How to Identify and Repair Leaks in Swimming Pools

Your swimming pool can be a sanity saver during the hot, Atlanta summers. But, even the most conscientious pool owner who takes proper care of their pool  through regular pool maintenance service in Atlanta can sometimes miss the signs of a leak. It's normal for the pool to lose some water over time, but if you're adding more than 2 inches of water to your pool every week, there may be a leak. Here are some tips for identifying and repairing a leak in your pool.

Detecting a Leak

One way to find out if there's a leak in your pool is to do the bucket test. This is easiest to do over a few days when your pool won't be in use.

Fill a bucket with water from the pool and set the bucket down on the steps of the pool with the top of the bucket above the water level of the pool. Make sure the water level on the inside and outside of the bucket is the same and mark the bucket in both places. After a few days, check for water loss in both the pool and the bucket. If there's no leak, the water  levels should be about the same between the bucket and pool. However, if the pool has lost more water than the bucket, you have a leak.

You can also use a grease pencil to mark the water level on the pool and check the mark 24 hours later. This is an easier method if your pool sees frequent use. A quarter inch loss per day is normal, but any more  that is not. 

Finding the Leak

Now that you know there's a leak, you need to pinpoint where it's coming from. Leaks can be from deteriorated sealants, plumbing, fittings, or in the shell itself. A good place to start is to determine if the pool leaks while the equipment is running. Repeat the grease pencil test (or you can use duct tape) and keep the filter system running for 24 hours before checking the level. Refill the pool and repeat the test without the filter system running this time. If more water is lost when the system is running, the leak is past the impeller of the pump. If you're losing more water without the system running, the leak is before the impeller. If water loss is the same, you may have a leak in the structure rather than the plumbing, which can be found using food coloring since it will be sucked in at the cracked area.

Fixing the Leak

Leaks are one of the most common pool repairs in Atlanta, for good reason. If the problem isn't a simple parts replacement, repairs can quickly become complicated and messy. You may be able to repair some leaks with pool putty, but in most cases, you're better off calling a professional to make sure the repair is done correctly.