Closing a leaky inground

dandjpool

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Nov 25, 2007
65
Illinois
I am getting ready to close my inground pool. It's been losing about 4-5 inches of water a week for the past 2-3 weeks. I just checked on it and, after filling to within an inch of the top of the skimmer, it's drawing air again. I am 99% sure it's the 12 year old vinyl liner that's leaking and it's too late to do anything about it now, I need to close it tomorrow. I'll replace the liner in the spring.

My fear is the pool will be losing water over the entire winter. I'm in Illinois so refilling will be an option until about mid-December but once the real cold hits I can't run the hose. I probably won't be able to get to the cover through the snow and ice by early January.

What happens if the pool completely drains over the winter? Or drains so it's just 2' of ice at the bottom?

I knew I shouldn't have tried to squeeze this last year out of the liner...
 

Melt In The Sun

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Oct 29, 2009
3,899
Tucson, AZ
Since you're already planning to replace the liner, I wouldn't worry about it at all. It won't leak any lower than the groundwater level, and you should be good to go with the liner replacement come spring.

Correct me if I'm wrong, closing experts :oops:
 

dandjpool

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Nov 25, 2007
65
Illinois
I can't believe how much water it's been losing. And all of a sudden. I calculated it to be about 1200 gallons per week. Where the heck is it all going?

My main concern is the steel under the liner. I'm worried the ground will expand and push it out of shape or, worse case, cave in completely. We bought the house with pool already in place so I don't have a grasp on the construction or what's under the liner.

thanks!
 

X-PertPool

TFP Expert
In The Industry
Jun 12, 2009
1,385
Exeter, PA
What you are concerned with can happen. Leaving the pool dry for a long period of time could lead to wall collaspe. If you can't find a leak a possible way to keep water pressure on the walls would be to purchase a greatly oversized winter cover and pump the water from the liner onto the cover. Almost like a second layer of liner. If you do just let the pool drain out over the winter don't cover the pool as a safety cover will break from snow load and a tarp cover will just fall in
 

dandjpool

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Nov 25, 2007
65
Illinois
Thanks X-Pert. My pool is the same size as yours and I am having no luck finding a cover big enough to do the job without ordering online (and I really do need to close today). I'm thinking it needs to be at least 44' x 30'
I think M.E.T.S. is on to something with the water not being able to drop past the ground water. I am trying to get the info on our water table here. What do you think about this theory? It's already hitting freezing temps here so my options are limited. I think I might just have to close and keep an eye on it somehow.
 

dandjpool

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Nov 25, 2007
65
Illinois
I think I found the leak. Once the water got below the skimmer I could see a tear and the liner is stretched from shrinking so it is pulling loose. I think I am all good!

I really used this liner to it's full life. It looks terrible. All bubbled at the bottom and barely hanging on where it's clipped in. It's my fault it aged so quickly over this past summer. I let it veer way off course in the pH department a couple times because we didn't use it as often. The wheels on my Polaris 380 even got a little chalky. I will definitely need to replace it in the spring. Unless I fill it with jello.