The “Best” Solution for Pond / Waterscape Leak Prevention or Repair: Diversity
By Kevin Root, Spray-Lining zone 2 distributor, Vancouver Lining and Coatings
The application of solid or spray-on liners to ponds and waterscapes seems to be competing tactics through forums. I build waterscapes and I know that as long as it’s a clean and solid surface, flexibility & adhesion matter. A solid sheet of any compound may adhere but should freely move as a pond settles over time. Lining sprayed-on is supposed to adhere to a pond’s surface yet as settling can slightly move it, coating must remain unbroken. To work without leaks on concrete, EPDM sheets, polyurea, epoxy or rubber sheets are in debate. A Spray-Lining or Coating designed for a live waterscape is another solution. I’ve used them.
A product called polyuria hybrid provides a practical and variable solution. Polyureas and hybrid coatings are used by professionally trained Spray-Lining applicators. There are harder and softer ones for lower vs higher humidity or movement in soil. Dealers and franchises of Line-X (mainly for truck beds) use polyurea or other forms or poly/hybrid Spray-Lining product. Some Line-X Spraylining dealers have experience, some don’t. Usually a spray-on bed liner is okay for waterscapes but few quality ones are available as a DIY. Polyurea can be determined by reviewing the spray-on lining MSDS or spec sheets.
Over time your waterscape likely won’t remain leak-proof. Regardless of the presence of temperature, fish or cascades all ponds can leak. A spray-on lining solution, epdm, rubber, plastic sheets, etc all function but nothing is forever. That said, you can repair, or prevent leaks in several ways.
The DIY route:
3- http://www.utvpartsandaccessories.com/UTV_spray_in_bed_liner.htm , http://www.watergardenersinternational.org/beginners/joel4/joel4.html, http://www.spray-lining.com/pond/
4- Let the pros do this – find 2 good & 2 bad reviews on prof applicators / go big on references & referrals i.e. there should be many refs a “pro” has… He should be more than willing to allow you to contact & see his work.
Coatings clientele can be easily misled or ripped off. Consider the risk of a disappointment with spray-on or solid lining sheets a learning experience if it fails. Spray-Lining gets complaints from scammed dealers of Vortex Spray Liner on faulty product as well as koi pond owners ripped off by fake, uncertified Spray-Lining dealers.
YOUR POND IS DIFFERENT THAN OTHERS. Don’t let an avenue go unnoticed. A homemade leak-proofing alternative, plugging or covering a leak can do the trick. Laying down plastic sheet lining (over the leak or the whole area), getting a spray on lining poly / hybrid professional or a total rebuild are worth contemplating. Professionals with good reputations aren’t available whenever you want them and are the most expensive. With a DIY, there are no guarantees.
Just weight these all out, use logic, you won’t be alone.