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Pool Leak Detection - Found the Source (Finally)!
by Felicia A. Williams
A couple of years ago I detected a pool leak. At first, it was barely noticeable. Every so often we added water to the pool but chalked it up to a dry season and rambunctious swimmers.
The following season we realized it was a true leak. We filled the pool at the beginning of the season but had to add water weekly. This began our pool leak detection journey. As written in earlier posts, I looked around the outside of the pool to get a hint as to where the water was emanating from. Thinking I found the source (weakness in the liner seam), I patched the cove area and crossed my fingers and found that wasn’t the source of the problem.
Pool Leak: One-Year Hiatus
Frustrated with the dropping water levels, I thought about relining the pool. The cost to reline a pool because of a leak didn’t make sense to me, so I allowed the pool to remain closed for a full year. That’s right, last summer we didn’t open it. It gave me time to think and put things into perspective. I looked into the pool leak repair cost and even thought of getting rid of the pool.
This year after opening the pool, I did what every prudent pool owner does. Added water as necessary, cleaned the pool and balanced the chemicals. The pool looked great, but the water levels began to drop again. This time the levels were dropping faster. The pool needed filling every other day. Even a bout of heavy rains didn’t stop the water level from dropping. This means the hole must have grown in size.
Pool Leak Detection - Lovin’ the Big Hole
Now that the hole had grown in size over a period of a couple of years, I was able to spot the hole. The tear in the vinyl liner was about 5 mm long, but the weight of the water pulled the slit open just wide enough for me to be able to see it (about 2mm wide). At first, I thought it was dirt, but when I swept the dirt, it didn’t move.
Next, I took food dye and squirted it at the small slit. The dye was drawn into the hole, never to be seen again. As a matter of fact, as I put my finger over the hole, I could feel the water being drawn out. Success!!! I found the culprit.
Pool Leak Repair: Patch, Fill and Swim
Now that I knew where to patch, I purchased a vinyl pool patch kit. Applied the patch and stuck a brick on it to help it adhere. While it was adhering, I topped off the pool with water, rebalanced the chemicals and crossed my fingers as I went to bed.
The next morning the water levels held constant and the outside of the pool was dry. It took a few years of frustration, but the pool is leak free and ready to use.
About the Author: Felicia Williams is a wife, mother and grandmother who likes to write about a host of topics.
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Last Modified: 24 March 2020
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