Here’s what you’ll need to get started:
– A clean-out pump with approximately 25 ft. of discharge hose – A high-pressure nozzle for your garden hose, or a power washer – Garden shears for trimming plants – A child’s swimming pool or a similar sized container to hold fish and any other critters you find during the clean-out – A net or something similar to place over the fish container to keep them from jumping out – Two five-gallon buckets to collect leaves and debris – A fish net – Aquascape Pond Detoxifier to remove chorine and chloramines prior to putting fish back – Aquascape Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria
Drain the Pond / Pondless® Waterfall
- Place the clean-out pump in the deepest point of the pond (or in the Pondless® Waterfalls Snorkel™) in order to remove the water. 2. Drain the water into the surrounding landscape. Be sure to relocate the pipe two or three times to allow the water to seep into the ground and not flood the yard. 3. If you have fish, use some of this pond water to fill up the holding pool. The fish can be removed from the pond using a net once the water is low enough so you can easily catch them. 4. Don’t keep the fish in the holding pool for more than several hours. Keep them in a shady spot with a net over the top of the pool to prevent them from jumping out..
Don’t Overdo the Cleaning
1. Rinse the inside of the pond. You can also use a pressure washer to help remove debris from the rocks and gravel. 2. Don’t try to scrub all of the algae away. Some algae on the rocks will prove beneficial in developing your ecosystem. For an average size pond (11′ x 16′) this should take around 15 minutes. 3. Use the gentle stream from a garden hose to rinse the rocks and gravel. Start at the top and work your way down to the bottom. Periodically turn the clean-out pump on to remove the dirty water. You can discontinue the periodic pumping once the water rinsing down to the bottom begins to look clear. Remove the pump and begin filling the pond.
Cleaning the Filters
- Remove any debris from the bottom of the skimmer and Snorkel™ Vault. This can be done by hand or by using the cleanout pump. 2. Remove the media nets and filter pads from the BioFalls® Filter. (Not included with the Pondless® Waterfall). If you have the optional drain kit attached to your Signature Series™ BioFalls® Filter, you can open up the valve and rinse the media and filters. Once the filters have been removed rinse them free of accumulated debris. 3. The filter media and mats can be put back into place and the waterfalls pump can be reattached in the skimmer or Snorkel™ Vault.
Putting Your Fish Back into their Clean Home
- If you’re on city water, it’s imperative that you add a Aquascape Pond Detoxifier to the water so it is safe for fish. 2. Dip a five-gallon bucket, or similar sized container, in the holding tank and fill it with water. 3. After you’ve caught a fish, place it in the bucket and set the buckets in the clean water. 4. After about 15 minutes, periodically begin splashing some pond water into the bucket. 5. By now, the temperature of the pond and the bucket water should be close to the same. You are ready to spill the fish into their spring-cleaned home.