Nothing defeats the aesthetic value a garden pond offers to a homeowner. A well-kept and active pond brings joy and instills a sense of tranquility to any visitor. However, the pond comes with its challenges, more so, for those who reside in cold areas. This is precisely the reason why a pond heater or de-icer is required. The pond heater and the de-icer help preserve life during the harsh cold season when dire conditions pose a serious risk to living organisms in the pond. It keeps the pond warm and ensures harmful gases are directed out of the pond during chilly winter season.
There are two broad types of pond heaters: floating. Other sub-categories of pond heaters include electric heaters, oil, or natural gas heated pond heaters. The floating pond heater is designed to float on top or middle of the ice when the pond water is frozen. It mainly melts a hole right on top of the ice that has covered the pond. This will allow gases to escape from the pond during the cold season. The submersible pond heater on the other hand refers to one that is submerged in the pond. It warms up a wider space and safeguards the living organisms within the pond from harmful gases and cold.
Temperature Regulation during Winter
One of the most effective ways of safeguarding pond fish from cold seasons is through adaptation of the eating habit of the fish. The second alternative is through replacing the pond water with new then using a net to cover the pond so as to prevent unwanted trash such as leaves from falling into the pond. Once ice starts forming, the net should be removed and the pond heater setup on the pond. The main purpose of the pond heater in reality is not for warming the water but rather to keep ice from forming.
Those who have koi fish in the pond cannot do without a pond heater. Extreme cold conditions during winter months pose a serious risk to the water plants and living creatures within the pond. The pond heater ensures the temperature of the pond is kept within bearable levels and that damage is not caused.
Options when Choosing a Pond Heater
Pond heaters operate on electricity, oil or gas. You should choose one that best meets your needs and falls within your budget. A pond heater that is powered by gas or oil takes up a lot of money when setting up. However, they are much easier to maintain and are economical in the long run. The electric powered pond heaters are quite easy to set up and cost little to install. However, their maintenance costs hit the roof when they begin to operate. They are also risky unlike the oil and gas units.
The solar pond heater is another alternative. It has zero maintenance cost but it is much more expensive.
Power Capability of the Pond Heater
It is quite easy to determine the size of the pond heater to buy if you know your pond size. The general rule is that one pond heater is required for a 600 gallon pond. You will need two if your pond is larger than that. 1 KW of power serves best 1000 gallons.
Pond Heater Examples
Allied Precision Bucket Utility Deicer
Designed with a sturdy aluminum base and an expansive surface area, this deicer not only stays cool but it also endures. It also comes with multiple thermostats that guarantee maximum efficiency. Another amazing feature of this unit is its 10-foot heavy duty cord that has been built with an anti-chew protector. This unit is best suited for buyers who do not want deicers that actively within close range to the fish, pond linings or foliage.
API 250D Pail and Birdbath De-icer
This is one of the best units for smaller areas. It works perfectly ensuring an ice-free pail, bucket, pan, and bird baths. It is a submersible de-icer that can handle up to 15 gallons of water. It notable features include an in-built thermostat, a stainless steel guard, and a six feet power cord.
The All-in-One K&H Ultimate 250-Watt De-icer
This is one of the best pond de-icers in the market. It can work as submerged or floating unit. It is ideal for keeping the pond warm, fresh and healthy and since it can be transformed into two, it gives greater versatility and benefits. It is a safe unit for all fountains, stock tanks, and ponds. It is available in 5 different electric power versions ranging from 250 W to 1500 W. It also has a free cord protection with every heater and comes with an extra cage. The pond liner is secured from damage thanks to the surrounding coil.
The 315W Laguna PondHeat De-Icer
This unit from one of the top manufacturers in the market has been designed for ponds of 20 degrees F and below. It comes with an additional 15-watt heating unit through which ice is melted upon contact. This helps prevent the buildup of ice. Asides that the unit helps exchange gases within the pond. It also has a clear LED light that displays when the unit is on.
Farm Innovators P-418 Pond De-icer
The P-418 pond de-icer is a reliable unit for those who would love to have an ice-free pond. It features a 1250 watt heater that safe for fish and plants and is capable of handling 50 to 600- gallon ponds. It is a perfect unit for aerating the pond since it offers an effective venting hole ideal for oxygen replacement. It is a built with a sturdy aluminum casing that eliminates energy wastage and guarantees long term use. It is also controlled by a thermostat hence it optimizes heating efficiency.
A Final Word
A total winter kill is preventable but since most people do not take seriously the use of pond heaters/de-icers they end up incurring huge loses. Apart from this, the de-icer helps protect the pond banks, attracts waterfowl, and secures the boat from damage. You can never run short of what to choose from when shopping for a pond deicer. Just ensure you buy your unit from a reputed manufacturer.