Recently, I purchased a new home in AZ with a relatively large, inground, pebbletec pool that sat empty for 5 months. After filling it, I immediately realized I was losing almost 2" of water every day and obviously had a leak. A contacted a pool repair company and it sent a technician to my home who analyzed my pool by using the dye test and allegedly found a leak in one of the two skimmers. He then plugged the opening that's connected to my auto-water "bowl" and allegedly found a second leak by removing all the water in the "bowl" using a cup and sponge. When he showed me how the bowl was slowing filling up even though it was plugged, I was sold on his analysis; but as he continued to wipe up the water, the water seemed to stop filling up the "bowl." Regardless, I knew I had a leak and trusted this company's analysis so I agreed to allow them to return to fix the leaks with an epoxy solution. Before the technician left my home he said, "I'll leave the opening that allows water to flow from your auto-water filler bowl to your pool plugged because it might be a few days before we can return to your property, and this way you'll save some $ on your water bill and potential damage underneath your patio." Over the next 4 days I stopped losing water, aside from regular evaporation.
The day for repaired arrived and a different technician visited my home and proceeded to inform me that the leak was not in the skimmer and verified it's in the auto-water level "bowl." He then went on to state that the entire "bowl" needed replaced, to the tune of $850.00 as compared to the originally quoted $125.00. Needless to say I asked him to leave my property because I was not going to pay $850.00. He left but did not retrieve the prior technician's plug.
I've continued to mark the water line in my pool over the past two weeks and am not losing any water aside from what is considered related to evaporation. I plan on purchasing some A+B Epoxy to fix the leak. The inside of the auto-water filler bowl is concrete so I have a few questions:
1. Is a leak in this area common?
2. Will A+B Epoxy work well on concrete?
3. Any preparatory work I should do in the bowl prior to applying the epoxy?
Thank you so much for any insight you're able to provide me. This situation has been nothing short of a nightmare.