Jun 16, 2015

Aeration is Key

Waterfalls Are Not Enough...
Supplement and You'll See!


Even though this pond has waterfalls fueled by pumps running
approximately 20,000 gallons per hour, it is well aerated also.
You can see the white columns of air under the water in the
upper right quadrant of this photo.

It is very common for people to think their waterfall is enough aeration for their pond. More often than not, however, it's not. Even if the waterfall is large, it's only aerating where it directly breaks the surface of the water. Your pond needs oxygen throughout the water column to stay healthy... that's where an aerator comes in.

So why is aeration so important? Beneficial bacteria in your pond keeps the water clear, clean, and healthy. Without it your pond would be a green, dark, smelly mess that nothing could live in. Can you picture it in your mind? Yes, if there's beneficial bacteria there's also bad bacteria and that's what that horrible smell is in the bottom of your pond when you're cleaning it. Fortunately, the beneficial bacterial keeps it in check and from taking over. The beneficial bacteria also competes with algae for food, starving it.

Beneficial bacteria is aerobic bacteria meaning it needs oxygen to live and thrive. The more oxygen it gets, the more it can reproduce, keeping your pond even cleaner. It's important that there's oxygen throughout the water column, not just at the surface where your waterfall churns the water. An aerator sends little bubbles to the bottom of the pond. As the bubbles rise from the aerator plate or stone, they spread out, circulating that oxygen throughout the pond.

Of course aeration is good for your fish also. It's especially good for them in really hot weather when the water doesn't hold oxygen as well. You'll see them more active and hanging out in the air bubbles.

Aerators come in many different sizes and styles. It's important to have one sized appropriately for your pond. Get one that is too small and it won't do the job; buy one too large and you disturb the water so violently that you will never see your fish. The air compressor for the aerator sits outside the pond. Tubes from the air compressor run to the bottom of the pond and are connected to air stones or an aeration plate.

Air tubing, air compressor, and air stones.

Air tubing, aeration plate, and air compressor.


 In the summer the air stones or aerator plate should be at the deepest area of the pond. (Make sure your aerator is sized appropriately to be that deep. Learn about sizing your aerator here.) In the winter, the air stones or aeration plate should be brought to the surface. Read more about your aerator in winter here. It's also important that the air compressor be protected from weather. A fake rock with air holes works well to keep it protected and camouflaged at the same time.

You won't be disappointed by the results if you add an aerator to your pond.



 Written by Staci Wicker
Cool Ponds co-owner

2 comments:

Beverly Reed said...

We purchased ours from you 3 weeks ago. It has made our pond 100% cleaner. We can see the rocks on the bottom and can now enjoy watching our 5 KOI. Thank you.

Cool Ponds' Staff said...

So glad to hear it. Aerators can be little miracles for some ponds!

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