Last Updated: 22 September 2020
In this article, we’re going to be discussing what the best preformed pond liners are, and which one is ideal for your needs and requirements.
What is a Preformed Pond?
Preformed ponds for your garden come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and allow you to visualize how your finished pond will likely end up looking. Made with various materials for holding water, preformed pond liners are also convenient and versatile.
If you are looking for the perfect preformed pond liners but have no idea where to start and which features are important, this article is here to help!
What are the Factors to Consider when Choosing the Best Preformed Pond Liner?
Preformed Pond liners are not made equally and depending on your situation or needs; there are a lot of options available in the market today. Just like when buying any other product, there are several important things and features to consider before purchasing a preformed pond liner.
These include the following:
Preformed liners come in much smaller sizes than flexible liners. However, you can get a preformed pond liner with a maximum capacity of several hundred gallons.
Smaller pond liners are your best bet for small ponds and gardens. When choosing the size of a pond liner, also consider that a deeper pond will be holding more water, hence it will require a large pond liner, which is heavier and therefore should also be made of higher quality materials.
For indoor use or for installing decorative ponds, a pond liner with a capacity of 50 gallons or less may be enough. If you plan to take care of plants or small fish in your pond, choose something bigger like one with an 80-gallon to 100-gallon capacity.
If you plan on putting your pond in a larger yard or garden and want something that can hold more than 100 gallons up to 300 gallons, make sure the material is very durable to prevent leaks or damage once you fill it up.
Don’t worry, whether or not you’re looking for a preformed fish pond to support marine life, or preformed garden pond for housing rocks and plants, we’ve got a variety to show you.
Preformed pond liners can be made with a variety of materials, each with their own advantages. Some of the most common materials include high-density polyethylene (HDPE), low-density polyethylene (LDPE), fiberglass, and Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM).
Here are brief descriptions of each:
High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
HDPE is a thermoplastic material that is cheap, resistant to chemicals, and non-toxic to plants and fishes. It is usually used for making pipes and containers of milk and detergent. It is a harder, less flexible material than LDPE. It can last up to 20 years, but that is if it is steered clear of freezing or cold climate which can easily cause it to break and leak. HDPE pond liners are also available in relatively smaller sizes.
LDPE liners are another cheap option that offers a great deal of flexibility. They have a rubber-like consistency, which means they hold their shape but can adjust a little depending on the surroundings. This makes them less prone to breakage, cracks, and leaks. However, they are not as durable as their EPDM counterparts.
Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer
EPDM is a synthetic rubber material that is UV stable, highly flexible, non-toxic for fish and plants, cold weather-resistant, and air-pollution resistant. It is probably the cheapest material out there but is extremely tough and can last up to 20 years.
EPDM pond liners can withstand extreme weathers much better than other materials.
If you are looking for a larger preformed pond liner but want it to be highly durable, fiberglass is an excellent material choice. These types of preformed liners are usually made with several built-in planting features. While fiberglass is a relatively expensive material, it has the longest life expectancy and can come in a wide range of patterns or colors, allowing them to blend with their surroundings efficiently.
Installation and Maintenance
Although preformed pond liners require a pretty straightforward and simple installation, some models may require extra attention in terms of the shape, shelves, material, and the position of the drainage plug.
Thicker materials also make a liner harder to install correctly.
Ponds will require regular cleaning, water change, and maintenance. So, look for something with good quality, large drainage plug for easier draining. Smooth edges are also easier to clean without risking damage to the material than ones with texture.
One of the major points of having a pond in your home or garden is to make it look better. So, look for a pond liner with a beautiful, natural shape and color. Note that HDPE and other hard materials often come in black and have a smooth outer texture that is far from natural-looking. These also do not undergo weathering over time, which is one way to have your pond blend with the environment.
What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Pond Liner?
Compared with their flexible counterparts, preformed liners offer numerous benefits but also come with a few drawbacks. We listed them here for your reference if you are still doubtful whether a preformed pond liner is a better choice for you.
- Reduce planning time because they are ready-made
- Easy to install
- Comes with a predetermined shape
- Leaves a smaller room for error
- A better choice for smaller spaces
- Some models come with shelves or levels for putting plants or decorations
- Many types blend in with the environment naturally
- Can be installed above or below the ground
- Small preformed ponds can even be used inside your home
- Less room for customization in terms of size and shape
- Hard preformed pond liners can make it difficult to install a pond skimmer
- More expensive than flexible liners
- Limited in terms of depth
Now that you have a thorough knowledge of the basics about preformed pond liners and how to choose one that will fit your needs and preferences, you are ready to explore your options.
There are many different types, brands, materials, shapes, and sizes of pond liners available in the market today. Therefore, it can be hard and overwhelming to skim through all of them. This is why we did all the dirty work for you and rounded up the top 10 Preformed Pond Liners that people love.
In the following reviews, we have included all the basic information, general specifications, and brief descriptions for each product. We also enumerated their pros and cons so you can compare and contrast your choices accordingly.
Listed down below are the 9 best preformed pond liners, arranged from smallest capacity in gallons first at the top to the largest capacity at the bottom.
This way, you can easily find the perfect size and volume capacity that you need for your pond or yard.
Best Preformed Pond Liners – Top 9
|Aquascape Aquatic Patio Pond 24-Inch Round||10||$$$||Buy on Amazon|
|Aquascape Aquatic Patio Pond 40-Inch Round||30||$$$$$||Buy on Amazon|
|Algreen 91901 Avonlea Rigid Preformed Pond Liner||33||$||Buy on Amazon|
|35-Gallon Preformed Pond by Beckett Corporation||35||$$||Buy on Amazon|
|Tuff Stuff Products 40-Gallon Oval Tank||40||$||Buy on Amazon||#1 Affordable Option|
|MacCourt Ponds Aruba-Pacific 50-Gallon Pond Basin||50||$$$||Buy on Amazon|
|Tuff Stuff Products 85-Gallon Oval Tub||85||$$$||Buy on Amazon|
|Tuff Stuff Products Heavy Duty 140-Gallon Oval Tank||140||$$$||Buy on Amazon||#2 Larger Pond Setup|
|Rubbermaid Commercial Products 300-Gallon Stock Tank||300||$$$$||Buy on Amazon||#3 For an Even Larger Pond Setup|
So, if you are ready, let’s get right into the reviews!
Aquascape Aquatic Patio Pond 24-Inch Round
- Dimensions: 24 x 24 x 13.8 inches (24” diameter, 12” height)
- Weight: 10.1 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 10 gallons
- Material: Fiberglass resin composite
- Warranty: 1-year Limited Manufacturer
The Aquascape Aquatic Patio Pond 24-Inch round preformed pond liner is made of a lightweight and durable fiberglass-resin composite beautifully designed to mimic the natural beauty of the stone.
The green slate finish even ages like a real stone without fading or chipping. You can use this pond liner both outdoors or indoors. Different finishes to choose from include terra cotta and desert granite, whichever fits the vibe of your home or garden.
As you would expect of Small Preformed Pond Liners, this particular product can hold up to 10 gallons of water. It so easy to add plants or fish into your pond thanks to the integrated design. However, the package does not include the filter, water pump, and basin which are sold separately.
- Small, compact size
- Nice, natural-looking finish
- Compatible for a fountain, plants, or fish
- A bit pricey
- May need to be drained to prevent cracks during the winter
Aquascape Aquatic Patio Pond 40-Inch Round
- Dimensions: 40 x 40 x 17 inches (40” diameter, 16” height)
- Weight: 19.6 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 30 gallons
- Material: Fiberglass resin composite
- Warranty: 1-year Limited Manufacturer
Also available in three different finishes namely Green Slate, Terra Cotta, and Desert Granite, the 40-inch Aquascape Aquatic Patio Pond Preformed Pond Liner is just the bigger brother of the previous product.
Instead of 10 gallons, this liner can hold up to 30 gallons. Pretty much all the other features are the same as the 24-inch Round Preformed Pond Liners.
- Looks like real stone
- Nice texture and color
- The larger capacity of 30 gallons
- Excellent build
- Somehow overpriced
- The plastic may melt when used with heated tools and fixtures
- Possible chipping of paint
Algreen 91901 Avonlea Rigid Preformed Pond Liner
- Dimensions: 26 x 12 x 36 inches
- Weight: 4 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 33 gallons
- Material: Recycled Plastic
- Warranty: 1-year Manufacturer
The Algreen Avonlea Preformed Pond Liner is made with durable, weather-resistant and UV stable thick recycled plastic material. This prevents it from getting damaged or fading due to the elements. It also makes the pond environmentally friendly.
It holds up to 33 gallons of water and is safe for both plants and fish or other animals. The base has a flat surface for stability, which also allows you to place a pump properly with no problems.
You can place it with surrounding rocks for extra support and a more natural look fitting for small gardens.
- Easy to install
- Good quality material
- Nice size for corner gardens
- Looks better in person
- Thick plastic
- Great for holding plants
- A slight buckle on one side so can only be filled up to an inch below the rim
- Large stickers on the inside of the tub are visible, hard to remove, and leaves traces of adhesive that can harm fish or turtles
- May leak after some time
- Smaller than expected
35-Gallon Preformed Pond by Beckett Corporation
- Dimensions: 39 x 39 x 18 inches
- Weight: 7.6 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 35 gallons
- Warranty: 10-year Limited Manufacturer’s warranty
The Beckett Corporation 35-Gallon Preformed Plastic Patio pond features a quality thick and durable plastic construction for strength, durability, and flexibility. It also has a flat bottom that offers a stable placement of plants or a pump.
The material used is UV stable to prevent cracking or disintegration. It is also safe for plants and fish or other living organisms. You can use this preformed pond liner both indoor and outdoor or for above ground and in-ground installation.
This product is US-made. Note, however, that the package does not include the pump, plants, or fish which are sold separately.
- Great for smaller spaces
- Longer warranty period
- Solid construction
- Flat-bottomed for stability
- Good value for money
- No integrated shelves to place plants
Tuff Stuff Products 40-Gallon Oval Tank
- Dimensions: 40 x 27 x 13 inches
- Weight: 16 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 40 gallons
- Material: Recycled LDPE
- Warranty: 5-year Limited Manufacturer
If you are looking for a heavy-duty tank for multiple uses in your home, yard, or barn, you might love this 40-gallon oval tank by Tuff Stuff Products! This high quality yet the low-cost product is suitable for a variety of uses.
Made with ¼” thick, 100% recycled low-density polyethylene (LDPE) material, this tank is not only impact-resistant but is also environmentally friendly, temperature-resistant UV resistant, and non-reactive to most chemicals.
LDPE also gives it a rubber-like consistency that makes it flexible and less prone to cracks, chipping or breakage. You don’t have to worry about maintenance, discoloration, or rusting either.
The smooth edges and non-toxic material also make it safe for animals, which also makes the tank ideal for use as secondary containment, ponds, and feed or water reservoirs for cattle and horses. You can also use it for dog grooming, as a planter, for hydroponics and aquaponics.
- Uses a thick rubber-like material
- Great for outdoor use
- Heavy-duty, industrial-grade durability
- Easy to clean
- Animal Safe
- Strong chemical smell even after several washes
- May leak due to pressure
- No drain plug
MacCourt Ponds Aruba-Pacific 50-Gallon Pond Basin
- Dimensions: 57 x 30 x 18 inches
- Weight: 12 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 50 gallons
- Material: Black High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
- Warranty: Lifetime Warranty
With a conveniently molded nice, sizeable shelf, the MacCourt Ponds Aruba-Pacific 50-Gallon Pond basin offers a larger receptacle for plants or plant baskets. It uses a black high-density polyethylene (HDPE) material that is non-toxic for both plants and fish.
HDPE is also UV stabilized, making it resistant to weather and sun damage throughout the years. This pond liner is great for taking care of small fish and giving life to small spaces in your home or yard.
This product, like similar others from MacCourt’s selection of preformed ponds, is designed to deliver maximum functionality and enjoyment. They are formed using 200 to 250 mil sheets of HDPE that do not crack, fade, or chip.
The company solely uses Grade A materials for stronger, more durable products. The surfaces are also made smooth for easier cleaning and maintenance.
- Lifetime warranty
- Well-constructed and sturdy
- Molded, large shelf
- The deeper end is a great place to put a filter and a pump
- Relatively affordable
- Labels are placed on the inside and take time to remove completely
- Too small for an average-sized fountain
Tuff Stuff Products 85-Gallon Oval Tub
- Dimensions: 50 x 35 x 18 inches
- Weight: 32 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 85 gallons
- Material: Recycled LDPE
- Warranty: 1-year Warranty
The Tuff Stuff Products 85-Gallon Oval Tub is a heavy duty-constructed with eco-friendly 100% recycled LDPE that is flexible with a rubber-like quality and resistant to rust and discoloration. This durable pond liner can be used both outdoors and indoors for many different applications.
It functions well not just as a pond tub but also as a fountain, planter, water or feeding trough, and as a pool or container for you, your kids, or your pets! The edges are all smoothed-out to keep you safe from injuries as well.
What’s great about it is that it is made to withstand harsh environments. It is UV-resistant and can handle extreme cold or heat.
The material used is also chemically neutral, non-toxic, and safe for storing animal feeds, fertilizers, or oil solvents. Thanks to the convenient drain hole and plug, it’s so easy to clean and drain. Note, however, that the plug is sold separately.
- Sturdy, thick rubber-like plastic material
- Good price
- Food-grade, non-toxic
- Cheaper alternative for a nursery pot or a heavy duty fish tank
- Weather and impact resistant
- May tend to grow algae and needs to be scrubbed or drained frequently
- Concerns about the drain plug
Tuff Stuff Products Heavy Duty 140-Gallon Oval Tank
- Dimensions: 56 x 40 x 20 inches
- Weight: 31.8 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 140 gallons
- Warranty: 1-year warranty
Made with the same eco-friendly and heavy-duty 100% recycled LDPE, the Tuff Stuff Products 140-Gallon Oval Tank is another elevated and larger version of the 85-Gallon and 110-Gallon tank from the same company.
It has the same smooth oval shape and flexible, tough material. It is also impact-resistant, weather-resistant, rust- and discoloration resistant, temperature-resistant, and UV-resistant.
Like the 110-Gallon tank, it comes with a ¾” brass drain plug for easier draining and cleaning.
- Durable, thick material
- Versatile for various purposes
- Flexible rubber-like material
- Does well in cold or freezing temperature
- Light enough for easy moving
- Easy to clean
- Cheap drain plug leaks
- A mild rubber plastic smell
Rubbermaid Commercial Products 300-Gallon Stock Tank
- Dimensions: 63.25 x 69 x 25 inches
- Weight: 80 pounds
- Maximum Volume Capacity: 300 gallons
- Material: Structural Foam
- Warranty: 1-year Limited Manufacturer
Last but not least, the Rubbermaid Commercial Products 300-Gallon Stock Tank is another excellent preformed pond liner because of multiple reasons. First, it is made of heavy-duty, weather-resistant, and durable structural foam material.
The seamless construction helps prevent leaks and reinforces the durability even more so you can use it for many applications for years to come. Structural foam is also resistant against cracking, chipping, and weathering.
Thanks to the oversized 1.5-inch drain plug, you don’t have to fumble around as you try to pull it when cleaning and draining. Because this product is made in the USA, you are also assured of the highest quality standards.
- Great quality seamless construction
- Made in the USA
- Durable, heavy-duty material
- Safe for plants and animals
- Oversized drain plug for easy draining
- Sleek look and black color allows it to blend with the environment
- May require some aquarium sealant to prevent leakage around the drain
In Conclusion: What is the best preformed pond liner for you?
With all the impressive features and benefits of the products listed here, you are in for a tough decision-making challenge to choose what’s best for you.
While all of these Top 9 Preformed Pond Liners offer the best quality and performance, the perfect one for you still depends on your preferences and needs.
Thankfully, you can use all the information and tips mentioned in this article so you can make a wise choice.
Out of all the options in this list, probably the best and most favorite among customers is the Tuff Stuff Products 40-Gallon Tank.
They say it is not too small nor too big for many practical applications around your garden. Made with rubber-like recycled LDPE, it is appropriate for holding fish and plants and is resistant against weathering, breakage, chipping, rusting, or discoloration.
Because this list is arranged according to size, it should be easy enough for you to pick one that is fit for your pond, yard, or garden. Whatever you choose, I’m sure you’ll have minimal problems since all of these products are already tried and tested.