- Last Updated on Thursday, March 27 2014 14:48
If you suspect your pool is leaking, but aren't sure how to check on your own, don't panic. Below is a step-by-step guide to determining if (and from where) your pool is leaking.
Make sure you've had your return & supply piping pressure-tested. They need to hold at least 10 lbs. of pressure for more than one hour with ZERO loss of pressure. You can always test the pipes yourself with plugs and a standard car-tire inflator.
Once your pipes are tested: use A+ B epoxy and seal the first two inches of the inlets leading back into the pipe. If your pool is already full, run this quick test: Fill to a defined point and run all the operating systems for exactly 24 hours. Measure any loss and record it. Then refill to the defined point – now turn ALL mechanical systems OFF, seal inlets and main drain with plugs you can purchase at a store like Lowe's, or a plumbing supply store. Key Point: If any loss is greater (even a small amount) with the mechanical system operating than it is without the pumps on and plugged – you have a pipe leak. If you're not sure, or this test seems inconclusive, repeat the test for 48 hours, respectively.
If you believe the pipes aren't the problem: Fill your pool to a defined level (suggested 1-2 feet deep) and measure any loss over 24 hours. Tip: Fill a bucket outside near the pool and compare – then you can determine what small loss is caused by evaporation. If that level holds, fill another foot, wait 24 hours, measure and repeat up to the filled pool level. In this test you are looking for the Leak Zone – or where the active leak is located. Tip: Usually that much water will not make it through grout, or if it does, the Leak Zone should be easily visible. Doing a nearly-full fill test (right up to but NOT including the gutter or skimmers) is a must! This zone is rather notorious for issues.
So what do you do now? If you can define a large enough 1-2 foot water level zone where the leak seems in increase, try to narrow your Leak Zone search and get within 6 inches. Tip: Examine all suspected penetrations in this zone very carefully – lights, rail good anchors, vac lines, inlets, etc. Often water will leave through a shell penetration for one of these areas, and that's a good place to focus your search.
Helpful Hint: You can use a plastic bottle, tip applicator, and some watered food coloring to check the penetrations. While this can be done when you are doing your band definition testing, water will leave much faster if the pool is full and you test with a mask.
Still stumped or ready to call in the pros? Give RenoSys a call at (800) 783-8005.