If you own a swimming pool, it can be quite easy to notice a leak. Once you have opened your pool for the year, you can easily spot a leak by the water gushing out. Where the leak is coming from though, may be an entirely different story. Sometimes it may be easy to tell, although other times it can be a bit more complicated.
The first thing you need to do, is make sure that the water you see or notice missing is actually a leak. Even though you may think it's a leak, it could be something else. Basically, there are three causes of water loss with swimming pools - plumbing leaks, shell leaks, and evaporation. You should make sure you know the cause of the leak before you go any further. Sometimes, what you think is a leak could be water lost from splashing - which can easily happen if you have a lot of people diving in your pool.
Evaporation is a common cause of water loss, and there is a way that you can determine if your loss of water is indeed evaporation. To find out, take a large container then fill it full of water and put it on the first pool step. Next, remove some water from the container sitting on the first step, so that the water in the pool and the container are the same level. Now, let the container sit there for a few days, with no one using the pool during the entire time.
When you check back in a few days, the levels should be the same. If they have gone down any, then you know that evaporation from the sun is to blame. If the water that you have in the pool has dropped a great deal more than what you have in the container, you'll know that you have a leak in your pool.
If you think that the water is going down to a pool leak, you'll first need to find where the leak is coming from. You should always start looking near the pump and the filter. Along the way, if you happen to notice any wet areas or damp areas, you should trace the water back and see if you can locate a leak. In most cases, the leak will turn out to be a connection with one of the pipes.
If it isn't a pipe, then it could be a problem with the shell. If you have an aboveground pool, simple look for the hole where the water is coming out of and repair it. On the other hand, if you have a pool that is below ground, it can be a bit more complicated. You can try inspected the shell in the pool, or checking surrounding areas.
Sometimes, no matter how hard you look, it can seem almost impossible to find where the leak is coming from. Keep in mind that if it is the shell, you should always leave it to a qualified professional to fix the problem. Shells for underground pools especially can be very tough to fix, and even harder if you know very little about swimming pools.
In most cases, locating and repairing a leak with your swimming pool is more or less just eliminating causes until you find the right one. Once you have located the problem and know what is causing it, you can decide on whether or not to do the repair yourself or to call a qualified professional and have them do the repair for you.