How To Determine if You Have a Leak in Your In-Ground Pool

Finding In-Ground Pool Leaks

Having to refill your pool too many times within a short period might be a sign that your pool is leaking. Click here to learn how to find a leak in in-ground pool piping.

How To Determine if You Have a Leak in Your In-Ground Pool

An in-ground pool is a common type of backyard pool that has been built into the ground such that the top of the pool is on the same level as your lawn. In-ground pools, although more expensive to build, are usually favored by pool owners because of their aesthetic appeal and longevity.

Over a period, your pool might start to use up more water than necessary, requiring you to refill your pool more times than necessary. More often than not, this is an indication of a leak in your pooling system.

However, finding a pool leak can be a challenging task, as a pool leak can occur anywhere in your pool. This is why before you go on a fool's errand of searching for a leak where there is none, you should try to eliminate other possible causes of water loss in the pool, such as evaporation and cracks in the filter system plumbing.

In this blog post, we will explore some of the common signs of a pool leak and how to fix pool leaks.

How To Determine if You Have a Leak in Your In-Ground Pool

Common Signs of Pool Leaking

High Water Bills

If you have an automatic water-filling system in your pool, it might be hard to notice a reduction in the water in the pool before it gets filled up again. One way you can, however, spot a change in the way your pool uses water is if there is a considerable increase in your water bills and your auto-fill system is running more than usual.

Changes in Water Level

Where there is no auto-fill system in place, it is easier to spot a pool leak as the water levels will drop. However, there might be other causes of a drop in water levels, such as evaporation. The key difference you should observe is the rate at which the water levels drop. Excessive water loss is more likely an indication of a leak than evaporation.

Cracks In and Around Your Pool

Cracks in and around your pool can be an indication that there is a leak in your pool or a potential leak. Excess water from leaks in your pool can create damage to the tiling of the pool. Once you start to observe cracks in the tiles or they start to fall off, then you should check for a leak in your pool. You should also check the bond beam and other parts of your pool or the deck for cracks that might reveal a leak.

Algae Growth or Discoloration

A pool with a chemical imbalance would, over time, sprout algae. Adding new, untreated water to a leaking pool leads to algae growth or discoloration. Green pools can be dangerous, so it is necessary to address the issue promptly. Many pool owners make the mistake of continually treating the water instead of finding and fixing a leak in the pool system.

Wet Spots in the Yard

Underground water movements can cause erosion which can cause a shift that will lead to a leak. Wet spots in the yard, as a result, can be an indication that there is a leak in your pool or the plumbing system.

Water Under Equipment

Stagnant water at the pump or around pipes means that there is a leak. If you also observe some premature corrosion on the equipment, it is a sign that there is a leak.

Dirt or Air in the Pool

Where there is a leak in your pool, you might observe some dirt in your pool that has been pulled into the plumbing system through the leak. Similarly, when you notice some gurgling sounds in your pool, it is a sign that air is being blown back into your pool.

Unable to Prime or Losing Prime

If your pool pump cannot be primed, it might be a sign of a leak in the system. Check other parts of the pump to rule out other issues. The inability to prime can be a result of a closed valve or a blocked impeller. If your pump keeps running dry after manual priming, it could be a sign of a severe air leak.

How to Find and Fix a Leak In an In-ground Pool

Finding a pool leak is not exactly a straightforward process. However, following the following steps can help you find the leak in your in-ground pool in no time.

1. Look for evidence of a leak

The very first step in finding and fixing a pool leak is to look for evidence of a leak. Using the signs already discussed above as a guide, check around your pool to see if you can locate any signs of a leak.

2. Check for leaks at the equipment pad

Once you find any of the established signs of a leak, the next thing is to try to locate the source of the leak. The most obvious point of investigation is the equipment pad. If there is a broken part, you can immediately see water pooling around the equipment pad. Check parts such as the valves, filters, pumps, and even the piping of your pool for any leaks. You should however take extra precautions around the pool to avoid electric shocks from a wet or exposed wire.

3. Perform the bucket test to see if it's a leak or just evaporation

One way to establish for sure that there is a leak in your pool is to try the bucket test. The bucket test is quite simple. All you need to do is to take out a five-gallon bucket on the second step of your pool and mark the water level after you do this. You should also mark the level of water inside the bucket. You should not lose more than 0.6cm in the water level per day. If there is a greater reduction in the water level outside the bucket, there is a leak.

4. Use a dye test to confirm a leak's location

A dye test will help you narrow down the exact source of the leak in your pool. You can do this by using a food colorant around any suspected source of the leak. If there is a leak around where you have put some of the dye, the water around it will get lighter over time as the color would be sucked out by fresh water from the leak.

5. Call a professional

If you have gone this far, it might be tempting to attempt to fix the issue yourself. However, most times, this would do more harm than good as you can end up causing more damage to the leaky equipment or component of the pool.

If you decide to DIY, depending on where the leak is coming from, you can either make a patch or use PVC glue to hold broken parts together.

When Do You Need To Hire a Pool Leak Detection Professional?

As stated earlier, finding a leak in your pool can be very difficult. Pool leaks can come from any part of your pool and usually, unfortunately for pool owners, it does not occur at the piping.

This makes it tough to easily find out what is going on. Hence, if you have tried any of the methods suggested above to find the leak in your pool to no avail, then it is time to hire a pool leak detection professional.

When it comes to underground piping, failing to promptly locate and fix a leak could mean you would continue to waste water and ramp up costs.

Also, some pool leaks can create harmful outcomes such as stagnant water around the pool which can cause slips, algae which can cause green pools, and dirt in the pool, among others. To avoid this, it is better to address your pool leaks as soon as possible by engaging the services of a professional to do it.

BMWemple - The Most Trusted Pool Builder and Maintenance in Oviedo, FL

Getting a pool leak detection professional will save you costs in the long run. Asides from the fact that you will continue to waste resources while performing different leak tests, you also risk exposing yourself to harm from some of the electrical equipment connected to the pool as you play around it.

However, not any pool professional would get the job done. In Central Florida, BMWemple Pools has been providing premium pool repair and maintenance services throughout all of Central FL for nearly 45 years. Their team of experts can help you figure out where the leak from your pool is from and fix it within a short period.

Contact our Pool Maintenance, Repair, and Restoration Experts

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