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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey! The koi pond that came with my new house could be great, but it needs work. The water level is lower than it once was (maybe a leak?), and the sides are drooping to the point where some of the rocks have fallen into the water.

Looking at the photos, could you please offer your thoughts on how you would go about tackling the water level and edges? If possible, I am aiming to keep it simple, while trying to avoid an ongoing series of band-aid projects.

  • Should I search for a leak?
  • Is a leak repair worth it, or should I deal with 3 inches of exposed liner?
  • You can see that the rim is formed with foam blocks with the liner over them. I haven't explored deeper. How would you approach straightening them in the least invasive way?
  • How about the side, about a foot deep, that is bulging or caving?

Finally, I am getting my bearings with how the filtration is setup, but especially concerned with wires that seem to be set up to go into the water (they are secured under rocks in this way)?

Any insights that could point me in the right direction are much appreciated!






More Photos:
Link to All Photos Folder
 

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First I want to say that all electrical items around a pond must be plugged in to a GFI C circuit and that I prefer the device to be a little ways from the water so that the wires in the area are protected also.


I need to find some pics I took last Fall to illustrate what I am going to say.
 

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First you have to net the leaves out, then you should begin with
vacuuming it out (use a wet vac) to get all the muck out, so that
you can see what’s going on.
Start the pump’s and try and clear it up with just filtration.

Is that filter box in your pics under your waterfall?

Is there koi in there?

First, has your leak stopped at this point?

We’ll try and help you as much as I can.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks... that will get me started. There aren't any koi now.

The filter box is raised up on the rock formation (top right of the first photo).

The average water level is about 3 inches under the rim, which seems to be lower than it has been in the past, and doesn't look so nice. Even when it rains, the level returns there. So I assume there may be a small leak?

Any thoughts on the drooping sides?

Thanks for your help!
 

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dj, What state are you in...

the drooping sides - is it steep enough to have water leaking in one area?
In order to build it back up you need to remove the rocks and ‘pack in’
the dirt under the liner and then put the rocks back.

Do you have a dog walking on the edge...Whenever we experience a leak
it due from our dog smashing it down in an area. Then we build it up with some dirt and rocks...etc.

You should start with exchanging water...empty out about a 1/3 of the water
and replace it with fresh water..

Run your pumps - do you use any cotton batter in your filter? It would help
if you could place cotton batting to absorb the gunk. Rinse them out as much as
you can and put them back.

We have several compartments of batter in our pond, however our filters
chambers are bottom drain gravity fed filters - so the water easily flows through
them..make sure your water will flow easily through the cotton batting. If it
doesn’t then rig up a bucket with holes and secure it to the bottom of the
waterfall so that after leaving the waterfall the water will first enter rage bucket
with the batting before entering the pond. This will help filter out the fine muck.

Remove all the gunk that you can by vacuuming and netting all the leaves.


You have to remove all the gunk on the bottom
 

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The average water level is about 3 inches under the rim, which seems to be lower than it has been in the past,



Any thoughts on the drooping sides?



The two may be directly related.


When a pond is built using a liner the correct method is to bring the liner up the side and tuck it under the border rocks. As they droop and as the dirt settles a low may be created.


My liner is 25 years old and as fas I can tell no leaks. I did have to rebuild one side of the edging. I did that last Fall.


You need a level or a combination of a very straight 2x4 and level that will span the pond in any direction. Then determine the low points. Assuming this was built correctly and you have liner tucked under the edging the fix is fairly simple but it is a bit of work.


I found my pics but they are on my phone and I need to transfer them to the computer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks @Two Knots and @Colbyt!

Progress in progress. Here's an update. Any thoughts are much appreciated!

Rebuilding the WallsYou were both right that water was escaping out of a low in the sides rather than a leak. It was partially hidden by the bridge, but explains why the bridge began to sink and twist on one side, as any rain would end up draining into it. The back wall was also disrupted by a collapsed retaining wall last year as the ground shifted.

I've drained half of the water and peeled back the liner to rebuild the back wall. I have some left over edging stones which will I think will be more solid than the smaller piecemeal granite that was used originally. I am also mixing in a good amount of gravel to hopefully reduce the washing away that was bulging under the lining.

It was a long afternoon of scooping out dirt, but there is light at the end of the tunnel now. Can't wait to split some grassy perennials for a backdrop (now that the whole yard isn't collapsing!).

Filter Pump IssuesIn the course of draining, I discovered not one but two pumps in the water. The main one, a Laguna Max-flo with a Powerjet 900 motor is not working, and well past warranty. I've taken it all apart, but I'm not sure whether to order a new impeller, or a new one entirely.

Getting a Vacuum In Lockdown? It seems like shopvac rental will not be an "essential business," but I'm tempted to fix an old towel to my garage broom and mop away.

Sorry for the sideways pics. Thanks for your thoughts!

 

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How deep is your pond? Many pond maintenance businesses empty the pond
every spring and fill it up with free water.. Since you don’t have and fish, this
is what you can consider. If you do go that route, make sure you fill the pond
up the same day you empty it other wise you’ll ruin the liner.

Harbor Freight has good pumps..we purchased 260 gph pumps for 12 to 15.00 dollars,
they have lasted any years. (We use 4 pumps in our main pond, however not all run at the same time)
For the size of your pond I think 2 pumps will suffice.
 
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How deep is your pond? Many pond maintenance businesses empty the pond
every spring and fill it up with free water.. Since you don’t have and fish, this
is what you can consider. If you do go that route, make sure you fill the pond
up the same day you empty it other wise you’ll ruin the liner.

Harbor Freight has good pumps..we purchased 260 gph pumps for 12 to 15.00 dollars,
they have lasted any years. (We use 4 pumps in our main pond, however not all run at the same time)
For the size of your pond I think 2 pumps will suffice.
I’m mean fresh water not free water...
 

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Do not use loose dirt to build up the low spots.


Get down to solid ground and then use flat rocks or mortar mix to fill the low spots under the liner.
The pond does need an overflow point somewhere but under the bridge is not the right place for it. The natural low point of the yard would be the place.
 
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