The Big Facts
Choose the Correct Direct Drive Pump
This choice is very important for achieving clear water when using our filter. The ponds total water volume should be filtered a minimum of once every two hours, but if possible once an hour is preferred. A larger pump maybe needed to deliver the necessary flow recommended for the filter and discharge to the waterfall. Measure the total length of tubing needed. For every 10 feet of tubing add 1 foot of lift to the height of the waterfall from the ponds water surface. Your pump selection will be based upon the total gallons per hour (GPH) at that calculated the height. The pump needs to pull from the opposite end of the pond’s waterfall or the filter discharge. This set-up will alleviate any stagnate areas in the pond.
Choose the Right Tubing
The following is a flow chart for choosing the correct tubing for your pump. Larger is better! Greater flow with less velocity and friction loss.
- 300 GPH 1/2" tubing
- 720 GPH 3/4" tubing
- 1,200 GPH 1"tubing
- 3,000 GPH 1 1/2" tubing
- 4,800 GPH 2"tubing
- 6,000 GPH 2 1/2"tubing
- 9,000 GPH 3" tubing
Run the System Continuously, 24 Hours a Day
If the pump is turned off, not only will the bacteria die, but also not circulating the pond water could allow for an anaerobic condition to develop. This condition is not a healthy environment for the pond or the fish.
Know Your Pond's Water Temperature
Is the pond water temperature too hot—too cold? Know your pond's typical water temperature. This temperature has a great effect on any ponds biological performance. To handle the temperature extremes a UV (clarifier) is used. This clarifier supplies additional mechanical filtration necessary to solve this problem.
Pond Location is Important
A pond located next to, or close to trees will have additional upkeep to remove the debris and leaves from the pond. On the other hand, a pond that is placed in full sun should have at least 60% of the water shaded. This can be done with various aquatic plants.
Know Your Pond's Bio-load
Plan to add fish? You will need to figure the Bio-load (how many fish) for the size pond you are planning. Figure the pond's surface area, then multiply by 1.5 inches. This is the number of inches of fish the pond will handle. Example: 10' x 10' pond = 100 sq. ft. of surface area. 100 x 1.5" = 150" of total fish. (30 fish at 5").
Know the Hardness/Softness of the Water in Your Area
You will need to know or have an idea of the hardness or softness of the water in your area. Test the total alkalinity or call your city's municipality for the answer. The ideal water hardness for a pond is between 120ppm–240ppm. If it is not in this ideal range, the pH will fluctuate dramatically and your pond's biological performance will be affected. It may be necessary to use a stabilizer or buffer; these products are available to the hobbyist. Some states have water conditions that effect the total alkalinity. These states are:
- Colorado, with very hard water
- North and South Carolinas, with very soft water
Seed Your Pond
Speed-up the pond's biological maturity (normally a 6-week period) by seeding the pond. Add bacteria weekly to raise the bacteria level or count.
Calculate Your Pond's Size Accurately
When contacting PFI for a consultation, figure your pond size accurately. Do not guess! Use the following formula to figure gallons (you can also use our convenient calculator at the top of the sidepane on every page):
Average length x average width x average depth x 7.5 (gallons per cu. ft. of water) = total gallons of pond water.
- Example: 10' x 10' x 2' x 7.5 = 1,500 gallons
For a circular pond, use Pi (3.1416) x (radius x radius) x depth x 7.5 = gallons of pond.
- Example: For a 10' diameter pond 2' deep. (radius = 1/2 of diameter): 3.1416 x 5' x 5' x 2' x 7.5 = 1,178 gallons