Just like maintenance companies, pool service companies generally absorb the cost produced by the price increase and the annual inflation that exists in the United States. Nowadays the cost of regular pool service maintenance ranges between $80-$90, of course this depends on the size of the pool, we will explain the reason later, but generally this is the standard cost.
Nobody likes to see the same service suddenly increase in cost, even more so if this happens in very short periods of time. This is something that is happening today in several sectors thanks to COVID-19 and other unforeseen circumstances that affect not only the market but also the person receiving the service, the end consumer.
The Impact of Coronavirus on the Pool Service Industry
We know that no one in the world was prepared to close the doors of their homes, businesses and companies due to COVID-19. Now, it is true that most pool service companies kept working as they were able to enter the essential workers category, however it was not for companies that manufacture equipment, tools, chemicals and other supplies used in the pool care area.
Chlorine is not transmitted by swimming pool water. Read more here
This also had repercussions for package delivery companies that had to increase their costs and delays across the board. This left us waiting to see what other sectors will have been impacted and whose consequences will be reflected in the near future in the area of production chains.
Inflation in Pool Service
Inflation is not something people are unaware of. Pool product prices and chemical prices increase on a scale that stays at or below dollar inflation rates. The increase in manufacturing cost is not always passed on to the end consumer every year, most companies don’t like to increase their prices year after year, they usually do it every two years with the increase being something really minimal.
Pool service companies like Urban Pool Services also absorb these price increases without raising rates to pool owners. However, inflation is part of business and we must be aware of it.
The large increase in demand
Thanks to the pandemic, now that everyone is trapped indoors, the idea of owning a residential pool skyrocketed, the demand for new pool construction, renovations, upgrades and equipment replacement reached an all-time high.
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Along with the construction of more pools, it created an earlier than usual start to the season in colder weather, which means a longer season and which translates to more use of chlorine and other chemicals. The demand for absolutely everything related to swimming pools increased considerably. This put pressure on manufacturers and their product deliveries in these difficult times.
The impact of manufacturing industries on Pool Service
Only if you manufacture hand sanitizer, cleaning spray or protective equipment such as face masks, mouth covers or plastic spacers, will your plants continue to operate almost as normally as they did before the pandemic, except that they will now have to concentrate primarily on the manufacture of these products and leave the manufacture of non-essential items on the back burner or on the back burner.
This applies not only to the pool service industry or to the United States, it applies to the economy worldwide.
For these reasons, as demand and orders increase, the cost of components will increase. We are talking about caps, bottles, labels, cartons, shelves.
When factories have fewer people working together, the speed or efficiency of the production process decreases. Social distancing, facemasks, clear plastic separators and sanitizing practices have not only slowed productivity, but have raised the cost of doing business.
It can be seen everywhere we go: restaurants, buses, supermarkets, shopping malls, etc. The amount of spray, gel and disinfectant wipes is very large, and it all costs money. So we all have to pay that additional cost of doing business.
Shipping in the Pool Company
It is a reality that parcel delivery companies have become much more expensive than usual. This is not only because their distribution centers are regulated by security and distancing protocols, but also because of certain costs.
This is not only because their distribution centers are regulated by social distancing and security protocol, but also because certain delays caused other delays. In March 2020, some ports were closed causing certain international shipments to be delayed until the ports reopened. We were waiting more than six months, when we usually only waited a couple of weeks.
Even if the final product was made in the U.S., it is possible that some of the internal components were from overseas.
For example, if a part or type of gasket that must go inside a pool pump motor is manufactured in Taiwan, the pump itself could not be finished and delivered. This happened with all kinds of products in the pool industry, from pool filters to children’s pool toys. The downside of this situation is that no one could do much to solve this problem or relieve the pressure.
The Real Reason for the Price Increase of Swimming Pool Services
Severe Chlorine Shortage
As we said in the first part of this article, all existing disinfectants, cleaners and chemicals for this task are in extremely high demand today. As a consequence of the pandemic, alternative uses for chlorine have been found in other industries as well as for personal use to disinfect surfaces of all kinds.
Although ports are opening and many businesses are getting back to normal in the United States, there is one product that is going to be in short supply in the future. Chlorine, and with the shortage of chlorine comes a domino effect that will increase the demand for other products that will be used with no option to replace it, which will also raise prices.
The fire in one of Trichloro’s largest factories
In August of last year (2020), one of the largest chlorine manufacturing plants on our continent was destroyed in a fire caused by hurricane Laura. The implications and repercussions of this disaster cannot be underestimated or taken lightly. Prior to this incident, the demand for chlorine in all its forms, dichlorine, trichlorine, sodium hypochlorite, calcium hypochlorite and many more, was already near an all-time high.
This plant was responsible for producing at least one third of the country’s chlorine.
With that in mind, we can see that even if the other manufacturers increase production, which we said was already at its peak because of the demand, they will not be able to cover the huge loss generated by the absence of this huge factory.
This is another reason why we have seen that chlorine prices, especially trichlor, have almost doubled since August, and are expected to increase even more this year.
To try to fill the demand left by this gap, foreign manufacturers in Asia will likely try to supply more trichlor to the U.S. market, so prices will continue to be higher than normal. It is a reality that production can only increase so much before the peak is reached. And thanks to the Coronavirus, chlorine plants were already very close to their maximum manufacturing capacity.
If we want to look at it in numbers, according to Louisiana regulatory documents, this plant was producing about 115 million pounds of trichlor per year. With this you can imagine the implications of the lack of this production.
These are the main reasons why the prices of swimming pool services will increase in 2021. Although many companies will try to maintain their prices in order not to create discomfort to their customers, we must keep in mind that it is a reality that we must keep in mind and be prepared for it.
We at Urban Pool Services have borne the cost of these increases at our own expense. This way our customers will not be affected in their budget and will continue to enjoy a completely clean and healthy pool.
If you would like to get a free quote for your pool please feel free to contact us at (954) 848-4842 or send a form and we will be happy to assist you: