Select Page

How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

This DIY yard water fountain includes running water

Water turns up through a hole in the stone and overruns the water fountain.

If you’’ re trying to find distinctive water functions for your outdoor patio, deck or perhaps front entry, this natural-looking artesian DIY water fountain will suffice. We developed this water fountain around an unique stone, one with a 1-in. hole drilled through it. Water from the pump gurgles up through the hole and overruns the stone. To decrease upkeep, we removed the collection pond. A gravel-filled tank listed below gathers the overflow for recirculation. Because no sunshine can reach the water in the tank and assistance algae development, the water remains beautiful. You’’ ll have algae growing near damp locations, however it just adds to the natural appearance.

In this short article, we’’ ll reveal you how to pick and drill a stone that’’ ll imitate a natural artesian well. We’’ ll likewise reveal you how to build an easy under-gravel tank utilizing 5-gal. pails. The ornamental options—– the top-dressing stones, water fountain stone and plants—– we delegate your own innovative eye and motivation. You can develop your own distinct water functions utilizing these fundamental strategies.

The entire structure procedure is easier than you may believe, and you put on’’ t require any unique abilities or tools. It’’ s not a totally no-sweat task. You’’ ll need to dig an 8 x 10-ft. hole about 2 ft. deep and discard in gravel. That’’ s the only really heavy work. You can quickly have this job up, running and ended up in a day as soon as you’’ ve collected the products.

The water fountain we reveal expense about $1,000 consisting of the pump, rock fill, pond liner and pad, and all of the stones, consisting of the one that’’ s drilled. Your pond doesn’’ t have to be intricate and as big as ours. You can develop a smaller sized variation that will cost as low as $200. All you require is one water-spouting stone resting in a little location of ornamental stone for a lovely discussion piece for your garden.

.Yard Water Fountains: The preparation actions  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature Test the water circulation.

Bring water from house and put it over the water function stone you select to check the water circulation.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Figure A: Fountain information.

This illustration demonstrates how the DIY water fountain is built. See the Additional Information area for a bigger, image.

The water basin is a two-tiered hole: a shallow end where the stones rest and a much deeper end that acts as the tank (Figure A). The 5-gallon pails (Photos 5 –– 8) produce a big tank volume, so you put on’’ t need to include water typically. They likewise minimize the quantity of coarse gravel required to fill the hole. (We ran this water fountain the majority of the summer season and discovered that we just required to include water weekly or 2, depending upon the weather condition.) All of the pails however the one including the pump are placed about 5 in. listed below the surface area to leave space for potted, water-loving plants.

We raised the pump pail so the cover lies simply listed below the surface area for simple pump gain access to. We drilled all of the pails with holes sized to stay out the gravel (Photo 5) however let the water seep in. Keep track of the water level more regularly if you construct a smaller sized water fountain with less 5-gallon pails. The pump might be destroyed if the tank goes dry.

Begin your look for water fountain stone by calling stone providers that either custom-made drill stones or have a choice of predrilled stones (or search online for natural stone). Costs will vary in between $50 for little stones and upwards of $2,000, plus shipment and positioning charges, for 1-ton stones with natural basins.

Deciding on the water fountain stone is the difficult part. Bring a number of gallons of water with you and put water over your stone choices to see how it streams. Change the stone to change the circulation. Try to find a stone that has natural chutes or channels if you’’ re looking for a “ stream-like ” circulation, or one that has a natural basin if you’’ re after a gurgling-up-from-the-ground appearance. Choose a stone that ’ s less than’15 in. thick at the water fountain hole place; that’’ s the limitation for offered drill shafts.

Our water fountain stone cost $75, and we paid $150 for the stones that supported and surrounded it. If you wear’’ t have a source for drilled stones, purchase a stone and drill it yourself. It’’ s much easier than you believe. (See ““ Drilling a Stone.”-RRB-

.Drilling a Stone.

Just about “any stone is” “ drillable, ” with just a few exceptions( scared wood being one). You’’ ll requirement to lease a rotary hammer drill and a 1-in. -size masonry bit long enough to drill through the stone you select.

Drilling your own stone might just take a couple of minutes, depending upon the solidity and density of the stone. It’’ s loud, so use hearing and eye defense. Don’’ t force the drill; let the weight of the hammer drill do the work. Pull the bit out of the stone every inch or’so to clear the dust. Support it prior to drilling by digging a little crater in the ground to rest it in if you ’ ve selected out a rounded stone. The 1-in. When you begin drilling, bit might move off the rounded surface area. Drill a 1/2-in if so.- deep pilot hole with a 1/2-in. bit.

 Drilling the water fountain stone  Drilling information Backyard Water Fountains: Select a website and dig the hole  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature Photo 1: Mark the water fountain place.

Group the pails and approximately put together the stone water fountain. When you’’ re pleased, mark the edges with spray paint.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Image 2: Dig out the water fountain.

Dig the tank end of the hole 6 in. much deeper than the pail height and the water fountain end 6 in. deep general.

Pick a location that runs out than a couple of inches of slope over the length and width of the water function you prepare to construct.

Roughly assemble your water fountain and other ornamental big stones and cluster the 5-gallon pails to find the deep end of the basin (Photo 1). Utilize a rope to form a natural-appearing border for the basin and gravel bed. A bigger basin suggests more digging!

Our excavation has to do with 4 ft. large and 8 ft. long. Dig the much deeper part of the hole with high sides and a flat bottom to leave lots of space for the pails. Utilize the depth of the pails as a guide to the correct depth (Photo 2).

.Yard Water Fountains: Lay in the cushioning and pond liner  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature Photo 3: Insert the carpet and liner pad.

Lay carpets in the bottom of the hole. Lay in the liner pad, folding it to follow the shapes of the hole.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Image 4: Place the liner in the hole.

Unfold the liner and center it over the hole. Press it into recesses and pleat it anywhere needed to fit versus the sides of the hole.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Image 5: Drill holes in the containers and set them in the hole.

Drill 4 columns of 1/2-in. holes around the middle and near the bottom and top of each pail. Snap on the covers and rest the pails in the hole.

The entire function of the pond liner cushioning is to safeguard the water resistant liner from leaks, however it won’’ t deal total defense. Cut off roots flush with the bottom and sides of the hole and remove sharp stones.

Lay indoor/outdoor or any other old carpets below the cushioning to more secure the liner (Photo 3), particularly where the pails and heavy stones will sit. Line the whole hole with the liner pad (Photo 3). Go ahead if you require to cut it to fit the shapes much better. Simply do your finest to keep folds to a minimum and prevent big spaces in between the pad and the soil.

Work in your socks when you’’ re setting up the pond liner to minimize the opportunity of damage. Start by unfolding the liner and focusing it over the hole. Work the liner well into the shift in between the bottom and the sides, folding cool, flat pleats any place needed to assist it fit (Photo 4). The weight of the fill and water will press the liner into any staying little spaces. Include another layer of carpets or pond liner scraps under the stone and pail positions to more defend against leaks (Photo 5).

.Yard Water Fountains: Add the pails and complete the hole  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature Photo 6: Cut the rim off the container.

Cut off the rim from the pump pail and cut and fold down a 1-1/2- in.-wide x 2-in. flap at the top for the water line and electrical cable television.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Picture 7: Spread gravel around the pails.

Backfill around the tank pails with 1-in. to 2-in. gravel, resting the pump pail on the gravel so its leading ends up being even with grade. Keep the gravel 2 in. listed below grade.

Use either a spade bit or a twist bit to drill 1/2-in. drain holes in all the pails as we display in Photo 5. To make accessing the pump simpler, we recommend cutting off the lid-locking lip of the pump-containing pail (Photo 6).

When you begin backfilling around the pails, they’’ ll wish to move a bit, so keep a foot on the covers while you shovel a couple of inches of rock around each base. Make sure to keep the height of the pump pail about 2 in. listed below grade level (Photo 7). Stop filling at this moment. The pea gravel will fill the last 2 in.

.Yard Water Fountain: Lay in the top-dressing rock and set up the water fountain and filler stones  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature Photo 8: Attach the water line to the pump.

Connect the water line to the pump and path it to the stone water fountain place, preventing locations where heavy stones will rest.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Image 9: Spread the pea gravel.

Pour in and level the pea gravel up until it’’ s even with the edges. Utilize a steel rake to even out the surface area.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Picture 10: Adjust the water fountain home builders and check the water’’ s course.

Place and approximately change the water fountain stones utilizing a garden hose pipe put near the water fountain hole to mimic the water’’ s course. Turn over the stone to access the underside of the hole.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Figure B: Fountain fittings.

Use a tube clamp to connect the adapter to the water line. Screw the elbow to the adapter.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Image 11: Connect the water fountain fittings to the water line.

Cut the water line to length and connect the water fountain fittings. Cover the plastic elbow with silicone sealant and work the fittings into the hole on the underside of the water fountain stone.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Image 12: Lock the stones in location with pond foam.

Test the water circulation by filling the basin and running the pump. Shim the stones as needed, then fill around the stones with pond foam to lock them into location.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Picture 13: Decorate the water fountain.

Scoop out the pea gravel and embeded in potted pond plants, then complete the water function with ornamental topdressing and border edging stones.  How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

.Corrugated tubing verses vinyl tubing.

Corrugated pond tubing is tougher than conventional vinyl tubing.

Hook up the pump to the water line and rest it on the bottom of the pump pail (Photo 8). Position the bigger base rocks at this moment, and after that put the pea gravel around them and complete the remainder of the function (Photo 9).

Arrange the water fountain stone and other stone includes or supports in the shallow end of the hole. Utilize a streaming garden pipe near the hole in the water fountain stone and play with the stones till the circulation pattern estimates the appearance you’’ re after (Photo 10).

When you’’ re pleased, topple the water fountain stone to expose the hole, cut the water line to length and clamp on the plastic fittings (Photo 11). Test-fit the fitting end in the water fountain hole; you might need to sculpt or grind off the plastic barbs on the fitting to make it tight. Cover the fitting with silicone caulk and slip it into the hole. Let it set for an hour and after that reset the stone.

Now fill the tank by laying a garden hose pipe on the gravel and running water through it till the pump pail is complete. Rest the pump at the bottom of the pail and after that plug it in for a trial run. Adjust the stones as required to get the perfect water circulation.

If you stack stones and smaller sized stones to form a more intricate water fountain, usage broadening ““ pond foam ” in between the stones to support the pieces. Secure the stones from overruning foam by tucking aluminum foil in the locations you wish to keep devoid of foam (Photo 12). Start with percentages of foam and attempt to keep it out of sight by pushing the giving tube deep into the crevices.

After the foam sets (about 2 hours), tear away the foil and cut off any exposed foam with a knife or saw. If water ““ sticks ” to the side of the stone as it runs and your objective is a tiny waterfall, let the stone dry and after that use a bead of silicone to the water side of the stone. The silicone will push back the water and assist it ““ fall.”


Finish the water function by cutting off the overhanging liner and pad even with the rim of the hole. The liner is finest cut with an energy knife and the pad with a scissors. Include whatever other top-dressing or border stones and plants you want.

If you reside in a cold environment, take your pump in for the winter season and shop it in a pail of water to keep the seals damp. Don’’ t fret about draining pipes the tank; freezing won’’ t injured it a bit.

.Purchasing a Water Pump.

A 300-gph( gallons per hour) water pump will offer you the kind of circulation you see in our opening image. If you’’d like a smaller sized, gurgling circulation, purchase a 200-gph pump or set up a restrictor valve at the pump to enable you change the circulation.

We chose a low-voltage pump since it’’ s more secure and the circuitry is simpler to set up. You just require to bury the cable television an inch or 2 listed below grade. For a basic 120-volt pump, nevertheless, you’’ ll need to obtain an electrical authorization, bury the wire much deeper and set up a GFCI safeguarded outlet.

.Extra Information Figure A: Fountain information Required Tools for this Water Feature Project.

Have the essential tools for this DIY water fountain task lined up prior to you begin—– you’’ ll conserve time and aggravation. 4-in-1 screwdriverCaulk gunCordless drillDrill bit setDust maskGarden rakeHearing protectionSafety glassesSpadeTape measureUtility knifeWheelbarrow You’’ ll requirement to lease a rotary hammer and a 1-in. masonry bit. You can utilize a corded or cordless drill.

.Required Materials for this Water Feature Project.

Avoid last-minute shopping journeys by having all your products all set ahead of time. Here’’ s a list. 000 pounds.1- to 2-in. smooth round stone. A big water fountain like this one needs about 11-in. elbow1-in. male adapterA little roll of indoor/outdoor carpets (or any other old carpets you might have on hand). BouldersCorrugated pond tubing only.Five 5-gallon pails with lids.Garden hosePea gravel. This function needed 25 bags.Pond liner paddingPumpSilicone caulkSpray paintTwo tubing clampsWaterproof liner


Read more:

How to Build a Low-Maintenance Water Feature

About The Author

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Will you boycott NFL games for the 2022 season?