Tag Archives: Above Ground Swimming Pools

Tips for Pinpointing a Swimming Pool Leak

Diver Looking For Leaks in Pool

Do you suspect that your pool has a leak?  Have you noticed a larger than average drop in your in ground or above ground swimming pool‘s water level? Determining whether there truly is a leak and then locating the source of the leak can present a challenge.

If your swimming pool uses an automatic fill system that keeps the water at a constant level, you may suspect a leak if you spot any of the following situations:

  • An out-of-the-ordinary increase in your water bill
  • Cracks in the pool deck as a result of settling earth
  • Existance of water puddles outside the pool that cannot be easily explained
  • An increase in your pool chemical usage

First, turn off your pool’s automatic fill system for at least 24 hours and keep track of the water level. If the level drops significantly within that time, your suspicions may be right, and you may have a leak in your pool.

Another sign that your pool may be leaking is if there is air in your pump that is being blown into the pool. A leak in the suction side plumbing (from skimmers and main drains to equipment), may pull air into the lines where it will show up in the pump or be blown back into the pool through the returns. This condition can also be caused by an obstruction or blockage in the suction lines. Either situation requires immediate professional attention to prevent mechanical damage to your pool equipment.

Looking for Leaks

Before calling a pool leak detection professional, you can follow a few easy steps to determine if you have a pool leak and narrow the possibilities for where it is located. Here are some of the more common areas where leaks can occur:

  • In and around the pool equipment (heater, filter, pump, etc.)
  • At fittings (lights, returns, skimmers, etc.)
  • In the liner or shell of the swimming pool
  • In the pool’s underground plumbing system

Any leaks in the underground plumbing will require professional attention, but you may be able to find obvious leaks in other parts of the pool using simple visual inspection techniques.

Check for drips or other signs of moisture around the pool equipment. Also check to make sure that your multi-port valve is not positioned to allow water loss.

Underwater leaks in the pool fittings or shell can be identified with a dye test. You can make your own dye tester by using dark food coloring and a turkey baster or a plastic syringe. If using a turkey baster, slowly depress the bulb to allow a slow, steady stream of the dye to be injected into the pool. Place a small amount of dye near the suspected leak. Liquid follows the path of least resistance, so dye will be drawn out of the pool where a leak is present. Test areas where potential leaks may occur, such as cracks in the plaster or tile, and places where skimmers, return fittings, or stairs join to the pool shell. Much of this testing can be done from the pool deck; however, you will eventually have to get into the pool with a dive mask to completely inspect the pool’s structure.

Don’t feel discouraged if you are not able to find the leak; most leaks are not visibly obvious, or they may be in parts of the pool that are not accessible, such as in the underground plumbing system. A qualified pool leak professional uses specialized equipment to find leaks. This process can take as little as an hour or two, but more complicated jobs may take longer.

Pool Fences are Just One Part of the Protection Plan

Pool Safety Information

Ensuring the highest level of safety around the backyard swimming pool means creating a plan of protection that makes it extremely difficult for children or pets to gain entry to the pool water.  Proper adult supervision is one important part of this plan, but it doesn’t provide the entire solution. 

Along with supervision, a pool fence should be installed around the pool to prevent entry.  Pool fences that surround in ground pools should be at least 4 feet in height and should be constructed of a material that cannot be climbed.  Gate entry points should always remain locked, and gate handles should be out of reach of small children.  

Pool Fence for Safety

If the side of your home makes up the 4th wall of your fenced pool area, be sure to install a door alarm on the door that allows entry to the pool area.  Keep the alarm on at all times, and make sure it’s loud enough to hear in all parts of your home.

The same fencing will work well around an above ground swimming pool, but you should also consider installing a safety fence on the pool itself.  A safety fence designed specifically for above ground pools provides an additional safety barrier that prevents unauthorized entry to the pool.

Above Ground Pool Safety Fence

There’s no such thing as too much safety when it comes to backyard swimming pools.  Responsible adult supervision and proper pool fencing are just two parts of the protection plan that homeowners should implement to help prevent accidents in and around the pool.

Pool Safety Tip — Proper Supervision Defined

Supervising children during pool time play is only one of several important steps parents and caregivers should take to help prevent accidents and drownings in the backyard swimming pool.  But, what does proper supervision really mean?

Adequate supervision is active supervision.  The designated “water watcher” should keep his or her attention focused on the children in the pool at all times.  Books, cell phones, conversations with friends, and other distractions should be put aside until another responsible adult takes his or her turn providing supervision.

Accidents can happen in a split second, so keeping both eyes on the action in a swimming pool is essential to ensure safe swimming.  Learn more about proper pool supervision in the following video produced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Pool Safely campaign:

The Only Sport That Can Save a Life

Did you know that swimming is the only sport that can save a life?  By learning how to swim, or by strengthening your existing swimming skills, you have a much better chance of staying safe in the swimming pool.  Lessons for adults and children are available year round at many community centers, YMCAs or YWCAs, and Red Cross facilities.  Now is the best time to improve swimming ability because there’s plenty of time to learn this vital life-saving skill well before swimming season begins again.  

If you like to give meaningful gifts for the holidays, consider giving swim lessons to your favorite water-loving adult or child.  Swimming lessons make a unique, long-lasting, and life saving gift.  It would be hard to find any other gift that offers benefits like that! 

For more information about the importance of swimming lessons and knowing how to swim, watch this short and helpful video from the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Pool Safely campaign.

The Price Is Right on Above Ground Pools

Above Ground Pool

The popularity of above ground pools has grown in recent years, and many homeowners who may have never before considered owning one are now taking a second look. The reasons for this turn around are numerous, but cost is most certainly a major contributor to the rise in popularity of above ground pools.

Even before the onset of current economic problems, in ground pools were cost prohibitive for many homeowners. In fact, “sales of new [in ground] pools have fallen nearly 75% from their 2004 peak,” according to research conducted by P.K. Data, Inc. Comparing the cost of purchasing and installing an in ground pool with the cost of purchasing and installing an above ground pool reveals a significant difference. Above ground pools, in most cases, cost thousands of dollars less, making them a much more affordable option for homeowners, even in today’s tough economic climate.

To save even more money on a new above ground swimming pool, start looking during the off season when prices are at their lowest.  Pool manufacturers and distributors are more likely to offer better deals when business is slow.