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Monday, August 31, 2009

Average Koi Pond Cost

My family wants to get a koi pond. One of our friends also has one, so he can help. The only problem is the money. How much does the average koi pond cost? - Jake

I assume you are building it yourselves, to save on labor costs.

It depends on the size and amount of filtration the pond will have. A small pond with high end filtration equipment will probably cost the same as a medium or large pond that is either poorly filtered or has DIY (Do It Yourself) filtration.

DIY filtration usually involves a large container, like a barrel, that is filled with bioballs. A high end filter system usually involves a pressurized bead filter, UV sterilizer and a protein skimmer.

DIY filtration costs less but involves much, much more maintenance than equipment that you can buy from a dealer. How much more maintenance? Up to about 10 times more. Don't think that's true? Cleaning a pressurized bead filter takes about 15 minutes a week. Pressurized bead filters backwash just like a pool filter, you only need to turn a valve to clean them. Cleaning a barrel full of bioballs takes about an hour (You will get covered in smelly pond scum and fish waste).

Here, it's broken down for you:

DIY Filtration
More time consuming - less money

Pressurized Bead Filter
More money - less time consuming

You will get tired of getting covered in goo every few days eventually.

Green Water
There really isn't a safe way to add a DIY UV light to your pond. You need a purchase a manufactured unit from a dealer. UV lights prevent algae from growing by sterilizing them, so the water in your pond stays clear.

Some people add large amounts of barley to their pond as a cheap alternative. A bacteria that grows in the bales kills algea. Who wants to have a bunch of bales of barley in your pond? No one. The bacteria that kills the algae takes two months to grow, so if you live in a cooler climate you better start the pond up early!

Dissolved Organic Compounds

Their is only one decent protein skimmer for a Koi pond, it's called a Clarity Protein Skimmer. They will get very small particles of waste that are dissolved in the pond water. It's almost impossible to do a DIY version of one of these, your better off buying one.

DIY filtration won't have a warranty or a guarantee that it will be adequate for your pond. When you purchase a filter from a dealer, they will help you size the equipment for your pond. Manufactured equipment can have warranties up to 4 years or more!

Here's the pricing, for a small (1,200 gallon), medium (3,000 gallon) or large (5,000 gallon) pond, with high end filtration and DIY filtration:

DIY Filtration:
Small: $1,500.00
Medium: $3,000.00
Large: $5,000.00

High End Filtration:
Small: $2,500.00
Medium: $4,000.00
Large: $7,500.00

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