How to find a leak in your Pond (The Leak Test)
Although a little water loss in a Water Feature is normal from evaporation, significant water loss indicates you likely have a leak. Repairing a leak is typically not hard to do. The hard part is finding where the leak is located. Here are a few steps that we take when finding a pond leak.
Step 1- Finding a leak in your Pond is about first narrowing down the potential area so we start with turning off the Pump. We do this to find out if the leak is in the Pond or if it is in the Waterfall. Once the Pump is off keep track of the water level. It’s usually easiest to do this by making a mark on a rock to the level of the water. Once you have marked the water level you just have to wait. Track the level for a few hours. If the water level stays the same, then that means it is holding water and the leak is not inside the pond basin (see Step 2)
Step 2- The Pond Basin holding water determines that the leak is not there. Now we need to further narrow down. The leak is either in your waterfall/Stream or in the Plumbing. First, closely inspect your plumbing, especially at the joints. You may have to do some digging where the plumbing connects to your biofalls or skimmer box to thoroughly inspect. If still no signs, inspect your waterfall and stream for a leak. Sometimes this can be caused by an obstruction that creates and damn that overflows the water. It is possible rocks have settled pushing down the pond liner and creating a low spot for water to escape. You can look for clues by checking the perimeter for wet spots. Locating one can help lead you to the source of the leak.
Step 3- If the pond basin water level has dropped since shutting down the pump the leak is somewhere in the pond itself. Continue to leave the pump off and allow the water to drop until it has reached a stopping point. If the water becomes dangerously low for fish and plants you will need to move them to a holding area. Once the water level has stopped falling you want to thoroughly inspect the liner all along the new water level to find the source of the leak. Keep an eye out for any irregularities in the pond liner including falling edges, large holes or even small holes in the liner.
Once you have found the culprit of your pond leak it’s time for repairs. If the liner has simply fallen below the water level, simply pull it back up into place. You may use rocks to prop the liner up to avoid it falling again. If it’s a hole that is found in the liner you can simply patch it.