Water loss over winter

jjherm7

Active member
Jun 14, 2015
32
Pittsburgh, PA
So, when we closed our pool down in the fall, we did the normal thing of putting the pillow in, draining the water down past the return jet, etc.

Well, we noticed about a month ago that the pool water level looks like it's dropped significantly over the winter. So, I'm just wondering if anyone knows what I'm going to be looking at when I unwinch that winter cover and take it off to open up. I'm honestly dreading taking it off, but figured the next few weeks under stay at home orders, I'll have a lot of free time to get the pool opened. I'm thinking maybe the liner tore and water drained out? Does that sound like what is probably the issue?

And if so, is there a way to prevent that in the future? And what kind of cost am I looking at to get that replaced? And anything else I need to be wary of if that is what happened? Friends of ours had theirs tear, and ended up getting mold behind it, so they had to replace the whole pool. Hoping that's not the case...

Haven't posted in a while, so not sure if my signature still active: 24' round above ground vinyl liner
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Winter water loss can be from a couple items that stand out in my mind, maybe others will have more ideas:
1 - Cover pump pulled water up and out of the pool during the winter
2 - Leak. Ugh. Either in the liner or plumbing related allowing a small loss over time.

Take your time and look closely.
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
2,388
NY
It could very well be a small hole/tear and be easily patchable. You wont know for sure until you explore, but if you pop the cover and *dont* see a 3 foot rip, its a good thing.
 

jjherm7

Active member
Jun 14, 2015
32
Pittsburgh, PA
Update: I stuck my hand in the skimmer just to see if I felt anything, and it feels like the lining is not sticking to the wall. It's attached at the top, but feels like there's air in between the lining and the wall below that. Not sure if it goes all the way around yet.

Uh-oh, now what?
 

jjherm7

Active member
Jun 14, 2015
32
Pittsburgh, PA
So another update:

I finally took the winter cover off completely today. I definitely lost about 2 feet of water. I always drain to just below the return jet, and I'd say there's only about a foot of water left in the pool right now.

Granted I haven't gotten IN the pool yet to check in super great detail, but just feeling around from the outside.... the liner feels like it is not attached to the pool walls all the way around the entire pool. The liner seems to be attached to the floor of the pool just fine, but has come off of the walls. I see no big tears, and see no damage using the naked eye that I can tell.

Do I have a small leak somewhere about a foot up? Or could anything else have caused this? And what would anyone think my next steps would be?

And assuming I have a leak, and we're able to patch it, will I still need to get someone out to "attach" the liner to the walls again?
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
We can call on some experts to assist, but #1 must be finding that leak. If you have no drain (I don't recall), it must be somewhere around that waterline. Once found and repaired, repair actions could depend on the amount of standing water behind the liner and whether it can be suctioned-out in such a way that the liner will go back to its original position. If you do have a drain, check there as well in case you have to plug it or perhaps repair a hydrostatic valve (if installed)..