The national average cost for a pool cleaner is $86 a month for weekly service or about $1,032 per year on average. Expect to spend $150 to $300 for a one-time pool cleaning service, $95 to winterize your pool and $75 to inspect it for problems. How much you'll pay in total will depend on the specific service you need, how big (or small) your pool is and many other factors.
|Pool Service||Average Price||Range|
|Basic cleaning, with monthly service||$86 per visit||$80-$200|
|One-time cleaning (outside of a service contract)||$225||$150-$300|
|Pool closing (winterizing)||$95||$85-$500|
As a homeowner, having a backyard or indoor swimming pool is a luxury. However, regular maintenance and cleanings are necessary to extend your pool's life and prevent costly swimming pool repairs down the line. For these reasons, many pool owners hire a pool company to come in once a week or once a month to keep their pool water sparkling clean, and the pumps and filters humming.
Whether you want to up your weekly cleaning game or get your swimming pool ready for a new season, a professional pool cleaner can help. Before you hire someone, get an estimate on pool cleaning costs with this guide.
What's in this cost guide?
- Common pool cleaning services and costs
- Pool cleaning cost factors
- What's included in a pool cleaning?
- How to hire a pool cleaning pro
- Find a swimming pool cleaning service near you
From basic cleanings and pool openings to acid washing and repairs, here's a look at the estimated costs for swimming pool maintenance and cleaning services.
Basic pool cleaning services cost an average of $80 to $200 per session nationwide, depending on if it's a one-time visit or part of an annual contract.
To do a basic cleaning, pool cleaning companies will send a tech to your house monthly, bi-weekly or weekly. During a basic pool maintenance or cleaning visit, the technician will:
- Test the water for cleanliness and pH levels, then adjust the chemistry if needed
- Check filters, settings and equipment
- Clear debris
- Brush down walls
- Clean out skimmer and pump baskets
- Backwash the pool's circulation system.
Maintenance isn't the only service you'll need, however. You might also hire techs to do seasonal jobs like opening or closing a pool — both of which can vary in price.
>>Get free estimates. Contact the best pool cleaners near you.
When it's time for your pool to come out of hibernation in the spring, a pro will remove the cover, reassemble the filter system, clean the water, test its chemistry, refill it, and turn on the pump and other equipment.
If your pool grew algae over the winter and got dirty and green, you'll also need to pay for a deep cleaning and algaecide (also called pool acid washing) treatment.
When pool season is over, you'll need to get it ready for its winter nap. To do this, a technician will shock the water, lower the water level, clean the sides and bottom of the pool, and backwash the filter. The pro will also close and store filter elements, clear water lines and put the cover on.
Because shocking the water takes a couple of days, a pro usually needs two visits to close a pool.
Acid washing removes stains caused by algae and hard water. It's a big job and requires draining the water, then scrubbing the sides and bottom with muriatic acid. If you take care of your pool properly, you'll need acid washing only once every five to seven years.
But keep in mind acid washing is only for plaster or Pebble Tec pools, not pools with vinyl liners.
If you've been DIY-ing your pool maintenance or — worse — skipping it altogether, it's a good idea to get a pool inspection.
A pool inspector will check your pool for cracks, the tile and decking around the pool for damage, and the pumps and filtration systems. They will also look for salt corrosion in saltwater pools and check automated controls.
Some pool cleaning companies are certified to do inspections and will include a free inspection when you sign up for a service contract.
>>See local pros near you. Hire a swimming pool inspector today.
The cost to clean and maintain your pool depends on a variety of factors, including the type of service you need, the pool's size and type, and whether you get a package deal. Keep all of these factors in mind when researching swimming pool maintenance and cleaning costs.
Nationwide, pool cleaning companies charge an average of $60 to $90 per hour, so the bigger the pool, the higher the cost. For example, a Thumbtack pro and pool cleaner in Cumming, GA, charges $60 to clean most average-sized pools and $75 for extra-large ones.
Cleaning an average-sized pool takes an hour and a half to two hours. A larger pool could take three to five hours.
It might cost more to build a saltwater pool instead of a chlorine pool, but the maintenance and cleaning costs are lower. Below is a comparison of chlorine vs. saltwater pool service costs:
- Chlorine pools: $300-$800 per year
- Saltwater pools: $70-$100 per year
Chlorine pools use chlorine to keep the water crystal clear and sanitary, and costs $300 to $800 in chemicals each year. That cost is priced into pool cleaning services. Meanwhile, the chemical cost for saltwater pools is just $70 to $100 annually.
With chlorine pools, the chlorine must be added, tested and balanced frequently to maintain correct levels. And weekly water checks are recommended.
Saltwater pools use chlorine to keep the water clean and clear, too, but the chlorine is made by a chlorine generator instead of being added in the form of tablets. The chlorine generator passes a small electric charge through the pool water, separating water molecules into hydrogen and oxygen. Instead of adding chlorine to the pool water, you add salt, which reacts with the hydrogen to make hypochlorous acid, the disinfection agent of chlorine. Technicians also don't have to do water testing and balancing as often.
Indoor pools tend to stay a lot cleaner than outdoor pools because they're not exposed to the falling leaves and tree debris, animals or the elements. So, you'll likely save money on regular cleaning if you have an indoor pool.
But although indoor pools might need less frequent visits, you will still need them year-round.
Above ground pools tend to be smaller than in-ground pools, so they don't take as long or cost as much to clean.
How many months your pool is open
If you live in Phoenix, Miami, San Diego or any place where your swimming pool is open for business year-round, you won't have to pay to close and open the pool. These two once-a-year tasks can cost several hundred dollars each, increasing your annual maintenance service costs.
Most pool service companies will give you better prices if you sign a year-long contract than if you buy pool maintenance services a la carte. For example, a Thumbtack pro and pool cleaner in Roswell, GA, charges $45 per hour for pool cleaning done on an annual contract and $80 an hour for one-time visits outside of a contract.
You will pay about the same for monthly service as you will for weekly or bi-weekly service because the pool stays cleaner and takes less time to service with more frequent visits. You may also get better rates on pool closing and openings if they're part of a package.
>>How much will you pay? Get free estimates from pool cleaners near you.
A basic pool cleaning package usually includes weekly and monthly services.
Weekly services include:
- Check pH levels and balance pool chemicals
- Skim debris from the surface and vacuum the bottom of the pool
- Empty skimmer baskets
- Check water level and add water if needed
Monthly services include all of the above and:
- Check proper operation of pool equipment
- Check filters and clean as needed. Sand filters and diatomaceous earth (DE) filters need to be backwashed, while cartridge filters should be removed and sprayed with a hose.
- Clean and check automatic pool cleaning systems
You'll usually be charged extra for treatments like a chlorine shock (a chemical process that's a deep clean for pool water), phosphate removers, clarifiers, algaecide and backwashing the filtration system. You might be charged by the hour or pay a flat fee by task.
For example, a Thumbtack pro in Phoenix charges $60 a month to only check chemicals and $90 a month for weekly full-service visits that include skimming, brushing, emptying all baskets and an equipment check. Additional services are $60 per hour.
Before you hire a professional pool company or cleaner, be sure to:
- Read online reviews and make sure they have experience maintaining pools like yours.
- Get free estimates from multiple pool companies. If you're signing an annual contract, you'll especially want to shop around to make sure you're getting the best deal.
- Ask exactly what the estimate includes. Does the cleaning quote include the cost of pool chemicals and replacement filters? How will you be charged for extras like chlorine shocks, filter backwashes or algaecide? How many visits per month do you get with an annual service contract?
- Hire qualified technicians. There are "pool guys," and there are the pool techs who are Certified Maintenance Specialists (CMS) and know how to keep your pool perfect. Spend the money on certified pool cleaners, because your swimming pool is too expensive to cut corners with shoddy care.
For more tips on how to hire a professional, visit Thumbtack's Smart Hiring guide.
Find a swimming pool cleaning service near you
Ready to hire a professional to do the dirty work of keeping your pool clean? Read reviews and find a pool cleaning specialist near you on Thumbtack.