- Mark the Pond Area
After determining the location of the pond, use a can of marking paint to draw the shape of the pond on the ground. Be sure to make the dimensions true to the size of the kit being used. These instructions are based on Aquascape’s Medium Pond Kit 11′ x 16′ with the AquaSurgePRO 2000-4000 Pump.
- Place Skimmer and Biofalls
Place the skimmer and Biofalls filter along the perimeter of the pond. The Biofalls will be the source of the main waterfall, so position the unit facing your main viewing areas.
- Lay the Plumbing
Using flexible PVC pipe, lay the pipe where it will:
a) Connect the filters &
b) Transfer the water from the pump to the waterfall
Laying the pipe at this point in pond building and burying it in the berm during excavation will save you the time and energy of digging up the berm to trench the pipe later
- Hook Up the Biofalls
i. Install Fittings
Begin by installing the bulkhead fittings provided. Use a pair of channellocks to tighten down the fittings to create a watertight seal.
There are multiple inlets on the Biofalls to allow multiple pump applications, or to allow for easy connecting of plumbing no matter which direction the pipe is coming from. Using silicone around the threads of the fitting, cap off the unused side with a plug and install an NPT fitting to later connect the flex pipe.
ii. Create Base and Backfill
Remove the Biofalls from where you have placed it to create a flat and stable base for it to be set. Depending on what you are using it for, the Biofalls can either be dug down or raised up. However, it must be set to scale with the rest of the landscape.
Compact the soil with a tamper to avoid future settling and reposition the filter so that it sits level side to side and leaning slightly forward.
Once set, stand inside of the unit and backfill around the front and sides. Do not cover the back where the plumbing will be connected – as connecting the plumbing is your next step.
iii. Hook Up Plumbing and Backfill
Use the PVC glue included in the installation kit to connect the pipe. Apply the glue liberally to both clean components then insert the pipe into the NPT Fitting. Hold firmly for about 20 seconds to allow for curing.
Proceed to backfill the area with loose soil and compact the dirt around the plumbing components to protect the connection.
5. Excavate the Pond
i. Excavate the First Shelf, Skimmer Hole, and Lay Pipe
Begin excavating the first shelf of the pond at approximately 8 to 10 inches on your way to the 24 inch maximum depth specified by your pond kit. Start in the middle and use the soil to build up a berm around the Biofalls.
Dig a small trench and backfill around the perimeter of the pond for the exposed pipe outside the berm. Lay the pipe in the trench and backfill around it with loose soil.
Prepare to set the skimmer by marking around the filter and digging down approximately 20 inches. Continue excavation on the first shelf and skimmer hole while using the excess dirt to build up the berm around the Biofalls. Periodically level the berm.
ii. Excavate the Second Shelf and Set Skimmer
Once the first shelf is dug, mark out and dig the second shelf another 8-10 inches. Use a laser level or transit level to set the water level with the skimmer. Be sure to check the shelves inside the pond for depth consistency.
In preparation for setting the skimmer, use a pair of channellocks to install the bulkhead fittings in the discharge ports. Use silicone to create a watertight seal as you thread the NPT fittings into the bulkheads and tighten them down with channellocks.
To avoid settling, use a hand tamper to create a solid, flat base for the skimmer to be set. In order to function properly, the filter should sit level side to side as well as front to back.
Proceed to backfill around the filter with loose soil while standing inside the unit to prevent shifting. Recheck the level after backfilling and be sure that the depth of the first shelf in front of the skimmer is several inches lower than the bottom of the faceplate opening.
iii. Install the Skimmer Plumbing
Prepare to connect the plumbing by measuring and cutting the pipe to the proper length. Once again, use PVC glue to attach the pipe to the NPT fitting and hold for 20 seconds to allow for curing. Continue to backfill and compact loose soil around the pipe and skimmer.
An optional overflow pipe can be installed out the other side of the skimmer or simply plugged if not required.
iv. Excavate the Third Shelf and Cut Shelves
Mark out the third and final shelf of the pond and dig down until you’ve reached the specified kit depth of 24 inches. Using a flat shovel to cut 90 degree shelves will make stacking boulders much easier and more stable than sloped walls.
Now you are ready to move on to Building a Pond Part 2 – Getting the Water Flowing!