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The Perfect Pond Starter Kits
Preformed pond "tubs" are the most
popular style on the market today, mostly because of their
reasonable price. With costs ranging from $50 to $100, most
homeowners can afford the basic component needed to start a
backyard pond project.
Preformed ponds are also simpler
to install than using a pond liner for a custom pond. The only
drawback to using a preformed pond tub is that you can't.
However, with the right
decoration, like rocks around the outside to hide the tub's
edges, it can look just as natural as a custom pond. Another
disadvantage is preformed ponds aren't generally over 100
gallons in size, so you have to winterize your fish, some
aquatic plants cannot root properly and both are easy prey for
Preformed ponds are usually made of
fiberglass and come with a pump and a filter. Due to recent
popularity, manufacturers are now making different shapes, sizes
and configurations to enhance the look and creativity of your
yard. The main advice is to shop around before you make your
purchase. Some pond supply retailers charge a larger mark-up,
especially if you live in smaller, inaccessible towns. Do your
homework and look online first.
The key to installing preformed
ponds is to dig a hole the same size and shape of the
tub, so that it can be placed in the ground snugly. You should
allow the top rim of the preformed tub to sit several inches
above ground level when it is unfilled. When you fill it with
water, it will sink into the soil and become level with the
ground. To mark the area, use a garden hose or spray paint. It
is advised to dig the hole immediately before installation
because it could rain, raccoons could wreak havoc with the area
or kids could fall into the hole.
These types of ponds are good as
starter ponds and they are not wasted later if you decide to
upgrade to a larger or liner-based pond. You can always use the
preforms as a holder for fish when cleaning, use it as an indoor
place to winterize your pond fish or use the frame as an
addition to your new pond. The preformed ponds are great
additions for multi-level, waterfall ponds as well.
When installing your pond liner,
you need to make sure you have enough liner to cover the depth
and enough to cover the sides, reaching up and over of the top
of your pond. Here's how to determine how much liner you will
Choosing a Pond Liner
Custom ponds require liners, just like
swimming pools. They allow you to dig the shape of the pond any
way you want it. The liner sits in the hole, holds the water in
the pond and keeps it from leaking and losing water.
Pond liners are very flexible
and are designed to conform to any hole, regardless of its
shape. They are built to withstand serious punishment, remain
flexible through extreme temperatures and are UV resistant. Most
liners are made of polyethylene and come with a 20-year warranty
which guarantees a solid and leak-proof pond.
•Measure the pond's
width, length and depth and make sure all measurements are taken
at the deepest, longest and widest parts of the pond.
•Length of Pond Depth X 2 2 extra feet
= Total Length of Liner
•Width of Pond Depth X 2 2 extra feet =
Total Width of Liner
Chances are the basic liner will
not be wide or long enough if you have a very large pond, so you
will need to attach two or more pieces together with adhesive
silicon or another splice kit method. However, this method is
not recommended. You may be able to get a larger liner from a
roofing company. If you do this, remember to put the
algaecide-side down on the earth and not where the water will
Pond liners vary in price depending on
the size and weight. The smallest liners, about 8' x 10', will
cost around $30, while the largest, usually 40' x 40', can cost
up to $670. They are also available in rolls, ranging from 5.5'
x 100' at $220, up to 50' x 100' at $2,000.