Service Industry News

For more than 28 years, Service Industry News has served as the voice of the pool and spa service professional. A twice monthly newspaper, the staff covers featured stories on equipment installation, trouble-shooting and repair; water chemistry and business issues facing the industry; and news pertaining to the interests of the pool and spa technician.

In addition to the newspaper, we have produced three technical books used throughout the industry as training and reference guides. The Professional Pool Technicians' Guide to ChlorineGuide to Alternative Sanitizers and the Guide to pH, Alkalinity, Water Testing and Water Balance are compiled from articles that originally appeared in our newspaper.

We've also updated and republished an industry classic on pool care, Charlie Taylor's Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Pool Care. This light, easy-to understand and illustrated book has long been a part of any complete library on pool care. Now, it's also available in Spanish!

Call 949-916-0292 to order a subscription or purchase any of our products.

Spring brings startup, opening opportunities

Even as the last of the winter storms are blasting through the lower 48, service professionals are assembling the chemicals and tools they will need for a successful pool opening or new pool startup. 

For those in the pool service industry, spring is rife with some of their most profitable activities and for many professionals, it is the busiest time of year.  

The two biggest reasons for this are spring openings and new pool startups. 

 Many pool owners don’t go through the hassle of opening their pools for the season, preferring to hire a professional. 

For others, anticipating a yet another brutally hot summer, it is finally time to put in a new pool. Indeed, spring is the busiest season for new pool construction.

In the case of existing pools, spring is when service professionals are called give the pool area a full annual check-up, looking for areas that need special attention. But smart service professionals recognize that this is also the time to up-sell products and services, such as installing new plumbing, leak detection, pool surface and deck refinishing, and even landscaping.

The warm weather just seems to put pool owners in the perfect frame of mind to beautify their backyards, and savvy service technicians understand this. 

This means refurbishing existing pools with modern features, reconditioned surfaces, and upgraded equipment and accessories. 

 In the case of new pools, service professionals are regularly called in to handle the “start-up” procedure, a particularly important task for newly plastered pools that are susceptible to a wide range of problems as they cure.

Wise service technicians recognize that after successfully performing this duty, there’s a great likelihood that they will be the same service companies contracted for regular monthly service on the pool.   

All in all, spring represents tremendous profit centers for service professionals, offering the potential to bring in more proceeds in a week than a full year’s worth of monthly service charges.            

Paid subscribers have full access to the complete coverage on Spring startup and openings. Read the entire issue — and every issue —  by ordering your subscription today online. Become a subscriber by following this link. Or, contact our circulation department at 949-916-0292 or email for details. 

WPSS promises education & discounts

Service professionals can look forward to big discounts at Long Beach restaurants and local recreation sites at the 37th annual Western Pool and Spa show. 

The Western Show, strategically located in the heart of Long Beach, is convenient to lots of shops and restaurants. Sightseeing opportunities abound, including the Long Beach Aquarium, as well as the historic Queen Mary, once a luxury cruise ship, now a historic landmark, hotel and entertainment venue. This year, our publication and the show’s organizers contacted restaurants and entertainment venues to provide discounts to convention attendees who show their conference badges.  Significant discounts are now offered to convention goers' at the Aquarium and the Queen Mary, and a great many Long Beach restaurants have also made special offers. See page 24 and 25 for participating venues. 

This year, the show’s organizers expect attendance to top 10,000, making the Western Pool and Spa show, in the Long Beach Convention Center scheduled March 12-14, one of the premier industry tradeshows in the United States. And no wonder: with more than 150 manufacturers and distributors showcasing their services and wares, and a wide variety of seminars — 84 in all — the Western Show has combined an educational program unmatched in the country.

Today, it provides an ideal opportunity for service technicians to meet and talk to manufacturers and distributors while offering a venue to get detailed training on the products. And while the education is beneficial for its own sake, attendees can also use the educational opportunities presented at the Western Show to gain credits, good for professional certification in water chemistry and equipment maintenance. Such certification is becoming increasingly important to get ahead in a competitive market place. 

Western's educational program covers virtually every subject a service professional will likely encounter over the course of his profession.  This year, more than 30 new classes were added to the educational schedule. This reflects the growing complexity of the pool service profession, not withstanding the additional seminars on electricity, newer technologies such as UV and ozone, chemical automation seminars, and two-day Certified Aquatic Equipment Installer. Moreover, a total of 10 classes will be offered in Spanish. 

Seminars will be presented in nine classrooms on Thursday, from 1 to 5:45 p.m.; Friday, from 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.; and Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 1:45 p.m.  For a complete schedule of classes refer to pages 5, 6 and 8 of this issue. The educational opportunities continue in the exhibit hall, which opens on Thursday, from 6 to 9 p.m., continuing Friday, from 2 to 6 p.m. and Saturday, from 1 to 6 p.m. 

Here, professionals are provided an opportunity to get details on new products that could help to improve the efficiency of their businesses.  And when the exhibit hall closes each evening, pool service veterans will have plenty of time to network and talk shop over dinner. This year, since we went out and found some deals  (see page 24-25 for  complete list), don’t forget to bring your badge to get your discount!

Paid subscribers have full access to the complete coverage on the Western Pool & Spa Show. Become a subscriber by following this link. Or, contact our circulation department at 949-916-0292 or email for details.

Cyanuric acid/chlorine: It’s all about ratio

By Marcelle Dibrell

Perhaps the most confusing, misunderstood and controversial topic within this industry is the chemical cyanuric acid. Cyanuric acid has been used in swimming pools since the 1950s to protect chlorine from degradation from the sun. Without cyanuric acid, chlorine is decomposed by ultraviolet light from the sun due to the photo-instability of both hypochlorous acid as well as the hypochlorite ion when they absorb this light. 

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