If this is your first time to build a koi pond, you are in for an exciting yet overwhelming treat. For your information, building a koi pond on your own is not as easy as you think. You would need to do a lot of research. It is also best that you seek all the professional advice and assistance that you can get.
The good thing is, koi pond kits are now made available for pond enthusiasts like you. If you don’t know how to choose one, you are lucky that you are on this page because this article is designed to help you find the best Koi pond kit for your needs.
But before we dive straight to the product reviews and information, let us first clarify a few essential things—the things that you need to know to make the right buying decision.
Why Go for a Koi Pond Kit?
You always have the option to buy the components of your pond separately. However, many professionals recommend that you go for a pond kit instead, especially if you are a newbie.
This is because a pond kit gives you a complete and straightforward pond build solution that will eliminate the hassle of having to select each piece of equipment that you would need in your pond. As a result, it will help streamline what could have been a time-consuming process.
In addition to time efficiency, pond kits also offer more savings than buying the items separately. Also, you can simplify the returns and warranty process in the future since you will be getting all the things from just one supplier or manufacturer.
Last but not least, the components of a pond kit have been carefully picked out by experts. With this, you are assured that all the pieces in the package are compatible with one another. In this way, you do not have to do the trial-and-error method of choosing which equipment to use. Om short, using a pond kit can help you save, time, effort and money and at the same time, ensure that you will eliminate possible purchasing errors.
What is the Equipment Included in a Koi Pond Kit?
You might be wondering what are the equipment that you can find inside a Koi pond kit. Below are some of the typical components of a koi pond kit (along with their uses).
• Pond Liner
This is made up of highly impermeable materials designed to retain water and prevent it from seeping into the ground.
The liners found in Koi pond kits come in pre-cut sizes. The manufacturers usually base the size of the pond liner inclusions on the most common pond sizes that they encounter in the market. Because of this, it is crucial for the buyer to check this factor when choosing a pond kit.
Aside from that, pond liners are made out of different materials, each of which has its pros and cons. That is why it is a must that you take note of the difference of the materials to determine which one would work well for you. Lucky for you, we will provide you all the information you need about this topic in the following sections.
We have a post on our recommended pond liners here.
• Pond Pump and Filtration
A pond pump is responsible for maintaining proper water movement inside the pond. Without adequate water movement, the pond will suffer from mosquitoes, algae development, and stagnation. All of these can cause danger to your Koi fishes.
On the other hand, the pond filtration system is designed to keep the water inside the pond clear and healthy.
Some pond kits include a skimmer box. This component removes any floating debris, like leaves, from the surface of the pond water. If you want to enjoy easy maintenance of your pond, this is one of the best features of a pond kit that you can invest in.
• Pond Lights and UV Clarifiers
Most pond kits would also include pond lights made from either LED or halogen bulbs. This equipment is designed to deliver illumination to the pond’ waterfall display and backdrop.
You can choose from three types of pond lights—floating, landscape, and submersible pond lights. If you could only use one, it would be best that you go for the submersible lights as the other two are only accessory lighting options.
On the other hand, UV clarifiers are pieces of equipment that remove algae particles from water. These substances are the ones that cause the unwanted green color in most ponds. Aside from getting rid of algae, the UV light that the clarifiers produce can also kill viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens.
• Water Treatments
To ensure that your pond will have a healthy ecosystem, most companies include different types of water treatments in their kits. The most common ones are de-chlorination water treatments and beneficial bacteria supplements.
The bacteria supplements feature active aerobic strains that are responsible for breaking down nitrites and ammonia. On the other hand, de-chlorination treatments help to maintain safe levels of chlorine in the water. High levels of chlorine may cause the death of Koi fishes.
What is Not Included in the Koi Pond Kit?
Pond kits already have all the essentials you need to get your koi pond up and running. But of course, there are some of the things that you cannot find in a koi pond kit. Here are some of them:
• Electrical components
Most pond kits will not contain electrical components like a transformer or GFCI electrical outlet. You will need these items if you plan to add more pond lights.
• Rocks and other stone edging materials
Most kits would not include these items simply because they are heavy and can be a bit difficult and expensive to ship. To avail of this, the best option that you have is to visit your local hardware store. When choosing rocks and stones for your pond, it would be best that you consider the type of rock that is found in your area so your pond will look more natural.
You would also want your pond to be surrounded with plants to achieve that natural aesthetic, but we are sorry to say that you cannot find these plants in your pond kit. Lucky for you, you can easily avail of these added decorations at your local landscape supplier.
These plants can also play an essential role in the pond’s ecosystem. For example, water lettuce can filter the water and add shade to the pond while underwater plants can give off extra oxygen to the water.
It is crucial that you familiarize yourself with what are the other components you need to buy even after investing in a koi pond kit. In this way, you will not get caught off guard, and you can properly budget your pond expenses.
What are the Things You Need to Consider When Buying a Koi Pond Kit?
We have already tackled all the essential details about a pond kit, but we are only about to start talking about the most important thing of all—how to choose a koi pond kit.
If you want to find out which is the best koi pond kit for your needs, we suggest that you consider the following factors:
• Pond Kit Styles
There are actually four pond kit styles that you can choose from. These include the Ecosystem Pond Kit, Waterfall Pond Kit, Formal Pond Kit, and the Bottom-drained Pond Kit. Among these four, it is the Bottom-drained Pond Kit that is recommended for Koi fishes.
From its name, bottom-drained ponds are the styles of ponds that drain fish waste at the bottom part. One of the biggest problems that you can ever face as a Koi owner is the water quality inside the pond.
You see, the leading cause of death of Koi is the presence of ammonia in the water. This is often brought about by the accumulation of fish waste in the pond. The bottom-drained pond kits are created for this very purpose.
If you use the usual pond kit styles, you will have to net the fish and remove them from the pond. You would also have to drain the water from the pond and refill it with a fresher one. This is not only time-consuming—it is also wasteful as well. More than that, the entire process can be stressful to the koi fishes too.
With a bottom-draining pond kit, all fish wastes and surface debris will end up at the bottom of the pond wherein it will be filtered into the drain and removed from the pond.
• Pond Liner Material
As mentioned, pond liners are manufactured using a wide array of materials. These are the most common ones:
– PVC Pond Liners
Many pond owners prefer this material because it is affordable and easy to use. This is because it is more stretchable than most pond liner materials in the market. However, it is not tearproof.
– LDPE Pond Liners
LDPE stands for Low-density Polyethylene and is a material that is more flexible, affordable, and durable than PVC.
– Rubber Pond Liners
This is considered to be the best pond liner material by many people. This comes in two types—butyl and EPDM. The former is highly durable but is a bit expensive while the latter has the same properties as Butyl but is made available at a much more affordable price.
Both materials are waterproof, impermeable and resistant to UV light. However, these are heavy and can be a bit difficult to install.
– Preformed Pond Liners
These liners are already pre-molded and are ready to fit your pond. With this feature, this type of liner is recommended for smaller ponds.
We have a post on our recommended pond liners here.
• Pond Filter
We already know that the bottom-drain filter system is the most suitable type of filter for koi fishes. But aside from that, there are also other factors that we need to take into consideration.
One important thing that you need to know is the volume of filtration that you would need. This would surely depend on the size of your pond. If your kit has hard plastic pond liner, the instructions that come with it will already indicate the exact amount of volume that you would need. If your pond is irregularly shaped, you can get the volume of filtration you need using this equation: Length x Width x Height.
Since we are dealing with koi (they are known to be one of the messiest fishes you can ever encounter), it is recommended that you quadruple the volume of filtration inside the pond.
We have a post on our recommended pond filters here.
• Pond Pump
When choosing a pond pump for koi fishes, you need to consider these elements:
– Flow Rate
Since Koi fishes produce a lot of waste, it is a must that water turnover must take place every hour. With that in mind, the flow rate of your pond pump must have the same values as the volume of water that the pond can hold.
– Water Lift Height
For this factor, you need to take a look at the “head height” rating of the pond pump. The right height would depend on the type of pump that you are using and the location of your filter box. You also need to make sure that the flow rate would be enough at the height that you have chosen.
– Monthly Operation Costs
Koi ponds are a lot larger than standard fish ponds and will, therefore, incur significant monthly costs. If you want to retain good water flow while minimizing your expenses, it is recommended that you take a look at the reviews of previous customers and the estimated monthly costs of the manufacturers.
Koi Pond Kits
Not all koi pond kits are created equal. A lot of people have learned the hard way. Well, we would not want you to go through the hassles of buying the wrong koi pond kit, and that is why we have decided to help you out.
Aside from sharing the important buying tips with you, we also searched far and wide to find the best of the best koi pond kits available. In the next few paragraphs, we will provide you all the critical information you need to know about each and every koi pond kit. We also have decided to list down the products from the most affordable to the most expensive so you can easily find the pond kit that would suit your budget.
If you are already excited to know what your options are, we will not have you waiting any longer. Below, we present to you 6 of the best koi pond kits that you can find in the market this 2019.
Best Koi Pond Kits – Top 5
- Algreen 300-gallon Pond Kit with Solar Lighting – $ – Skip to section
- Algreen 91914 Avonlea Pond Kit- $$ – Skip to section
- Algreen 1200-gallon Pond Kit with Lighting System – $$$ – Skip to section
- Simply Ponds Pond Kit – $$$$ – Skip to section
- Half Off Ponds Salvio Select Pond Kit – $$$$$ – Skip to section
- Dimensions: 12 x 18 x 12 in
- Weight: 15.45 pounds
- Kit Includes: Pond liner, pond pump, fountain heads, lilies, LED roses, floating frog light
- Warranty: Contact customer service for further information
- 320 GPH Electric pump
- PVC Liner
- Non-toxic Pond Liner
- 300 Gallon volume
This is probably one of the most affordable pond kits that you can ever come across in the market. But regardless of how affordable it is, this pond kit is designed to help you put up a well-decorated and high-performing koi pond.
One of the inclusions of the kit is the customizable pond liner that is made of a highly flexible and durable PVC material. Aside from the fact that you can customize the shape of this pond liner to fit your pond well, the liner is also non-toxic and, therefore, perfectly safe for your koi fishes.
The pond liner can accommodate up to 300 gallons of water which is already enough for small ponds at homes. It is paired with an electric pump which can pump up to 320 gallons per hour. This ensures that the water flow inside the pond moves every hour. As a result, fish waste and debris will not accumulate inside the pond.
If you plan on going all out with your pond decorations, the good news is that this pond already comes with almost everything that you would need. It already has three types of pond lighting, fountain heads, and water lilies.
With its small size, this pond kit is recommended for people who plan to create a small koi pond in their homes.
- Comes with different pond decorations
- Includes three types of pond lighting
- Customizable pond liner shape
- Great for small ponds
- No filter system included
- Some users encountered a few problems using the pump
- Dimensions: 37 x 28 x 15 inches
- Weight: 10 pounds
- Kit Includes: Pond Liner, Pump, Fountain Heads, LED Light, Silk Water Lilies, diverter, and telescopic riser
- Warranty: Contact customer service for more information
- Non-toxic pond liner
- 200 GPH Pump
- 33-gallon capacity
- Pump with Flow Control
If you wish to remove the hassles of fitting the pond liner into your pond, you may want to consider this pond kit. It includes a preformed pond liner that can shape into your pond perfectly. All you have to do is fit it into the pond, and you can achieve a wrinkle-free installation.
The included liner is made of recycled plastic that is weather resistant and UV protected. The pond kit also features plant shelves that allow you to decorate your pond with whatever natural plant you wish to use.
The pump that comes with the kit has a flow rate of 200 gallons per hour. This means that the water is pumped to and from the pond many times in an hour, getting rid of possible bacteria, waste, and algae buildup.
Since the pond has low water capacity, this is an excellent option if you plan to raise only a few Koi fishes.
- Made from recycles plastic
- The pump has flow control
- Pond liner is safe for both plants and fishes
- Preformed pond liner makes installation easier
- Low water capacity
- Users claim that the pump tends to clog
- Dimensions: 20 x 24 x 14 inches
- Weight: 37 pounds
- Kit Includes: Pond Liner, Pump, UV clarifier, Lighting System
- Warranty: 2 years Manufacturer’s Warranty
- 20-milliliter thick pond liner
- Pump with Filter
- 13-watt UV clarifier
- LED Lighting System
Many people may consider this as one of the high-end pond kits. True, its price may be a bit higher than the budget of most people, but this is for a good reason. The difference between this kit and the first two ones is the former features more pond essentials, namely the UV clarifier and filter. As mentioned, these two work together in keeping the pond free of bacteria, waste, and algae. It also keeps the water healthy and safe for the fishes.
The UV clarifier has a voltage of 13 watts which is powerful enough to clean and keep the water clear all the time. On the other hand, the pump comes with a prefilter that further cleans the pond water and at the same time, protect the pump from debris.
In addition to these two, the kit has a 14 x 14 pond liner that is free of toxic materials and completely safe for plants and fishes. The liner is 20-mil thick and is resistant to weather, tear, and puncture.
With the price and the water capacity of this kit, this one is recommended for a home with a large backyard and the owner who has a budget to spare.
- Easy to put together
- Powerful Pump
- Thick heavy-duty liner
- Comes with a filter and UV clarifier
- Comes with the essentials for a high performing pond
- Does not include hoses
- No pond flowers included
- Dimensions: 32 x 24 x 23 inches
- Weight: 71 pounds
- Kit Includes: Skimmer, Waterfall filter, Pump, Pond Liner, Pond Light, Water treatment, Kink-free tubing, and all necessary plumbing fixtures
- Warranty: Warranties are available only for major components of the kit—5 years for the pond liner, 5 years for waterfall filter, 5 years for the skimmer, 2 years for the pump, 1 year for the pond lighting, and 25 years for kink-free tubing
- Multiple sizes available: 10 x 10, 10 x 15, 15 x 15, 15 x 20
- Submersible light set
- Submersible Pump
- 700-gallon capacity
- 1.5-inch feet pond liner
This kit is way more expensive than the first four pond kits that we have reviewed, but when you take a look at all its inclusions, you would surely understand why. The package already contains everything you need to create a more-than-decent koi pond. It has the usuals—pond liner and pump.
In addition to that, it has a skimmer and waterfall filter (which is perfect if you plan on adding waterfalls to the pond) which you won’t usually find in a basic pond kit. Moreover, it has an entire set of pond lighting, a beneficial water treatment (so you do not have to wait for the 6 months for the good bacteria to grow), and it already includes all the plumbing accessories that you may need.
With all the equipment included in this kit, it is perfect for people who are planning to start a pond from scratch. It would also come handy for people who plan to upgrade their current pond.
- Has all the basics and a few extras
- Multiple sizes available
- High water capacity
- Contains high-quality equipment
- Affordable (considering its inclusions)
- Needs to buy hose clamps separately
- Some users received damaged pump
- Dimensions: 32 x 24 x 23 inches
- Weight: 200 pounds
- Kit Includes: Skimmer Filter, Waterfall, Pump, Pond Liner, Underlayment, Kink-free Tubing, Spot Light, Waterfall Foam, Beneficial Water treatment, All necessary plumbing fixtures
- Warranty: Warranties are available only for major components of the kit—Limited Lifetime Warranty for Pond Liner, 2 years for the pump, 5 years for the skimmer, and 5 years for the waterfall
- Multiple sizes available: 10 x 10, 10 x 15, 10 x 20, 15 x 20, 15 x 15, 20 x 20, and 20 x 25
- EPDM Lifeguard Pond Liner
- 400 to 3700 gallon- capacity
- 1.5-inch feet pond liner
This is the most expensive pond kit in the list (that would depend on the size of pond kit you plan to buy, of course). This is pretty understandable. After all, the kit comes in 7 sizes, with its largest size being the most significant size of pond liner in the list.
Besides, the kit offers the real deal. It includes all the components that you will need to buy a functional and high-performing pond for your koi fishes. It has the same equipment as that of the previous pond kit that we have discussed.
The only difference is its pond liner material. The included pond liner in this kit is made of EPDM which is known to be highly flexible, weather-resistant, easy to maintain and install. Moreover, it is perfectly safe for both plants and fishes (this goes the same with the kit’s pond lights and filter fall). Last but not the least, the liner is covered by a lifetime warranty which tells a great deal about its quality.
With the vast array of sizes available for this kit, it is the perfect option for people who want to build an unusually sized pond.
- 7 sizes available
- A lifetime warranty covers pond liner
- Already comes with an Underlayment that provides a barrier between the pond liner and the ground.
- Great Customer Service
- Pump works quietly
- No UV clarifier included
- Pump outlet is hard to connect
Final Words: Which is the Best Koi Pond Kit for You?
We hope that the information in the buying guide that we have provided you is enough to help you make the right buying decision.
When you consider these buying tips, we do not doubt that you can find the right koi pond kit for your needs.
But if you want to get some recommendations from the experts, our editor is here to help you out!
Our editor knows that you would need a recommendation according to pond size, but since we have a few products in the list that comes in multiple sizes, he only has one product recommendation for you.
Considering all the available size options, the included equipment, and the quality of the products included in the kit, there is no doubt that the best koi pond kit in the list is no other than the Half Off Ponds Salvio Select Pond Kit. It may be expensive, but all its features make the investment worth it!