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We have a 24x52' rink with about 15-16" in the deep end and 4" or so in the shallow end.  I noticed yesterday the water level had dropped a bit and found a big puddle at the low end of the yard.  Long story short, I can't tell where the water is coming from.  It could be from a tear in the deep end from the weight, or it could be further up the yard where our stupid dog jumped into the rink last week and the water is just running under the liner to the lower yard.  I don't see any obvious holes or tears through the 3 or 4" of ice we now have on the rink.

Does anyone have a good way to find the source of the leak without removing the ice and draining the whole thing?  I guess I'll have to cut or break the ice out once I know where to fix it.  Any suggestions?

John

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Hi John,

We had the same thing: Our rink is 44'x36', 4 inches on shallow end, 20 inches on deep end.  We noticed the yard was soggy and we had lost an inch of water from the rink over about a 10 day period.  Last weekend, we called Nice Rink and asked their advice.  They said to actually get into the rink and look around.  Start within about one foot from where you notice the ground starting to get wet and look from inside.  I wore snow pants, boots, and large garbage bags tied around my legs and got in when the ice was mostly melted.  We found two areas we never saw from walking around the outside!!  I used E-6000 adhesive (bought a tube at Michaels craft store) to clog the scratches, and placed strips of the liner over the glue like a bandaid.  Then we placed white tiles on top to weigh the strips down.  Nice Rink says the glue won't harden, but rather clog the leak enough to get you through the season, when at the end, you can do a real repair.  I think what caused the leak was a lawn chair I used to weigh down the liner when it was really windy here and the rink wasn't filled all the way yet.  They were faint and I wouldn't have seen it if I wasn't right over it.  Nice rink also said look for air bubbles.  Is there a patch of your ice with an air bubble underneath?  

Best of luck,

David

Thanks David.  I'll look for air bubbles tonight.  We have about 4" of ice now, so getting in might be difficult.  I like the garbage bag idea...that cracked me up a little.  I will borrow some waders from fisher-friends when I can get in.  Maybe with the 50deg weather we're about to have, it'll melt enough.

I've read somewhere that using food dye and watching where it goes can work also, but with 20,000+ gallons of water, you need a good starting point for that to work.  Again, with ice on top, any of these solutions are impossible.

Thanks again for the response.

After removing 3-4" ice from a 4 foot section across the rink (that was the hard part), I was able to wade around and find 20+ small holes and tears from the dog bounding across the liner (and a few from me removing the ice).  I couldn't believe how many there were, no wonder it was leaking.  I patched with E6000 and extra liner.  Water level doesn't seem to have fallen in the last 12 hours, so hopefully its fixed. 

Thanks for the advice!

Good news, glad you found them!  

Turns out the 20+ holes weren't the main leak.  Found another hole in the deep end that was the gusher.  Fixed it and now all is golden.  Water flowing back in as we speak!  Believe it or not, went through a whole tube of E6000. 

I believe it!  I used a lot too. The glue was cheap.  How did you find the gusher?  We think there is still possibly a leak, maybe on the deep side, I don't know.

The ice had melted a bit more and I was able to see the bottom in the deep end with my polarized sunglasses on.  I thought it was a dirt patch at first, but it didn't look the same so I broke the ice up and low and behold, it was a big hole.   I have no idea how that hole got there.

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