How to Choose the Right Liner for Your Pond

Ponds can be a wonderful addition to your backyard. They can be a relaxing and pleasant addition to any backyard. However, there are many things to consider when adding a pond to your home’s yard. One of the most important things to consider during construction is the pond liner that you’ll have installed. A pond liner acts as a barrier between the ground and the pond water. With a pond liner, you can better control the ph level, minerals, and what grows in your pond. Also, you’ll be able to have a clearer pond and make it suitable for all kinds of uses. Koi ponds, in particular, requires a good liner to keep the pond hospitable for the fish.

Flexible vs. Pre-formed

A flexible pond liner can be cut to fit your pond exactly. Common types of pond liners include PVC (Polyvinylchloride), EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer), HDPE (High-Density Polyethylene) and Butyl Rubber. Pre-formed liners, on the other hand, do not allow you to choose the shape of your pond. This allows for less customisation, but may be simpler to install. Pre-formed pond liners are also commonly made from fiberglass.

  • PVC- Inexpensive and easy to use. However, it should not be used in an area where it will receive frequent direct sunlight because it can be detrimental to the material and cause the liner to deteriorate.
  • EPDM- Long-lasting and excellent in cold water. However, it is a more expensive liner option for ponds.
  • HDPE- Lasts for around 15 year, which is considered a long life for a pond liner. Less expensive than most other liners and very tough. But, the liner does not perform well in the cold.
  • Rubber- Rubber is the most common pond liner. It has a similar lasting ability to EPDM liners, and is very thick and tough. However, rubber liners are not good for most fish and other wildlife, which makes this liner less than ideal for a koi pond.


Flexible liners are known to provide a natural look for ponds. They are often dark in colour and blend in well, making your pond appear deeper. Fiberglass or pre-formed liners tend to be less flexible and less natural looking. However, they are significantly easier to install.


Determining the size of your garden pond liner will require some math and understanding how much of your yard you want to become a pond. To determine the overall amount of liner required, the formula is pond length + pond depth x2 + overlap. Also, to determine the width of the liner, the formula is pond width + pond depth x2 + overlap. Take extra care when you are calculating irregular pond shapes.

Fish or No Fish

Fish require greater space, especially when it comes to depth. Depth is also important if you live in a climate that is colder for part of the year. The depth will provide protection for your fish. Also, make sure the liner you choose is fish-friendly. Aquatic plants are also a good idea to add if you decide to keep fish in your pond. Flexible liners tend to be much simpler to use for complex pond designs when you want to accommodate both plants and fish.


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