If you are a service technician new to the pool and spa industry, you may be unaware of the enormous profit potential that can accompany spring. While you may have been called to a new account to open a green pool for the season, this is also a great time for up-selling new products, equipment, and services. For pool and spa service techs, spring is one of the busiest times of the year, and this is why: service professionals are tackling major jobs.
This is the perfect time to recommend basic repair chores as many pool owners will pay reasonable maintenance and upkeep fees today to avoid major repair work tomorrow.
Extra charge maintenance jobs typically performed in the months leading up to the swim season include:
• Filter Servicing. Systems that have been down for a long period may require backwashing to remove accumulated dirt or rust that has collected during the winter. Spring is a good time to replace DE or change the system over to one of the DE alternatives that can improve filtration capacity. Likewise, it’s a good time to replace the sand in a sand filter or the cartridge in a cartridge filtration system.
Of course, complete filter service also involves replacing damaged DE filter grids, or sand filter underdrains and laterals, drain plugs, and pressure relief valves.
• Automatic cleaner service. A thorough check of the automatic cleaning system can add years to the service life of the cleaner. Check the gears or wheels for smooth operation and the hoses for leaks.
• Leak Inspection. It is not uncommon for PVC pipes to freeze and crack over the winter months. Pressure testing the plumbing is a good idea even in milder climates if the pool seems to be losing water at a greater rate than normal evaporation. This shouldn’t be a tough sell, especially during a drought where a small leak can waste a lot of water, and many pool owners are particularly sensitive to this.
• Tile inspection and repair.
Winter can be hard on tile. The concrete and the mortar holding the tile can begin to deteriorate from water infiltration and freezing and thawing, causing the tile to crack or fall off the wall. It is also a good time to offer special tile cleaning services to remove calcium deposit buildup.
• Heater servicing. Heaters that have sat idle for months should be fired to ensure operation. It is important to check for enough water flow because manufacturers design these units with a flow switch that prevents ignition without adequate flow. Technicians should remove any debris from inside the heater and inspect the internal wires for signs of damage caused by rodents or insects.
• Accessories. Spring opening is an ideal time to sell customers accessories such as new water toys, games, floats, and deck chairs.
In addition to these seasonal tasks, service professionals also use spring openings to tackle much bigger projects. Knowing that pool owners are anxious to get outside and enjoy their outdoor oases, plenty of pool professionals find it relatively easy to sell customers on bigger ticket items. Major jobs that service professionals take on during the spring include:
• Refinishing the shell.
Every year, service technicians make thousands of dollars by reconditioning the pool’s shell. The shell can be replastered, painted, fiber-glassed, or retrofitted with a vinyl liner. Acid washing is also a common spring service procedure that can bring plaster back to its original luster.
• Installing safety features.
As more pool owners become educated about the prevalence of child drowning, they are very receptive to the idea of installing new safety features. Federal and state law also mandate certain safety precautions. Alarm systems on doors and windows, fencing, door and gate latches, pool covers, and antientrapment drain covers are all on the life-saving product list. It is a good idea to offer safety checkups to make customers aware of the preventative measures available and the laws pertaining to barriers and safety features.
• Upgrading to automatic systems. Automatic systems are
increasingly popular for everyday customers, and not just the wealthy. As society moves to smarter devices, it is more common for pool owners to translate that to their backyards. The ability of the pool to maintain itself to some extent, combined with competitive pricing, has made these systems appealing to pool owners.
Furthermore, new state and local ordinances and financial incentives are driving demand for more energy efficient equipment; this means profit for professional pool service firms.
• Resurfacing the deck.
Larger service firms expand their repertoire across the entire backyard. While training and licensing may be required, there’s plenty of profit in adding new decking or patios.
• Landscaping. Outdoor service can also extend to landscaping. This could mean a bit of gardening and groundskeeping. The larger firms are also installing rockscapes, creating waterfalls, building lagoons and grottos as part of their services. There is also mood lighting and stereo systems to install.