Maintaining Water Levels

97 degrees today in our neck of the woods - welcome summer!  With heat like this you really have to keep an eye on the water levels in your pond.  In hot, dry weather, ponds can lose 7" or more of water in one week.  This wreaks havoc on pond water quality as evaporation greatly increases the concentration of ammonia and nitrites.  Not to mention equipment damage when that pond pump starts sucking air!

First things first.  If you are re-filling your pond with tap water you must be vigilant in consistently treating the water with a dechlorinator.  Dechlors are not just for major water changes.  You may think there is no need for a dechlor when your just topping off the pond - but the effect is cumulative.  If your just topping off, then just use a little.  Our absolute favorite is AquaMeds DeChlor and More.  It is safe and effective and removes chlorine, chloramine, ammonia, heavy metals and, in true AquaMeds fashion, has a stress coat proctectant for fish. 

From an equipment standpoint, the biggest risk lies with your skimmer pump.  Once the water level drops below the skimmer door, your pump will burn out very quickly (and unless you're really nifty, this is not covered under most warranties...).  To keep this from happening, install a  low water cut off switch.  Granted, you will still have to add water to the pond, but you will save your pump and a lot of $$$.

There are several inexpensive auto fill kits which attach to a garden hose or irrigation line.  They operate pretty much like a toilet float (sorry!).  When the water drops below a certain level, the valve opens and water runs into the pond until the desired water level is reached then shuts off.  The   Laguna Auto Fill Kit is an inexpensive and basic auto fill that can be installed pond-side (does not have to be in a skimmer).
 

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