly are at particularly high risk of contracting serious illnesses through the use of an unmaintained swimming pool. These pathogens can become introduced to the water through a number of different sources including fecal matter, insects, rodents and pests, groundwater runoff, and users who may already be ill. Once introduced into the water, the use of pool heaters help to encourage the growth of these pathogens along with other organisms such as algae until the pool becomes unsafe to enter. Proper filtering and chemical maintenance can prevent these issues from occurring and keep your pool safe for use.

Types

Pools take a lot of maintenance on a regular basis to keep them safe for use. This maintenance changes depending on the time of year, whether you are opening or closing the pool, the size of the pool,and how much use it may get.

Type of MaintenanceWhen to PerformAverage Cost
Test and Adjust PH, Calcium, and Sanitizer LevelsOn opening$80 - monthly in test kits and chemicals
Check and Adjust Water TemperatureDaily$75 - $250 monthly electric costs for heat pump
Run Pool FilterDaily$30 - $50 monthly electric cost
Visually Inspect Pool and Clean As NeededDailyNo cost beyond time invested DIY or $100 - $200 monthly in professional pool cleaning
Vacuum PoolOn opening and closing$600 for the vacuum or $100 to $200 month in professional pool cleaning
Adjust Water LevelsOn opening and closing$30 - $60 yearly in water costs
Remove leaves and debris, empty skimmer basket, and brush down wallsWeekly$100 - $200 monthly in professional pool cleaning costs
Add AlgaecideWeekly$20 - $30 in chemicals a month
Clean Filter and InspectMonthlyNo cost beyond time invested DIY or $100 - $200 monthly in professional pool cleaning costs
Lubricate Fittings, Valves, and PlugsOn opening$10 - $20 for lubricant
Take Samples of Water for Professional TestingOn opening$20 - $40 per test


In addition, depending on the type of pool you have and whether or not it is covered or lined, as well as what type of water you have, you may need to brush or clean the liner, check hardness levels and adjust chemicals accordingly, as well as maintain the equipment. Most pool cleaning services can do these things for you if you get on a regular maintenance schedule. Otherwise, you may need to perform these actions yourself.

Types of chemicals

There are a number of different chemicals that you may need to help maintain your pool These include things like shock, chlorine, sanitizer, and algaecide. What your pool will require will depend on its condition, the type of water you have including hardness levels, and how much use it gets. The common types of pool chemicals that you will likely need include:

ChemicalUseAverage Cost
ChlorineSanitizer used to kill germs$15 - $60
BromineSanitizer sometimes used in place of chlorine$30 - $40
Pool Shock

Dramatically raises chlorine levels in the pool at opening

and whenever the free chlorine in the pool falls behind the total

chlorine levels to remove contaminates

$20 - $30
AlgaecideKills algae$20 - $25
ClarifiersClears cloudy water$20 - $30
Stain RemoverUsed to clean the sides of the pool$15 - $30
Water StabilizersTreats hard water, PH level, and calcium levels$20 - $30

Labor

Professional pool maintenance can help keep your pool clean on a weekly or monthly basis. Most people will hire a company to come out once a week to check levels of chemicals, clean the pool, and empty the filter basket. This service costs around $100 to $200 a month on average. Weekly service typically takes about an hour to perform; opening or closing the pool may take three to four hours depending on the amount of work needed. Most pool service companies work on a weekly or monthly basis, but you can sometimes hire them for a one time service call at a rate of about $75 per hour.

Enhancement and improvement costs

  • Automatic pool cleaners are available which will vacuum and clean the pool, removing debris, leaves, and some stains. They cost around $600 to purchase.
  • Winterizing your pool at the end of the season involves draining the pool and pipes, cleaning it, fitting the pump and filter for winter, and putting a cover on. You can hire a professional pool company to winterize for you for around $150.

Additional considerations and costs

  • Some homeowners choose to maintain their pools on their own. In this case, you will need to invest in a skimmer ($10), vacuum ($600), and brush ($30) in addition to the chemical supplies.
  • Having a swimming pool raises your liability insurance, which in turn will increase your monthly payments. Speak to your homeowner’s insurance agency to find out what your monthly payment will be.
  • One of the most expensive parts of maintaining a pool is the electricity needed to run the pump 1 and filter, with most people paying between $50 and $300 each month.
  • Part of swimming pool maintenance is the occasional need to repair leaks, which costs around $300.
  • Always discard any unused chemicals at the end of the season. Follow local ordinances for disposal, and purchase new chemicals when you reopen the pool.
  • Always keep pool chemicals away from sources of heat and open flame, as many are flammable.
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Remodeling Terms Cheat Sheet

Definitions in laymen's terms, cost considerations, pictures and things you need to know.
See full cheat sheet.
1 Pump: A device used to move air, liquid, or gas by mechanical means

Cost to maintain a swimming pool varies greatly by region (and even by zipcode). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

Labor cost by city and zipcode

Compared to national average
Chicago, IL
+40%
Compton, MD
+3%
Downey, CA
+9%
Frederick, MD
0%
Hollywood, FL
0%
Pompano Beach, FL
+2%
Saint Paul, MN
+20%
San Antonio, TX
-4%
Springfield, IL
-3%
Tempe, AZ
+1%
Vista, CA
+8%

Labor cost in your zipcode

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