With summer winding down, homeowners will soon be getting their swimming pools ready for the fall and winter months. This makes it an excellent time to check and see that no foundation issues are arising. Just like a house, a pool has a foundation that is resting on the soil. The structure of swimming pools is heavy in and of itself, and then you add on top of that the thousands of gallons of water it takes to fill them.
Because of all this weight, a pool requires a lot of foundational support. Imagine the damage that thousands of gallons of water could do to a home’s foundation if it were to leak out. Whether it’s an above-ground pool or an in-ground pool, homeowners need to be aware of any damage that could cause water to begin leaking into the soil around a pool and home.
How to Know if a Swimming Pool is Damaging a Foundation?
Problems with foundation caused by swimming pools often look like signs that a home’s foundation is compromised. If there are cracks in an in-ground swimming pool, that could indicate that one or more parts of the pool are moving in different directions and at different rates. This places stress on the foundation, causing it to crack.
If the paving around a swimming pool begins rising or sinking below the pool’s edge, the pool itself could be moving. This lifting or sinking could also be evidence of soil problems beneath the pool caused by any cracking of the pool floor.
Another warning sign to watch for is a change in moisture around the pool. If the soil surrounding a pool is suddenly soggier than usual, it may have a severe leak. The leak could be from the pool itself or from underground plumbing that may have developed problems. Depending on its moisture content, soil either expands and contracts. This expansion and contraction can cause the foundation of a pool or a home to shift and become damaged.
One thing to note is that some damage is hard to see until it is too late. Slow leaks can damage a home or pool’s foundation over a period. The supply and return lines to pool equipment are the most common source of slow leaks. Homeowners are sometimes unaware of the damage as it is occurring. Pool equipment is often located next to the home, with pipes buried between the equipment and the pool. A pool needs to be tested immediately for a leak if there is a suspicion of losing water.
Issues that can Turn a Pool Leak into a Big Problem
A leak can turn quickly from a relatively small home repair to a need for a professional. If a home has any of these issues, call an experienced team to come and address the problem.
- Ground Collapse- If a plumbing or foundation leak is in place, it could result in soil loss. The ground around it is getting washed out. As a result, there is a soil collapse process under the pool itself.
- Voids- A pool leak can wash out soil from underneath a pool. If a homeowner has a fiberglass shell, the sudden weight shift caused but lesser support will result in cracks. Additional leaks can now wash out more soil, which may eventually lead to complete structural failure.
- Backfill Problems- Improperly compacted soil around the pool shell can lead to settling. That said, even soil compacted well can become washed out due to a leak. The pool structure is now lacking support in an area, which leads to cracks and possibly additional leaks.
- Soil Creep- Refers to the slow movement of the earth due to a low-grade quality of soil and gravity pulling it down. If there is creep on a property, it can take years to show up. However, once the damage is done, the leaks can rapidly cause other problems.
- Expansive Soil- As mentioned earlier, soil fluctuates between expansion and contraction based on its moisture content. Depending on the soil type, it swells when the earth becomes saturated with water. It will also contract considerably when it dries out. A leak can cause both problems, depending on the air temperature.
What to do?
If your pool shows signs of leaking or foundation damage, give us a call here at WTX Foundation Repair. We are an experienced team of foundation repair professionals, so you can be sure any repairs that need to be done will be done the first time correctly. We will provide you with a free inspection and estimate to know precisely what will happen every step of the way. We pride ourselves on excellent customer service, which includes honesty and trust. So, if you are in the Amarillo, TX, or Lubbock, TX area, make sure to give us a call!