Oops! “I went to check on the pool and we’re losing water?” It happens. Note: Never drain your pool on purpose! We do not recommend that any pool be left empty. There are safety concerns as well as additional damage may occur to the pool liner, walls and/or surrounding deck. If you have lost or are losing water in your pool, contact a pool professional immediately.
How long should my liner last?
We have seen liners last a few years to over 20 years. The average is probably between 12-15 years. The quality of the liner is obviously a factor, but there are many things you can do as a pool owner that will help to extend the life of your liner. The number one action you can take to prolong the life of your liner is to keep your chemicals in balance and all chemicals at suggested levels. Very high PH and/or Alkalinity or Very Low PH and/or Alkalinity are both hard on the liner. When these numbers are low, the pool water is very acidic and tends to attack the vinyl in the liner. When high, the metals in the water tend to come out of solution and attach themselves to the liner, hand rails, ladders, slides, etc. Neither case is good for you or your liner. Closing the pool for the winter with these items out of balance is especially hard on the liner.
Obviously other things happen too. Animals, patio furniture, kids playing with toys that have a sharp edge, nails, screws, ants, termites, vandalism, etc. We change several liners each season due to home owners using concrete blocks, bricks or other heavy “blocks” on their winter covers to hold them down. When all is well, these items work to hold the cover in place, but they are not suggested. Unfortunately, if a strong wind gets under a portion of the cover, it becomes very much like a kite. And, with a kite the size of the surface of the pool, and a strong wind, it will pull anything on the cover along with it. When these hard items hit the cold surface of the liner, it is not uncommon for it to create a slit in the liner several feet long. In a matter of minutes several thousand gallons of water becomes history.
If you have a pool that you are concerned that you are loosing water the first thing to do is to determine if the water loss is a problem with the liner or the plumbing. To do this, shut off the pool pump with the water at normal operational level. Use a marker or piece of tape inside the front edge of the skimmer and mark the current level. Plug the return line(s), floor drain (if applicable), and the skimmer line with your winter plugs. Leave the plugs in and pump off for a period of 24 hours at a time when no rain is predicted. Check your level after 24 hours and see if the water level has changed. If you loose more than about 1/8 to ¼” inch of water (allowing for evaporation – varies due to ambient air temperature and humidity levels) the liner would be suspect. If the water level remains less than ¼” less your liner would seem to not be the culprit. You may still be loosing water but it could be an underground leak in your plumbing.
If your water is gone, if you have identified a liner leak(s), or if you are simply tired of looking at your current liner color or pattern. We are here to help. Contact us. We will send a technician out to measure your pool and supply you a written estimate to replace your liner. Our liner team expertly replaces dozens of liners each season.