My swimming pool has a moderate leak. I've had several people out to look for the leak, and they've failed to find anything. This summer I was losing around 1/2 inch a day, which is bearable, but since the pool was closed in the fall it seems worse -- an inch a day or so. I plan to have yet another company look at it when we open up in the spring. The company that is most recommended requires that the pool be open and safe to enter, so I think I need to wait until spring.

We live in the Atlanta area, where temperatures occasionally drop to just about freezing but not much more, and not for long. Normally I just leave the pump running on slow and that prevents any freezing issues.

If the pool is leaking this much, I'll need to continuously re-fill it all winter long so the pump can run. That's wasteful (and expensive, our water costs quite a bit).

What I'd like to do is turn off the pump and just leave the pool alone during the winter. I suspect the leak is in some of the plumbing and that the water will drop to just below the pipes (6 inches or a foot down) and then stay like that.

What am I risking by doing this? I hate to waste the water, but I don't want to have the pool more damaged than it already is.

  • 2
    Well, I wouldn't waste the water. Shut the pump off and let it drain, that will tell you where the leak is. Fix it and refill 3" above it and see if it's really fixed. Nov 12, 2019 at 21:29

1 Answer 1


You should confirm the leak is in the plumbing. The pool company can do a pressure test (it's easy to do diy too, just need some fittings. Just be careful not to put too much pressure in the system.) Anyway, another way to confirm where the leak is to plug the return and skimmer lines. If the water stops falling, then you have your answer.

If the leak is indeed in the plumbing, capping the lines, winterizing and waiting till the spring is fine.

  • What does "winterizing" mean in this context? The plumbing I'm suspicious of is the Polaris pool cleaner piping - I can certainly try capping that off.
    – iayork
    Nov 12, 2019 at 21:23
  • Winterizing a pool includes removing all water from the plumbing, pump and filter. If you suspect the pool cleaner, have you taken it out of the pool to see if your water level still changes?
    – beswald
    Nov 12, 2019 at 21:27

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