New concrete pool leaking


  #1  
Old 07-25-17, 05:02 AM
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New concrete pool leaking

Hi folks,

We got a number of quotes for an overground pool. Because we thought the structure was more solid and enduring, we went for a poured concrete pool. We didn't have the budget for the best finish and rather than compromise we decided to just have a bare concrete finish with a view to having it tiled in a year or two.

This was presented to us as an option by the commercial guy - a bare concrete pool in tinted (dyed) water proof concrete. The commercial guy was telling us how great this stuff is - telling us how it the same stuff used for off shore wind turbines and stuff.

It wasn't long after signing contracts that the contractor was backtracking on these promises - saying that customers don't like the look of the finish and he would offer us a good deal on tiling or a "free" decorative coating. We didn't want this because we knew we would have to re-do it after a couple of years and wanted instead to save of for a more durable finish, i.e. the tiles. And if he felt that what he sold us wasn't fit for purpose, we would prefer a heavy discount on the tiling, even if this is down the line a little.

Now the project is close to completion. The pool has been filled but it is leaking quite substantially. The contractor cannot determine where the leak is but my conclusions is that the pool simply isn't waterproof and that he knew this would be the case and that what we were sold simply wasn't an option and he hoped all along to up-sell us the tiles.

So here's a question - have we been mislead about a waterproof bare concrete pool? Is there such a thing? Can anyone offer any advice?


Moderator note: member location - France.
 

Last edited by PJmax; 07-27-17 at 08:59 PM.
  #2  
Old 07-25-17, 08:32 AM
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Just like in a boat where things penetrate is usually the culprit for leaks. Concrete can be waterproof but making a good seal with a bottom drain, skimmers, lights and jets can be difficult. In Central America pools are often "bare" concrete and hold water quite well.
 
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Old 07-25-17, 03:22 PM
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I agree with Dane. A cement pool will basically hold water fine. Now you'll need to let the water drop to see where it stops in order to find the leak.

I'm assuming it's filtered. does it leak with the pump on and off ?

You're under contract for a pool that holds water. Hopefully the company hasn't been paid in full yet.
 
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Old 07-25-17, 03:32 PM
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Google "24 hour bucket test for swimming pools" and read up on how to do this.

Do this test with pump running..... and off....as per Pjmax.

Lower the level and do the test at skimmer....return jets.....light and see if and when the leak stops.
 
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Old 07-27-17, 09:58 AM
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Thanks for all the help folks - really appreciate it.

I was watching the thread for a while and no replies were coming in, so I thought maybe this wasn't really the place for pool related questions - so I posted over on ***********

In this thread you will see that posters are mostly of the opinion that concrete is fundamentally porous and will leak. This is true but I guess it's all a question of extents. I know of others with concrete pools and it does seem possible - so your opinions here help a lot to put things in perspective.

It's a pity I didn't see these replies earlier and apologies for my lack of patience! The trouble shooting steps mentioned make a lot of sense.

The contractor is pushing us to take his "good offer" of tiling with epoxy joints €3000 for 60 square meters for the tile, epoxy joints and labour. That's around $3000 for 650 square feet. However, we're inclined to see it hold water without tile first rather than pay to fix his problem! I know the contractor is under pressure to get his pipeline finished before tradesmen generally quit in France for August. He has admitted himself he took 2 pools too many!

When draining the pool, it did appear to stabilise at one point, but there was no obvious seal at that level. I wish I had seen your advise about running with and without the filtration running. I do think it was leaking in both cases. The only thing I think I can rule out is the drain since there's a few cm of water left at the bottom that remains to be emptied.
 

Last edited by Shadeladie; 08-26-17 at 09:40 AM. Reason: Link removed
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Old 07-27-17, 11:32 AM
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There were no more replies because it appeared you had not returned to the forum. People won't continue posting if there are no replies from you answering their questions or providing more information.
 
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Old 07-27-17, 12:06 PM
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The most likely location for a leak in a new concrete pool is in the pipes and plumbing.

If there IS a leak in the concrete shell, you should see a crack.

One option for sealing cracks is Bentonite, a form of powdered clay that expands into a gel.

Essentially, if you can find a crack, you let the waterflow pull the bentonite into the crack where it expands into a gel to plug the hole.
 
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Old 07-27-17, 08:59 PM
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Yes.... cement is porous if not shot in under high pressure.... like gunite..... but it shouldn't be that porous that you can actually see a leak..... or lose water that quickly.

When you say tiling..... do you mean just at the top.... the waterline ?
That won't affect any leak and the tiling process won't stop water from passing thru.
Epoxy grout.... maybe.... but doubtful.

However.... if it comes down to the cement being that porous..... it will need to be sealed. At the very least an epoxy type pool paint.....and yes.... it will have to be redone every 3-4 years depending on water composition.

I have a Sylvan pool. It's 45 years old so I know all about painting it. The painting takes only 1 hour. The prep and cleaning is a day or two. I use a pressure washer with a fine/spinning tip to remove loose paint and rough up the rest.


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Last edited by PJmax; 07-27-17 at 09:17 PM.
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Old 07-28-17, 12:13 AM
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I'd suggest calling other pool companies to come out and check on what is really wrong. Sounds like the original company may not know what their doing. If another company finds an easily fixable solution you might consider asking the original company to reimburse you for the cost to fix their mistake.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 07-28-17 at 02:31 AM.
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Old 08-26-17, 08:58 AM
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Di11on......what's the latest ?
 
 

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