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Thread: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

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    How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    We built our pool last summer and the closing the first year come with the pool. We got a letter offering $400 for the opening and closing for the year. I am a very big do it yourself-er and cannot stand paying someone to do things I can do myslef. We have 3 young kids and I guess it boils down to how much your time is worth. $200 for them to open it, power wash the cover, re install the fillter, and flush the lines I guess does not seem bad, especialy if I get to enjoy yhe day with the family. I am sure like everyone else, time is in short supply. Now my other motivating factor is, that my father in law who also has this PB open and close his pool. One year when opening the pool, somehting got in the pool during opening and stained the liner, they replace the liner for him. They also take responsabilty for anything that goes wrong during the winter due to there winterizing. What are you thoughts? Thanks Jesse
    17,000 gallon IG Humpback Kidney
    333k Sta-Rite Max-e-therm Heater
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Opening is fairly easy. The only slightly difficult part of the project is cleaning the cover, and that is only tricky because the cover is large, not because there is any inherent complexity.

    Closing an in ground pool is a little more complex and has a small amount of risk. If you do it wrong it is possible for there to be freeze damage. Some people have trouble blowing out the lines, which often requires equipment that not everyone has (a compressor or shop vacuum that can produce a reasonable amount of pressure). Still, most anyone who is reasonably handy should be able to do it without too much trouble.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    The company I work for charges $250 + tax for openings and closings (so ~ $530 for opening and closing)

    In the end it's gonna be your comfort level on being able to do it and not need the guaranty + what $ amount do you put on your time/ time with the family.

    Jason has posted while I was composing this, but you may want to let the PB do it for now - watch what they do so you can make it a family project once the kids are old enough to help
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Quote Originally Posted by waste

    In the end it's gonna be your comfort level on being able to do it and not need the guaranty + what $ amount do you put on your time/ time with the family.

    Jason has posted while I was composing this, but you may want to let the PB do it for now - watch what they do so you can make it a family project once the kids are old enough to help
    Sound advice!

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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Thanks !!!! Iknow there is not a lot to it, I could easily do it. Just wondering, Thanks Again, Jesse
    17,000 gallon IG Humpback Kidney
    333k Sta-Rite Max-e-therm Heater
    Sta-Rite Modular Filter
    Intellichlor IC-40
    Awesome Tiki Bar!!!!!

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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    My pool company charges $300 for opening and $300 for closing. I could definitly handle the opening but have them do it for peace of mind. Money well spent in my opinion.
    Inground Grecian 20,000 gallons vinyl liner
    Hayward 250 BTU Propane heater
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    I suppose it's worth asking where you're located... I'm in Arizona and just keep my pool open year-round. It gets too cold to swim in during the winter months, but since we only usually have a couple of nights a year where it drops below freezing, my pump freeze protection is enough to keep my lines safe.
    My Pool:
    12K gal IG gunite with 7' raised spa, gunite waterfall, PebbleTec Caribbean Blue finish, solar heating & in-floor cleaning system

    Equipment: Sta-Rite 300' Cartridge Filter, Intellichlor IC20 SWCG, Sta-Rite 400k BTU heater, Intelliflow 4x160 main pump & Sta-Rite 3/4 hp waterfall pump, EasyTouch controlls w/ wireless controller, TF-100 Test Kit w/ salt test.

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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    I am located int michigan,
    17,000 gallon IG Humpback Kidney
    333k Sta-Rite Max-e-therm Heater
    Sta-Rite Modular Filter
    Intellichlor IC-40
    Awesome Tiki Bar!!!!!

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    spishex's Avatar
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Openings, closings, and sand changes tend to be pretty big money makers for pool companies because of the lack of experience needed to do them (read: cheap labor) and low material cost. They (we ) also, depending on the seasonality of the area, depend on closings to carry them through the winter and openings to save their bank accounts if the closings didn't go as far as they'd hoped. For all these reasons, they're usually pretty overpriced. It's rare to have either require more than two hours, one skilled person and one extra set of hands. That would equate to about 2.5 hours (labor cost wise) of actual work (~$200) for a pretty difficult pool. Usually it's more like 1-1.5 hours. But since it can be easily labeled as a rate card type item instead of billed by the hour, the price goes up and the company bets that most openings will be done in much less time than what is billed.

    Just to give you an idea of what it actually costs to do it, I offer free openings for customers within 5 miles who sign up for at least a month of weekly service. Even if I need to pay someone else (a friend paid in cheap beer) to come out with me, I basically break even after 4 weeks of service and I've got a customer who knows me well enough that they'll hopefully call if they have a problem later. Since I have steady hot tub and heater work through the winter, and no storefront as a customer source, it's more valuable to me to build up the local customer base than to squeeze every cent possible out of openings and closings.

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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    I hired a pool company to open and close my pool the first year I owned it after moving into a house with a pool. I wanted to see how these are properly done before deciding if I could manage it myself. I was also hoping to pick the brain of the people doing to work to learn how to care for a pool.

    I did learn a little from watching them open and close. However, the standard process for the company I used involved adding several bottles of chemicals without even measuring the water first. Needless to say, all of what they added was not needed and some was downright harmful.

    At the opening, they added stabilizer without measuring how much was in the water already. I was flighting the usual problems from high CYA until I found this site and bought a FT100. The closing the company did was also marginal. They did not blow out any of the lines and did not add any antifreeze. I'm amazed the pool survived 40 winters.

    Finally, what little advice I got from the workers was over simplified (to be polite). I'm now doing my own closing and openings. I do a better job and save $600-800 per year. I also wash the grids of my filter while closing which has greatly improved filtering efficiency (another tip I learned here). This allowed me to cut down on pump run time saving >$100 a year in electricity.
    11x27 in ground, vinyl pool
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    PAC FAB (Pentair) Pinnacle 3/4 hp pump
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    One skimmer, one return (no main drain)

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Mine does it for two or three beers and maybe some food off the grill or smoker. He's grouchy, slow, messy, prone to fits of swearing when things go wrong and sometimes doesn't do it until the last minute, but I do the best I can.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?



    (Mine's the same way...especially after she's just mowed the lawn and changed the oil in the truck....maybe 6-8 beers)
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    $225
    2003 Coleman MAAX Collection Model 706 - 400gal

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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    $395. And last fall he charged us an extra $150 or so because he (supposedly) had to do extra work looking for the stakes for the pool cover. This spring he "forgot" the salt - I told him to just drop it by the gate and I'd put it in, no worries. He did, and then had the nerve to bill me an extra $140. For salt that would cost $40 at Home Depot. That he never said wouldn't be included in his already high fee. I told him to come pick it up and I'm going to look for a new pool service guy before we leave on vacation this fall.
    ____________
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Wow...I guess I'm in an expensive part of the country (northern VA). We pay $725 for opening, closing and a winter checkup, which is about the going rate around here for a decent contractor. But the guy does a great job. Pool opened yesterday and is clean, balanced and ready to swim in today.
    inground gunite, 18x38 freeform, 3'-9' w/ diving; 3M caymen green/blue blend; Pentair 2HP whisperflo; + aux pump for water feature; SWG; Rheem heat pump; Polaris 380; Pentair TR 100 sand filter; silverlake flagstone coping/broom finish concrete deck; NPTG Aztec cobalt tile; 18" bond beam wall with water feature

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    I paid myself a beer and paid hubby with a kiss and a beer.

    I'm guessing we saved several hundreds of dollars over the years opening and closing ourselves. The last two years I have opened myself, with hubby doing the heavy pump lifting and tightening anything that was out of my physical range. I even got the heater working myself. I never thought 10 years ago I could tackle these things.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Well, Ann, we always knew you were amazing - but not the Pool Goddess you apparently are :P (I'd better stop this before I have to report myself to the mods for going off topic )
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Quote Originally Posted by waste
    Well, Ann, we always knew you were amazing - but not the Pool Goddess you apparently are :P (I'd better stop this before I have to report myself to the mods for going off topic )
    Honestly Ted, I don't think I would have had the courage to try to tackle these things alone if it weren't for the support of the kind folks like you, on this forum!
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT
    Mine does it for two or three beers and maybe some food off the grill or smoker. He's grouchy, slow, messy, prone to fits of swearing when things go wrong and sometimes doesn't do it until the last minute, but I do the best I can.
    Dang! Sounds like we use the same person..

    Opening it up tomorrow, in fact. Got myself a new grill this week, beer's in the fridge, and pork chops are marinating.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
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    Re: How much does your PB charge for opening and closing?

    PB? What's that?
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

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