Do It Yourself Leak Test-The Bucket Test

So you’ve noticed that you have to continually add water to your pool to keep the water levels normal.  Is it just evaporation?  Are the kids swimming too hard and knocking a substantial amount of water out of the pool?  Or is it the dreaded word…leak..

Want to see if your pool is leaking before calling a professional leak detection company??  Follow our simple steps to perform a flawless “bucket test.”  

(By the way…does the name of this test remind anyone of the old song “there’s a hole in my bucket dear Liza, dear Liza, there’s a hole in my bucket, dear Liza there’s a hole!”)

A few reminders before you start the test:

  • Do not swim in the pool or spa while performing the test or the test will be void
  • First check for any visible leaks around your equipment pad
  • You need 24 hours to perform the test
  • Turn off your pump or autofill before the test
  • Make sure the water level is filled to “normal” (at least 2 in from the top of the pool)
  • If it is windy or it rains before or during the test, repeat
  • If the bucket floats, but rocks or a heavy brick in the bottom of it

To start your test:

Grab a bucket (one perferably without holes ;))


Mark the outside of the bucket and the inside of the bucket with masking tape

Fill the bucket with water


Set your bucket on the lowest possible step without having water go into the bucket

Mark the water level with a writing utensil inside and outside the bucket


Allow 24 hours to pass.  Mark both tapes with the new water levels

Empty the bucket and measure the difference between each mark.  *The mark inside the bucket stands for evaporation and the outside stands for your pool water level.  If the difference is significant time to involve the leak detection company