PVC pond liner repair is possible although there is the risk of it becoming brittle. Some pond liner repair kits are designed for use on rubber pond liners only so read the label first.
Pond liners if installed correctly and placed above a protective underlay liner, are less likely to puncture. However, a PVC pond liner doesn’t have the same UV resistant qualities as Butyl and Epalyn (EPDM) pond liner therefore over time there is a risk of the pond liner becoming britle and, as a result become more vulnerable to puncturing. The claws or sharp beaks of visiting wildlife can also be the perpetrator of a damaged pond liner. A drop in water level through evaporation will expose a pond liner to higher levels of UV radiation, weakening the pond liner and again heightening the risk of puncturing and the resulting drop in pond water level.
A PVC pond liner doesn’t repair as well as a rubber pond liner such as that of Butyl or Epalyn (EPDM), so depending on how big the puncture is, you will need to weigh up whether to try and repair the leak or just replace your pond liner given that PVC have a life span of around 10 to 15 years.
Finding the puncture to your PVC pond liner?
If the water level of your pond drops at a faster rate than expected from evaporation alone then the next step is to find the cause. This may mean draining the water out, but only to the point where the puncture becomes visible. Use a garden hose to drain out the water.
For ponds that are home to fish, they will need to be removed and put in a temporary holding tank or plastic bath before draining your pond. Fill the tank with water from your pond first to reduce stress and risk to the health of your fish.
- If the leak is at the bottom of your pond, then repairs will be more of a challenge but not an impossible one.
- Clean a wide area around the puncturea of algae, grit and any plant life using a clean rag.
- Rinse the area and dry it thoroughly (you can use a hair dryer to make sure that the surface is thoroughly dry) before roughing up the damaged surface with a wire brush. A rougher surface is more porous and holds the glue more effectively.
- Mark the punctured pond liner by circling it with a piece of chalk.
- Cut a piece of PVC liner in a circular shape. The shape will need to be larger than the size of the hole.
- Spread PVC liner patching glue or waterproof sealant over the surface of the tear and the surface of the patch. Allow the glue to dry until it is no longer tacky to the touch. Press the patch, glue side down, over the hole in the pond liner so that the two glued sides are sandwiched together. Apply the patch uniformly over the hole to prevent wrinkles. Hold for 30 seconds.
- Wait 48 hours for the glue to cure before refilling your pond and re-introducing your fish back into your pond.
Pond liner repair kits such as the traditional Mastic Tape are not suitable for repairs to PVC pond liner.