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After you’ve made your pool leak detection appointment, there are a few things that you might want to be able to tell your pool leak detector to receive the most accurate leak detection.
You might wonder why you need to know what to tell a pool detector when you book a leak detection appointment. After all, shouldn’t they just show up and find my leak?
Well, ideally, yes. But pool leak detection is actually a more nuanced skill than you might think.
The things we will go through in this article will also help you understand your pool a little more and give you insight into what you should look for when you suspect a pool leak.
So often, the questions we ask pool owners are used to help troubleshoot what we do and can save you frustration and wasted money.
For instance, If you have water features, we will ask you if the pool leaks whether they are running or not. This is important for a couple of reasons. First, some water features can’t be pressure tested. If you turn off your water features for a day and the leak stops, we will know the leak is in the water features. Simple right?
If we rule out your features, we can cancel your $395 leak detection and schedule a repair. On top of that, you can keep your water features off, stopping you from the rising water bill and any damage that might occur on your property with a continual leak.
On the flip side, if the leak doesn’t change with the water features on or off, we can likely rule out the water features and focus more intently on the other parts of your pool that will be leaking.
So, with that said, here are a few pieces of information you’ll want to tell your leak detector.
Five things to tell your pool leak detector
1) When was the last time you filled up your pool?
This is the most simple question to ask yourself. It may seem too simple.
But why is this question important?
First, it establishes that you understand a baseline for the level at which you fill up your pool.
It also tells us how much water you are actually losing if you aren’t measuring.
So often, we go to pools after customers insist they are losing inches every day. We show up, and the water level is very high. Our pool leak detector will then ask, “When was the last time you filled up your pool?” Quite often, the answer will indicate that the pool doesn’t have a leak.
This isn’t necessarily the homeowner’s fault. It is so easy to feel like something is going wrong with your pool when it might not be. Maybe evaporation is high. Maybe you are overfilling the pool and don’t know where the extra water is going.
Either way, being able to tell your pool leak detector when the last time you filled it up is a great way for you and the pool leak detection company to have a great understanding of your pool.
2) Does your pool only leak when the pool is running?
Here is another great question to know the answer to in order to save you some money potentially.
You see, when a pool is only leaking when the pool is running, this is often a sign of some very specific issues.
One of the main things we see is a faulty backwash line. This can be due to a broken backwash valve, which we see very often, or sometimes the backwash line is left a little open.
When this happens, water escapes to the drains every time your pool pump is on.
Here’s a super easy way to check your backwash for a leak.
3) How much evaporation are you losing vs your leak?
So, if you’ve kept up with our blogs, you know we can’t stop talking about “The Pool Bucket Test!”
It’s true, we love it. We love it because it gives you the exact answer to this question that your pool leak detector needs to know.
A pool bucket test essentially measures the difference in water loss from a 5-gallon bucket to the water loss in your pool.
Since we know the bucket doesn’t have a leak, any water loss from the bucket over 24 hours would be considered your evaporation level.
When you compare that with the water loss in your pool, you will know if your pool is losing water due to evaporation or water loss.
This is so important during the summer months because we see some pretty scary water loss amounts due to evaporation. And if you had to pay for a full leak detection just for us to tell you that you don’t have a leak, it’s just high evaporation… that’s a double ouch!
So, do the pool bucket test first to make sure your water loss is definitely due to a leak.
If you feel like you can’t do the pool bucket test, measuring how much your pool loses a day is also helpful. Here is an online tool that estimates the evaporation level in your area. Although this isn’t as accurate as the bucket test, and evaporation may be different from backyard to backyard, this may help you.
4) Does the pool stop leaking at any point?
Again, this is another great way you could possibly save some money here.
Now, this is simple.
Turn off your equipment and let the water drop for a few days.
If the pool stops leaking at any point, that is an indication that you have found where the leak might be.
For instance, if the water stops dropping at the bottom of your skimmers, the skimmers are likely the source of the leak.
This could be from a break in the skimmer line or a crack in the skimmer throat.
Either way, we can suggest a single-line test, which we do for a lower price than the full leak detection.
If the water keeps leaking, you could potentially see how far it drops. For instance, the pool may stop leaking at your light feature or return lines, but be aware that although it is extremely rare, pools can become irreparably damaged if the pool is drained too much.
Another way to save money is if the leak stops at the skimmers, you can leave the water at that level, turn off the skimmer valves, and run the pool from the main drain. This will continue to circulate water and chemicals without you losing water from your leak until a pool leak detector can repair the skimmer line.
5) Do your water features have their own pump?
Okay, this one is a little tricky, but well worth knowing if your pool waterfalls and water features have their own pump.
I won’t go into the details of this too deeply. However, this is something for a pool leak detection company to know.
You see, if your broken pipe is located in your water feature line that has its own separate pump, then that will continue to leak even when your equipment isn’t running water to those water features.
To put it as simply as possible, as long as that break is below the water line, that broken pipe will act as a siphon continuing to drain water from the pool through the pipe break.
So, if your pool is leaking when the equipment is off, and your water features have a separate pump, take off the lid to the pump.
If taking off the lid stops your pool leak, then the break is most likely in the pipe between your equipment and your water features.
We may skip the leak detection if this is the case and skip straight to the repair, saving you a lot of money.
Things to tell your Pool Leak Detector: Conclusion
In conclusion, there are five great pieces of information that you should do on your own before calling a Pool Leak Detection Company or before your pool leak detector arrives.
- 1) Know the last time you filled your pool and how much water you’ve lost since you last filled it up.
- 2) Measure if your pool only leaks when the pool is running or not.
- 3) Figure out, through a bucket test, if your pool is leaking from evaporation or if your pool is losing more than your area’s evaporation level.
- 4) Check if your pool stops leaking at any level in your pool.
- 5) Check if your water features have their own pump
Knowing these things can save you a lot of time and money. And if you’re more curious about how to do these things, please give us a call or read more of our How To Blog Posts!