A leaking pool can be a real pain, but small leaks can be taken of yourself with these excellent products.

Fix your leaking pool, yourself
Pools – they’re so easy to love, but when they develop a leak they’re quite easy to hate, too. However, before you decide on an expensive pool maintenance action plan, let’s discuss some DIY options you can try yourself.

First of all, establish whether your pool is leaking or just losing water due to evaporation, by doing the bucket test. Place a bucket with a brick in it on the pool’s step. Fill the bucket with water until it matches the pool’s water level. Leave it for a few days. If the water levels in the bucket and the pool remain the same, any water loss is likely due to evaporation. However, if the pool level drops lower than the bucket, you have a leak.

Fix your leaking pool, yourself
If the bucket test confirms a leak, it’s time to play detective. Common areas to check include plastic fittings meeting the pool’s surface, weir boxes, light fittings, the pump’s return line and the grout lines between tiles. To pinpoint the leak, use red dye from your pool test kit or food colouring. Turn off the pump so that the water is still and then gently squeeze a few drops of dye close to the suspected leak. Watch to see what the dye does in the water.

If the dye forms a stream and gets sucked into a crack, you’ve found your leaking area. If you can’t locate the leak, it might be in the underground suction or return pipes and you’ll need professional assistance.

Fix your leaking pool, yourself
If you manage to locate the leak, you have some DIY options. The first option is Pratley’s Putty Original, which can cure even underwater. Before applying it, clean the area thoroughly to remove algae and dirt. Pratley’s Putty comes as a two-part mix – resin and hardener. Cut equal portions of both sticks and knead them together until thoroughly mixed. Apply the mixture to the cracked areas, ensuring good coverage and press it firmly into place. Use your finger to smooth the putty for a clean finish and let it cure. Pratley’s Putty can adhere to various materials, making it a versatile choice.
Fix your leaking pool, yourself

Another option is Soudal Pool Fix, a hybrid polymer sealant suitable for temporary fixes on small underwater cracks or areas not permanently submerged. For example, it’s perfect for sealing the gap between pool tiles and coping. To apply it, first ensure the area is clean. Cut the tip of the tube and use a caulking gun to squeeze a bead along the joint. Work it into larger openings and then smooth it with your finger.

Soudal Pool Fix is also handy for reattaching mosaics and tiles. Apply a few beads to the back of the piece, press it into position, hold for a few seconds and let it cure. It remains flexible after curing and is UV stabilised for long-term exposure.

Owning a pool should be a privilege and a ticket to fun in the sun throughout summer. These tips will help you to keep it that way. Remember, everything you need for pool maintenance, including fixing small leaks, is available from Builders, both in-store and online at builders.co.za.

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