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How to find a Pool Leak?

There are 2 main reasons why a pool loses water. Evaporation, which is the natural process in which water changes from a liquid to a gaseous state due to the influence of the sun’s rays and temperature. And what we will delve into in this article, a Pool Leak.

What is a Pool Leak?

A pool leak is a place where your pool is leaking water. This causes the water to become chemically unbalanced resulting in the appearance of algae.

Where can a Pool Leak Occur?

Pool leaks can occur inside or outside your pool. Before looking for a leak inside your pool, be sure to check the entire filtration system (plumbing), pump, filter, heater, etc.

If your pool is inground, leaks can also occur in cracked subway pipes. If this is the case, you should call a pool professional to pressure test the pipes for possible cracks.

The first step in detecting pool leaks is to determine if you actually have a leak and are not losing water through evaporation.

How to detect a Pool Leak?

1) Bucket Method:

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Tools you will need:

  • 5-gallon plastic bucket.
  • King size black marker or masking tape

Step 1) Place and fill the bucket:

Place the empty bucket on the second step of your pool and fill the bucket with water to match the water level of the pool. Use the marker or tape to mark this level inside the bucket.

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Step 2) Turn off the pump:

Turn off the pump and any other automatic filling devices your pool may have.

Step 3) Check the water level:

Then 24 hours later and compare the pool water level with the water level in the bucket. If the water in the pool and the water in the bucket have dropped, but remain even, your pool is losing water due to evaporation.

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However, if the pool level is lower than the bucket level, you most likely have a leak.

Step 4) Repeat the test:

To narrow down the possible source of the leak, repeat the test for another 24-hour period, this time with the pump on.

Step 5) Verify the new results:

If the water loss in the pool is greater when the water is circulating with the equipment on, the leak is most likely somewhere in the pool plumbing.

2) Dye Method:

Tools you will use:

  • A pair of swimming goggles
  • A snorkel
  • Leak detector dye, or dark-colored food coloring.

Step 1) Check to see if the floor and walls around the pool are damp:

This will help determine the area of the leak. Now you know the height of the leak, because that is where the water has stopped draining, and now you know the area because the pool floor or wall will be wet.

Once you have an idea of where the leak might be, jump into the pool and find the exact spot with the dye.

Step 2) Use the pool leak detection dye to locate the leak:

Moving slowly into the pool so as not to disturb the water, make your way to the area where you think the leak might be.

Pour the dye into the water near the wall. If the leak is nearby, you will see the dye move toward the source of the leak as a stream.

If you suspect the leak is at the bottom of the pool, put on goggles and do the same.

Don’t let your pool lose water and perform a Leak Detection Test!

Keeping your pool clean is of vital importance. A pool leak affects the health of your pool water, causing it to turn yellow or green.

At Urban Pool Services we perform leak detection and repair. If the leak is small we repair it immediately. If the leak is in the structure, equipment or requires breaking the concrete we notify the customer to proceed with the repair.


Call us and we will help you bring your pool to life.

  • Get your pool back.
  • Remodel your pool or patio.
  • Receive advice for the construction of your new pool.

(954) 406-4344

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