Concrete Vs Fiberglass Water Features

Basic Types of Waterfalls

Waterfalls and fountains are an excellent source of peace and tranquility, which can create a relaxing environment around you. The reason people love to go to parks with fountains, beaches and natural waterfalls is it brings a sense of serenity and warmth around and within you. Research studies on the effects of trickling and flowing water has shown that it enhances your mood, reduce stress levels and acts as a white noise. Other studies on the impact of water on your health have shown that it provides humidity, purifies the air and improves overall health. And of course, it makes your garden more appealing and beautiful and provides a dramatic and well defined focal point in your back yard or garden.

Pondless Waterfalls

Waterfalls can be added to your existing pool or spa or can be designed as a stand-alone item, known as pondless waterfall. And if you are wondering where the water goes in a pondless waterfall, it flows down the rocks and gathers in a small basin hidden beneath the rocks and is carried back to the top via a hose. You can turn the waterfall on and off, as in a fountain, and needs nearly no maintenance after installation.

Material Used in Waterfall Construction

There are many different types of materials used in constructing waterfalls. Synthetic fiberglass rock materials can withstand the weather conditions, but natural materials blend better with the landscape. Man-made materials include fiberglass, ceramic, acrylic, stainless steel, concrete, GFRC, styrofoam, polyurethane, glass, plastics, and resin, while natural materials include wood, stone and slate, marble, and tile. Metals are also used such as brass and copper. The most popular types of material for large landscape waterfalls are discussed below: Rock and Concrete.

Rock Waterfalls

Rock waterfalls are the most popular type of waterfall feature because they create a natural, tropical, resort like environment. A rock waterfall is can be an amazing addition to a pool or pond, or you can install a stand-alone feature called pondless waterfall. You can choose natural stone or faux rock. The cost for a pool rock waterfall varies from company to company. There is no set budget and prices vary from region to region based on experience. Man made rock waterfalls are an art form that can take many years to learn. Prices fluctuate with supply and demand. Most rock waterfall contractors in Canada have prices that range between $40-$100 per sq/ft of shotcrete, GFRC, or other rock material. Companies that produce rock waterfalls with fiberglass such as WaterfallNow can do them for less than prices quoted for shotcrete. You end up saving more upfront and in the long-run.

Natural Stone

If you have a taste for authentic materials, you can explore local quarries. There is an option of shipping stone from distant locations, as long as you are ready to bear the shipping cost which is high. Natural stone is cheaper when bought in bulk, but the cost of freight and installation makes it as expensive as the manmade stones.

Artificial Fiberglass Rock

Faux rock is usually composed of Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete (GFRC) that is prepared from natural rock formations and is colored to match the grains and texture of different types of stones. GFRC is lighter in weight and very easy to install compared to shotcrete. WaterfallNow is one of the only companies in North America using a special rock panel which the company produces themselves in Surrey, BC, Canada. How much does concrete rock water features cost vs fiberglass rock waterfalls? Fiberglass rocks can cost around half as much with prices improving as you scale up in size.

fiberglass rocks

Concrete Waterfalls

Concrete waterfalls demand a considerable level of skill and expertise, but they make a permanent feature in your garden or backyard. They are most effective when used with rocks and stones.  The excavation for concrete waterfalls has to be waterproofed, preferably polythene. In case you want to add rocks or stones, you should do it while the concrete is wet. And the soil at the site should be compacted enough to support the weight of the concrete.

Concrete waterfalls allow a wide range of altering the dimension, such as length, width or shape. In addition, the basin can be made smaller as the space of the water is not taken up by the rocks. Concrete waterfalls are stationary – especially when you have kids there is no risk of movement, permanent, lifetime life expectancy, more economical to build and operate, easier to clean or maintain, safer and more natural looking. They are sturdy but also considerably heavy. You definitely want to ensure they are kept moist while setting to delay cracking. Shotcrete carved rocks will inevitably begin to deteriorate over time. Leaks can prove expensive as well as impossible to repair as they are difficult to detect especially if they are happening within the solid concrete rock formations.

In short, waterfalls whether an addition or stand-alone item can be an amazing addition to your garden or backyard. It is a great way to bring all the positive energy and health benefits offered by flowing water into your home.

Fiberglass Vs Concrete Pools

 

Contemplative Water Feature

Backyard waterfall landscaping ideas

Fiberglass faux rocks are very flexible and makes creating water features, fountains, and waterfalls possible in any location.

Have an idea in mind?

Get in touch with us. We can work with you to develop your idea and bring it to life.

WaterfallNow

water bubbler

 

 

 

 

 

 

With many product suppliers for landscaping supplies, fountain parts, bubblers, LED lighting, and more, we can find the right parts for your project.

 

Waterfall spillway (Water sheer for waterfall)

Custom-build LED lighted waterfall spillways and water sheers with ease. Just as you can custom build boats, cars, and statues with fiberglass, we can custom build water features and fountains for both indoors and outdoor applications.

Outdoor Waterfall Features

Custom waterfalls made with lightweight fiberglass provides infinite possibilities to get a completely custom-crafted waterfall for the home and garden.

Outdoor Water Features

The versatility of artificial rocks (also referred to as faux, fake, or imitation rocks) allows landscape contractors to create beautiful waterfalls for their clients. Typically these contractors serve a very niche market comprised of wealthy home owners.

There is very little that compares to having a miniature resort in your own backyard. People have a tendency to be drawn to waterfalls. Rock waterfall contractors simply recreate that effect for you from the comfort of your home.

waterfall

Faux rocks can come in virtually any colour by using different natural rock powders. Their colour can even be changed using paint year after year. Change from one color to another with ease. Paint spray guns work well for this and the mixture of several different colors is recommended.

Normally the biggest barrier that we find our customers face is that they don’t have the budget for something spectacular. The industry average cost for custom crafted work all things considered can be $400+ per square foot. We often have deals going on where we do it for less than half of that. The competition is essentially those miniature fountain statues that you buy off Ebay. However, some people want something much larger that fits well in their yard.

Rock Waterfall Ideas For Backyard Renovation Projects

Lately I’ve been fascinated with the website Houzz.com. If you aren’t familiar with this website, it is one of the most popular sites along with Pinterest where homeowners, and contractors go to gather ideas, connect with others in the industry, and share their work.

Here are several rock solid ideas that may help you decide on what type of waterfall water feature you personally prefer.

This is a popular photo that many people have expressed interest in. It has been built to compliment and blend the surrounding landscape to create a natural effect. I really admire projects where the landscaper took the effort to make things as natural as possible.
While some people prefer the insane overhangs that can be achieved using faux or fake rocks, this method is very cool and I think it would look even nicer with the addition of custom lighting colors. Overall an impressive job with great attention paid to detail and no stone out of place.
Rustic Landscape by Portland Landscape Contractors Paradise Restored Landscaping & Exterior Design
This is a great shot with a beautiful natural stone waterfall. The two larger boulders alongside the spillway combined with a well designed lip makes for an impressive sight. I can only imagine how nice this particular waterfall sounds. This double tiered feature would definitely create a very relaxing sound. I would highly recommend this design to someone looking to add a waterfall to their koi pond or for a new pond construction.
The oxygenation and circulation that these kinds of water features adds to the pond also helps to slow the growth of algae which many pond owners can tell you has saved them many dollars in maintenance.
Contemporary Landscape by Woodinville Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Classic Nursery & Landscape Co. / Alan Burke, asla
There are many people (myself included) that are blown away by larger man-made waterfalls. However, smaller water features that were created by landscapers with extra attention to detail can be just as stunning. The addition of this small waterfall feature changes up what would have been just an ordinary space into something special. Imagine sitting out on your patio just enjoying the sounds of a soothing fountain in your garden…
Pondless waterfalls are picking up in popularity and for good reason. Many homeowners are embracing the DIY (do-it-yourself) movement, perhaps inspired by their favourite gardening shows on TV, and tackling some of their own projects. I’m sure you that are reading this hate the idea of having to pull rocks out of the pond, cleaning the pond out, then putting the rocks back in and so forth. If you are a landscaper being paid to maintain it I feel your pain.
As an aside, should you decide to create your first waterfall using natural stone I highly recommend studying The Pond Digger on YouTube. He has shared many tutorials online to help home owners and contractors alike what to expect and some tips to get the most of a pond project.
Tropical Pool by Florence Pools & Spas Shehan Pools
The guys over at Shehan are amazing and have taught us a lot about what it takes to make clients dreams become a reality. From using shotcrete to other faux rock materials, they are masters at creating custom waterfalls which also compliment their specialization in pools. Check out their website to view some of their award winning projects and brainstorm more ideas.
Have a great weekend and happy landscaping

Pool Rock Water Features: Advantages and Disadvantages

Pool rock water features can offer a variety of benefits to a homeowner

Things to consider are the type of buyer that would be interested in your home. If they like the idea of having a pool then having a custom-made water feature by the poolside will get them excited about investing in the property. On the flipside we have seen many new homeowners have a pool filled in because they did not want one.

Whether or not you should add a pool to the yard is something that requires a bit of knowledge of the surrounding area. It sounds simple but it is surprising how often builders forget to understand what type of buyer or demographic they are catering to. Sometimes the buyer doesn’t want or even care about owning a pool.

Keep in mind that there are different options to choose from ranging from concrete, GFRC, paneling, natural rocks, fibreglass, or plastic.

Pool Rock Water Features

Advantages of having rock water features by the pool

  1. The white noise produced by a waterfall helps to drown out the sounds of nearby traffic
  2. The soothing sounds help to promote stress-relief and relaxation
  3. Help to increase the property value or appeal to home buyers
  4. They are a symbol of wealth as not everyone can afford them
  5. Makes for a private resort-like setting with the addition of a few palm trees
  6. Lasts for many decades with minimal down-time
  7. Can be enjoyed year-round or whenever you decide to have it turned on
  8. They require minimal maintenance to operate (ensure water level is maintained and pump is replaced every several years)
  9. Can be customized with your favorite lighting, shapes, designs, and colors
  10. An affordable luxury that can be purchased for the same price as a designer purse or piece of jewellery
  11. Receive many compliments

Disadvantages of pool rock water features

  1. They aren’t viewed as an investment to the average consumer
  2. May require a permit which can be difficult to get if using heavy materials, drilling into natural rock, and so forth.
  3. Same as above, depending on the type of material used, if a mistake is made during the construction, you can end up with expensive maintenance issues
  4. The cost of maintaining a pool may surprise first time pool owners who may be too busy to do their own maintenance The small amounts do add up over time. A pool rock water feature that flows into the pool will require extra maintenance and care
  5. Jealous neighbors that will try to 1-up you with a bigger one
  6. Expect high shipping fees for products purchased outside of Canada

Advantages of WaterfallNow’s Pool Rock Water Features

  1. We take care of the maintenance with one phone call
  2. Lightweight with no permit requirements
  3. Simple to install
  4. No large trucks or machine equipment required
  5. Custom-designs that can be changed during the formation process
  6. Small working crews which reduces cost to the consumer
  7. Any lighting, or other custom materials such as water sheers and spillways can be incorporated into the design
  8. No limit to the size, shape, or design
  9. Operates in all 4 seasons
  10. Does not need to be operated on an ongoing basis like most water features
  11. Remote control switch on or off
  12. Competitive pricing for custom work
  13. Can be premade and shipped locally according to the designs you had in mind
  14. Artificial rocks made with fibreglass to capture the realistic indentations seen on real rocks
  15. Pondless waterfall designs that recirculate water over and over for reduced maintenance

Waterfall Contractors: Finding The Right One For You

Are you making plans to renovate your yard this summer?

The Lower Mainland, BC is expected to have very nice weather this summer. As the weather gets nicer more people start making plans for their garden or outdoor living renovation projects. One of the most popular ways to revamp a yard (once everything else is taken care of) is to add a water feature to the garden.

Why hire the right waterfall contractors?

Many people are attracted to the idea of do-it-yourself projects. Some aren’t. Hiring professionals that are dedicated to their craft and not doing it as a hobby will save you time. Not only will you have time more time to relax after a long day but you will also enjoy a quality product. There are risks in doing things yourself and these risks grow with the complexity of the project. There are also risks in hiring the wrong contractors who only get the job because they were the cheapest.

Hiring a landscape waterfall contractor can be an easy process.

Depending on the style of waterfall that you like you can simply do a local search on Google for contractors in your area. You should first determine the type of water feature that you want or imagine already owning it and reverse engineer the process from there.

Here is a checklist you can use when deciding on which waterfall contractors to hire.

1. What kind of water feature will you have (Read: Water Features For The Garden)

2. Browse through photos online to get an idea of what you like and then do a local search for contractors that provide those services.

3. Ask about maintenance fees. Cost per call and per hour. Do this because regular maintenance requirements can cost more money in the long-term than those that cost more initially.

4. Determine how long you plan to use the water feature for.

5. How much space is there in your yard?

6. Do you want a pond or no pond? Pondless waterfalls are growing in popularity due to low maintenance requirements.

7. Determine how much the water feature will increase your property value. If you plan to sell the home consider that most homeowners are now seeking low maintenance (which is why pools are in decreasing demand). High end homes don’t mind maintenance but the opposite is true for the average home.

8. How often are you outdoors? Is it in your budget to buy something you won’t get much use out of?

9. Do you want lots of sound or just a little coming from the waterfall? Ask about adjustable water pressure to vary the sound.

10. Determine the type of lighting to be used.

11. Determine the types of plants and landscaping that will be employed around the waterfall

12.. Cheapest isn’t necessarily the best. That is a trap that you should avoid. If you want quality then the last thing that should be on your mind is to lowball waterfall contractors and take the lowest bidder. That is a recipe for disaster. When your mind is focused on finding the cheapest prices you will more often than not find the cheapest quality as well. There are other ways to get a better deal which includes providing a referral, written testimonial, video testimonial, or online review for the waterfall contractor.

Check the contractors portfolio and ask the right questions

Ask for references, ensure the photos of their work are actually of projects they’ve done. Use Tineye and upload one of their photos to see if it appears anywhere else online. Avoid contractors that haven’t taken the time to get a website. Write out an agreement of the work you want done and when it is expected to be completed by. Most contractors ask a 25% or 33% deposit upfront and the rest as the projects moves along. If a contractor asks for 50% upfront there is a good chance that they are still working on another project and will be using a chunk of your deposit to finish that one up. For that reason you should determine an end-by date and not have to pay for work beyond that deadline.

 

WaterfallNow’s landscaping waterfall contractors specialize in creating custom waterfalls for commercial and residential locations. Give us a call today for a free no obligation estimate at your earliest convenience.

Hiring Water Features Contractors For Your Garden Renovation

Water features for the garden are a staple for outdoor living.

As the weather grows warmer more people begin to shift their attention towards how they will redesign their yards. Considering the average person will spend a significant portion of their time it just makes sense to spruce things up.

There is a large variety of choices to be made when considering the type of garden renovation ideas one has in mind. Having many decades of landscaping experience under our belts we’ve heard the common issues most people had with their own yards. Most people want their yards to look nice but many don’t even know where to begin. Some believe they want a large amount of flowers only to find that they don’t have the time to maintain it themselves.

When most people look to add a water feature to their yard it is usually because they saw something online or they were in their friends yard and their neighbour had one. So what most people end up doing is going with the first company that they can find. I recommend getting a minimum of 3 estimates from different companies or contractors to get a better understanding of what the project will look like.

When choosing a contractor pick one that has a portfolio of past projects that you like. It is not enough to take one’s word for it and assume that they will create exactly what you had in mind. When in doubt ask for references.

How much does it cost? That will depend on the company you hire to do the work. Generally they will ask for a smaller deposit to begin the work. If a contractor asks for 50% of the total cost up front it should raise some alarms. Most companies work out smaller payments as the work progresses. There are times, especially with smaller companies just starting out, where the contractors ask for 50% upfront to fund an existing project that isn’t yet completed due to lack of funds.

It is safest for you as the customer to deal with contractors that only require small payments as the work progresses. Doing business simply because you like someone even if you know they might not do a good job or are inexperienced always comes with a risk. Things don’t always go as planned as is apparent in the world of contract work but there are precautionary steps you can take to avoid these setbacks. Such costs may entail having to re-hire someone else to fix the ‘fix.’

On the other hand, if you are a contractor reading this you must develop the ability to say ‘no’ to clients who will only cause more problems. It is not worth the headache and heart ache to deal with bad clients.

In summary:

1. Check the contractors portfolio. Ideally you want photos of projects they’ve done themselves. If they are in the custom crafting arena then bring your imagination to the table and plan things out beforehand.

2. Get multiple estimates before picking the water features contractor you plan to work with. Don’t overpay for something that anyone can do (eg. installing a DIY water feature from natural stones). The costs for things that cost less upfront often cost more in the long-run. Have in mind the type of water feature you want with the right budget in mind. Avoid attempts to haggle with something that is clearly out of your budget range in hopes of getting a deal. It’s not worth it.

3. Ask lots of questions. One of the ‘catches’ with most water features is that they lose their appeal after 1-2 years. The high maintenance costs of hiring someone to restore the pond and rocks from looking like green pea soup can be costly and time consuming over a long period of time. If you are a fan of maintenance free (hands off, minds off) and just want to relax then seek out low-maintenance options. Ideally you want something that suffers no cracking from ice (freeze-thaw), has no permit requirements, no excessive weight that may cause sinking and cracking, nothing that takes up too much of your yards real estate, nothing potentially dangerous for children, and something that lasts a lifetime.

4. While I recommend negotiating to get the best price try to avoid excessive haggling (see point 2) with contractors because it is a waste of your time and a waste of theirs. You will not get the best quality from asking for too much and giving too little. Often times trying to get things for cheap results in poor quality and a lower level of service. Water features, fountains, and waterfalls don’t come cheap but that is the point. The cheap variety can be found from Home Depot or Rona in a do-it-yourself kit. Doing it yourself is something that I recommend everyone try at least once. Why? Because it will yield a greater appreciation for the many years of experience that landscapers put in to the point where they make it ‘look easy.’

The bottom line for anyone seeking to renovate their yard is to pick something that gets a ‘wow’ out of themselves, their guests, and makes them feel good. WaterfallNow’s waterfalls are custom designed with you in mind so that you know you have a one of a kind custom hand-made piece of art. Go ahead, show off your yard.

Garden Water Features: Can They Save Your Life?

Can a water feature save your life? Well… Maybe not, but they may help.

Imagine coming home from a hard working day and relaxing by the patio next to a soothing garden water fountain waterfall.

The soothing sounds of running water helps to relax the mind, providing a sense of calm.

Have you ever experienced the joy of having a water feature in your yard? Having a beautiful water feature will not only increase the property value (if properly maintained) but will also create a harmonious environment.

There are health benefits of having water features as well.

Stress is the number one killer of human beings in the world. The compounded effect of stress from our everyday lives causes major health issues which can unnecessarily shorten ones lifespan.

So what can we do? Having a water feature can be part of the solution to reducing stress levels. There are many other things you can do to further reduce your stress levels.

1. One effective method that has worked for thousands of years is meditation. It is never too late to learn how to do this or take a local class.

2. Breathe deeply. Did you know that most people either take shallow breaths or breathe incorrectly through their mouth? Diaphragmatic (belly) breathing is a simple way to ensure that you are getting the correct flow of oxygen through your body.

3. Being more present. Slowing down for at a few intervals can actually help you be more productive throughout the day. Being more conscientious about where you are in the world, relaxing tense muscles can all help to improve your health.

4. Fad diets are just that ‘fads’. Take a long-term approach to your health by making healthy eating a habit. Things such as eating more omega 3 fatty oils than omega 6 or trans fats, eating less processed foods, more vegetables, getting enough vitamins and minerals through natural food sources, drinking lots of water, and doing a detox every now and then are all going to help you feel better.

By being more self aware about your health you can extend your life by 10-20 years. Good health doesn’t start at the mouth, rather it starts in the mind. A healthy mind is far more likely to take measures to care for the body and avoid self-destructive behaviour.

Enough stress can cause heart attacks. The relaxation benefits offered by garden water features can in a way help to reduce the stresses that surrounds everyday life.

Garden Water Feature Fountain Waterfall

You don’t need to call WaterfallNow to get a big luxury custom waterfall fountain but we still recommend getting something that you can enjoy everyday – even if it is just a small tabletop fountain made in China.

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