This is my third season of the TFP method, and overall I've found it to be MUCH easier than balancing with pool store chemicals. Except my pH always seems to rise.
It donned on me the other day that my pool is constantly aerating itself with air bubbles from the returns - which thanks to Pool School I've figured out is due to a suction side leak. I've used the garden hose to rule out the plug at the bottom of the strainer pot, the lid/gasket, and the plumbing above ground. So I started digging. I've uncovered the 90° elbow below the pump and flooded my hole with water, but still had air. Before I dug further, i used a winterizing plug to rule out my main drain plumbing and skimmer plumbing into my pool deck debris canister. So... I dug some more but still haven't found the leak. I'm beginning to wonder if I'll find it without digging up concrete (something I'm not comfortable doing - I don't have the tools or the expertise).
Here are two pics of my current excavation:
So, any suggestions? Do I need to dig under the pipe, too, or would flooding the hole as I currently have done find the leak? If I call the pool company to come check it out, what kind of expense is reasonable to get this fixed? Is it okay to just leave it sucking air and adding acid weekly - basically what I've been doing since the fall of 2012...? Any recommendations on contractors that do a good job in Maryland?
Thank you so much!
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