Our Bucket Test will help determine if your water loss is due to evaporation or if a leak is present.
Use the following steps to determine if your pool, spa, or fountain is leaking.
- Ensure that the swimming pool is filled to normal operating level.
- Dip a 5 gallon-bucket in the swimming pool (or water you have) and fill it an inch or two higher than the level of the pool water on the outside of the bucket.
- Place the bucket on the steps of the swimming pool. Do not immerse.
- Shut the pumps off and ensure that the auto-fill valve is off to set up the test.
- Mark the water levels inside & outside the bucket with a grease pencil.
- Restore the pump function (keep the auto fill valve off).
- Mark the time. After 24 hours compare the two levels of water.
Review Your Results & Keep A Few Things In Mind
- Do not carry out the bucket test during any rainfall, as the rain interferes with results.
- Do not extend the test over a 24 hour period or the results will not be accurate.
- Write down the number of inches lost in 24 hours and calculate the difference between the loss of water in the bucket and that from the pool.
- If the mark outside the bucket (swimming pool water) is lower than the mark inside the bucket, this is an indication that there is a leak.
The bucket test principle is simple – the rate of evaporation of water is the same from any surface. Hence, if the bucket shows a quarter inch loss of water owing to evaporation, the swimming pool should have the same loss. If the water loss in the swimming is more than in the bucket, there is a leak.
Call us immediately if you suspect a leak. Aquaman Leak Detection can expertly determine if the leak is in the structure, plumbing, or accessories, and isolate the leak to minimize the required repair expense.
If your pool, spa, or fountain is losing half an inch a day, it could be evaporation, or it could be a leak. A quarter inch per day is most likely evaporation. The evaporation rate in your area depends on humidity, sunlight intensity, barometric pressure, wind, as well as the amount of use (people) in the pool, spa, or fountain. In the heat of the summer, more evaporation is likely. If you aren't sure what is causing your pool water level to drop, you can perform a bucket test.
Preparing For A Service Call
If you suspect a leak, but don’t know how much water your pool, spa or fountain is losing per day, we may ask if a bucket test has been performed. Once we know a leak is present, we go right to work using our own patented leak detection technology to find the leak fast. We find and repair leaks the same day in most cases and offer warrantied work, leaving our clients with peace of mind.
Pool Leak FAQs
Do I have a swimming pool leak, or is it evaporation?
There are many common signs of evaporation that may mimic a pool leak. The Bucket Test is an easy DIY way to check for evaporation versus a potential leak. Additionally, the Ink Test option can identify the leak source if one exists.
Can you use food coloring to find a pool leak?
Yes, you can use food coloring to find a pool leak. An alternative option is to utilize pool detection dyes, which are typically non-toxic and biodegradable. The cost-effectiveness of using pool dyes may vary depending on the amount of food dye available.
What causes most pool leaks?
Some common causes of leaks include pool equipment mechanical problems, equipment pad issues, structural damage, plumbing issues, broken pipes, and broken or loose fittings.
What are the common locations of leaks?
Leaks occur in vinyl pool liners as well as cement pool walls. Underwater lights and return lines also commonly product leaks. In-ground pools, above-ground pools, underground pipes, spa tubs, and fountains are all at risk of developing leaks.
What is a sign of a leak?
If you have a spot of wet soil that doesn't dry or excess water that puddles in one location of your pool deck that is an obvious sign of an underground leak.
I've found the leak. What's next?
Once you've confirmed a possible leak through the bucket test, it's time to call the experts. Contact Aquaman Leak Detection and schedule your appointment today.