New Plumbing installed Pipes Leaking!! PB says this is fine???!

Dmax13

Member
Aug 18, 2022
8
Maryland
Hi All! Posting here for saving my sanity! And hopefully to get some responses to help me and any others with this issue down the road!

Our pool builder ran the pool internals and stub outs for the pool months ago - capped and pressure tested them holding at 25psi with no leaks for month +
We have 3 pumps the main pool pump attached to the filter/ returns is not staying pressurized And one of the water feature pumps is not staying pressurized either. The 3rd pump IS holding the air through the whole line from pad to the pool.

The pool builder response to this was “This is very normal when pressuring with air. There are many unions on the system. Unfortunately we can’t pressure with water because of the weather.”

I’ve looked around through some threads and I’m confident that since this is a closed system it shouldn’t be leaking!? Water or air tested.. and should stay pressurized within 2-3psi to account for temp changes? Could anyone shed some insight if I’m mistaken and should I hold the PB accountable to come figure out where these leaks are? As you can see within 2-3 days the gauges are down to zero PSI.

Look forward to any help and insight anyone can provide on this!!
Thank you so much!!
 

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Dmax13

Member
Aug 18, 2022
8
Maryland
Figure out which unions are losing air. Or wait until the weather improves and pressurize with water to be sure it’s still ok.
Would the best way to do this using soap and water on every union? Something with this size leak still bubble if it’s very slow leak? 2-3 days to zero from 25psi. Or is there a way to put dye in the air so it will show where it’s leaking on the pipe.
Is it true that air will leak but water may not from the difference in surface tension?
I should state they want to close the trench after electric is done which pressure testing with water will now be even harder to test and a way out for them to say trench is closed can’t test those home run pipes.

Thanks!
 
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Dmax13

Member
Aug 18, 2022
8
Maryland
Has the pool project been approved for pre-Shotcrete inspection?
In my area that much loss of air pressure in 2 days would fail pre-Shotcrete inspection by the city.
Sorry I should have stated yes it has been gunite already. All those pipes held pressure no problem. But since they have now came out and installed the pad plumbing and plumbing in the trench up to those lines. That section somewhere is where the pressure isn’t holding.

And from what we were told in maryland the county doesn’t inspect pipes or for leaks after their pre inspection before shotcrete. So now left to make the PB fix the issue even though they are saying 25psi lost is fine within 3 days while the other pump and lines they did for the other water feature is holding with no loss.
 

Bperry

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Would the best way to do this using soap and water on every union? Something with this size leak still bubble if it’s very slow leak? 2-3 days to zero from 25psi. Or is there a way to put dye in the air so it will show where it’s leaking on the pipe.
Is it true that air will leak but water may not from the difference in surface tension?
I should state they want to close the trench after electric is done which pressure testing with water will now be even harder to test and a way out for them to say trench is closed can’t test those home run pipes.

Thanks!
You might try shaving cream. I’m assuming there’s only a few unions at the pad and no unions buried underground.
 

Turbo1Ton

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What I am understanding is the PB pressure tested all the lines underground, and they all held pressure just fine. It is not until they installed all of the equipment at the pad that there is an issue. If that is the case, I think this is not a problem. Any leaks at the pad will be found and fixed once they start the system up. The underground pipes are where you don't want the leaks. They have proven the integrity of those. Unless they did something to compromise those after the pressure test, such as dig near them or move the lines in some way.

My PB never put another gauge on the lines after the initial underground pressure test.

A dish soap/water solution in a spray bottle would be the best way to find any leaks. This is how we air test our piping systems where I work.

--Jeff
 
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Dmax13

Member
Aug 18, 2022
8
Maryland
What I am understanding is the PB pressure tested all the lines underground, and they all held pressure just fine. It is not until they installed all of the equipment at the pad that there is an issue. If that is the case, I think this is not a problem. Any leaks at the pad will be found and fixed once they start the system up. The underground pipes are where you don't want the leaks. They have proven the integrity of those. Unless they did something to compromise those after the pressure test, such as dig near them or move the lines in some way.

My PB never put another gauge on the lines after the initial underground pressure test.

A dish soap/water solution in a spray bottle would be the best way to find any leaks. This is how we air test our piping systems where I work.

--Jeff
Hey Jeff I have attached a pic for reference. About which lines held pressure before the plumbing pad and home runs were installed. The pool is gunite now but the pic should explain it as these were all capped and pressure tested before gunite. So the “internal” plumbing to the pool held with no issues.

But now that the pad equipment and plumbing / new connecting runs to the “stub outs” of the pool have been finished - these lines are not holding the pressure. Everything in the tench and pad is all recently installed and somewhere in there is leaking. Like you said really don’t want it to be in the trench runs would be much easier at the pad to find and fix. But at this point some dirt has already fell on the pipes (more than the attached pic that was taken day of) and not sure the best way to track down where this leak is now. Am I chasing something that isn’t a big deal or should I make sure it can hold pressure pad to pool.

I did spray heavy soap and water on the connections / unions at the pad and did not find any bubbles or leaks. I have not heard of the shaving cream method before as a previous member has stated I will have to look into that.

But now I’m concerned it may be at a coupler in one of the home run pipes to the pool?

Regardless - if air leaks = water will leak? The PB is trying to reassure me air might escape slowly but water won’t. And I’m just not buying that.!?!?
 

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Bperry

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Have not heard of this method before will look into this do you find this to be better than soap/water? Also correct no onions IN the ground of tench just at the pad on all equipment
Soap and water is fine too. If it held pressure before until they added unions, then those are the likely culprit.
 

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Turbo1Ton

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Thanks, the pics help me understand. They didn't add the runs from the pool to the equipment pad until after gunite, and now it leaks. Yeah, I understand your hesitancy to accept that as well. On my build, they ran everything to the pad area, built a manifold, and pressure tested there. Then the only thing they changed was to add the equipment above ground.

I agree, I would want to see that everything underground holds pressure prior to burying, and I think you are right to request your PB to ensure this. You don't want to have to break up a deck after 2-3 months because of a leaking pipe, that could have easily been caught now.

My understanding of the shaving cream method is more for suction side leaks, as the shaving cream will suck into the leak and seal it off. For a pressure side leak, I don't think the shaving cream would do much.

--Jeff
 

Bperry

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My understanding of the shaving cream method is more for suction side leaks, as the shaving cream will suck into the leak and seal it off. For a pressure side leak, I don't think the shaving cream would do much.

--Jeff
That may be true. I had a hard time with the soap bubbles on stuff that wasn’t flat or where the leak might be facing downward with gravity and so I read somewhere that shaving cream tends to hold on a bit better.
 
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