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Pond Liners and The Sun
Scenario: When rubber liners are used in pond construction, competent installers will first place an underlayment fabric to relieve concerns about soil off-gassing and protect the material from the wear and tear that can erupt with rocks, roots and other intrusions. Basically, it's an affordable form of insurance that will increase the liner's longevity as well as that of the pond.
Competent installers also know that rubber liners-which typically are 45 mils thick-are warranted only if they are protected from the damaging effects of the sun's ultraviolet radiation. This means that the liner must be fully covered by gravel, sand or other material; it even leads some installers to top the liner with concrete in key places along the edges.
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Scott Cohen is president and supervising designer of The Green Scene, an outdoor design and construction firm based in Northridge, CA. He provides consultation for clients nationwide and gives seminars on designing landscapes, swimming pools and outdoor kitchens.