BOTTOM DRAIN????


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Hello all! Next spring I am going to do a pond make over. Pull my liner out, reshape it, and most importantly add a bottom drain. Basically I need all the information I can get about installing them and how they work. I’ve found ample information on splicing them into the liner but nothing on how they work and how to plumb them. Please give me any and all information!
 
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We have some very knowledgeable people on here, I'm sure you'll find all the info you're looking for
Welcome to the group!:)
 
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The main thing you have to keep in mind is that a bottom drain is only one part of a whole gravity fed system. The idea of a gravity fed system being that the fish waste and debris that naturally sinks to the bottom of pond can gently flow through the bottom drain where it is captured in some sort of mechanical filter, like a sieve or settling tank, before it has any chance of going through a pump and getting blended up by the pump impellers and becomes much harder to filter out.
Sometimes people install bottom drains and plumb them directly to the pump, this is a big mistake and defeats the whole purpose of installing a bottom drain.
 
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The main thing you have to keep in mind is that a bottom drain is only one part of a whole gravity fed system. The idea of a gravity fed system being that the fish waste and debris that naturally sinks to the bottom of pond can gently flow through the bottom drain where it is captured in some sort of mechanical filter, like a sieve or settling tank, before it has any chance of going through a pump and getting blended up by the pump impellers and becomes much harder to filter out.
Sometimes people install bottom drains and plumb them directly to the pump, this is a big mistake and defeats the whole purpose of installing a bottom drain.
Is the settling tank required? Or can it get plumbed right into the skimmer? And pardon my incompetence, lol, but how does the gravity feed work if it has to go uphill?
 
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Is the settling tank required? Or can it get plumbed right into the skimmer? And pardon my incompetence, lol, but how does the gravity feed work if it has to go uphill?
The settling tank is not required so long as you have some sort of mechanical filtration between the drain and the pump but it needs to be on a separate circuit from the skimmer. Meaning in almost every bottom drain scenario you would have a skimmer pump (typically submersible and sitting in the bottom of the skimmer) sending water to a filter and a separate external pump pulling water from the bottom into a different filter (such as a sieve or Eazy Pod or a Nexus 350 or similar) . The water from both pumps needs to be filtered and returned to the pond.

The Eazy Pod w/ air and UV (between the drain and an external pump) is probably the simplest approach I've seen.
 
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Here is what I did..... By no means an expert but it worked out for me. My pond is kinda oval shape and my waterfall is in the center at one end. If you stand behind my waterfall you would be at 6:00 o'clock.... My bottom drain is at 12:00 o'clock in the very deepest part all the bottom of my pond is sloped to the bottom drain. My skimmer inlet is located at 2:00 o'clock. This was all pre planned, I did this for a quiet area/ little current for plant shelfs, lilies between 2:00 o'clock and 6:00 o'clock. This all worked great but when I put my waterfall shelf in I got it skewed toward 10:00 o'clock so it created a current that any leaves or debris that fall to the bottom and gets by the bottom drain and the skimmer ends up in a neat little pile in the center of my pond that I can scoop up with my leaf net .... That's what they say..... The Good Lord takes care of Fools and Children. Lol
 
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View attachment 105335 View attachment 105336 View attachment 105337 Here is what I did..... By no means an expert but it worked out for me. My pond is kinda oval shape and my waterfall is in the center at one end. If you stand behind my waterfall you would be at 6:00 o'clock.... My bottom drain is at 12:00 o'clock in the very deepest part all the bottom of my pond is sloped to the bottom drain. My skimmer inlet is located at 2:00 o'clock. This was all pre planned, I did this for a quiet area/ little current for plant shelfs, lilies between 2:00 o'clock and 6:00 o'clock. This all worked great but when I put my waterfall shelf in I got it skewed toward 10:00 o'clock so it created a current that any leaves or debris that fall to the bottom and gets by the bottom drain and the skimmer ends up in a neat little pile in the center of my pond that I can scoop up with my leaf net .... That's what they say..... The Good Lord takes care of Fools and Children. Lol
also around my bottom drain I made a shallow trench, this catches all the gravel or rock chips, for a easy cleanup and they dont get to the pump or filters, not my invention but something I picked up off the internet
 

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Proper engineering is required in utilizing a bottom drain. You would want to research proper sizes and dimensions for the entire system whether you utilize a settlement tank or sieve. Then that is only part of the overall filtration system. For dedicated Koi ponds they are popular and there is ample information available to determine proper flow rates and drain diameters; get it wrong and it's a lot of money and time invested to have to fix after the fact.
For garden ponds or eco ponds bog filters have gained a lot of popularity. Bottom drains and the engineered systems that go with them like bakki filters, moving media filters, particle separators and settlement tanks add a lot of expense when the goal is a balanced system of plant and fish. It all depends on the end goal if a bottom drain system would even be recommended.
 

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One of the things you need on a bottom drain is nice long turns to help the line from clogging .

Having a easy way to keep the drain clean is a bonus.

I can run a dryer brush all the way into my bottom drain through my skimmer when ever I need too . with a slight bend I can clean out the lines to my seive .

This pic is of two of my ponds plumbed together, both bottom drains come up valved under the skimmers and head too a seive to collect leaves and stuff .
Every thing is gravity fed , then pumped to my filters
 

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