Time: 1 day
Skill Level: Advanced
Is it time to get your pond up and running so you can start enjoying it again? Do you want to make sure whoever you hire knows what they’re doing?
In this post, you can find out the spring pond maintenance process a pond contractor should follow. It’ll get your pond clean, working properly, and ready for the year. The cost for spring pond maintenance done by a contractor may not be what you think. By the end of this post, you’ll better understand how to clean a pond for the early spring season.
- Sump Pump
- Garden Hose
- Power Washer
- Large Tub For Fish
- Net For Covering Tub
- Big Buckets
- Water Treatment/Detoxifier
- Beneficial Bacteria
How To Do Spring Koi Pond Maintenance
1. Drain Pond Water
The first step in prepping your pond for spring is to drain the water down to about 6 inches. This helps clear out any debris, algae, or anything else that can hurt your pond inhabitants or turn your beautiful water feature into an eyesore.
To do this, start by turning off the pond pump. Then, use a sump pump to drain the existing water into a large tub. This will be where you relocate your fish.
2. Relocate Pond Fish
Net all of your fish and transfer them into the large tub. Place it in a shady area so your fish don’t overheat. Once you move all of your fish, cover the tub with a net or breathable material. This will keep them from jumping out.
Now you can finish draining the water.
3. Take Out Any Winter Accessories
Remove any winter pond accessories, such as floating covers or de-icers, and store them until next winter.
4. Remove Muck
Part of a pond clean out is removing muck. Muck is decaying organic matter from plants or animals (such as fish waste) that settle at the bottom of your pond. You can remove it with your hands, a shovel, or something to scoop with.
After removing all the visible muck from your pond, it’s time to rinse out any remaining dirt and debris. You can do this using a garden hose with a sprayer attachment or the water you pumped out.
Aim the nozzle directly into any crevices, cracks, and other surfaces to flush out any remaining dirt or debris. Make sure you are thorough so that no dirt is left behind on the walls or floor of your pond.
6. Powerwash Rocks
Start at one end of the pond and work your way around in a clockwise motion, making sure to get every rock in the process. The pressure should be strong enough to dislodge any smaller pieces of debris, caked-on muck, and algae that may have been left behind from the rinse.
Don’t remove all of the algae! Algae is part of your pond’s ecosystem and needs to be there.
7. Clean Filter Media
The filter media of your pond ensures any debris and contaminants don’t accumulate in the water. Depending on the type of filter you have installed, you may need to remove it periodically (or seasonally) to rinse off any gunk that has accumulated on the surface.
Rinse the filter mats, bioballs, and filter containers clean with the garden hose.
8. Check Pond System Equipment
Inspect your pond system equipment, such as pumps, filters, skimmers, and UV sterilizers. Make sure that all of the parts are clean and functioning properly. Replace worn-out parts immediately before they cause any damage or lead to additional problems. You’ll also want to check (or add) any pond lights.
9. Refill Pond
Put the garden hose in the pond and refill it. This can take a while, so now is a good time to relax a bit. You can also use this time to check the health of your fish and take care of any pond plants.
10. Fish Health Check
Parasites are a common problem in ponds. Common parasites include flukes, anchor worms, gill maggots, and more. Look for signs of parasites, such as white spots on the fins or scales, worms, or excessive thrashing behavior. If you see anything suspicious, contact an aquatic veterinarian right away.
11. Detoxify Water
Fish are sensitive to changes in their water. Water from the hose isn’t ideal for them, so detoxifying the water changes the chemical balance to one they can live in.
12. Reintroduce Fish
Once you’ve tested the water and it meets all requirements for your fish, it’s time to acclimate them back into their home environment. Start by floating a bag containing one or two of your fish in the new pond water for 10-15 minutes. During this time, slowly release small amounts of the new pond water into the bag until it’s nearly full. Then release your fish into the pond.
Spring Pond Cleaning Tips
Test Your Water Quality
It’s essential to test the water quality. This includes testing the pH level (a measure of acidity or basicity), kH (carbonate hardness), and temperature. If these levels are off balance, it can lead to algae growth, health issues with your fish, and other issues.
- pH: It is vital to keep your pH level in the 7.3-7.7 range, depending on what type of fish you have in your pond. This will help them stay healthier and keep the water quality high.
- kH: Try to keep your carbonate hardness (kH) levels higher. This will help your filtration system work better, keeping your pond cleaner and clearer.
- Temperature: To help your biological filter work best, try to keep the water temperature at 65 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s okay for it to range between 64 and 73 degrees Fahrenheit. You can use waterfalls, aerators, or additional shading to help you regulate it.
Add Beneficial Bacteria
Beneficial bacteria help break down organic matter in the water, reducing the chances of algae blooms. They work to keep your pond water cleaner and clearer, and they help to keep fish healthy by reducing ammonia levels in the pond. Your pond should already have beneficial bacteria in the Biofalls filter.
Depending on the temperature, you may want to add cold water beneficial bacteria to your water feature. They work better than normal beneficial bacteria during colder weather.
Check For Leaks
Make sure there are no leaks in your pond liner or anywhere else. The most common places for water seepage are around the edges of the liner, along pipes or other fixtures that enter or leave the pond, and through any cracks or breaks in the liner itself. If you find a leak, fix it as soon as possible.
Depending on the source of your leak, there are various ways that you can fix it. For example, if the leak is coming from around pipes or fixtures entering or leaving your pond, then applying some sealant should do the trick. If there are any cracks in your liner, you can patch them up using an epoxy patch kit specifically designed for use with rubber-lined ponds (never use silicone).
You might find extensive damage to your liner to the point that sections need replacing entirely. This is best done by an experienced professional, as liners can be difficult to install correctly without prior experience.
Add Aquatic Plants
Aquatic plants help add oxygen to the water and provide shelter for fish. They also reduce algae growth by competing for nutrients with algae, making them a great addition to any pond. Make sure you choose pond plants that are appropriate for your area’s climate and soil conditions.
Feed Your Fish Carefully
Overfeeding fish causes excess waste in the form of uneaten food particles. This adds extra nutrients to the water, which can lead to algae growth and poor water quality, both of which can lead to health problems with your fish. Feed them only what they can eat in 5 minutes or less, 1 to 3 times per day. Adjust the amount based on how much food is left after the 5 minutes.
Wait until temperatures are above 55 degrees Fahrenheit to start feeding them. You can also look into cold water fish food if you enjoy feeding them and want to start as soon as possible.
Add UV Clarifier For Algae Control
UV clarifiers are a good way to keep algae growth under control without using harsh chemicals or manual removal methods. These systems use ultraviolet light to quickly kill unwanted green algae without harming other water organisms, such as aquatic plants or fish. They do not work against string algae.
Reawaken Your Pond With Grass Roots Pond And Garden
As a pond owner, taking on a big project like spring pond maintenance can seem daunting and overwhelming. However, with the right pond contractor, it doesn’t need to be!
With Grass Roots Pond and Garden, you can get a quick and professional cleaning for your pond. Your fish and plants will be handled with care, your pond will be left looking incredible, and you’ll be left loving our high level of service.
So what do you say? Let’s kick off spring by revitalizing your pond. Fill out our contact form today and talk to one of our friendly representatives about your pond cleaning project.