We hear this one thing from owners of leaking ponds all week, every week and it's INCREDIBLY EASY to avoid!
The pad foot vibratory roller is CRITICAL for natural soil bottom pond construction.
If you are building a natural bottom pond or lake the bottom soil material is one of the most important elements of the project. (Second only to water in the long run!)
I take phone calls from a dozen or more pond owners every week whose ponds do not hold water. With very few exceptions, when I ask about this one, seemingly small detail of construction, I learn that it was omitted.
That detail is soil compaction. Many ponds fail simply because of overlooking this critical detail. In most cases, the landowner was convinced that a bulldozer track run repeatedly over the soil will provide adequate compaction.
THAT is simply not true.
A typical Caterpillar D6 bulldozer exerts a ground pressure of 5.4 psi.
An average human male - 8 psi.
The proper tool for embankment and pond bottom compaction, the pad-foot (or sheep's foot) vibratory roller smacks the ground with a whopping 300 psi or more of compaction pressure.
There is a HUGE difference between properly compacting the pond soil, particularly if you are building an embankment pond.
Cutting corners to TRY to compact the soil with a dozer will only end up costing FAR MORE in the long run.
In the pond leak investigations that we have conducted over the years MOST of the failed ponds could have been prevented by using the appropriate compaction equipment on acceptable soils.
Insist on proper compaction of your soils. You will not regret it.