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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for opinions, I have a newer pond that has been leaking since day 1(pond was fill within 3 days of being dug). So this is my question the current water level is about 2 to 3 foot low and iv tried the beninoite and had really no results. I seen this polymer stuff called soilfloc and it looks like it is drawn to the leaky areas when applied. My main concern is I use this pond for water in my house and I afraid if I use this stuff it will clog the filter or screw up my treatment system. Has any used this product and what was the results? Also if u have used it and u use ur pond for house water please let me know if u had any troubles with ur water treatment system. Thanks
 

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Gosh there are so many questions that I'd have before I could say what happened. Did you have much free stone, was it cored, was it packed in and more. Once you have a leak they are hard to fix without draining and some construction work. Bentonite will help if you find a specific leak, but it needs mixed into the soil. I don't like it as a permanent fix. It will mess up a filter if it gets into it. It's a clay, so it will stop water permeability. So will the other stuff. Did you have good clay? I have seen a lot of leaky ponds in my day and they are rarely a simple fix. How valuable is this pond to you. A poly liner will do it, but that is super expensive. Some ponds will seal themselves off over time, but usually it takes draining and adding a clay blanket packed in. Some old timers would put a bunch of carp in a pond to keep the mud stirred up and settle into the leaks, but you wouldn't want that if your using it for potable water. I had many leaks in our 30 ponds over the years and a permanent fix always involved some form of rebuilding. If you know right where the leak is you could drain it below that point and get a backhoe and dig it up and repack with clay. do this as a T trench. If it's new there is no better time than now to fix it. Good luck

For those who think using pond water is bad, it's all soft water and safe with filtration. We used pond water for 30 years and never had any issues. A floating prefilter and a sand filter with holding tank below the pond gave us crystal clear water and safe. You can even add a chlorinator.
 

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I remember one time reading about an office park with a leaking pond. While I don't reccomend this, they dug a well beside it and pumped water in 24/7.
You all have offered some good solutions.
One question I might ask the OP is, did you just dig a hole and fill it up? Was there ever a liner?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The pond does not have a liner in it and It was filled in 3 days by a big pto water pump hooked to a tractor and roughly 1000 feet of 6in fire hose coming from the river. I also have had a well dug close to it and I keep water pumping 24 7 and it keeps its constant but I never gain much
 

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Capped with clay could mean a lot of things. A pond needs a core or key way dug the full length of the dam and 2 feet below grade then packed hard through the bowl of the pond. A blanket core should be at least two feet right up the the dam top. If the clay came from on sight and you have a sand seam then it could have sand in the clay. Quality of clay matters, too much free stone, shale or sand content will not seal well.

Sadly your three options are most likely truck in good clay and completely recore, line it (good liners will cost several thousand dollars per acre) or let it set and see if it naturally heals. Since you filled so fast it may not have soaked up well and expanded the clay. We built a pond over a gravel base once and it always found a way to leak. We done a good clay blanket, but it wasn't enough. Our final fix was to haul in high quality clay and do a new blanket core 3 feet deep....yeah expensive. But we had our own equipment crew and site to mine clay. Not an option for most. I'm not trying to be critical, but if I ever built another pond over porous substrate I'd just plan on lining it. Actually if you start with that approach you do less excavating work, because you don't even worry about coring it. Lay a base of sand and spread your liner. Ponds are a great thing but they take a lot of planning and maintenance.

I came back to add, I have no experience with the soil floc. I read some of the articles and it may be an option, but I bet you wouldn't be able to use the water for a while. You'd have to check that out.
 

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Capped with clay could mean a lot of things. A pond needs a core or key way dug the full length of the dam and 2 feet below grade then packed hard through the bowl of the pond. A blanket core should be at least two feet right up the the dam top. If the clay came from on sight and you have a sand seam then it could have sand in the clay. Quality of clay matters, too much free stone, shale or sand content will not seal well.

Sadly your three options are most likely truck in good clay and completely recore, line it (good liners will cost several thousand dollars per acre) or let it set and see if it naturally heals. Since you filled so fast it may not have soaked up well and expanded the clay. We built a pond over a gravel base once and it always found a way to leak. We done a good clay blanket, but it wasn't enough. Our final fix was to haul in high quality clay and do a new blanket core 3 feet deep....yeah expensive. But we had our own equipment crew and site to mine clay. Not an option for most. I'm not trying to be critical, but if I ever built another pond over porous substrate I'd just plan on lining it. Actually if you start with that approach you do less excavating work, because you don't even worry about coring it. Lay a base of sand and spread your liner. Ponds are a great thing but they take a lot of planning and maintenance.

I came back to add, I have no experience with the soil floc. I read some of the articles and it may be an option, but I bet you wouldn't be able to use the water for a while. You'd have to check that out.
I was going to post the same thing about clay and a key way trench. There are different types of clay composition. It doesn’t all seal the same. Was the clay compacted in multiple lifts of 6” each to a depth of 2’ or more? Did you dig a key way and backfill it in multiple compacted lifts?
 
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