So you’ve just made a pond in your backyard and the water in the pond keeps draining away?
Don’t panic you have come to the right place. Here I will show how to make a pond hold water.
So let’s not waste any more time and first learn why your pond isn’t holding water. After that, we will jump to the solutions.
Table of Contents
Why Pond Doesn’t Hold Water?
Leakage In The Pond Liner
Pond liner is very important in holding water in your pond. Damage in pond liner is a common cause of water loss in the pond.
If you haven’t installed the pond liner accurately, there is a great chance that the liner has been damaged. Leaks, splits or cracks in the pond liner are reasons for water loss.
Seepage of Water Through Pond Bottom
Seepage issue is very common for farm and large ponds as no liner are installed in them. A considerable amount of water can be lost through seepage.
The degree of loss of water through seepage depends on two factors, the location of the water table and permeability of the pond bottom.
If there is coarse material in the pond bottom, for example, gravel and coarse sand water will easily seepage through them if the water table is lower than the water level of the pond.
Leakage Of Various Pond Instruments
Many people think the leakage is the least common issue for pond water loss. However, you actually cannot overlook them.
Try to check the fastenings in your pond pump, filter, and pipework. These are probable places for leakage to occur. As they are made of brittle plastic.
These damages and degrade over time leaving large cracks and leaks in them.
After this, you have to check filter media inside your filtration system. If they are not cleaned regularly they can be blocked. This will result in water overflowing from the filter box.
Low And Narrow Bank Of Pond
Low and narrow banks are also responsible for pond water loss. Water seepage can easily take place through a narrow bank.
Water escapes from the pond at a low point, thus low edges have their effect. It also shows that the edges of the pond are not even, therefore it is losing water.
Evaporation Of Water
Evaporation can cause the water level to drop 1 inch per week. This is the most common cause of water loss in a pond. The rate of evaporation depends on size, location of the pond, time of year and most importantly weather.
Evaporation is an important part of the water cycle. This occurs when water molecules are in constant motion. And have enough energy to break through from the water surface and escape into the air.
Higher temperatures and wind speed can cause a significant amount of evaporation in your pond. Because of evaporation, a significant amount of water is lost from the pond.
It is turning your pond water into vapor and then water is escaping from your pond. The loss due to evaporation is regained by rain naturally. But if it doesn’t rain for a while and the temperature is high, water loss can be noticeable.
The size and quantity of the waterfalls will also affect water loss. As wind dries clothes on the laundry line, splashing and moving water from your waterfall or fountain can be the cause of water loss in your pond.
Evapotranspiration By Pond Plants
It might seem crazy. But too much pond plants are responsible for water loss in the pond. It is depended on the type of your pond plants.
Plants consume a lot of water from the pond for transpiration. The plants that bloom in the summer for example lilies they consume a huge amount of water from the pond.
The aquatic plants are not only responsible for water loss. The terrestrial plants have their impact too. The foliage hangs into the pond water. You can take the Juniper tree as an example. They hang their leaves into the water. Resulting in water loss for the pond. These are huge trees and can consume a lot of water from the pond.
Interference By Wildlife
Wildlife will interfere with your pond depending on the location and the nature of the pond. And this interference will result in water loss. In maximum cases, water loss will not be significant enough.
Birds may use the pond for bathing. Taking the residual water with them when they fly away.
Water loss occurs due to animal drinking water from your pond. But this will not be a significant amount of loss.
If it is a farm pond and you have livestock on your farm that moves openly, they can use the pond water for drinking. This can be a considerable cause of water loss in your pond.
Splashing And Spraying Of Water Out Of Pond
This is another probable reason for water loss in your pond. Water splashes out of the stream and then it doesn’t go back to the pond due to wind action.
In the fancy type of ponds where you have a waterfall and fountain system this kind of problem is seen.
A single drop of water can fill out a bathtub in one day if continuously added throughout the day.
To troubleshoot this problem, you can hold a piece of dark paper around the outside edges of your flow line. If you see spots of water forming on the paper then you can assure yourself that you have a problem of splash and spray.
Obstruction In The Stream
Leaves, twigs, and rocks at times gather in the flow line of water in your pond. In some cases, because of not taking proper care of pond they become way too much in the pond. This then raises the level because of Archimedes’s law.
As a result, if you have low edges then the water will overflow. These obstructions also help the evaporation of water. And lead to greater loss of water in the pond.
Surroundings Near The Pond Edge
Look what is near the edges of your pond. Let us say, your pond is surrounded by rocks or other metals and they are touching the water, they might absorb water from the pond. Also, water can seepage through these rocks.
Rocks that are submerged in the water are more likely to increase the loss. This is because the thin water layer will evaporate faster.
Now that you have got an idea over the problems that cause our pond to lose water. We will now try to give you solutions.
How to Make Pond Hold Water
Check And Fix Pumps, Filters, And Plumbing If There Are Any Problems
You should regularly check the pumps, filters and the plumbing system to see if there is any leakage in them. Also, you should make sure that they are properly functioning.
If there is leakage in the pumps try to fix or replace them for solving the water loss issue.
The same goes for the filters. Because of the extra blooming of algae in the pond, the filter may not be working as it should.
In many cases, it is found that water is overflowing the filter system because of this clogged filter media. So try and make sure that you are keeping the pond clean as well as the filter.
Keeping the pond clean, checking different fixtures and fixing them will also help the pond to hold water.
Evaporation can be reduced by giving pond proper shading. As this is a natural cyclic phenomenon. Water loss due to evaporation is filled up by rainfall.
But if you think that you want to take matters in your hands for that there are several approaches.
Science shows you that, for the reduction in evaporation you will need less surface area exposed to sun, lower temperature of the water, and a decrease in the wind speed.
Practically we can take measures like underground water storage, chemical treatment with water vapor retardants, reducing the surface area by shading the pond, using windbreakers, using floating covers on the water surface.
Technically these are the measures that can help you to hold up the water in your pond from evaporating.
Maintain The Pond Plants – If Required Get Rid Of Them
You have to be aware of what kinds of plants consume more water. The plants that bloom in summer generally extract way too much water like water hyacinth, water lilies, water iris, water hawthorn, etc. belong to this type.
On one hand, they are enhancing the beauty of your pond but on the other hand, they are consuming a lot of water. So you have to choose one. For making sure that water holds up in the pond you should get rid of this type of plant.
The trees that are near the banks of the pond have their leaves into the water. They are also responsible for water loss. To avoid this type of loss it is necessary to trim the plants regularly, although this might be case dependent.
The drop in the water level will be more visible if you consider water intake from pond plants and natural summer evaporation.
To this, a solution would be getting rid of the plants. This is the only wat to stop them from consuming pond water.
So it is totally up to you how you take your measures.
Have A Barrier For The Pond For Solving The Interference Of Wildlife
You can have a strong barrier for your pond to stop the interference of wildlife. Wildlife, even your pet and farm animals might somehow manage to damage the ponds system. This will eventually result in water loss of pond.
So try fencing your pond to solve this problem.
Properly Directing the Rocks to Solve Splash and Spray Issue
Sprays and splashes have enough effect on increasing the water loss from the pond. You must come off with a plan to eradicate these issues.
For this, you will need to watch carefully if this is causing the water loss. And if it does, you should try to align the rocks properly in your pond waterfall stream.
This will reduce the water spraying and splashing after striking the rocks in the pond. As a result, the loss due to this will reduce.
Wide Bank And Line Them Properly
Proper edging is very important to pond to hold up its water. Low banks are a common reason for water loss in the pond. Try not to use small pieces of stone right on the edge. As they tend to slip away.
You can use paving slabs for effective edging of the pond. Alternatively, you can use round pebbles. Another option for edging will be if you turf right up to the pond edge.
By doing this a narrow band of waterside grasses will give their effect.
If your pond banks are narrow, then make it wide and if there are lower edges portion, fix them to save water from overflowing.
Try to make sure that the installment of the pond liner is proper. A liner is made of PVC or rubber. There are different kinds of liners. Different kinds of ponds will need different kinds of pond liners depending on its type.
All the pond liners have the same purpose. They maintain the pond water level by not letting the water seepage below.
Ponds having dirt at their base will lose more water. If the pond was built without a liner then you should drain the total water out of the pond and then install a liner. Then refill the pond with water.
The best time for installing liner is the winter season. Because the plants are dormant in this season. This will help to hold the water up in your pond effectively.
Use Bentonite Clay to Seal Your Pond
If your pond bottom has coarse material like coarse sand and gravel, water loss due to seepage can be high if the water table is below the pond level.
Although pon liners work best for small to medium ponds, for large farm ponds they aren’t suitable. In that case, the best solution is to seal the pond bottom with bentonite clay. You can also use bentonite for sealing the edge or bank of the pond.
Now that we have known about the solution to our problems. In addition to solutions you should also make sure of the location of the pond before making it, also the pond plants that you will be planting, try to install a windbreaker if necessary and last but not least try adding up some water regularly to compensate the loss.
Some Final Advice For You
Let’s have following these measures shown above, hopefully, you will be able to hold up your pond water. Waterlevel is necessary for keeping the ecological and environmental balance of the pond. And also keeping a sufficient amount of water in the pond is necessary for the wildlife and the animal that lives in the pond. Proper maintaining and cleaning are also necessary. Try and keep all the systems regularly checked. This will surely do your job.