Coming on the cooler months, when the pool isn't getting used as much, is an ideal time to find that suspected leak in your pool.
If you suspect you have a leak in your pool, there is a simple test to confirm if this is the case...
Place a bucket filled with pool water on a pool step (weight it with a rock or a brick). Mark the water level on both the inside and the outside of the bucket.
Make sure the water levels are the same inside the bucket as the pool water level outside the bucket.
Check the mark 24 hours later. If there's a greater drop in the line on the outside of the bucket, a leak in the pool is most likely.
This test should be done with the pump on, and again with the pump off.
Scroll down for some tools and repair equipment for most leaks.
Also do a visual check around your pool equipment, and walk around the yard to see if there is any unusual dampness around the pool area.
Do you have a concrete pool?
Nearly all in-ground concrete pools will develop leaking problems at the skimmer throat at some point. Expansion and contraction of the pool and deck moves the skimmer slightly, breaking the seal between the pool wall and the skimmer. The seal is on both sides and the bottom of the front of the skimmer, and can be dye tested (with pump off), to determine if water is being drawn into cracks around the front edge of the skimmer opening. Pool Putty is often used as a temporary / permanent repair to seal up leaking concrete skimmers.
Allow the water level to drop below the skimmer. If the water continues to drop, you can rule out the skimmer (although there can always be more than one leak).
When the water stabilizes at any specific level, dye test and inspect around the pool very carefully, at that level. Look for small debris which may have been sucked into the crack or void. This is a good indication of a leak. If the water stops at a wall fitting, wall step, or pool light, give it a good close look.
Shutting off the pump, and plugging the drain, skimmer and return lines with expansion plugs, is another test, to rule out the plumbing.
Take a walk outside the pool deck and between the pool and the equipment pad. Check for wet soil and eroded areas. If your pool has a downhill slope near the pool, walk down the hill to see if you can notice water weeping from the hillside – at least you know where it’s going!
Do you have a vinyl liner pool?
Look for tears or separations around all the fittings, skimmers, returns, cleaner line, lights, steps and the corners.
Vinyl Liner pools need to have water in them at all times! If you have a liner pool and the water level is dropping rapidly. Start adding water and call a pool professional, or for an above ground pool, you'll most likely need to replace the liner.
Do you have a Fibreglass pool?
Nearly always a leak in a fibreglass pool will be at a fitting, such as a light or return jet. Allow the water to drop to where it stabilises, and then do the dye test as described as above.
If the level continues to drop below all the fittings, the leak will most likely be the Hydrostatic valve located in the deepest end of the pool. These are easily replaced
At Direct Pool Supplies we have a range of tools, dyes and repair putty to fix most minor leaks.