At Sparkling Pool Service Inc., we know that having a swimming pool is a big commitment whether you currently own your home or are looking to buy a home. Discovering a pool leak can be frustrating for you whether you’ve lived in your home for years or recently moved into your new home. You are not only losing water but also the chemicals in the water. So, even a small leak is costly.
What Are The Signs That Your Pool Is Leaking?
Once a leak is discovered it can be quickly repaired to prevent further damage. But it can be hard to tell if your pool is leaking due to the size of your swimming pool. As a pool owner, you need to know what the signs are of a potential pool leak.
Signs you have a pool leak are:
- You are adding more than 1.5 inches of water per week to your pool
- You notice cracks in or around the pool decking
- You notice cracks in the pool shell
- The grass around your pool is soggy
- Your pool deck is starting to sink or lift
- Your pool loses more that a ¼ inch of water a day
- You are finding algae build-up even though the water was recently treated with chemicals
If you are not sure if any of this is happening with your pool but you suspect a leak, there is a tried-and-true method for figuring out if your pool is potentially leaking. You can perform your own swimming pool leak detection test with the “bucket test”.
What Is The Bucket Test?
The bucket test involves 4 steps to see how much water you are potentially losing in your pool.
Step 1: Fill your pool to its normal level. Grab a clean bucket with fairly straight sides. Fill the bucket with pool water until it’s about an inch from the top—this amount of water will keep the bucket from floating away. Place your filled bucket on the top step of your pool. You’ve now created a mini pool so you can compare the water level in the bucket with the water level in the pool.
Step 2: Make sure you turn off the auto-fill, pool pump, and spillover (anything that makes the water level change). Give your pool water time to settle down. Mark the top of the water line inside of the bucket to see how much water is lost from evaporation. Then, mark the top of the water line on the outside of the bucket so you can compare how much water is lost from evaporation or detect if your pool is leaking. You can use a thin strip of duct tape to make these marks.
Step 3: Turn the pool pump back on. Leave the auto-fill and spillover off. Let your pool run its normal time period. Do not let anyone use the pool. The displacement from others using the pool can make it appear to be leaking.
Step 4: After 24 hours have passed, compare the water levels inside and outside of the bucket. You need to measure the distance from the water level to the bottom of the mark you made on the inside of the bucket (this shows how much water is lost from evaporation). Measure the distance from the water level of the pool to the mark on the outside of the bucket (this shows the total amount of water lost from evaporation as well as if there is a leak). If there is more water lost from the pool than the bucket then you may have a leak that should be checked out immediately. Another way to think of this is: Outside Bucket Measurement – Inside Bucket Measurement = Leak.
Before conducting any leak test, it is recommended to have your pool vacuumed, cleaned, and full to its normal level. Pools with dirt, debris, mildew, algae, or fungi make it difficult or impossible to accurately detect a leak. If it turns out that there is no leak, then at least your pool is clean and ready for swimming!
Where Can Swimming Pool Leaks Be Found?
Once a leak is detected there are a number of factors that can be responsible for your leak. Pools are full of multiple components and leaks can be found in:
- The suction lines;
- The main drain;
- The pool pumps and filters;
- The skimmers;
- The return lines;
- The pool accessories;
- The pipes;
- The structure around the light, tile line, stairs, etc.
If you have an issue, we will take care of it right away and our promise is that we will be on your property within 1 business day of your notice of a critical issue.
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