How Much Does It Cost to Dig a Pond? | Complete Pond Guide

Building a pond in your backyard will create such a joyful oasis for your relaxing moment. Hearing the sound of the moving water and watching the colorful fishes swimming here and there will surely decrease the level of stress in your mind. Pond also makes your outdoor living space looks more attractive and inviting.

Many homeowners who have spacious backyard consider to build a beautiful fish pond, and for that, you have to know the cost of building one. You will need to pay for digging, labor, adding the fishes, plantation, etc.

There are some factors which determine the cost that you should pay in building a pond. Like the size, for instance, it is obvious that if you want to build a larger pond, you will need higher cost.


The Cost of Building a Pond

How Much Does It Cost to Dig a Pond
credit: Agway Industries


Below, are the brief explanations of several factors which determine the price of installing a pond:


This is the firs consideration when you are about to build a pond. As stated above that the larger the pond, the more work that should be done which then impact to the installation price. For example, you will need to spend around $2,500 to $3,500 for a 4′ x 6′ plastic rectangular pond with typical fish, edging and bridge, while the 11′ x 16′ pond, it needs about $2,500 to $3,500. Here are some typical pond sizes with the cost that you have to spend:

Pond Size Cost
26′ x 26′ $12,500 to $16,000
16′ x 21′ $10,000 to $12,000
11′ x 16′ $7,000 to $8,500
8′ x 11′ $5,000 to $6,000
4′ x 6′ $2,500 to $3,500


Generally, a pond is built in rectangular or square, and they are the basic shapes which cost lower than others. If you want a sophisticated shape pond, you will have to increase the cost, but you will get a unique addition to your backyard. The more affordable option is you can use the plastic liner shells which are offered in various shapes, but they may experience crack than the concrete liner.



As slightly discussed above, that plastic liner shell is the affordable pond liner option. There are other different options of the pond liner, which are:

  • Concrete, the sturdy and durable pond liner which needs more labor cost, and the price will increase if you want to build a pond in a unique shape. Since it is hard to remove, the concrete liner is recommended for a that will never be removed.
  • Fiberglass, recommended for the shallow ponds, this is an expensive liner which is durable and easy to install.
  • Rubber, this one is recommended for deep ponds with unique shapes since it can be easily customizable. It is the affordable liner but not really durable.


Filter and Pumps

There are five types of pond filter that you can choose, which are:

  • In-Pond Filter, the filter is hidden inside the pond. This is an affordable filter option which works best for a small to a medium pond or a pond with less than 1,200 gallons water.
  • External Filter, this one can be used for all pond sizes and easy to maintain. As the name suggests, this filter is placed outside of the pond and harder to hide.
  • Skimmer, this is the most recommended filtration system which works more effective and offers better water quality than the other types. It can be used a medium to large pond, and quite expensive to buy.
  • Waterfall Filter, aesthetically pleasing, this filter is recommended for a small to a medium pond. Layers of sponges inside the box mechanically filter the water.
  • UV Clarifier, by this device, you will be protected from the green pond water problem or blanket weed. UV clarifies will vanish away the algae by exposing them to the high-powered UV lights. This is technically not a pond filter, but really helpful to maintain your pond.

As for the pump, it depends on the size of the pond itself with the water volume inside. For instance, an 11′ x 15′ pond needs a pump with 2,000 GPH (gallons per hour).



Again, it depends on the size of the pond that you are building. Averagely, pond installer will cost you about $40 to $65 per hour to dig a pond. For example, a 125 gallon needs about 8 labor hours time. If you would like to add some lights or heater to your pond, you will need an electrician. It takes about $65 to $85 per hour to hire them.


Bells and Whistles

Building a dazzling waterfall, fountain, bridges are great additions to your pond, but obviously, will cost you more money.

It is better for you to call a professional or experienced pond keepers to know the exact calculation to build a pond in your area.

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