Aeration 101

Posted by: Jorge VA

Aeration 101 - 08/20/19 04:01 PM

I'm about to install aeration and have read almost everything here. Am I missing a post that details everything a new Aerator should know? If not, let this be the start. Here's what I think I've gathered and some questions:

- The way the pond gets air really isn't from the bubbles, it is from mixing the water - the air comes from the water/air interface being on the surface of the pond.
- It is useful to have deep and shallow diffusers. Number dependent on size of pond and shape.
- Once the pond turns over in the fall you don't need the deep diffuser. When exactly do you stop the deep one?
- If the deep diffuser ran in winter it would make the water too cold.
- The shallow diffuser is mostly to keep a hole in the ice in winter. If ice is not a big issue, should it be run? When and how long should it run?
- When starting it up, you run for 1 minute. If you don't smell sulfer, you can go to 2 minutes the next day. Increasing very slowly and only when no sulfur is smelled.
- It should run long enough to turn over the water 1-3 times a day. To keep it from getting hot in the summer, it should only be run at night when the air is cooler. Probably a max of 8 hours starting at something like 11pm.
- If it is summer and the aeration stops (breaks), the pond will stratify and may cause an issue if there are too many fish. (insert technical stratification link by Bill Cody). Timing to worry about is _ to _ days.
- In the spring, you should start the deep diffuser(s) when _____.

If there is PB article in a past issue, let me know! Sadly I don't keep them all.

I'm in Virginia with a 2/3 acre pond so I'm interested in answers for a climate that is hot in summer and cold in winter, but rarely has thick or long lasting ice. However, please add modifiers for norther and southern climates.

Thanks for your thoughts!

George
Posted by: Quarter Acre

Re: Aeration 101 - 08/20/19 05:32 PM

Originally Posted By: Jorge VA
- Once the pond turns over in the fall you don't need the deep diffuser. When exactly do you stop the deep one?


I stop my deeper diffusers when the fall air temp highs get below the water temp (18" down from the surface). This will happen gradually, I will switch form running at night and start to only run the air during the daytime. I use the aeration system to try and keep the water as warm as possible into the later fall season. Most of the time it happens pretty quick and the benefits are probably minimal, but it's convenient for me and I'll take what little benefits I can get. The only drawback is that switching the air schedule around can mess with the fish's feeding enthusiasm. This winter I may not run the air at all...I don't have much ice to worry about and my pond has been muddy this year. Maybe it will settle out over the winter without air.


Originally Posted By: Jorge VA
- When starting it up, you run for 1 minute. If you don't smell sulfer, you can go to 2 minutes the next day. Increasing very slowly and only when no sulfur is smelled.


I started mine up in the freshly renovated pond with 15 minutes to begin with and doubled from there, never smelled anything. Some have had troubles (fish kills) with this route and suggest taking it slower. I think starting with 1 minute is too slow, but hopefully some one with more experience will chime in...maybe starting it until you smell sulfur OR hit 15 minutes for the first day, then increase by 15 minutes every day unless you smell sulfur. I key is to hit the 1+ turnover a day as soon as you can while not stirring up too fast...

Originally Posted By: Jorge VA
- In the spring, you should start the deep diffuser(s) when _____.


I start my aeration system (all 3 diffusers) during the day once the daytime air temps get warmer than the water (18" down). Now, I am trying to warm the water up faster, so I only try to run the air when I can use the air temps to speed things up. Once the water starts approaching 80 degrees F, I start moving the run-times towards the night and keep them there until fall.

This year is only my second year with aeration at my pond so, these are just my theories based on what I have learned here at PB. I would be glad to be challenged and/or corrected if need be.