How to Start a Pool Cleaning Business? – Here’s a Comprehensive Guide

Most residents of the United States often like to swim. Therefore, many of them have a swimming pool, which will need maintenance at regular intervals. So, they need pool cleaners to keep their pools operative and clean.

The market size of the U.S. swimming pool cleaning service industry is $8 billion. Moreover, this market has also seen an average growth of 6.1% per year between 2017 and 2022. It means that there are a lot of opportunities for new businesses to make the most of it using a robust strategy.

There’s much more to the job than just showing up and wiping things down! So, before you start a pool cleaning business, you should know in and out of the pool cleaning process. Let’s dive into all about how to start a pool cleaning business.

What is Pool Cleaning Business? 

Pool cleaning is a lot of work. It’s also fun, but let’s keep that a secret.

Pool cleaning businesses deal with water levels and check the chemical balance in the water and adjust them if necessary. Such businesses also keep an eye on the filters and pumps. These are complicated machinery, and letting them break can get expensive. If you’re starting your own pool cleaning business, you must know how to sort out problems with pumps and filters.

As a pool cleaning business owner, you’ll also need to keep track of when is the season to open or close your pools for the year, which means there will be lots of extra work during the busiest season.

9 Steps to Start a Pool Cleaning Business 

Here are the 9 steps to help you start your pool cleaning business.

1. Come up with a business plan 

When you’re ready to start a business, the first step is to research and strategize.

A well-thought-out entire business plan will help you keep track of your time and finances and induce growth. It’ll also be helpful for business decisions when it comes time to apply for loans or grants from banks or government agencies.

business plan to start a pool cleaning business

A good pool cleaning business plan will allow you to:

  • Set goals for yourself and your business.
  • Understand how you are going to manage your operations and the swimming pool service industry standing.
  • Cater to your marketing and financial requirements.
  • Identify potential problems with your pool business structure before they become serious issues later.
  • Pinpoint what skills are needed for each position within your company.

2. Register your pool cleaning business

One of the most critical steps in starting a pool service is registering your business with the state. A pool cleaning business can be registered as a sole proprietorship, partnership, or limited liability company (LLC). This will allow you to pay business taxes, and open a business bank account & credit card. You will also get access to startup funding and help build a credit history.

Most people register their businesses in the state where they live. Still, if you plan to expand, you might consider looking elsewhere, as some states could offer real advantages regarding servicing pools.

The legal structure you choose for your pool service will shape your business. After opening a business account, you should get a business credit card too, which can be later helpful for applying for any business loans. A legal business entity will provide more protection for personal assets and allow for growth over time.

3. Get the required permits & business license

You’ll need to be licensed and trained to start a pool cleaning business. In some states, this means taking and passing a test that ensures you know about pools before you can clean them.

Becoming certified as a Certified Pool Operator varies from state to state. In most places, you’ll need to be approved by the National Spa Pool Foundation to stay in business.

Getting certified will give you the training you need to take care of a pool properly.

4. Apply for pool cleaning business insurance

Your business is more than just a collection of people and products. It’s a dream you’ve worked hard to make happen and deserves to thrive. That’s why you need insurance to operate safely and lawfully and protect your company’s financial well-being in case of a covered loss.

There are several types of insurance policies created for different types of businesses with various risks including personal asset protection. If you’re unsure of your business risks, begin with General Liability Insurance—it’s the most common business insurance coverage that small businesses need.

5. Buy pool cleaning equipment

When starting a pool cleaning business, the first thing you’ll need is a truck. You don’t want to be that one who shows up on your potential client’s doorstep underprepared, right?

Once you have the truck, it’s time to equip it with all the essential tools and equipment: telescopic pole, skimmer attachment, pool brush attachment, vacuum head, vacuum hose, pool filter, pool filter media, and pool pump. The equipment list goes on!

These tools and equipment will help your team perform at its best and provide customers with an excellent customer experience. And that is essential for any pool service business owner who wants their pool cleaning company to succeed.

6. Define your pool cleaning business brand

Branding is a crucial part of a successful pool cleaning business. Whether you’re a startup or a well-established company, your brand is what your company stands for, and it’s how the public perceives your business.

Your brand will set you apart from your competition and make people want to work with you. 

That’s why it’s so important to take advantage of all the ways you can build your brand. This includes website development, active presence on social media accounts, and real-life activities.

7. Focus on USP

To lure customers into your pool cleaning business, you must have a USP (Unique Selling Proposition). You should do everything possible to ensure your USPs stand out on your website and in your marketing materials. 

Customers are inundated with buying options today, so you must have a real advantage that tells them how your pool cleaning business meets their needs or wishes.

8. Market your services

When starting a pool cleaning business, you might think getting an ideal customer will be a big challenge. But it doesn’t have to be. The perfect time to market your pool cleaning services is in the late winter or early spring when people start thinking about their swimming pools.

market pool cleaning business

Use digital marketing to get the word out about your business profiles. It will help people find your company when looking for local pool cleaners or pool technicians.

In addition, when advertising with Google, ensure your business is listed correctly. Google will help potential customers find you when they search for local pool cleaners near them.

9. Provide good customer service

You have a lot to offer your ideal clients as a pool service business, but make quality customer service your priority. This is irrespective of whether you’re targeting residential pools or commercial pools.

Provide good customer service for pool cleaning business

Be on time and communicate with clients in a way they understand (without jargon about cleaning pools). Make them feel deeply understood and heard; your clients will be happier knowing they’re getting exactly what they need from a pool service business.

Use Upper to Find Optimized Routes for Your Pool Cleaning Services

Avoid manual route planning hassles and find the best routes for your service visits. Let the Upper schedule and assign your cleaning jobs in just a few seconds.

Equipment for Pool Cleaning Business 

There are a lot of pool cleaning tools on the market, but we’re here to tell you that you only need nine:

  1. Water test strips and test kits
  2. Pool shock
  3. Algae brush
  4. Manual pool vacuum
  5. Leaf skimmer
  6. Telescopic pole
  7. Multi-purpose surface cleaner
  8. Filter cleaner
  9. Pool cover

Pros and Cons of a Pool Cleaning Business 

Here are some pros of owning a pool maintenance business and offering pool cleaning services.

Pros
  • Pool cleaning businesses require low start-up costs than most businesses, and the opportunity is huge.
  • Pool cleaning is rewarding work as you quickly solve a customer’s issue. It also keeps you physically active.
  • You can pick and choose your clients as pool cleaning businesses remain in high demand. The retention rates are high too because of happy customers.
  • Pool cleaning companies enjoy high-income potential.
Cons
  • Pool cleaning business requires you to handle toxic pool cleaning chemicals daily. Some of them can be dangerous if misused or without proper safety equipment.
  • You need to be extremely vigilant about your pool equipment to prevent expensive breakdowns at the business property.
  • As a pool technician, you must accept that pool cleaning is repetitive work that doesn’t come with remote working advantages.
  • Projects and income can be inconsistent as pool maintenance is a seasonal business. This is until pool service businesses establish a brand. The ideal time for a pool maintenance company is during the busy summer season. Hence, you will need to find some other work during the off-season.

What is the cost of launching a pool cleaning business? 

Starting a pool service business is relatively inexpensive, with most startup costs at $2,000 or less. The majority of the capital goes towards equipment and additional supplies. Purchasing these items in bulk helps keep costs low but may increase the initial investment slightly.

Get Optimized Routes on Upper for Your Daily Appointments 

Your cleaners are working hard to keep your customers happy, but they will be able to do it well only if they’re in the right place at the right time.

Upper Route Planner—the only automated route planning solution you need for your pool cleaning business. It’s an easy-to-use software that will ensure your cleaners get to the right places at the correct times, so they can work faster and more efficiently than ever.

Upper’s intuitive interface makes it easy for business owners like yourself to plan and optimize routes so you can ditch the exhausting paperwork and focus on core business operations. 

Here’s how Upper can help you offer pool maintenance services to your target market, lower business expenses, and constantly secure customers.

1. Lets you focus on core business operations

As a pool cleaning business owner, route planning and scheduling aren’t what you must ideally spend your time on. Upper route planning and optimization software understands and automates this process so you can focus on core business operations. 

2. Increases delivery efficiency

With Upper, you don’t have to worry about your drivers wasting time on inefficient routes or spending money on fuel. Upper helps your service team to save an hour of drive time per day, thus increasing efficiency. You can do the employee planning for you so that you can focus on maximizing business profits.

3. Increases customer satisfaction

Upper helps you send automatic notifications to your customers (pool owners) about your ETA. Keeping your customers informed about your arrival helps them be prepared. Also, efficient route planning will ensure you always stick to schedules and arrive on time. Such proactive behavior helps small business owners to increase customer satisfaction and grow a successful business.

4. Captures Proof of delivery 

Upper’s proof of delivery feature helps drivers collect e-signature and capture photos (client details) at the time of successful task completion. This increases the cleaner’s accountability and keeps everyone in the loop once the information is submitted.

Get your 7-day free trial of Upper Route Planner today.

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FAQs

The answer depends on a few factors, including the size of the pool and how much it is used, but most cleaners will be able to get through the cleaning process in about one – four hours. The average pool service technician can service approximately 16 full-service swimming pools a day.

Pool cleaning services are a great way to make money. You can clean pools for residential and commercial clients and make between $50 and $60 per hour. Offer minor repairs and maintenance, and you can increase your profit by several hundred dollars per hour, and earn between $75,000 and $85,000 annually.

While pool cleaning is not a difficult task, it can be a tedious one. It takes time to monitor water chemistry, filter it, clean up debris, and circulate it with pumps. You need proper training and experience to understand and master the pool cleaning work thoroughly to meet your client expectations.

Following are some of the necessary tools for the pool cleaning business:

  • Leaf rakes
  • Poles
  • Hoses
  • Skimmers
  • Brushes
  • Vacuum
  • pH test strips or Chlorine-pH test kits
  • Algaecide

Conclusion

If you are willing to start your pool cleaning business, it will now be easier for you. Following the steps mentioned in this guide, we hope your new business will flourish.

As a business owner, you will need to handle a team of employees for providing services. You can take help from route planning and optimization software like Upper. With Upper, your cleaners can find efficient routes to reach their destination faster and fulfill more daily appointments. 

You can book a demo with us to check why you need the Upper Route Planner. 

Author Bio
Rakesh Patel
Rakesh Patel

Rakesh Patel is the founder and CEO of Upper Route Planner. A subject matter expert in building simple solutions for day-to-day problems, Rakesh has been involved in technology for 30+ years. Looking to help delivery businesses eliminate on-field delivery challenges, Rakesh started Upper Route Planner with the ultimate goal of simplistic operations in mind.

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