Leak or evaporation from cold weather?

BPool5

Member
May 29, 2020
19
Illinois
I’m in Chicago area and we’ve been having some cool temps lately. 50’s at night. We have also had quite a bit of rain. A couple days ago I noticed my Intex pool (the kind with poles, not inflatable ring top) water level seemed low. Especially considering all the rain we’ve had in the last week. Hard to tell if ground is wet from leak because the ground is wet. Kids haven’t been in pool in a couple weeks and I know last time they were in it I walked around the pool checking for leaks. I had to drain my pool and have it filled by company a month ago and I have been a little worried about a leak because I had to drain the pool and just something that’s concerned me. So 3-4 weeks ago water was filled new, pool barely used, no signs of leaking. We get lots of rain and cold temps and now water level is dropping. Just started keeping track and it’s about 1/4” in 24 hours. No obvious signs of leak, I don‘t see anything from outside of pool. I’ve examined outside of pool and don’t see anything. Pool is on top of landscaping fabric with landscape rocks around perimeter. Rocks don’t appear to be excessively wet, just what I’d expect since grass is wet from rain and every morning wet from condensation overnight. I have been searching for a leak but wonder if it’s more a case of evaporation from cold temps. If that is the case, will the water level drop way down over the next X amount of months once I close up the pool until next spring?
 

duraleigh

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Apr 1, 2007
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Sebring, Florida
Colder temperatures partly contributes to slowing the evaporation process so it's not the temp.

1/4 inch daily could be either from normal evaporation or a very small leak.......but it would be a very small leak, indeed. I would just keep an eye on your pool and make sure it doesn't start to lose more quickly.....indicating the leak is growing.
 

BPool5

Member
May 29, 2020
19
Illinois
After crawling around the outside of the pool and moving around all the landscape stones I noticed water pooled around one of the legs of the frame. Looked inside the pool and saw a black dot on the bottom. Used my handheld pool vac and the “dot” isn’t moving. I think it’s a tiny hole. Glad to find something and should be simple enough to patch. But could a tiny hole cause that much water loss?
 

x Wild Bill x

Well-known member
May 5, 2016
72
Rochester, MA
Hard to say, but I'm betting a small hole could lose 1/4" a day. What is the size of your pool?

I quickly took a guess at your pool being 18ft in diameter for an example. If an 18ft diameter pool loses 1/4" of water, that is the equivalent of 5.3 cubic feet, there are 7.48 gallons in a cubic foot of water, so the pool would have lost about 40 gallons of water in 24 hours. This is a loss of 1.66 gallons of water per hour or 3.55oz / minute. I would believe a small hole could lose that much water in a day. I just wanted to run the math and give you an example that would quantify the 1/4" water loss. When I started the calculation I honestly expected the 1/4" drop to be equivalent to more than 40 gallons, so that goes to show what I know... haha
 

x Wild Bill x

Well-known member
May 5, 2016
72
Rochester, MA
With a 15' diameter pool, 1/4" of water loss is only 27.5 gallons of water in 24 hours, so definitely a small / slow leak.

I actually had a small hole in our in ground vinyl liner pool this spring and was able to successfully (hopefully Murphy's law isn't listening) patch it with one of the self adhesive underwater patches. I applied to patches on top of each other for safety. The first one I cut about 1.5" diameter circle and the second was 3" diameter. I did my best to follow the instructions and press from the middle out and eliminate wrinkles. They make other patch kits that have a special adhesive that melts / welds the patch. I was afraid to use that as our line is almost 20 years old and some people warn that the melting action of the glue and patch can create a new tear / hole.

Personally I would try the self adhesive patch first and if that doesn't work then go for the bonding glue patch. I was able to find both patch kits for short money at a local hardware store. Good luck!