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Thread: Leak Detection/location service

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    Question Leak Detection/location service

    Long time listener, first time caller.

    My pool is a 20x40 concrete/gunite with a deep end and diving board. The return system consists of in-floor cleaning heads (I believe they are Caretaker). The pool was built with the house in 1999 I live in Michigan.

    The issue is that my main drain is not holding pressure, and neither is one of the Caretaker zones. The pool tech has been at it for least 20 years thinks cleaning heads are more trouble than their worth. He thinks I should fill in the bad zone, and plug the main drains. He also claims that he has used a sound based leak detection system in the past and didn't find them all that effective. I know that there are speciality companies' that do this full-time, I am trying to see if anyone here has had experience with using one? In other words, how good are they?

    I would really like to weigh my options for repair. If the leak is under the deck and doesn't require breaking up the pool bottom, it would be a no-brainer to have it fixed. The problem, as it stands now, is there is no way to know where the leaks are.

    I know that bottom drains aren't a necessity, but I don't want to keep playing a game where I just cover up broken stuff because eventually the piping will have to be replaced anyway.

    Any opinions would be appreciated.

    Thanks.

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Leak Detection/location service

    I have had the unfortunate need to use these services multiple times over the years, from what I can tell there is certainly an art to the trade as well as certain tricks of the trade they can use for locating troublesome leaks. So far the guy I have used has pinpointed the underground leaks all 3 times within 6 inches or so, in one case he spent about 45 minutes narrowing down the position (turned out to be the L fitting under the skimmer), he nearly instantly had it within 2-3 feet, just the pinpointing gave him some trouble. It is not cheap though, I think I have paid around $350 each time, of course this guy covers about 1/3 of the state, and lives 100 miles away, batches calls so it may take a few weeks for him to show up too. The last time he was here he had 5 other calls in the area that day.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Leak Detection/location service

    Welcome to TFP !!

    First, I strongly suggest you read this: Pool School - Leak Detection

    Second, problems like these are why we generally don't like built in cleaning systems.

    Third, leak detection companies are generally very very good at finding leaks. You aren't in Houston or LA so finding one with much pool experience may be difficult. But we don't see bad reports about them on here.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    Re: Leak Detection/location service

    Thanks for the replies.

    I talked to the head pool guy today. Ultimately decided to permanatly seal off the bad Caretaker zone and plug the main drain. The hydraulic pressure from the ice pushed up and cracked the sleeve that the Cartaker's head sits in - fixing it would likely require digging up some of concrete floor of the pool. I think its a fine system for a southern climate, but even if money were no object, I wouldn't put them in again in this climate.

    At some point in the future, I am probably going to add a second skimmer on the other end of the pool. Its only about 20 feet from the pump equipment and it wouldn't require much deck work. I can also add return lines on the same wall in case there is any future problems with the caretaker system.

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    Re: Leak Detection/location service

    Quote Originally Posted by gwegan View Post
    But we don't see bad reports about them on here.
    Ok, i can fix that...

    In my experience, with the exception of one guy we use locally, leak detection companies have become the new scourge of the pool industry. Not that they can't find leaks, but their business tactics and practices have a lot to be desired. It would seem that their mission statement consists of just one sentence: "We shall not loose one dime on wasted time, OR on call backs, no matter what". One franchise (that will remain nameless) insists on a credit card number before they will take your job, and the minimum charge (put on the card when the tech sets foot on your property), IMO, is a bit out of line. I will just leave it at that before i get a PM from the Admin.

    Quote Originally Posted by ephone1 View Post

    At some point in the future, I am probably going to add a second skimmer on the other end of the pool. Its only about 20 feet from the pump equipment and it wouldn't require much deck work. I can also add return lines on the same wall in case there is any future problems with the caretaker system.
    Believe it or not, some thought does, or should be going into the placement of skimmers during construction other than the proximity to the equipment. Most important would be an area where the prevailing wind would collect the surface debris. Make sure that your placement decision includes this, otherwise, your skimmer could be upwind from its most effective position, leaving your pool with a constant "slick" of debris that will never get skimmed!
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