The pool skimmer plays a pivotal role in keeping your inground swimming pool clean, functioning as the first line of defense against debris, leaves, and other unwanted particles. But like all equipment, pool skimmers are not immortal. At some point, you may need to replace your inground pool skimmer, and naturally, you’ll wonder about the costs involved. This article dives into those expenses and gives you a thorough understanding of what to expect.
On average, the cost to replace an inground pool skimmer can range from $500 to over $1,500 depending on various factors such as labor, materials, and the complexity of the installation.
Why Would You Need to Replace a Pool Skimmer?
Inground pool skimmers don’t require frequent replacement; it’s usually only necessary when you encounter a significant issue. Reasons can range from age-related wear and tear, external damage, or simple functional inefficiency. Replacing a skimmer isn’t considered routine maintenance but becomes essential when you’re facing persistent problems that even pool putty and skimmer parts can’t fix.
Types of Inground Pool Skimmers
Although we’ll be focusing on concrete pool skimmers, it’s worth noting that they can also be made from other materials like plastic. Each type comes with its pros and cons, affecting the overall cost and longevity of your skimmer.
The Replacement Process
The task of replacing a skimmer is anything but trivial. You’ll start by removing the pool deck to access the skimmer. Next, you’ll need to cut off and cap the existing pipeline leading to the skimmer to keep dirt out. Removal of the old skimmer involves jackhammers, sledgehammers, and potentially dealing with rebar. When it comes to installing the new skimmer, it’s often a Hayward SP1070 model for inground pools, or something similar. According to 2020 data, expect companies to charge upwards of $1,500 for this complete process.
Factors Affecting the Cost
The actual expense can vary widely depending on multiple factors:
The material of the skimmer: Plastic is usually cheaper than metal or concrete.
Labor charges: This could depend on your location and the complexity of the job.
Additional materials: You might need extra concrete or rebar for reinforcement.
Can You DIY?
While the DIY route may seem tempting, remember that replacing a skimmer is a complex task requiring specialized tools and expertise. Plus, any mistakes can be costly in the long run, making it generally advisable to hire professionals for the job.
Sometimes, you may also need to replace the pool liner, adding to the overall expense. Furthermore, unexpected issues that arise during the replacement can also inflate the final bill.
Replacing an inground pool skimmer is not an everyday affair but becomes unavoidable when persistent issues arise. With costs that can exceed $1,500 based on 2020 figures, it’s vital to budget appropriately and consider all potential expenses.
How often do you need to replace a pool skimmer?
Skimmer replacement is typically a rare event, carried out only when there’s a major malfunction or damage that can’t be repaired using putty or spare parts.
Can you replace a pool skimmer without replacing the liner?
Yes, it’s possible to replace the skimmer without replacing the liner, although you should be prepared for potential additional costs if complications arise.
How long does a pool skimmer last?
The longevity of a pool skimmer can vary, but they often last for many years, sometimes even decades, depending on the material and maintenance.
What causes a pool skimmer to leak?
Leaks can be caused by cracks in the skimmer itself or in the connecting pipes. Aging and external damage are often the main culprits.
Can you fix a cracked skimmer?
While minor cracks can sometimes be patched up with pool putty, significant damage usually requires full replacement to ensure optimal functionality.