Outdoor pond

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Have any of you ever built an outdoor pond? I'm curious whether I really need to use 45 mil pond liner, or can I save $$$ and go with 20 mil for about 30% less?
I'm in NC, if it matters.
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How much are you talking about in actual dollars for the size of the pond you're thinking of building?
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It was many many moons ago but I believe I used the 45. Last thing I wanted was a leak, tear, sun deterioration, cold weather crack after all that work. I was in northern VT. It was 4ft deep because in winter it would freeze very deep at 20-30 below. Many critters found their way to it, lived in the summer and hibernated in the winter at the bottom. Had water plants in pots on a ledge below the water line. They were dropped to the bottom in winter.
Most of my supplies I got mail order from a large supplier. Prices then were much better than local. Link for liners:
    http://preview.tinyurl.com/ycbofo9      - or -     http://tinyurl.com/ycbofo9
Pond Pics...BTW which they ended up using in their catalog.
http://tinypic.com/r/jagia9/4 http://tinypic.com/r/10dwg8n/4 http://tinypic.com/r/309ikd2/4 http://tinypic.com/r/a1plyt/4 http://tinypic.com/r/1zg9wn9/4
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wow! nice work
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Thanks for the ack, Red...
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Yes, use 45 mil. We have a 1000 gal pond, 8 years old. This next spring going to double or triple the size. Used 45 mil last time and will again.
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wrote:

PS. Private pond nice feature. There may be insurance/liability implications if one 'builds' a pond and if someone were to wander in (especially if property unfenced) and fall in. This similar to a having an unfenced, locked gate access, private swimming pool on one's property. If pond is/was a natural feature of the landscape the situation might be different?
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PS. Private pond nice feature. There may be insurance/liability implications if one 'builds' a pond and if someone were to wander in (especially if property unfenced) and fall in. This similar to a having an unfenced, locked gate access, private swimming pool on one's property. If pond is/was a natural feature of the landscape the situation might be different?
It's fenced, 6' stockade and I'm armed. :) Nobody wanders in.
To the OP, make it bigger than you "think" you want.
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Yep- Last year. I'm in NY. The pond is tiny- 8x12x2ft deep at its deepest point. Its primary purpose was for pugs to wade in- but it has become a home to some beautiful flora and fauna. [and the dogs cool off in it from time to time]

No matter the size or where you live- the money you save on a lighter liner is miniscule compare to the amount of work & money you'll have invested by the end of year one. It would be foolish to skimp on the weakest link. When a kingfisher plunges down and punctures your liner you'll wish you'd spent the extra $$. [what *is* the difference?]
45mil EPDM is the *only* way to go. [well-- I suppose plastered concrete would do- but it is a whole nother story.
http://ponddepot.com/pondliner.html has 45mil epdm for .55/sq foot. [a 15x20 would be $165]
I also bought a lot of supplies from azponds.com. I've managed to spend a couple grand on things over the last 2 years- mostly online for 1/2 what the local pond store or the borg sells things for.
Hook up with http://groups.yahoo.com/group/pondkeepers / and news:rec.ponds.moderated for some helpful folks to guide you through the process. Then go for it. One of the most satisfying projects I've undertaken.
Jim
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45 mil is the only way to go. Mine is 15 years old (ag zone 6) and going strong.
You may find a local to you better price than mail order. I did and saved about 20% while paying no added shipping.
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The first tear in the liner will make you regret "saving" the, what? $60?
R
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Jason Carlton wrote:

What, you don't like indoor ponds any more? :^/ -- aem sends...
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If your pond will hold one thousand gallons or more and you do not have fire hydrants within one thousand all weather road feet of your home you may want to consider providing a drafting hydrant for use by the fire department in protecting your home. Installed at the same time as the pond the additional cost are quite low. Some insurers will give you a break on your homeowners insurance if you provide water for fire protection. FWIW.
-- Tom Horne
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State Agricultural Extension departments usually provide detailed instructions how to d.i.y. (These are usually designed for farmers, working alone but with machinery, e.g. backhoes or bulldozers.)
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
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I built an outdoor pond, and never will do it again. Mine was only 4 feet deep, all the fish froze to death over the winter (Chicago) (it should have been minimum 6 feet deep). I also regret not installing a bottom drain return for the bio filter, as that would have kept the bottom clean. If I did go 6 feet I would have had too much ground water pushing the liner back up. Also if it is not on perfectly level ground you'll get runoff into the pond and liner lift out, mine was on a very slight slope which was problematic. All in all I learned a lot, it was hard work and cost a lot of money to build. After built it was a constant source of maintenance work and little jabs from the wife worrying about a neighbor kid falling into it. Both of these were not worth it. But it did look pretty with the lilypads and fake koi (colored goldfish that look like koi but are 1/16th the price).
I would never have another pond in suburbia, maybe on a farm if I could do it naturally by tapping a spring or artesian well and use a clay bottom.
After 2 years I pulled the liner and filled it with black dirt, now its a vegetable garden and I have bought myself back many months of living doing other things I enjoy more.
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windcrest wrote:

I would tend to agree, based on ponds I have known. (Space and money for one of my own being way above me on the food chain.) Sort of like swimming pools and outdoor hot tubs- once the novelty wears off, they are a PITA hole in the ground you pour money and time into. If I were to hit the lotto and build a rural dream house, a water feature would be appealing, but it would have to be something that was an adaptation of existing waterflow on the the property (assuming the PTB allow modifying existing waterflow in the area), and self-maintaining.
-- aem sends...
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-snip-

Different stokes. . . I find the pond and hot tub to be very low maintainence. [The pool wasn't bad if you kept plugging along at it 15 minutes every day- I don't spend that in a week on either the hot tub or pond]
Jim
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wrote:

So very true...I know several people , my brother included that have had a pool installed and then taken out...A ROYAL PITA for such a short season here in Maine...3 months use at most....Especially if both hubby and wife both work..A house I was just recently doing drywall at was having their pond and waterfall removed...They were tired of constantly screwing with it...He said they just get it looking good and then it's time to close it down for the winter..LOL ...
If I had my way I would pave the whole damn yard with asphalt so I could have my weekends back...I'll be damned if I would add a pond , pool or hot tub to my honey do list...LOL...Maybe AFTER retirement when I'm living in Florida...LOL...
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On Fri, 2 Oct 2009 19:55:07 -0700 (PDT), Jason Carlton

I have a pond and it does not have a liner. We dug it out by hand, hold about 6000 gallons, fed by springs and overflow pipe to a brook. The overflow has been running about 15 years, about 2 gallons a minute.
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I know I risk starting a war here but you don't have to use pond liner. 45 mil EPDM roofing material is the same thing. Make sure it is not treated for mildew etc. but I used this in a pond for ~ 12 years with no ill effects. If there is a commercial roofing company near you you can probably buy left over material for a very good price.
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