How to choose the correct monthly pool cleaning company
Trying to pick a pool service you can trust from websites alone can often be frustrating. The average pool owner doesn’t know pool water chemistry and equipment in depth, nor do they want to. Most of our customers are just looking for a reliable service to take care of their pool properly and keep it safe and in good working order so there is one less thing to worry about.
There are a some good pool services in Florida who are licensed and insured, know what they are doing, and take the time to train their employees. However there are also a lot of routes that were purchased by someone with no background in the pool business who has never taken the time to learn the business in depth. They don’t have a good understanding of pool chemistry, equipment or most importantly how all of these relate to their customer’s health and safety.
There are also a lot of what are called, “guy and a truck” services. These are small one person businesses. There are some who have taken the time to get a full license and keep up with their industry education but unfortunately there are also many who try to slide along under the radar. If the truck breaks down or “the guy” gets sick your pool may be the one getting skipped for a while. When asked if they are licensed before repairing your equipment they may tell you they don’t need to be or say they have a CPO “license”. Other times they give customers a speech about how licensing is just a scam for the state to make more money and how, “they have forgotten more than the licensed guys ever knew.” Please Don’t buy it. Besides it not being legal to have an unlicensed person repair or replace your pool equipment it should be a warning about who you are working with. A state level certified license shows customers that this is a business that has the education and has invested the time and expense to do things correctly. To be able to sit for the license you need to be able to provide proof of several years of experience in pool industry. There is classroom time and a challenging test involved as well. To maintain a state certification the license holder is required to take an additional minimum of 14 hours of continuing education on industry specific courses every two years. Someone who is not maintaining this level of expertise will be behind in the latest equipment, techniques and most importantly, safety level required to maintain your pool and equipment.
When looking for a weekly maintenance service it is also important to avoid the “splash and dash” companies. Some pool services have high employee turnover, give their pool technicians the bare minimum in training and give them too many pools to clean every day to ensure the correct amount of attention is given to each job when needed. Unfortunately this leads to them dashing back to your pool dumping a jug of chlorine and a few cups of acid in as their best guess and then jumping back in the truck to hurry on to the next job. Very often when we take over a pool from another company the chlorine levels are off the charts and all the other levels to have safe balanced water are well outside acceptable ranges. This water is unsafe to swim in and over time will cost you a lot more money because it damages the pool surface and equipment.
Here are some important questions to ask a prospective pool service:
- What is the license level you hold and your license number?
- Can you email copies of your liability and workmans comp proof of insurance pages?
- How often do you check the chlorine level and PH? (Hint: This should be every week)
- What other water chemistry parameters do you check (This should be alkalinity, stabilizer, calcium hardness and salt (if a salt pool) and should be done at a minimum on a monthly basis).