Calcium bentonite enhanced with additives will quickly lose its swell…It is short lived. Sodium bentonite is a natural sealant and is used for sealing stock and recreational ponds, dairy and sewage lagoons, and city landfills. Some companies are not interested in producing a quality product. As added protection to the sealing blanket, 2 to 4 inches of local soil or sand should cover the sealing blanket and be compacted. The fact that sodium bentonite swells many times its mass, then forms a strong water and chemical proof seal makes it an ideal, inexpensive, permanent, and easy to install liner.
Cheaper is Not better! The quality of the bentonite deposits will vary. Use a high quality sodium bentonite Apply the product properly Use the recommended amount based on your soil type and square footage of area being treated. In this soil, mix one to two pounds of bentonite and tamp down in the bottom of the pail. Plow the area to be treated to a depth of 4 to 6 inches and allow soil to dry. This will reduce the potential for dispersion into the water and un-yielded bentonite particles interfering with the gill action of fish. Use 1 part granular or powdered bentonite mixed with 5 parts soil to fill large holes and crevices. Bentonite will not stop the leak immediately. If clay soil is used it must be fine and without lumps. When the entire area has been covered, mix the bentonite with the top 3 to 4 inches of soil, using a disc, spike tooth harrow or hand rake, and then roll or tamp to compact it. We at Sturgis Materials are trying to educate the public on using sodium bentonite as a pond sealant. Calcium bentonite enhanced with additives will quickly lose its swell…It is short lived. Because it contains no chemicals, no additives, nothing toxic, sodium bentonite is environmentally-friendly. The fact that sodium bentonite swells many times its mass, then forms a strong water and chemical proof seal makes it an ideal, inexpensive, permanent, and easy to install liner. The bottom of the pail represents about one square foot. Calcium bentonite is a non-swelling bentonite. Sandy soil works best for mixing with bentonite because it compacts better. Some deposits of Sodium Bentonite are very high quality swelling deposits, while others are not as good. So a good quality sodium bentonite begins with a good deposit! Thus they will use poor deposits of bentonite and process the material quickly enabling them to sell their product at a cheaper price. Over several years of testing, Sodium bentonite has proven to be one of the most effective sealants on the market. It is so effective, that the Federal Government and most states require a liner of sodium bentonite or material comparable, to be used to seal toxic waste lagoons and abandoned water and oil wells. If you are considering using bentonite as a pond sealant, Please read on! It is environmentally safe, because it contains no chemicals, no additives, nothing toxic. Gather enough soil from the area to be sealed to fill about 3 inches of the pail. If not, repeat the process and increase the amount of bentonite by half a pound until the water is contained within the pail. When you know how many pounds of bentonite it takes to seal the pail, then we know how many pounds per square foot to distribute and roto-till into the pond, dam or other earthen structure.
Video about blanket harrow:
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