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Soilfloc® Sealant is the best polymer based sealant available for your canal, irrigation ditch or watering hole. Specifically designed to find leaks, whether in the floor, the wall or through rock formations and seal them. Soilfloc® custom blends linear and cross-linked polymers to seal any type of soil, for any sized project.

Muck Remover
The biological removal of muck and sludge from ponds, lakes and canals is an ecological way to eliminate organic sediments from ruining shorelines and making swimming impossible. Safe muck eating bacteria are blended from anaerobic bacterial mixtures and enzymes that specifically target the thick, black, stinky muck that is common in ponds and lakes.

Dock Bubblers
Bubbler systems use perforated tubing placed at the bottom of the water around a boathouse, dock or wall. When using diffuser lines to protect your dock from ice damage there will be some fairly common installation procedures: place the air compressor in a ventilated cabinet or shed and run an airline to the structure where a weighted bubbler hose is placed at strategic points around the dock or against the wall.

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Can a Bubbler Protect a Sea Wall?

I'm getting ready to order my bubbler hose package--based on the information you sent me awhile ago.
I will need the Medium package with the ventilated cabinet, thermostat, and timer.  
Before I place my order, I have some concerns:
This will go on a lake to protect my retaining wall,  The water hits the bottom portion of the wall and is too shallow right there for the bubbler,  When I go out to a depth of 2 feet, there is  a substantial amount of "muck" built up.  Will this affect the performance of the bubbler?
Does the unit stay in the water permanently?  If so, could it be removed without a lot of trouble if that was desired.  I ask this because there is a plan to dredge the muck in front of some of the properties.  I like that idea but wouldn't want my bubbler disturbed and am somewhat concerned about that process.
Because I had so many questions, I have not placed my order. It's an expensive proposition and I don't want to make a mistake. but  it's getting that time, and I have to make a decision.

Carol in Connecticut
asked by anonymous
edited by TPR

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Hi Carol,

Thanks for asking about the Dock Bubbler Packages.

The question of muck is common and it is important to note that any bubble tubing or perforated deicing hose that is a weighted variety designed to sit on the bottom will have a tendancy to sink into any mucky bottom it is placed in. Of course the linear layout of tubing means that it will be laying across the bottom and the weight of the tubing will distribute itself on the bottom and act like snowshoes and will keep it from sinking into the muck unless of course you are talking about a souopy bottom which is not normally seen unless it is an industrial waste pond or some sort of tarsands pond with a high amount of total dissolved solids or suspended solids, in mist lakes or rivers or ponds the regular muck is not an issue.

Muck is something that can be addressed during the warmer seasons by using Muck Pellets which is a natural bacteria blend in sinking pellets that will actually eat and reduce this sort of organic muck so it might be worth it to use a muck pellet blend to attack this issue. But when bubblers are involved it is not usually a problem especially when high air pressure is pumped through the tubing.

The weighted bubble tubing or deicer hose that is commonly used requires a PSI of 3 and above to force air through the perforations. When a compressor is used that can provide a higher PSI then the risk of sedimentary build-up is reduced as the air pressure pumping through the tubes can force any muck to be literally cleaned off the holes. A bigger issue in some regions can actually be Zebra Mussels which will adhere themselves to the poly pipe or PVC tubing and cause bloackages prematurely. If ever there is an infestation with Zebra Mussels then a bubbler air system might not be the best method depending on the depth and aquatic environment of the area surrounding the dock structure or vessel being deiced.

Traditional dock bubblers that use the perforated hose being fed with compressed air will work in a number of applications and indeed one of them is to protect a seawall from damage due to ice formation and movement however there are some things to consider when using an air bubbler system to protect long stretches of a seawall when the water is shallow or when the lake level is drawn down during winter months by lake managers.

A bubbler line, when placed in depths of 4 feet or less, can have some problems: shallow water, especially when severe wind chills are present during frigid winter storms blow in, can freeze solid or if not solid then ice can form almost everywhere except right over the air bubbles that are pumping directly out of the hose.

If your line of bubble tubing is parrallel to the seawall and is 6 feet out from the wall and is only in 3 or 4 feet of water there is the possibility that the water close to the wall will freeze solid and there will only be a 6 to 24 inch wide gap directly over the hose.

If the slope against the seawall is gentle you should try and put the bubble hose in at least 2 feet of water if you can. Less than 24 inches of depth will reduce the temperature effectiveness of the bubbler system; ie: if you are in a warmer location then the bubbler in 18" will likely be enough but if your dock or structure is in a very cold, windy region then the results might not be perfect.

Because the goal of a bubbler system is to at least stop the pressure build-up of ice against an immoveable surface like a seawall then often even a small open slice of water between the lake ice and the wall ice can help minimize any damage but it cannot guarantee 100% effectiveness. A power failure of only a few hours could lead to a complete freezing of the surface and even once power is re-established and air is again pumping thropugh the deicer hose if the ice has thickened beyond a certain point it may be impossible for the bubbles and movement of the deicer to cut through established ice layers.

Regarding the possible dredging of the muck in the future, the bubbler tube systems can easily be removed for cleaning or maintenance and often clients will retrieve the hose from the water and clean it and store it for the summer and re-install it in the fall. Of course in  larger industrial deicing jobs like in commercial marinias or with barges or pump outlets then the bubbler hose is often left in place due to the sheer size of the system and complications involved in having divers come and remove it for servicing.

In smaller applications such as yours if there were the potential to have dredging done during the summer season it would be easy enough to pull out the bubbler hose to ensure it wasn't damaged by any heavy machinery.

Again this can be a reason that people will use an Ice Eater instead of a bubbler system if they are able to direct the thrust of the Ice Eater to perform the same job. Plopping a single electric thruster or a series of units with the thrust aimed correctly can do the same job as a bubbler without any issues of mucky sediments or the complication of removal that a system based on long hoses entails.

More about our Dock Bubblers & Ice Eaters.

answered by TPR

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