Pool Cleaning Business 101 Guide: Your Guide To Pool Maintenance Business Industry In The U.S.

pool cleaning business

Pools aren’t as expensive as they used to be a decade ago, which is why many homeowners are adding a pool to their houses. An increasing number of pools in residential buildings has boosted the need for pool cleaning services. It’s no wonder that pool-cleaning businesses in the U.S. have increased by 7% annually since 2016.  

Although the number of businesses in the pool cleaning industry is high, with many businesses competing, there seems to be a lack of high-quality services. Over 300000 pool owners are struggling to get the right type of services for their pool. Yes, it may not be a flashy business idea, but pool cleaning is indeed a rewarding business model and a hassle-free one.  

If you are interested to start a pool cleaning business, it’s important to first understand the industry and how beneficial it is for you. 

Pros & Cons

Pros & cons
Pool maintenance is a low startup cost business idea.  Active lifestyle and chances of staying outdoors.  In most areas of the country, it’s a seasonal work.  It’s a tedious job and can be demotivating at times.  Some states make it mandatory to have licenses.  

The pool cleaning industry is growing, and the USA is one of the biggest markets for pool cleaning business in the world.  

Industry_ Pool Cleaning Industry Size & Trends

Industry Overview: Pool Cleaning in Recent Times

The pool cleaning industry has undergone a considerable shift after COVID-19. People who were staying at home started getting their pools constructed and maintained. That’s where the need for pool cleaners and technicians increased in the U.S.A.  

Many new companies emerged in the industry, and the industry started to become more competitive. However, a rising need for pool maintenance made many business owners change their service plans. New maintenance and pool cleaning services with subsidized pricing plans became more popular for clients who’d love to subscribe to a maintenance service. This helped pool cleaning businesses maintain a steady income inflow.  

Industry Overview_ Pool Cleaning in Recent Times

However, many commercial pool-owning clients already have in-house equipment for pool cleaning. They consider this investment to lower their maintenance expenditure. While this trend might lower pool cleaning business potential, the business wouldn’t go obsolete since there are multiple luxury houses with pools requiring maintenance.  

Instead of taking jobs away or reducing the pool maintenance industry to zero, technological development will only improve and support pool maintenance businesses. Also,  

Also, the Asia Pacific region is bound to be at the forefront in pool cleaning revenue share, which exemplifies the reach of the industry on a global level. With the above factors in perspective, the industry seems to be moving towards a growth phase primarily because of innovation and the role of geographies. 

Industry Size & Growth

Industry Size and Growth

Size: The pool cleaning and maintenance industry is evaluated at a market value of $8 billion, and it has grown at a 6% rate over the last five years. As the number of pools in the U.S.A. increases, it will also create more opportunities for new business owners to expand their businesses with more clients.  

Growth: The pool cleaning business is expected to stay strong and competitive through 2027. However, what will make a change in the industry is growing awareness about disinfection measures for pools.  

A number of businesses: currently, there are more than 75000 pool cleaning businesses operating in different parts of the U.S.A. his industry also employs more than 145000 people as pool cleaners and in other subsidiary roles. and in other subsidiary roles.  

Trends & Challenges

Here are some recent trends and challenges in the pool cleaning business – 

Pool cleaning businesses have been going through several industry-changing trends lately.  

Robot Pool Cleaners: most professional sectors are automating some tasks, and pool cleaning services aren’t any exception. Robot pool cleaners are now working for businessmen to improve service efficiency.  

Sanitization Options: Salt Chlorine generators and Advanced Oxidation Process (A.O.P.) systems are becoming more popular. These technologies are great for maintaining water quality. They are also reducing the need for traditional chemicals.  

Labor Shortage: It’s challenging to find skilled laborers to run a pool cleaning business.  

Demand Hotspots: some states in the U.S.A. have warmer weather and more pools, which creates opportunities for pool cleaners.  

Pool Cleaning Business Challenges: 

Getting Certified: Pool cleaning businesses can be profitable. But there are still some challenges for business owners. For example, some states in the U.S.A. require you to get the necessary training before you become a certified C.P.O.  

Gathering equipment: If you are new to the business, choosing the right equipment can be difficult at first. Remember to stock all the equipment and materials you need to start a pool maintenance business. You will need equipment such as – test strips, pool shock, manual pool vacuum, algae brush, leaf skimmer, telescopic pole, multi-purpose surface cleaner, filter cleaner, and a pool cover.  

Difficulty getting clients: New pool cleaners might struggle to get clients, especially if they aren’t clear about their customer segmentation. Pool cleaners have to be very thorough with their marketing initiatives to attract the right client. However, usually, the marketing methods can be door-to-door marketing, such as Google Maps Satellite View. In most cases, pool cleaners have to leverage seasonality to increase revenue. 

The entry barrier is quite difficult to phase through since many established businesses are already dominating the market. Also, some business owners struggle to gather their initial startup capital.  

Who Is Working In This Industry? 

Who is Working in this Industry

The pool cleaning industry is heavily populated by male pool cleaners. 84% of the pool cleaning workers are men, while only 16% of females work as a pool cleaner. Data suggests that at least 53% of these pool cleaning professionals have a high school degree. These professionals are usually around 40 years old

Startup Cost: How Much Does It Cost To Start A Pool Cleaning Business? 

Pool cleaning is a low-startup business idea. The startup cost for a pool cleaning business can vary depending on the type of services a pool cleaner wants to provide. However, the average initial capital needed for this business is close to $2000.  

You should at least secure a budget of $8500 to successfully launch a pool cleaning business. Although you don’t need too much equipment, a significant amount of your expense will go on equipment alone.  

Startup Cost_ How Much Does it Cost to Start a Pool Cleaning Business_

Now, if you want to get started, here’s a list of equipment to get you started – 

  • Skimmers & brushes 
  • Water testing kit 
  • Pool cleaning chemicals 
  • Truck or S.U.V. to transport your equipment 
  • Leaf rakes 
  • Vacuum 
  • Or a trailer for a smaller vehicle  
  • Contract, invoice book, and pricing sheets 
Start up costBallpark range
Naming & Incorporation $150 to $200 
Licences & Permits $100 to $300 
Insurance $100 to $300 
Business Cards & Brochures  $200 to $300 
Used Truck $2000 to $5000 
Tools & Supplies $2000 to $3000 
Initial Marketing Budget $500 to $1000 
Website Setup $1000 to $3000 
Total  $2050 to $7100 

Earning Potential: How Much Can You Earn From A Pool Cleaning Business? 

Pool cleaners can charge their clients on a per-hour basis. Usually, small pool cleaning businesses charge their client with $80 or $100 per hour for a cleaning service. In fact, the service charge can also be $200 if you are offering maintenance and repair services along with cleaning services. 

Earning Potential_ How Much Can You Earn from a Pool Cleaning Business_

However, the number of customers you gain and how quickly you can complete a job determines your income potential as a pool cleaner. In the first two years of starting your career, you can expect to have 150 bookings every year. Each service will require a minimum of 3 hours of work. If you are charting $80 per service, you will earn $36000 in annual revenue.  

There is no need to buy a professional workspace initially, and you can work from home.  You can keep your equipment at any part of the house. As you continue to gain more clients, you will reach 250 customers every year. Yes, you have to hire staff, and the per-hour service charge has to be roughly $100 if you want to keep a good profit margin. At this rate, you will generate $75000 in revenue. If your profit margin is 50%, you have the potential to earn $37000 per year. 

Entry Barrier: What Barriers To Entry Are There? 

It’s pretty easy to start a pool cleaning business. But, there are entry barriers you must be aware of. Some states in the USA have strict regulations for pool cleaners. Pool cleaners first need to complete specific certifications and undergo severe training before they are able to start their business as residential or commercial pool cleaners.  

First, do your research and find out if there are any regulations regarding getting training or certifications. Pool cleaners usually want to upscale their business and become pool technicians. But it’s important to  

So it’s a good idea to get some training before you venture into this industry. Start by offering simple cleaning services like debris cleaning. Next, hone your skills and get the necessary certifications to take your business forward as a pool technician.  

Pool Cleaning Business Opportunities: Who Are Your Potential Customers? 

Pool Cleaning Business Opportunities_ Who are your Potential Customers_

Every industry has some entry barriers. Most of your pool cleaning business competitors are established, and it’ll be difficult to compete against them in common areas of service. For example, if you are planning to start a commercial cleaning service, you’ll be competing against established companies that are already providing their services to renowned hotels, motels, and residential pools.  

If you want to find the right pool cleaning business opportunity, efficient competitor research and audience research are required to shape out a niche. It’s best to try to target an underserved market. As you narrow down your focus, you can build your reputation in a niche and have a chance to expand into other areas of pool maintenance service. 

However, not all areas in the country have the same number of pools. While warm areas have more pools, the cooler areas lack those numbers. So, it’s easier to find clients in the warmer areas compared to the cooler areas in the U.S. The pool maintenance business offers opportunities for both residential and commercial clients. You can work for clients such as – 

  • Residential homeowners. 
  • Hotel or motel owners. 
  • Apartment complexes. 
  • Water parks or public pools.  

However, residential clients hold a 75% stake of the revenue generated in the pool cleaning industry.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some popular queries people have about cleaning pools – 

1.How Many Pools Can You Clean in a Day? 

The average pool tech can clean close to 20 full-size pools every day. Some pool techs can also clean 25 to 30 pools every day. The number depends on the type of pools you are cleaning,  your clients, whether you are automating your tasks or not, and the amount of staffing you have as a pool cleaner.  

2.Do You Need a License to Clean Pools? 

You don’t need to have a license to clean pools in Florida. But you need a service license if you wish to work on any components like a pump, filter, or similar. In addition, you’ll also need separate gas licenses necessary for any tech doing any such work.  

3.How Long does it Take to Fully Clean a Pool? 

It’s easy to clean a green pool using chemicals and pool filters. But, this process will take around 4 to 5 days. But you can expect to see major improvements right after starting your cleaning and within 24 hours.  


Opportunities in the pool maintenance business are growing. But, new startups will face difficulty gaining customers unless marketing is strong. Also, it’s important to choose the right customer segment if you want to see your business expanding and revenue going up consistently. Look out for new technologies in the market and learn to equip them for your business to bring out the most efficient service tailored for your customer.  

Usually, these jobs are from 9 to 6 pm jobs. Your customer might expect you at any time of the day. Remember to accept challenges and adapt to flexible service requirements for the highest profit and the longest run in the pool cleaning business.



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