Which Is Right For You…
A Koi Pond Heater Or
A Koi Pond De Icer?
How do you know whether you really need a koi pond heater or a koi pond de icer? The truth is that if you live in a climate where your pond freezes over you definitely need one or the other.
One thing that you NEVER want to do is break a hole in the ice with a hammer or any other implement. This will create shock waves that can kill your koi.
That being said, if your pond should unexpectedly freeze over, you need to get a hole in the ice and you don’t own a pond heater or de icer you can boil a pan of water and place it on top of the ice to melt a hole through it.
When there is no opening in the ice toxic gases are trapped under the surface and can be fatal to your koi. If you see bubbles beneath the ice it is a sign that gas is trapped there and it is imperative that you open a hole immediately to release it.
The least expensive way to make sure that this doesn’t happen is to purchase a koi pond de icer. They are easy to install and operate. They contain a thermo-regulator that will automatically come on if the water temperature drops below 40 degrees fahrenheit.
If you are keeping your koi outside through the winter and live where it is cold enough to freeze you need to make sure that your pond is a minimum of three feet deep. Any shallower than that and it won’t be deep enough for a warmer layer of water at the bottom.
The reason that some koi owners choose a pond heater is that it can keep the pond warm enough so their koi can still feed during the winter. This is mainly a concern for those keeping show koi.
If you don’t heat your pond you need to stop feeding your koi when the temperatures drop below 50 degrees fahrenheit. Their metabolism slows way down and they stay down near the bottom of the pond in a semi-dormant state.
The problem with this is that their immune systems become more sluggish as well. Then in the spring when everything “comes back to life” (including pathogenic bacteria) your koi are more prone to a bacterial infection.
Then you have to deal with treating the infection, which also often causes blemishing of the skin. If you have plans on going to a koi show you definitely want to avoid that scenario!
By keeping the water temperature above 50 degrees these koi owners can keep feeding their koi, thus keeping their immune systems functioning optimally.
To achieve this you will need to use a submersible koi pond heater. If you go this route make sure to purchase a heater that has the appropriate wattage for the size of your pond.
Ultimately the decision is yours. However, if there is a possibility that your pond will freeze over you most definitely should have either a koi pond de icer or a koi pond heater!