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How To Repair Leaking Underground Pool Pipes

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How To Find A Leak In Underground Pool Piping

How to Fix Leaking Swimming Pool PVC Pipes

Although the majority of leaks are not in the pools underground piping, it does sometimes happen. One way to make sure that the underground pipes are the source of the leak is to switch the pump off and to plug the lines. If leakage still occurs the problem is not the pipes however, if leakage stops each plug can be taken out one at a time to determine when leakage begins again. Once the source of the leak has been identified, a break can often be repaired by cutting a small hole into the pool deck, but sometimes replacing underground pool pipe runs will be necessary.

All of these tasks can be quite stressful for most homeowners. That is why there are companies like Poolknights who can find the problem and fix it quickly and correctly. Poolknights will take your stress away while allowing you to enjoy your pool without the downtime you may encounter trying to fix yourself.

If you suspect a leaking swimming pool pipe let us help! Contact Poolknights Now!

What Our Client Say

Pool Knights service is outstanding! The staff is friendly, and they are very detailed with our pool. We dont have to worry about anything when it comes to maintenance, equipment, etc. Rates are great too! I would recommend them to anyone with a pool in the greater Houston area.

The Ultimate Guide To Finding & Fixing A Swimming Pool Leak

  • |November 28, 2018

We all know swimming pools get wounded from time to time, but that doesnt make fixing an unexpected leak any less hassle, right?

Fortunately, there is a way to make fixing your pool a surprisingly quick and painless process, so you can get it patched up and ready for swimming again in no time.

In this article, Ill cover the exact steps you need to take in order to identify and fix a leak for both inground and above ground pools.

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How To Fix A Pool Liner Leak

This may sound like a big problem, but dont fear. You shouldnt have any trouble fixing a tear in your vinyl pool liner as long as its not too large, and your liner is worth repairing i.e., it is in otherwise good shape and not too old. Initially, for a quick fix, theres no shame in patching the hole with a strip of duct tape while you gather what you need to fix the tear permanently.

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Is Leakage Greater When The Pump Is Off

While the pump is running, leaks in pipes, fittings or valves on the suction side of the system before the pump usually draw air in rather than leak water out. When the pump cycles off, however, water leakage may occur through these openings. Air locks in the pump that require frequent manual priming, bubbles emitted from the return jets in the pool and high-pressure readings in the filter that are relieved by opening the bleed valve are all signs that a leak somewhere before the pump is sucking air in while the pump is energized and probably leaking water out when the pump stops.

Hacks For Identifying A Pool Leak

Swimming pool pipe leak repair East Orlando
  • Use Food Coloring: If you know you have a leak but want to be sure of the location, grab some food coloring and squeeze it near the cracked area. If there is a leak, youll likely see the food coloring get sucked into the crack. The same applies to areas around fittings and also the mouth of the skimmer.
  • The Bucket Method: Place a 5-gallon bucket on the second step of your pool. Fill it to match the water level in your pool. Turn off the pump and check the levels in 24 hours. If the water in the bucket is higher than the water surrounding it, you probably have a leak.

Once youve determined that you have a leak, the next step is to repair it.

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Signs You Have A Leak In Your Plumbing System Include

  • Low Water Pressure The more air in your lines, the less room there is for water. Be sure to check your filters pressure gauge and if the PSI rating is lower than your normal reading, use the filters air relief to release air pressure.
  • Unable to Prime If your pump suddenly is unable to be primed, it could be as simple as a closed valve or a blocked impeller. Be sure to check a few other things to really single out this issue.
  • Losing Prime If the pump runs dry after manually priming the pump with a hose, it could be a sign of a more severe air leak.
  • Air Bubbles The most common sign you have air in your lines, air bubbles throughout your pool during the runtime of the pump shows an issue that needs further diving into.

How To Find A Leak In Your Swimming Pool

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It’s natural for your pool to lose some water to evaporation, some to splash out, and some to backwashing your filter. But if you routinely need to add more than two inches of water to your pool per week, you may have a leak. Uh oh, right? Not so fast. Before you call the local pool tech, give your pool a once-over and determine whether you can’t fix it yourself.

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How To Check For Plumbing Leaks In A Swimming Pool

The average in-ground residential pool in the United States contains about 20,000 gallons of water. Given that volume, leakage from a pool may be subtle and hard to detect. Tracing it to its source can be even more difficult. Leaks in the concrete shell of the pool often require high-tech leak detection methods such as underwater listening devices and/or dye testing. Fortunately, the majority of pool leaks occur outside the pool and above-ground in the plumbing and pump/filter circuit. Answering some simple troubleshooting questions can identify these most common and easily repaired sources of leakage.

Common Signs Of A Pool Plumbing Leak

Repairing Pipe Leaks Underground – Fix A Leak Without Digging – DIY Pipe Repair

Repairing leaking pipes, fittings, and joints can be costly. That is why homeowners with swimming pools need to pay attention to the warning signs. Pool leaks can also be challenging to detect since having water around a pool is expected. Weekly inspections of your pool equipment area can help in finding minor leaks before they have time to become a major problem.

Here are some telltale signs that you should look for:

  • Consistent puddling in equipment pad area
  • Water spots on pad after turning equipment off
  • Saturated ground in front or behind equipment pad
  • Leaking from backwash valve when not in backwash mode
  • Adding excessive amounts of water to pool weekly

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Pool Pipe Repairs Under Swimming Pools

Its an iconic element of the Australian leisure identity a summer barbie around the backyard swimming pool. Even in New Zealand, backyard pool ownership rates are surprisingly high thanks to the wonders of pool heating systems with nearly 10,000 private pools inspected by Auckland Council in 2018 alone.

But as we float beneath the swaying palm fronds intoxicated by the fragrance of the frangipanis and gardenias bordering the path, how much thought do we give to the vital network of pipes below us that keep the whole thing pumping?

This article explains just what types of pipes usually lay under and around backyard or residential complex pools, how to identify whether theres an issue in one of those pipes, and what to do if repairs are needed.

How Does The System Work

  • The drain is inspected with our CCTV drain cameras. We will locate the exact location of the break in the pipe using a locator.
  • We then measure the amount of lining required to repair the underground pipe
  • Whilst the camera is inside the drain we will push to an exit point in the line in order to tie a rope on and pull back through
  • Once the measurements are confirmed and a rope is in the line, we will then impregnate a felt liner with a 2 part epoxy resin
  • An inflatable bladder is pulled through the felt liner and roll up and taped to keep tight and secure for transport through the pipe
  • Using the ropes in the line we pull the liner into place and check its position with our camera in the line
  • The liner is inflated and left to cure until rock hard
  • The bladder is removed from the inside of the pipe, leaving the newly installed liner behind which has bonded to the host pipe
  • All work is checked with a cctv camera and recorded + handed over to you.
  • Learn more about pipe relining costs

    • About Maida

      Our family has been trusted in the plumbing industry for over 60 years, spanning four generations. Our mission is to deliver simple, innovative and smart solutions to our clients with unrivalled service. It’s more than just pipe relining and blocked drains to us. We strive to be Sydney’s most trusted plumbers.

    • Maida Pipeline Solutions

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    Measure Twice Cut Once

    Yeah, I knowfor the most seasoned among us, measure twice, cut once is a bit of a cliché. But its important to remember all the same, and one of the reasons why when measuring new PVC pipe, I usually add about a half an inch to my measurements. Additionally, in order to leave enough pipe to make a solid connection, youll want to add about two inches to either side. Its always better to have pipe too long that needs to be trimmed than pipe too short. Dont forget to measure that second time, right before you make the cut.

    Make Connections With The Existing Pipe

    How to Fix Leaking Swimming Pool PVC Pipes

    Step 6a: Outdoor Joints

    A solder joint isnt appropriate for a buried line, so instead they used a pack-joint coupling to connect the new pipe to the existing supply line in the ground outside. Unfortunately, I dont have a picture of this step, but you can Google for pack-joint coupling and find a good amount of information on it. Next, they turned on the water to flush out any dirt or debris.

    Step 6b: Indoor Joints

    Next, the crew went about connecting the new line inside my house, which involved simple copper soldering. If youre curious about that fitting in the middle, its a compression fitting called a SharkBite. When they installed the new, 90° elbows, one of the joints wasnt properly soldered. When they turned on the water, a small pin-hole leak was evident. Unfortunately, its impossible solder a pipe when its full of water. To address this, they cut the pipe in the middle, drained the water, re-soldered the elbow and then used a SharkBite to repair the cut. In Maryland, SharkBite fittings are fully code-compliant for indoor use.

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    Common Signs Of Broken Pipes Under Swimming Pools

    All of the above means its important for relevant homeowners to be aware of the warning signs that indicate there could be trouble brewing in the pipes under their pool.

    Pools can leak water through any of the pipes, fittings, joins or bends in the plumbing system or through the shell of the pool itself. Broken, blocked or collapsed pipes under or beside swimming pools and their surrounds can be very costly and difficult to identify, because water around a pool is expected. It can take months or even years for someone to recognise that the wet area of deck, garden or paving is there rain, hail or shine and even when no-ones swum for a week.

    But wet areas around the pool arent the only way of recognising you might need a pipe repair under your pool.

    Signs of a broken or leaking pipe under a swimming pool include:

    • falling water levels
    • excessive dirt on the bottom of the pool
    • cracks appearing in decking or paving around the pool
    • greater need for use of pool chemicals
    • water puddles that dont go away even when there has been no rain or pool use
    • water weeping downhill from a pool
    • wet spots in the yard on the side of the pool where the plumbing returns water to the yard
    • any of the usual signs of blockages in the homes sewage and drainage pipes which can be traced to pipes sitting beneath a pool.

    S To Repair A Broken Underground Pipe

    The plumbers presented two strategies for fixing the leak. One approach would be to replace the entire length of copper pipe between my house and the meter by securing a cable at one end and pulling the old pipe and a new one through the ground. This would require minimal digging and less labor however, copper is expensive and this solution would be too. I opted for the second approach, which was to dig down to the pipe at the leak location and replace a small section of the pipe.

    Pro-Tip: On newer construction, you may see black, high-density polyethylene pipe in lieu of copper, because it is less expensive.

    Pro-Tip: Copper water pipe has an expected lifespan of 50-60 years.

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    How To Find Pool Leaks In Underground Pipes

    Although you may not see them, pool leaks do occur in underground pipes. Due to them being invisible , most homeowners overlook them. They usually dont suspect a leak is even present until major issues arise. With major issues, comes costly repairs. That being said, we recommend all homeowners with an in-ground pool take the time to learn about how to look out for pool leaks in underground plumbing.

    Know Your Leak Know Your Options

    Locating and Fixing A Pipe Leak Under Concrete Pool Deck with LeakTronics Pro Complete Kit

    Not all leaks were created equally. Yours might range from a small drip, drip, drip to a geyser aspiring to be the next Old Faithful. If its a really small drip on a plumbing fitting , chances are it wont get significantly worse or alter your water levels. But anything larger, and youre going to want to take action.

    No matter where your leak is, your plan of attack is going to be similar: instead of reaching for the short-term epoxy, were going to walk through the longterm solution of replacing the sections of pipe that have been cracked. But since there are minor differences in approach, this is the time to inspect those cracks and take note of just where theyre happening in your greater pool system. Youve got a few different categories to check off here.

    A suction side leak is one that occurs somewhere in your plumbing before it reaches the pool pumps impeller. These are the pipes that suck water from the pool to your pump. Usually, a leak on the suction side will draw air into the pipes when the pump is on, and leak water out when the pump is off. If you know anything about priming your pump, you know air in the pipes is a no go. You can patch these up with pool putty or silicone as you get ready for a proper replacement, but thats only a short term solutionthe leak is almost guaranteed to return.

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    Repairing Concrete Pool Leaks

    Concrete pool leak repairs can be extensive and costly, depending on the damage. After pinpointing the culprit of the leak, you may be able to repair it yourself with a temporary patch, or youll be forced to immediately call professionals to make the repairs .

    How do you fix a pool leak?

    • Fittings Leaks: To repair a leak near the faceplate, jets, or lights, you can likely put silicone around it to secure the water and stop the leak.
    • Plumbing Leaks: If you think there is a leak in your plumbing, call a professional. It could involve digging up the foundation around the pool and/or replacing pipes. This would be one of those scarier leaks that will likely cost more to repair.
    • Main Drain Leaks: Unfortunately, the only option to repair the main drain is to replace it. While you wait for the replacement, you can plug a pipe into the drain and turn it off completely.
    • Skimmer Leaks: A temporary fix for a leak in the skimmer is to patch it with silicone. Most cases require a skimmer replacement as a permanent fix.

    How To Check If Your Pool Has A Leak

    If youre still convinced your pool has a leak, there is a ninja trick you can deploy, and its what we in the biz like to call the The Bucket Test.

    The Bucket Test works by applying the same water conditions in your pool, to the water in a bucket. This allows you to very easily check if water is lost at the same rate.

    Follow these steps to find out if you have a leak.

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    Common Reasons For Pvc Leaks

    Here are some of the most common causes of PVC pipe repairs and replacements:

    • Improper installationIf a PVC fitting is not properly installed onto the joining pipe, a leak can occur. This is usually caused by a loose-fitting that allows water to seep through.
    • Wrong adhesive glueMake sure that you purchase the correct PVC cement so that it doesnt deteriorate prematurely. Before selecting a glue, read the label to confirm that its designed to adhere to PVC. Even if you select the correct glue, itll eventually deteriorate with old age and require a repair.
    • Freezing temperaturesAlthough PVC is resistant to freezing, its still capable of becoming brittle and damaged under extreme winter weather. If you live in an area that experiences cold temperatures, insulate your pipes to prevent freezing.

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