Any tips on finding my leak? Gurgling in UV unit...


Joined
Oct 15, 2011
Messages
34
Reaction score
2
Location
Bucks County, PA
Hi folks,

I have a 3600gal koi pond in my yard, came with the house. We have a large main pond, with skimmer box at the bottom (with pump inside) which feeds through buried 2” flex PVC up to a UV sterilizer and onward (through non-buried line) to a waterfall/collecting pool/stream and back into the main pond. It’s springtime so I’ve just cleaned the pond out, gotten everything back up and running...and begun the annual tradition of trying to find where the $%# leak is in my system. I’m in Pennsylvania btw.

I’ve gone through the usual steps (so many times) with shutting the pump off, isolating different parts of the system, and so far it appears to me that the falls is ok, the collecting pool is ok, and the stream is ok. I can see liner edge all around, and if i let the pond sit without the pump running, it stays full (so i assume no leak in the main liner).

My suspicion is that I’m leaking somewhere in the buried line that runs from the skimmer box to the UV sterilizer. There is a tree that has grown over the years and kind of lies over where I expect the line runs (I’ve never actually dug it up to look ...yet). I’m guessing that the roots are to blame. The system is old (we’ve been here 10 years and they installed it at least 10-15 years before that).

One thing I have noticed upon restarting the system is that i hear a gurgling/bubbling sound coming from within my UV sterilizer (Emperor Aquatics 25W system). There are no leaks from the UV unit itself nor the fittings to and from it. The UV unit does sit above ground, so I suspect that any air getting into the line is floating up into the top of the UV and getting stuck.

Does anybody have any similar experience with finding leaks in buried PVC line? Does my “gurgling UV” ring any bells and suggest that I’m right (or wrong)? Any tips on easily confirming that the buried line is the source? And then isolating the location? Obviously digging it all up will be the gold standard but in case my guess is wrong, I’d like to avoid all that labor.

Thanks for your support and assistance!
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
5,012
Reaction score
3,853
Location
Ct
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Pictures pictures and more pictures.

We really need to make a sticky on pond leaks.

Yes shut everything down . Mark your water heights. If water enters the skimmer then the fitting will be suspect as well if there is one.

Water falls are a first look to

Your liner anything that is less then a couple inches above water level could be tge problem as rubber and or other liners when folded can let water wick upward of a couple inches even though they don't absorb water.

Feel around in the pond or around the liner or falls for and soft spots. A tell tale sign of a leak is soft areas.

Try a temporary pump to push water from the pond to the water fall. This can show or eliminate plumbing as a problem or show its the waterfall.

Do you have plants growing in or out of the pond where plants are dropped over the edge this too can whick water.
 
Joined
May 5, 2013
Messages
1,105
Reaction score
517
Location
Le Roy, New York
"I’ve gone through the usual steps (so many times) with shutting the pump off, isolating different parts of the system, and so far it appears to me that the falls is ok, the collecting pool is ok, and the stream is ok. I can see liner edge all around, and if i let the pond sit without the pump running, it stays full (so i assume no leak in the main liner)."

It sounds to me like evaporation or splashing and not a leak. I typically lose a couple of inches a week. Another place to look would be the edges of the rocks leading up to the waterfall.
 
Joined
Oct 15, 2011
Messages
34
Reaction score
2
Location
Bucks County, PA
Thanks all. With pump running, water level drops more than 1”/24h. The end result is that it drops below the level of the skimmer box in a few days’ time, requiring me to top the pond off 2-3x/wk...
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
5,012
Reaction score
3,853
Location
Ct
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Depending on size of the pond how many plants wind direct sun it sounds normal
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top