DIY: How to Build a Pond Skimmer

Written by nicolette smith
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DIY: How to Build a Pond Skimmer
A garden pond can make a wonderful focal point, provided that you keep it clean. (Perry Mastrovito/Creatas/Getty Images)

A pond skimmer is a tool used to clean the debris off the surface of your garden pond; similar equipment is also used for cleaning pools. Garden ponds need regular maintenance and cleaning, otherwise they quickly become clogged by fallen leaves, dirt, twigs and rubbish. An instrument such as this can be highly effective at maintaining the cleanliness of your pond and is not difficult to produce. A pond skimmer is a manually operated tool and does not require any electrical power to use. The easiest way to clear your pond is to simply remove any fallen objects cluttering up the pond on a weekly basis.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Broom handle, 5 feet long, 1 inch wide
  • Plastic netting, 1 square meter
  • Garden twine, 30 inches
  • Strong, pliable wire, 2 meters

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  1. 1

    Shape the wire attachment. You will need to fashion a triangular shape from your wire. Tie the ends of the triangular shape together, and, if you have any remaining wire, reinforce the triangle by wrapping the wire around the edges. Leave a 20- to 30-inch section for the handle attachment.

  2. 2

    Fit the netting to the wire. Using your square meter of netting and the garden twine, affix the netting to the wire head of the pond skimmer. The twine should easily fit through the loops of the netting so that you can wrap it around the wire to fix it in place.

  3. 3

    Attach the wire and netting head to the handle. Using the leftover 20- to 30-inch section of wire, attach the head to the handle by wrapping the wire around the end of the wooden stick. You can fortify the handle by wrapping garden twine around the wire neck of the triangle (the section where the wire meets the wooden stick).

  4. 4

    Test your pond skimmer. To make sure that your pond skimmer is sturdy enough for use, test it out by dropping objects in a filled bathtub, such as twigs, sodden leaves and rubbish cans, then picking them up from your bathtub using the skimmer. If the wire head bends, you will need to either reinforce it with more wire and twine or use a stringer wire and manipulate it into shape using a hammer.

Tips and warnings

  • You should use a sturdy type of netting, ideally one made from thin mesh rope. The netting needs to be sturdy so that you can fish out heavy objects from your pond should any branches fall in.

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