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Recently we were talking with a potential customer here in Atlanta and reviewing all the options for their backyard water feature when I brought up the idea of a pondless waterfall. I got an immediate “Scooby Doo” look and knew the prospect had no idea what I was talking about. So, sometimes, our blog post ideas are born out of actual conversations with clients.

What is a pondless waterfall and why would that ever be a good idea?

Well, some names paint a picture, now don’t they? A pondless waterfall is exactly what it sounds like. While most waterfalls collect water somewhere a pond, river, stream or ocean, these waterfalls simply disappear between rocks (usually) and collect the water from the waterfall out of sight. In nature, the water collects in an underground chasm, aquifer or some other feature.

When it comes to a backyard water feature like a water fountain or waterfall, the customer has the option of having a pond where they can have fish (koi or other species) or no pond. There are some viable reasons to select the no pond option. For example, there are tighter rules and regulations in some communities about how deep a backyard pond needs to be and ponds can create what lawyers like to describe as an attractive nuisance where people can come (uninvited) and throw stuff into the pond. That is why homeowners are leaning these days more toward pondless waterfalls

In fact, a waterfall without a pond can be the perfect selection for someone who wants to turn their backyard into their own place of serenity without any pond maintenance issues. No pond? No problem! Also, pondless waterfalls obviously save money since there is less to build and not as much labor involved.

When it comes to waterfall construction, what’s needed at the base is a collection basin which is slightly wider than the waterfall itself. The breadth and depth of the basin helps determine how much water capacity there is in the entire system. Obviously, the larger the waterfall, the bigger the basin needs to be. If the basin is too small, the pump will pump water to the top of the falls and will be close to empty before enough water can be collected again. This problem could burn your water pump up quickly as well. With a larger basin, the differential between the amount of water being pumped through the system and the returning water is minimized. This eliminates the chance of water getting sucked completely out of the basin before it can cascade down the waterfall in time.

Not to get too technical, but you want to make sure to ask a lot of questions of anyone that is installing a backyard waterfall or any water feature for that matter. For example, some waterfall installation companies put the water pump in the bottom of the basin and pile rocks around it so it can’t be seen. This can create problems since the pump can get fouled up with debris or slimy stuff. Above ground pumps are more energy efficient and better warranties (sometimes). Plus, this design is easier to care for over time.

If your home is your castle, you can turn your backyard is your own little paradise with a water feature like a pondless waterfall. They can give you years of enjoyment and relaxation!

Universal Aquatics has been featured on the show “Pond Stars” and has devoted years to helping homeowners create their own backyard paradise by installing koi ponds, water fountains and waterfalls throughout the metro Atlanta area including Alpharetta, Johns Creek, Suwanee, Buckhead & Dunwoody, Call them today for a consult on a pondless waterfall installation!