Tag Archives: pond repair

Bucks County Pond Renovation

Bucks County Pond Renovation
Bucks County Pond Renovation

Time for a Bucks County Pond Renovation!

Why a Bucks County Pond Renovation? Maybe you built it yourself. Maybe you hired a landscaper to build it. It may have even been there when you bought the house. But it is not the pond of your dreams.

We specialize in Bucks County Pond Renovations and pond installations. We can fix your current pond and make it into the pond you have always envisioned.
Regardless of how it got there you have pond or water feature in your yard and it needs help. There are things you love and possibly a few things you hate about your existing pond.
Our team has handled many Bucks County Pond Renovations over the years. The renovation can be as simple as adding more stones around the pond to redoing the waterfall you’ve never been satisfied with.
We can also expand your pond, creating streams or waterfalls to give the pond a whole new look. From a trickling stream to a bubbling waterfall, we have your Bucks County Pond Renovation covered. We can put large urns and basalt columns in the pond to invigorate the look as well.
AquaReale has also added fountains, streams, waterfalls, large urns and basalt columns to ponds over the years to help create a new look.
Lights are always a great way to brighten and lighten the pond. Lighting adds a new element to your pond and allows for beautiful. Lighting can accent certain areas of your pond, highlighting your stream or waterfall.
We can help you turn your existing pond into the pond you have always dreamed of. A low maintenance water feature brings your yard to life and will have all of your neighbors talking!

Reach out today to see how we can help your Bucks County Pond Renovation dream come true.

Philadelphia Pond Leak

So you think you may have a Philadelphia Pond Leak?

Philadelphia Pond Leak
Philadelphia Pond Leak

Leak vs. Evaporation

Before fixing the leak, make sure there really is a leak! Every water feature has splatters and evaporation.  Evaporation happens when atoms or molecules escape from the liquid and turn into vapor. Hot weather and wind are two factors that affect the evaporation rate of a pond or water feature.

Evaporation is inevitable and can be misleading. It’ s normal for a pond to lose anywhere from 1-3 inches a week in the Philadelphia area during summer.

Of course this varies from pond to pond. Water features that have a lot of surface area, big streams and multiple waterfalls tend to lose water faster due to evaporation and splatter out too. It is important to understand that some water loss is normal, but excessive water loss can mean problems!

Troubleshooting a Leak

Always start troubleshooting a  Philadelphia Pond Leak by narrowing down the causes.  You start by noting how much water loss there is when the system is up and running and then how much loss there is when the system has been off for 24 hours.

Turn off or unplug the pump.  Next, let the area sit for 24 hours (without rain)  If it’s hot and you have any fish, add an aerator to the pond to provide oxygen.  After the 24 hours mark off the water level if the level has dropped and then let sit another 24 hours. Repeat this until the water has stopped draining. If the pond continues to drain to dangerous levels for the fish they will need to be relocated to a separate holding tub. If the water never dropped at all, or dropped just a very small amount during the first 24 hour time period then the pond / basin is holding can be eliminated from the search.

You Have a Leak in Your Pond– Now What?

When the water level has stopped dropping check along that  level for the source of the Philadelphia Pond Leak (low edge, liner tear, concrete crack, failed skimmer seal, etc.). Always check first for the obvious: large rocks that may settle and weight down liner, wet mulch areas, wet gravel, even the skimmer to liner connection.

Low edges can be adjusted by the homeowner, but often anything like a tear, crack or failed seal most often needs to be serviced by a trained professional  Note that  your  water feature could be leaking in multiple areas. So just because one Philadelphia Pond Leak is fixed doesn’t necessarily mean the problem is fixed. Check the streams, waterfalls and all the hardware to be sure.

In a lot of cases water loss is simply a low edge or water diversions from leaves, debris, or overgrown plants.

In situations that aren’t so obvious it may be time to call a professional to have it looked at or fixed.

Contact a Professional

AquaReale is a professional pond company servicing the Greater Philadelphia County, including Bucks and Montgomery Counties.  Contact us with a photo to see how we can help you!

Horsham PA pond installation

Horsham, PA pond installation
Horsham, PA pond installation

 

At AquaReale, all of our clients are special.  We do our best to bring their visions to reality.  In some cases, the client reaches out to us.

When Gary contacted us, he had just bought a house.  He had always had ponds at previous locations, and knew he wanted another pond.  His research on Horsham, PA pond installations led him to AquaReale.

In a word, Gary was thrilled with his Horsham, PA pond installation by AquaReale: “They were so easy to have around.  I think what I liked best about the process was the openness of AquaReale.  They involved me in everything.  Matt told me what he was thinking. I didn’t feel like people descended upon my home and did it TO me.  It had to do with atmosphere.  They kept me abreast every step of the way, and asked questions.  Matt started it and the guys continued.  And let me tell you, they are perfectionists.  I never had to say just leave it.  I mean, they did a WOW!! job.  Absolutely meticulous, the whole job.  I had no doubts or concerns, and there was open discussion about everything.  They had all the answers.“

A true success

Gary W. loves his Horsham, PA pond installation created by AquaReale.  “I love the placement, and I love that I can walk around barefoot.  It just feels like it’s been there forever.  And because it blends into the landscape, it feels like another room.  It has inspired me with so much creativity and serenity.  Another feature I love is the rock work.  It is a work of art.   I also love knowing my fish have caves for protection from the birds!  I think the best part about my Horsham pond by Aquareale is that everyone who comes to visit wants to sit on the back porch just a little while longer.  Friends and family gather to listen to the sound of the water moving over the rocks.

“One amazing thing about my new Horsham, PA pond installation by AquaReale is that it has become a silent memorial to my mom.  I put a memorial to her outside at the pond.  It was almost as if she knew, because on Thanksgiving Day, cardinals began to appear…as though she had sent them.

Thanks to Matt and AquaReale, I am outside more than I have ever been.  My Horsham, PA pond installation brings me closer to nature.  AquaReale is my water feature professional for life.  I couldn’t recommend anyone higher.”

 

Contact AquaReale to see what we can build for you!

Pond Pump Repairs fish pond

Your pond pump is one of the most important pieces of equipment in your pond, so why not learn how to take care of it properly via Pond Pump Repairs?

Oftentimes, pumps burn out or die prematurely due to improper care and installation. By knowing how to take care of Pond Pump Repairs, you can ensure it will last several years.

Pond Pump Repairs
Pond Pump Repairs

Pond Pump Repairs case #1 : Pump Hums but Pushes Very Little Water

Possible Cause: Impeller may be seized by debris

Troubleshooting: Unplug and remove the pump from the pond and inspect the pump intake to ensure there is no debris restricting the impeller. Remove any debris, like rocks or sticks, which may have become lodged around and above impeller.

While the pump is still out of the pond, lay it on its side and plug in the pump to see if the impeller spins. If the impeller does not spin, use a screwdriver or similar tool to kick start the impeller.

Possible Cause: Pump may be air-locked.

Troubleshooting: Air has gotten into the impeller chamber. Tilt the pump while it’s in the pond to allow air to be released from the chamber or remove the pump from the pond and re-install, ensuring that the impeller chamber is flooded with water.

Pond Pump Repairs case #2: Pump Pushes Very Little Water

Pond Pump Repairs case # 3: Possible Cause: Plumbing clogged with debris.

Troubleshooting: Disconnect the pump from the pipe. This will allow the plumbing to drain. Clogged debris may back-flush out of the plumbing and into the pond during this procedure. Inspect the plumbing to make sure no debris is lodged inside.

Pond Pump Repairs case # 4: Issue: Pump Is Not Running

Possible Cause: Poor electrical connection, tripped breaker, blown fuse, or other interruption in power supply.

Troubleshooting: Check to make sure all electrical connections are working and that a qualified electrician installed and tested it. Note – Long extension cords may cause voltage drop at the pump and the amps to rise above maximum level. This can cause the pump to heat up and burn out the motor.

Pond Pump Repairs case #5  Issue: Pump Operates Intermittently

Possible Cause: Not enough water in the pond.

Troubleshooting: Most pumps must be submersed in water to operate properly. Low water levels may cause the pump’s internal thermal shut-off to activate. The thermal shut-off will deactivate once the pump is cooled down. The proper water level must be established in the pond for the pump to work properly.

Possible Cause: The pond is too small to support the volume of water needed for the stream.

Troubleshooting: The pond must be designed to provide enough water to the stream and waterfalls for proper circulation. When the pump is first started, it may be necessary to add a few inches of water to the pond in order to account for the water used to feed the stream and waterfalls. Upper pools and “check” dams in the streams are also very effective at holding water upstream when the pump(s) are not operating. Ponds that are too small may not be able to supply enough water to start the streams and waterfalls. This will cause the water in the pond to drop below the opening of the skimmer upon initial start-up and starve the pump of water.

Enjoy!

Remember, your pond should not be an endless source of frustration and confusion to you. If you continue to have problems with your pond, regardless of the troubleshooting steps you performed, it may be time to call in the help of a professional.   That’s where  AquaReale can step in and help.  Just reach out!

But please, don’t consider routine, general maintenance to be a burden on you. After all, how many tasks do you get to perform in the warm sun, with the sounds of frogs and birds all around you, and your friendly koi nibbling at your fingers?

And how often are you tempted to take your shoes off and dip your toes in the bathtub when you’ve been cooped up in the house washing windows? Not often. That’s why you installed your pond. Enjoy it!

Watch our Pump Troubleshooting video for more tips on maintaining your water feature pump

Hatboro PA, pond installation

Hatboro, PA, pond installation video!  Here’s a new pond installation that Pete in Hatboro, PA.  The new pond installation lasted a few days.   Reach out to us to see what we can do for YOU!

6 Tips for Pond Plants

pond plants
pond plants

Pond Plants: 6 Tips for the Perfect  Plants

When it comes to planting in ponds,  you can apply many of the same tips and guidelines you use to create your terrestrial flower beds.  Things like color, height, and planting conditions are things you’ll want to consider when it comes to naturalizing your pond with plants.

It’s the amazing pond plants that truly put the “garden:” in water garden.

 

(1) Create Interest with Pond Plant Variety

Random placement of plants with varying textures and colors will create more interest than using plants that have all the same growth habit or leaf shape.

(2) Water Plant Colors

Choose colors you like best and consider the type of lighting your pond receives. Yellow, orange, and white help brighten shady areas, while cool blue and violet tone down the intensity of the sun’s rays.

(3) Go Green

A soft, calming space is created by using different textures and shades of green foliage.  You can also play with color based on leaf selection alone, since you’ll find aquatic foliage in a range of colors such as red, purple, yellow, and several variegated combinations.

(4) Pond Plant Size

. One of the biggest mistakes novice water gardeners make is failing to realize how big their pond plants might grow. Be sure to take height and width of the mature plant into consideration and allow enough space for future growth.

(5) Group  Pond Plants Together

Interior decorators tell you to group like objects together when decorating your home, to create visual impact. Use this same principle when planting your pond. Plant a row of marsh marigolds along a stretch of the ponds edge, as opposed to dotting them all around the pond in single locations.

(6) Consider Each  Water Plant’s Needs

Be mindful of how much sun your aquatic plants require, along with their planting depth. If a plant requires full sun, that’s a minimum of 6 hours of unobstructed (ie not dappled shade) sun per day.  If you’re not sure what your plant needs, ask the pro at your local garden center or search online for information.

Final thoughts

You’ll want to ensure an interesting mix of aquatic plant types for your water garden. Plant a few marginal at the pond’s edge, include colorful water lilies or even a lotus, add floating plants like water lettuce, and include submerged plants to help add oxygen to your pond.

Variety is the spice of gardening life, so don’t be afraid to experiment   For more information about pond planting and what we can do for you, contact us.

Small Pond: Plant Placement Ideas

pond plant diagram
pond plant diagram

 

Large Pond: Plant Placement Ideas

pond plant diagram-- large pond
pond plant diagram– large pond

What do pond fish do in the winter?

What do pond fish do in the winter?
What do pond fish do in the winter?

What do pond fish do in the winter?

It’s the question we get asked the most, so here are some answers:

The warm weather is obviously the best time to be able to enjoy pond fish. During this time pond fish and koi are active, lively, and highly visible. Many pond fish and koi become downright interactive with their keepers and will follow them around the pond, stick their faces out of the water or practically climb out of the pond to celebrate feeding time.

During this time we all know exactly what is going on with our fish and all it takes is a quick peek into the pond.

Then the cold weather sets in and we slowly lose our ability to see what’s happening with our pond fish. Their activity slows down, they tend to keep themselves concealed, and once the ice and snow come; well, we lose touch with our fish. So what’s going on underneath those layers of ice and snow? What do pond fish do in the winter?

So what are the fish up to?

In short, not too much. But pond fish not being up to too much is an interesting behavior all the same, given that they are so lively throughout the rest of the year. Koi and pond fish are poikilothermic animals, a fancy way of saying cold-blooded.

This basically means that their body temperature is regulated by the surrounding temperature of the water, and their body functions respond and change according to the water temperature. The activity and metabolism of koi and pond fish is greatly reduced which is why they do not feed during the cold periods.

What do pond fish do in the winter?  For the most part they sit on the bottom of the pond in the “warmest” pocket of water they can find. During winter months the warmer water is on the bottom of the pond as opposed to warmer months when the warmer water is at the top of the pond!

Fish Hibernation

What do pond fish do in the winter?  Koi and other pond fish go into a state of torpor. Torpor is not quite full hibernation, because it is of a shorter duration than hibernation, but otherwise it is a very similar state of being: reduced body temperature, slowed metabolism, slow reaction times, reduced breathing rate and primary body functions.

Torpor allows the animal to save the energy that would otherwise be needed for higher levels of activity. Because of the state of being in torpor it is a very good idea to keep things as calm as possible around the pond. If you need to open the ice in the pond find a quiet way to do it like using boiling water to open a hole, don’t chop it open with a pick ax!

Even using a hand held drill with a hole saw is actually pretty quiet compared to other methods, and if the ice is too thick to open with boiling water the hole saw is a great tool to have. To maintain an open area in the ice try using a floating de-icer or an aerator. This open area in the ice will allow noxious gases, like ammonia, to escape from the pond.

Contact us for more information or to get a de-icer for your pond.

A wetland filter renovation

Doylestown, PA Wetland Pond Filter

How did the R. family end up with a Doylestown, PA Wetland Pond Filter? Patrice and Michael R. wanted their pond to be clear. They spent five years trying to achieve that goal, until AquaReale gave them exactly what they wanted.  They had three different companies try to fix the pond clarity issues within five years, with no success.

The Doylestown, PA Wetland Pond Filter

When AquaReale met the family, their 20x 12 pond had an external filter system. AquaReale suggested installing a wetland filter along with the external pump and filter to help clear the water.

Wetland filters work with graded gravel and plants to help trap sediment and consume excess fertilizer.

AquaReale’s Matt and Eric both worked on this project featured below…

About Wetland Pond Filters

Wetland filters have many uses, including being highly effective at removing sediment (suspended solids) from the pond. They also improve clarity and reduce algae, without any additional physical or chemical maintenance. Wetland filters can easily be retrofitted onto existing pond and it is possible to create a waterfall and stream by designing the wetland filter system off the perimeter of the pond

For the Doylestown, PA wetland pond filter, we also also added a  bottom intake to draw the water from the bottom of the pond to get extra sediment moving and not stagnating.

The Doylestown, PA Wetland Pond Filter  Challenge

The challenge for this job was trying to keep the overall look of the pond when doing the renovations. The R. family loved their pond and waterfall just as it was. AquaReale’s job was to add the bog and other water-clearing solutions while keeping the integrity of the original pond along with the shape of the waterfall.

In the end, the R. family has a clear pond and they are thrilled. “After all this time, we are finally happy with the pond, ” says Mrs. R. “I wish we had known about AquaReale years ago.”

For more information or to see how AquaReale can solve your pond needs, contact us!

Quick breakdown: pond renovation vs. pond repair

Many people question the difference between pond renovations vs. pond repair.  though they sound similar, renovation requires much deeper intervention. Repairing something means fixing or replacing a small part that is broken or malfunctioning – renovation is a complete overhaul and redo, resulting in a practically brand new end product.

A pond is no exception to these terms of home improvement– take a look at the before and after of this pond renovation!

Pond Repair

When a pond leaks, you have the option to make repairs or completely renovate the pond – these options depend heavily on the extent of the problems. If the causes don’t inherently interfere with the structure of the pond or the health of the pond wildlife, you can likely troubleshoot and fix the specific issue. Problems that can be repaired include holes that leak or the liner detaching from the skimmer or biofalls, just to name some things that are more common. The possibilities are endless – without the guaranteed standards of a Certified Aquascape Contractor, there’s no telling what happened during construction. If the leak is caused by a hole in the liner, it can sometimes be patched. A broken pipe means you need to replace the pipe. Repairs are self-explanatory.

The most difficult part of even the simplest pond repairs is identifying the problem in the first place. We usually hear,“why is my pond leaking?”  This opens a variety of potential causes, which can be narrowed through a few key tests.
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  1. Walk around pond, checking for visible wet spots for possible leaks. A simple issue could be a low liner, allowing for a water to flow over the edge.
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  2. Fill up the pond and determine the water level
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  3. Turn off the pump and come back 24 hours later to check for a change in water level.
    • If the water level is unchanged, the problem arises somewhere in the pipe or filter.
    • If the water level has decreased, the problem lies somewhere in the pond or skimmer.

If none of these are the causes, your issue lies somewhere in the pond or stream and a renovation is likely the best solution.

pond renovation vs. pond repair

Pond Renovation

Renovation is considered a complete pond replacement. This means we remove the pond and replacing all parts. This is the perfect opportunity to change anything you didn’t like, and address any issues, even minor ones – you could add more tunnels for fish, install lighting, and use more plants to encourage a healthy ecosystem. You could increase or decrease the size of the pond, or add an additional or larger waterfall or other feature.

Many pond renovations we encounter come from homeowners who had a landscaping company come in and build a pond, or new homeowners who don’t know their pond’s history. Renovations can seem daunting, but are a great opportunity to save time and energy that will be spent making temporary repairs on a flawed or dissatisfying pond design.

pond renovation vs. pond repair