FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is considered average water loss? How can I tell if it is from evaporation or a leak?


All pools will lose water to splash out, backwashing, and evaporation. Water loss from these factors is normal and will vary from pool to pool depending on usage and the time of year. Evaporation is influenced by air temperature, water temperature, humidity, water movement, and wind. Expect your pool to evaporate more under the following circumstances: low relative humidity levels, faster wind speeds, uncovered pool surface, warmer pool water temperature combined with cooler air temperature, and additional features that have water cascading back into the pool (waterfall, spillover spa, etc.). We notice higher evaporation rates in the spring and the fall because of the reasons listed above. Not sure if your pool is leaking? Try the following. -Check your pool’s water chemistry results and compare your salt, calcium hardness, and cyanuric acid levels over some time. A constant decrease in these levels may indicate the presence of a leak. -Do a Bucket Test to confirm if your pool is leaking or determine how much water your pool is losing to evaporation. -If there is water under the liner or in a sump well, try to extract and compare it to the pool water chemistry. Similar water chemistry, especially salt content, is a significant indicator of a leak.




Why should we hire Pool Buoy?


We have close to two decades worth of experience in the swimming pool industry and have been involved in all aspects of swimming pool service and construction. In 2008, we first endeavoured into leak detection, and it became our only service offering shortly after that. This industry-specific knowledge is invaluable and unmatched. We are not a pool company performing leak detection services or a leak detection company performing a pool leak detection; we are a pool leak detection and underwater repair company with thousands of leaks located and fixed since 2008! We are always furthering our education and maintaining necessary certifications like Certified Pool Operator, Stain Specialist, Advanced Water Chemistry, and PADI Open Water Diver. We have also taken many courses from Orenda Academy, Pentair, and Hayward University in proactive pool care, water chemistry, automation, saltwater chlorination, lighting, hydraulics, and heating systems. While we do not perform other pool services anymore, we would be happy to answer any of your pool-related questions! As experienced pool leak detectors, we are always evaluating new practices and technologies. We utilize industry-leading equipment like water loss computers, pipe inspection cameras, tracer gas, thermal imaging, and sonic listening devices. We are one of the few companies that incorporate all of these technologies in their leak detection practice. As certified divers, we are always fully equipped to perform underwater repairs and inspections on the same visit as the leak detection and cold water situations. This saves you time and money from having to wait for another service call. Some of our industry achievements include beta testing a leak reporting application for a leak detection equipment manufacturer, presenting at the 2020 Atlantic City Pool Show leak detection methods seminar, and a guest appearance on a popular pool industry podcast.




Does someone need to be home during the leak detection appointment?


No, your presence is not mandatory. If no one is available upon completion of the leak detection, we will report our findings to you in the most convenient way possible.




How long does a pool leak detection appointment take?


Most standard residential pools take between 1 and 3 hours for a complete leak detection. More time may be required for pools with additional features, multiple leaks, or complex plumbing leaks.




What forms of payment do you accept?


We accept eTransfer, cheque, and credit card.




Do you offer other pool services? Do you locate other leaks (home, irrigation, ponds, etc.)?


No, we are strictly a pool leak detection and underwater repair company.




Do you do leak detections on standalone hot tubs?


Unfortunately, we do not. We recommend that customers call a hot tub repair technician in this situation.




I know where my leak is. Can you only test that area?


We always recommend testing the entire pool to ensure there aren’t multiple leaks and peace of mind. We always assume there is more than one leak and do not stop after finding the first issue. In our experience, we have seen many pools where the observed symptoms and original hypothesis did not match our test results. While we offer partial leak detection services, the rest of the pool that is not tested is not covered under our warranty, and subsequent visits to test other parts of the pool are charged the full, partial rate. Remember, paying less to test less could cost you more in the end.




Does the pool need to be drained for the leak detection appointment?


No. We require the pool to be filled up to the middle of the skimmer to locate the leak(s) when the pool is actively leaking. We are equipped with scuba diving equipment and use repair materials that work underwater.




Why do I need to fill up the pool to the middle of the skimmer for the leak detection appointment?


The pool must be filled to the middle of the skimmer so that our electronic equipment can detect active structural leakage when we are on site. If the water level is too low, our electronic equipment may not be effective in finding your leak(s).




Can I shut my pump off and let the water level go down until it stops leaking?


No. This is not always an indication of where the leak is. You can also cause unwanted damage to your pool and compromise the pool’s water quality making it difficult to find the leak(s). It is best to keep topping up the pool until we arrive.




Where does the water go when the pool is leaking? Can this cause a sinkhole issue?


The water drains immediately underground and is usually unseen. Occasionally, this water can appear in other places depending on the pool's elevation, drainage, and location and severity of the leak(s). Also, it is uncommon for pool leaks to cause sinkhole issues. Regardless, we recommend addressing the problem immediately to avoid unnecessary damage to the pool and other areas.




Does sand or dirt in the pool mean there’s a leak?


Not always. This can happen for non-leak-related reasons like filtration issues. Try backwashing or cleaning the filters to see if that helps. If you have a sand filter and backwashing does not resolve this, try turning the dial to “recirculate” to bypass the filter media. If you are losing water in addition to seeing dirt or sand in your pool, give us a call!




Does the air coming out of the return jets indicate an underground plumbing issue?


Not necessarily. This means that air is being introduced into the system at some point and coming through the return jets. In some cases, this can be due to low water level, pump lid o-rings, pump drain plugs, and valves or fittings on the suction side of the pump. Inspect these areas and replace components if needed. We will pinpoint or rule out an underground plumbing issue with our specialized equipment.




Does having difficulty maintaining pump prime indicate an underground plumbing issue?


This can occur for several reasons like filtration issues, blockages, air leaks, and collapsed plumbing. Try backwashing or cleaning the filters first. If you have a sand filter and backwashing does not resolve this, try turning the dial to “recirculate” to bypass the filter media. If you have a cartridge filter, try operating the pool without the cartridges to see if they are the culprit. We will pinpoint or rule out an underground plumbing issue in this situation as well. Please note, we do not clear blockages.





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