Pond Liners are an intrinsic start to building a garden pond, remaining essential for the retention of the water. When laying the liner, you must ensure that there are no sharp objects in the way to avoid a rip, tear or puncture.
Pond Liners are available in various protective and waterproof materials. Rubber is extremely durable and has the added benefit of being slightly more puncture resistant. At Aquatix-2u, prices start as little as £4.65 per square metre. PVC liners are heavy duty and flexible making them also a sought after option. Prices start at £2.05 per square metre.
For added protection, you can purchase a pond liner underlay offering further peace of mind. We recommend the Prolene Pond Liner Underlay which is a superior bonded, geotextile material, stronger than average felt products. The fact the material is thinner means that laying it becomes much easier.
We would recommend you always keep a liner repair kit somewhere handy in the unfortunate event of a rip or puncture. The kits are available for both rubber and PVC liners and are sold in the form of glue or double sided tape.
Aquatix-2u offer a professional service and stock everything you could possibly need to ensure a successful and satisfactory garden pond. Have a browse through the website and feel free to contact us with any questions.
If you are new to the world of garden ponds there a few pond essentials that every pond owner should own and indeed a list of items that you will need when setting up a new pond.
The pond filter and pump system
This is perhaps the most important component of your pond. If the filter and pump are not working correctly, your pond will not provide a suitable habitat for your fish. The ammonia levels will rise due to fish waste products and hence your fish will suffer. A correctly working filter system will turn the ammonia into nitrites then nitrates. And in conjunction with the pond pump which passes the water through your filter system, this is one piece of equipment your pond can not do without.
Installing your pond liner correctly can mean the difference between the pond leaking and the liner lasting for the next thirty years. We have written articles before on how to fit a pond liner but if you prepare your groundwork, use a suitable underlay and choose an Epalyn or Butyl liner you won’t go far wrong.
We will continue with Pond UV lights in the next article.
After you have bought your new pond liner the last thing you would want to do is damage it during the installation process. If your new pond is large in size it can be difficult to lay the liner over the hole and fill the pond making sure you have enough liner around the edge. And, while doing this you need to make sure you do not accidentally puncture or stress the liner in any way.
The work you do in your initial pond design will be rewarded with less need for maintenance or repair in the future. Repairing a Butyl or Epalyn liner is not a too difficult job but it can be really frustrating to have to repair a new liner before it is used in anger. You can take these few steps when digging and designing your pond to prevent any future pond liner problems:
• After you have dug the hole, remove any stones or twigs that might pose future problems
• Putting a layer of sand at the bottom of your pond can prove to be a great base layer
• Use underlay before you install your pond liner. This will provide further protection to your liner and hence increase the time before your pond may need a repair
One of the simplest things that you can do to your pond at this time of year that will take seconds is to add a ball to the pond surface.
It is the time of year when we start to prepare for the winter freeze. This does not however mean that the pond owner’s life becomes one of just staring through the window at the pond waiting for warmer weather.
If you haven’t already cleared the leaf fall from trees around the pond now is the time. You don’t want to alter the balance of nutrients in your pond by letting all the leaves in your garden blow into the pond during windy weather. Depending on the size of your garden this may take some time but it is definitely a worthwhile task. Remember to remove dead or dying foliage from around the pond’s edge as well. Any clearing now will make your life much easier come spring.
You should be slowing down the feeding of your fish around now. Fish are cold blooded so will be less active in the winter and will consequently not need to be fed as much. If your pond is likely to freeze, add a ball to the pond’s surface, this will stop it freezing and thus allow the pond to be fully oxygenated. If the pond does freeze it can damage the pond liner due to expansion and dangerous gases can build up underneath the ice surface. In such instances heat a pan and use this to melt the ice surface, don’t be tempted to add hot water to the pond to melt the ice or hit the ice with a hammer.
If you are in the process of creating a garden pond you will have of course to buy a pond liner. Pond liners come in different materials like Epalyn and Butyl but have one thing in common – they have to prevent water loss into the surrounding earth so must be installed properly.
One of the first problems you will face when you buy your liner is working out how much liner material you will need for your pond. The quick calculation below may help with your pond liner purchase:
Pond liner calculation
The first thing you need to do is measure the depth of your pond in feet. Double this figure and add 2 feet to get a 1 foot overlap on the side of the pond. Add this calculated figure to both the measured width and length of the pond and you have your final figure.
If that seems a little confusing we have a worked example so you can see how it works.
You have dug your pond and it measures 8 feet long x 4 feet wide x 4 feet deep. So following the above, 4’deep x 2 = 8’ + 2’ overlap = 10’. Then add this 10’ to your length of 8’ = 18’. Then add the 10’ to your width of 4’ = 14’. That means you need a liner measuring 18’ x 14’. Voila
In part one and part two we covered a few helpful hints that every pond owner should know. Here we will conclude this three part article with some final thoughts.
• If your pond is near trees, in the autumn cover the pond with a light mesh so any leaves will not fall into the pond.
• Cover the pond liner around the pond edges with paving. This will provide a nice aesthetic edge to your pond and also protect it from sun damage.
• If your pond freezes in the winter don’t be tempted to break the ice with a hammer. Use a warm empty pan to gently melt the pond surface so methane can escape. You can try to stop it freezing in the first place by putting a ball on the surface of the pond or adding a pond heater.
• Install a good pond filter and pump system in the initial design. Don’t scrimp on quality, this device is the backbone of the health of your pond.
• Children and ponds do not mix. If you are concerned that your pond presents a risk, install rigid metal mesh over the pond and secure it firmly so that if a child falls onto the mesh they will not fall into the pond.
In part one of this article we covered a few helpful hints and tips for pond owners. Here we will add to these with some more invaluable advice.
• When installing a pond always use sand and then underlay at the bottom of the pond before you add your pond liner. This will minimise any potential future punctures.
• If you have a surge of algal growth the water nutrient balance may be wrong. Try to add water lilies on the pond surface to reduce the amount of sunlight the algae receives. Adding oxygenation plants will reduce the amount of minerals and carbon dioxide.
• When starting out try to get a balance of different aquatic plants such as marginal’s, oxygenators and underwater aquatic plants to offer the wildlife and pond the maximum level of diversity possible.
• Remove blanketweed from your pond by using a blanketweed brush.
• Place aquatic pond plants in baskets that can be easily removed from the pond if necessary.
• In your initial pond design try to add a sloping area into the pond so that animals such as hedgehogs can get out if they fall in.
• Cut back dead plant growth in the winter months to allow for new growth in spring.
• You may need to take some plants out of the pond in the spring to cut them back, this is also a good time to split plants if necessary.
We will continue these tips and hints in the next article.
If you are currently in the design process of a new garden pond, then you will be looking to choose the right pond liner. With Butyl being the liner of choice for many years it is difficult to look at an alternative liner. But, with advances in rubber technology a new liner has hit the market – Epalyn.
Epalyn does all the things Butyl does and with it becoming more common for other uses in the construction industry and the price of Butyl increasing, Epalyn now stands as a brilliant choice for the new pond designer or owner.
Epalyn has all the excellent qualities of Butyl such as brilliant flexibility, pliability and can be easily repaired just like Butyl. This means that it is excellent to use for your pond application because just like Butyl it is long lasting and if the liner is damaged it can be quickly repaired on site instead of being replaced completely causing untold problems to your pond.
So, if you have only used Butyl in the past, why not try Epalyn. It’s not only just as good as Butyl, it also outperforms it in many test situations.
Planning is the quintessential component you should focus on in any pond design. And, one key choice you will make will concern the pond liner.
After you have made your choice of pond position, you will need to look at the size and shape of pond you want. Try to take into account the stocking level of the pond when finalising the size and depth and make sure you incorporate different shelving levels and a sloping bank into the design. The shelves will provide a suitable place to position aquatic plants and a gently sloping shelf will enable and wildlife that may accidentally fall into the pond an easy route to escape.
When you are happy with the shape and size and have removed any sharp objects from the base of the pond you should line all the surfaces with a layer of sand. This will provide a suitable base surface for your underlay and pond liner.
You should always incorporate liner underlay into the design, it will give added protection to the liner and hence prevent the liner from being punctured by any sharp objects such as twigs, roots or stones.
There is a good choice of pond liners available from online aquatic stores and while Butyl has been the liner of choice for many years, a new and equally good alternative you may want to think about is Epalyn. This can be formed easily to the shape of your pond and is easy to work with. Many stockists of this material offer a lifetime guarantee with this type of material making it the perfect choice for the lifetime of your pond.
In part 1 of this article we discussed general pond design and using an underlay underneath your pond liner. In this article we will try to explain the best way to lay out your liner and fill the pond.
If you have room in your garden, a good idea is to lay out the liner and spread tit across the lawn. Assuming the day is sunny the liner will warm up in the sun so it will be easier to smooth out any creases that may have developed since it was rolled or packaged, this will also make the liner more pliable.
Lay the liner across the complete area of the pond making sure that it is draped loosely across the hole. Make sure that when the liner sinks into the pond there is enough liner at the sides to drop into the pond comfortably and there is still enough liner around the outer edges to be well above the pond level.
Placing bricks or stones around the edges of the pond to keep the liner in place while you fill it will keep the liner in position while it fills. This will mean it only gradually sinks into the pond and does not pull too much in any single direction. Fill the pond slowly using a hose and the pond liner will sink into the pond gradually. The weight of the water will mould the pond liner to the exact shape of the pond and as long as no creases appear when the pond fills there should be no further problems.