Above-Ground Pool Leaks: 5 Ways to Find Them Quickly

An above-ground pool is an excellent way to maximize your fun in the sun. However, one issue that can dampen the fun is a leak. Leaks can cause significant damage to your pool and the surrounding area, so it’s essential to find and fix the issue as soon as possible. 

The challenge is that leaks tend to be inconspicuous, at least in the beginning. So how do you spot a sneaky leak before it wreaks watery havoc on your yard? 

The first step takes place before you even bring a pool home. Specifically, you want to choose the pool that is least likely to surprise you with leaks at any point. Doughboy® Pools and liners, for instance, are produced with high-quality raw materials and with precision engineering to ensure that the product lasts for decades with proper care.

In any case, it’s still good to know what to do if the unexpected happens and a leak sneaks into your pool setup. More on that in a minute, but first, let’s cover some important points about pool leaks.

The Problems That a Leak in an Above-Ground Pool Can Cause

A leak in your above-ground pool can cause several costly and even dangerous problems, including:

  • Structural damage. A pool leak can cause damage to the structural components of your pool, including the walls and liner.
  • Water loss. Pool leaks can result in significant water loss. This means that you’ll need to continually refill the pool, which can add up quickly in terms of water bills.
  • Chemical imbalance. When water leaks out of your pool, the chemicals in the water become more concentrated, which can affect the pH balance and cause skin irritation and other health problems.
  • Damage to the surrounding area. If the leak isn’t fixed quickly, the water can seep into the ground and cause damage to the surrounding area. This can include erosion, mold growth, and damage to your property.

Ways to Find a Sneaky Leak in Your Above-Ground Pool

Now that you know the potential problems caused by an above-ground pool leak, let’s discuss effective ways to spot them quickly.

1. Check the Filter and Pump

The first thing to do is look for any signs of water gathering around the filter or pump, which can indicate a leak.

2. Check the Walls, Liner, and Fittings

Next, inspect the walls and liner of your pool for any signs of damage. Even a small puncture can cause a significant leak, so be sure to check thoroughly. Also, look for any signs of leakage around the fittings in your pool, including the skimmer, return jet, and drain.

3. Conduct a Bucket Test

The bucket test is a simple way to determine if your pool has a leak. Fill a bucket with water and place it on the pool’s steps or ladder so that it’s partially submerged. Mark the water level on the inside and outside of the bucket, then wait 24 hours. 

If the water level inside the bucket drops at the same rate as the water level outside the bucket, then it’s safe to conclude that the water is dropping due to evaporation. If, however, the water level outside the bucket drops more significantly than the water level inside the bucket, then you probably have a pool leak on your hands. 

4. Conduct a Dye Test

A dye test is another way to detect a leak in your above-ground pool. Add a few drops of food coloring to the water near where you suspect the leak may be. Wait for 15 minutes and then check to see if the food coloring has dispersed. If the dye has dispersed, it indicates that water is escaping through a hole in that area.

5. Hire a Professional

If all else fails, call a professional pool technician. They have the necessary tools and expertise to locate and fix the leak in your pool.

Above-Ground Pool Leak Prevention and Repairs

If you suspect that your above-ground pool has a leak, the key is to act quickly but don’t panic. Conduct one or more of the leak tests outlined above, all the while keeping a keen eye on your water levels and the area surrounding the pool. 

In any case, contact your local Doughboy dealer about how to prevent leaks in the first place. If, however, the unexpected happens, ask your dealer about what repairs are necessary to reverse the leak.

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