How to Detect a Pool Leak in 5 Easy Steps

How to Detect a Pool Leak in 5 Easy Steps

Pool leak detection is a specialised part of the pool servicing industry. There are several reasons your pool’s water levels could be lower than before, including evaporation, splash-out, backwash waste water, as well as actual leaks.

Generally, if you add more than two inches of water to your pool on a weekly basis then it’s worth investing the time and money to repair the leak, if there’s one at all. Thankfully, there’s a simple initial test you can perform.

Before you go searching for a leak beneath the water, check your entire filter system area, including salt chlorinators, filter, heater and pump for any obvious faults. Once you’ve done that, follow these steps to detect a leak in your pool.

How to detect a pool leak:

  1. Place a bucket in your pool and fill it with water
  2. Turn off the pool pump and return in 24 hours
  3. Measure water levels inside and outside the bucket and compare to before
  4. Turn on the pool pump and repeat the test
  5. Test the new results

For more details, see our full instructions below.

Step #1: Get a Bucket

Find a 20-litre bucket and fill it to match the level of water in your pool. You should place the bucket on the second step of your pool, so that you can fill it far enough and avoid additional water flowing in simultaneously. Then, use duct tape or a market to mark the water level both inside and outside the bucket. The picture below illustrates how this could look.

Step #2: Turn Off the Pool Pump

You will perform one test with the pool pump on and one with the pool pump off. First time around, turn off your pool pump as well as any other auto-refill device you may have for your pool. Then, leave your pool and come back in 24 hours.

Step #3: Measure the Water Levels & Compare

Here comes the moment of truth. By leaving your water in the bucket for 24 hours, you’ve given your water enough time to evaporate.

If the water level in your bucket and pool both decrease at the same rate then you’re losing water due to evaporate. On the other hand, if your pool water level is decreasing at a faster rate than the water in your bucket then you have a leak.

Make sure to mark your final water level on the outside of the bucket, you will need this for the next steps.

Step #4: Turn on Your Pool Pump

By turning on your pool pump, you’re narrowing down the potential source of the leak. Again, you want to the pool for 24 hours. Though you’re no longer going to be testing for evaporation, you’re still going to need your bucket to compare first and second test results.

Step #5: Check the New Results

When you return to your pool, mark your water level in another colour. If the loss of pool water is greater with water circulating under pressure (when your pump is on) then the leak is most likely to be somewhere in your pool’s plumbing. At this stage, you will definitely need to call in a pool servicing expert or local plumber to fix your pool leak.

At Pool Magic Pool Care, we can help detect and fix leaks in your pool. Give us a call or contact us to book your appointment. Spring is one of the best times to perform precautionary tests, so that you can enjoy your pool as soon as summer kicks off.