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How To Keep Pond Surfaces Clean ... Use A Skimmer, Floating or Fixed In Position

A great deal of the debris you see on the bottom of your pond starts life as a windborne bit of debris that for a while floats on the pond surface. If the debris is allowed to sink it becomes unsightly and if organic in nature it also consumes precious oxygen in a pond to be able to break down the organic waste.

A pond skimmer is designed to remove floating dirt particles such as pollen, leaves, and dust for example. Water at surface level is sucked through the skimmer and diverted to either an external sump or filter or an internal chamber attached to the skimmer where the solids are "filtered" or strained out.

Floating Skimmers ... best for smaller garden fish ponds

These are by far the simplest to install; the skimmer is simply attached using a length of tubing or pipe to the suction of the pond pump (normally a pipe size of 32 or 40 mm is correct) and the skimmer then adjusts its position so that it floats and allows surface debris to be sucked into the chamber in which there is mesh to trap particles. It can work in ponds of almost any depth ... deeper ponds use longer pipe lengths between the pump and skimmer. The diameter of the pipe is important to ensure minimum restriction to water being sucked by the pump into the skimmer basket.

Bradshaws also supply skimmers with built-in pumps which don't need to be connected with hose.

Fixed Skimmers... best for larger koi ponds

These are similar to skimmers used in pools ... they are located so that water leaving the pond is via the surface overflow into a strainer system (contains a basket made from fine plastic mesh for example). Water is actually sucked from the surface by a pipe connecting the skimmer to an external pump located in a chamber designed to operate at the same level as the pond (it's connected by a pipe so that levels of water in the pond and chamber are the same). The pump sitting in the chamber then delivers the water to a pond filter or waterfall or directed to wherever you want the water to go to.

Fixed skimmer installations are best reserved for larger ponds and all serious koi keepers have this type of pond skimmer installed. It is amazing what difference a skimmer can make to the clarity of pond water since often it is fine dust particles that get disturbed by fish or blown into the pond that create a water haziness that prevents perfect viewing of the koi or other pond fish. The ideal pond pump for use with fixed skimmer installations is the filter pump or solids handling waterfall pumps.

Filter pumps also called solids handling pumps

Over the last few years major improvements have been made to submersible pond pump impellor designs especially. Pumps that used to have sponges to protect the impellor from damage caused by pond debris can in fact now pump such debris without breaking the impellor. These pumps were developed alongside another big improvement to garden fish pond filters. This was the introduction of small pressurised pond filters like the Hozelock Cyprio Bioforce (this was the first one) or the FishMate pressure filters. Because these filters operate under pressure they need pumps that could develop more "head" or pressure and this prompted better and more efficient impellor design in order to keep pump running costs down. Oase make excellent pressure or solids handling filter pumps and have been seen as the pioneer in this field with their famous Aquamax product range.

Bradshaws Delivery and Shipping

Shipping is direct to your door from our warehouse and takes approximately 5-7 working days. For deliveries of items under 30kg a charge is made to cover handling and despatch (For Highlands & Islands despatch please phone for delivery and service details). Next day and 48 hour delivery is available in most areas. For single items weighing 30kg or over, also a charge is applicable.


If any item does not meet your expectations you may return it within 30 days. Please return it in its original condition, including packaging & obtain proof of return from the carrier. Please ensure faulty products are clean and not contaminated with pond water or mud from your pond. Please note Bradshaws will cover the cost of return for damaged and faulty products. Please call our customer services team before returning an item on 01904 698803, weekdays 8.30am-5.30pm. Remember to include your returns label from your despatch note in your returned parcel. Please state whether you would like a refund or replacement. Your statutory rights are not affected.


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Polyex liner exclusive to Bradshaws

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Oase Pondovac 3


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