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Thread: Main Drain Leak - Plz Help!

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    Main Drain Leak - Plz Help!

    Ok, I've been filling my pool with water daily for a couple few weeks now, and finally realized this excessive heat isn't the issue (yea it took me a while to come to grips with this).
    I've been trying to ID exactly where my issue is, and did the bucket test to confirm. When my pump is on I lose almost nothing except evaporation. When it is off I lost a little over an inch more in the pool vs bucket just in 12hrs overnight, so by all accounts suction side leak. I did have the main off at the equipment though. Both the suction and return were closed off.

    The reason I think its main vs either skim line (2 main, 2 skim) is because I can use my skim as either a return or a suction based on 2 separate Jandy 3-ways. When I use the main as a return, I get air bubbles coming up through the pool. When I use just the main as suction (both skim off) I get a decent amount of air in the clear filter lid and pressure is about 14PSI. When I use just the skim as suction (main off) I get almost no air and the pressure is a shade under 18PSI. If I use both together the PSI goes to 18 and the air is still minimal so Im guessing all together makeup for the main issue there.

    I've also dove in and around the pool with the dye test and didn't notice any significant draw of dye around either skim, any returns or floor/wall plugs. I did do dye around the main drain and didn't notice anything either but the cover was still on, so most likely will have to repeat today. Even once I do that, I was going to repeat bucket test by plugging the main drains and confirm since isolating off at the equipment but not plugging it could still leak Ive heard.

    My sump in the basement has been running a lot too which is very near the pool equip and pool itself

    If my assumptions above are correct and I do isolate are these my options?:

    1 - Hire a leak pro and pay to detect exactly where and fix or at least just isolate (cost not sure)

    2 - Start digging myself and try to locate hoping its close to equip and not under concrete or deck

    3- Try the liquid fix a leak (is this stuff any good and does it work/even worth a shot?)

    4 - keep main plugged and not in use and wait until more time/money to investigate

    Am I missing anything? On the right track? Option 3/4 would obv be the cheapest from a cost and time/labor standpoint but don't want to ruin anything. Also If I do plug and leak stops (saves my water bill)
    Blue Haven Pool - In Ground ~16,500Gal; Concrete (circa 1998)
    Hayward Cartridge filter - New in May '14
    Hayward 1.5HP Pump - New in Aug '15
    Helicoil Solar Heat System (12 panels on roof) Installed May '16
    Dolphin Sprite, Dedicated pressure Ray-Vac line (currently not in use)

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    May 2014
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    Re: Main Drain Leak - Plz Help!

    Well, friends who have used option number 1 generally paid a few hundred dollars to get wispy washy answers - it might be here or it might be over there......

    I generally take option two, but that's just me.

    I've never heard of a stop leak for pools, car radiators - yes, pools - no. I can't imagine pouring something in my pool that would advertise stopping a leak.

    Option four is also a good possibility now if money/time is tight. Many new pools,are being built with no main drain, so as long as you get good circulation with just the skimmers it is viable.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: Main Drain Leak - Plz Help!

    Thanks Tim. Actually for the first 3 years I owned the pool (on my 4th season) I didn't have the main used for return or suction (it wasn't plugged but just no real pressure) - I only started using this year since the solar was installed and that guy said it would help distribute the heat better using it as a return.
    Blue Haven Pool - In Ground ~16,500Gal; Concrete (circa 1998)
    Hayward Cartridge filter - New in May '14
    Hayward 1.5HP Pump - New in Aug '15
    Helicoil Solar Heat System (12 panels on roof) Installed May '16
    Dolphin Sprite, Dedicated pressure Ray-Vac line (currently not in use)

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    wjr75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    IL
    Posts
    816

    Re: Main Drain Leak - Plz Help!

    The hydrostatic valve in my main drain had a leaf stuck in it and was leaking this year. We also had a leak around both of our skimmers which they patched with pool putty. Our pool company that opens our pool fixed both issues for a round $200. There are companies that can fix pipe issues which they isolate the pipe and pour a liquid into the pipe that seals the leak. I have never had to do this so I don't know how well that works.
    Inground 22k gallon gunite 15x31 main pool, 15x7 wading pool/sunning deck, hot tub/with overflow (9' octagon with limestone top) & slide NSWG, Aqua Blue Pebble Sheen
    Filter dual cartridge Sta-rite 450sq/ft, TF-100 Test Kit
    Heater Raypak 2100 400k btu cupro-nickel exchanger
    Auto pool cover, Polaris 280 auto pool cleaner, Jandy AqualinkRS8 Remote Control System

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