Spring Start-Up for Pond & Lake Aeration Systems
Ideally, an aeration system should run all year long. By running it all year, there is a reduction in the risk of winter fish kills do to turnover. Aeration systems that were shut down in the winter for recreational purposes, will need to be restarted once the ice melts off the pond. It is best to do a slow system start up as you did when the system was first installed, to avoid any quick turnover in your pond.
In addition to a gradual start-up follow the steps below:
- Re-level the Cabinet: Take the cabinet and system back outside and get it on level ground again.
- Change the Air Filter: The air filter, which prevents debris from entering the compressor, can be cleaned periodically to remove light debris – but it should be replaced every three to six months for maximum system performance and longevity.
- Check and Clean Side Intake Air Filters: Take a look at the side intake air filters on the cabinet, and make sure they’re clean and unobstructed.
- Ensure Cabinet Fan Works: To make sure fresh air will tunnel evenly through the cabinet, turn on the fan and verify that it’s working properly.
- Clean or Replace Membrane Diffuser Sticks: Though they’re virtually maintenance-free, these diffuser sticks, which deliver the air bubbles to the water, should be cleaned or replaced before they are turned on for the season. For tough debris use Fountain & Aeration Cleaner which is 100% Biodegradable and safe for the environment.
- Airlines Cleared: The water may still be icy, so check airlines for ice buildup. To clear them, pour 1 cup of isopropyl alcohol through the airline running out to each plate, turn on the compressor and push through the line to free any tiny icebergs.
- Start the Compressor – Gradually: To prevent shocking the pond, follow the aeration system’s initial seven-day startup procedure. On Day 1, run the system for 30 minutes and then turn it off for the rest of the day. On each day following, double the time: Day 2, run for one hour; Day 3, run for two hours; Day 4, run for four hours; and so on. On Day 7, begin running it for 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- Pressure Check: Once the aeration system is up and running, make sure that its pressure gauge stays within the normal range of 5 to 10 psi. An easy way to do this to mark the gauge upon initial start up and check it regularly to verify pressure has not significantly risen above or dropped below your initial reading. Please note, this does not apply to Shallow Water Series™ Aeration Systems. It is also recommended to install a maintenance kit every 6-12 months, so if the compressor is not producing as much airflow as it has in the past it may be time to perform some additional maintenance.
Following these simple steps will ensure aeration is providing the pond all the benefits it has to offer.