Steps for How to Dig A Pond with A Bulldozer

Feb. 05, 2024

Creating a pond is one of the most exciting parts of building a beautiful garden. However, there are many challenges associated with it, including how, when and where to dig the hole. Many people choose a bulldozer, which may seem like an odd choice considering that excavators are known for their digging abilities. But bulldozers have their advantages.

In this article, you'll also learn about how to use a bulldozer to dig a pond.

Finding a water source

When filling a pond, you can use a well, a hose, or hire a professional company to come out and fill the pond. With that said, you need a way to keep it filled through evaporation and the inevitable leaks into the subsurface soil.

If you live in an area with a lot of precipitation, rain may be a good option. Another option for keeping your pond full is to have a well.

Steps for How to Dig A Pond with A Bulldozer

Check the soil

Knowing your soil conditions will give you an idea of what type of equipment you need, how the drainage system works when the pond is filled, and what you need to put on the bottom (liner, boulders, clay, etc.).

If you're not sure how to check your soil, there are dozens of companies that will come out and do it for you. Have them perform a core soil inspection. They'll dig a pipe in the ground, pull it out, and let you know everything that's under the surface.

Get bulldozer attachment

Backhoes are some of the most useful attachments for digging with a bulldozer. They are not too expensive compared to getting a brand new excavator, which would be the only option. Check all available sizes and determine the best size for your bulldozer.

Using a backhoe excavator will allow you to dig up large buckets of soil, thus reducing the workload by several hours. This step is technically optional, as you can use the main dozer attachment to dig the pond.

Using the blade

Before using a backhoe to dig everything out of the soil, use the blade on the front of the dozer to push out the perimeter. Make sure you have an outline of the size of the pond you want. Once you have everything lined up, it's time to push it out and create the general shape of the pond.

When you use the blade, you have to go back and forth. It takes a few hours or days around the bulldozer, but getting your pond set up the way it should be is well worth the effort. Once you are ready for the backhoe, move on to the next section.

Steps for How to Dig A Pond with A Bulldozer

Digging the center

Now that you've outlined the perimeter with the dozer blade, it's time to start digging with the backhoe. This step is the longest part of the process, but it's also one of the most impactful components. Allow a few days to complete it, depending on how wide, long and deep you want your pond to be.

You should start digging in the center of the pond, as it is usually the deepest part. Once you have dug out the lowest point, turn in an outward direction. Then repeat the process.

Creating the shelf

Digging shelves to one side of the pond is an excellent way to maintain the structure. Like some of the next steps, this step is not required, but it can be extremely helpful. Please note that this is a requirement for those digging ponds from sandy soil, as otherwise it tends to collapse.

Fill the pond with water

Choose how you will fill the pond and then start filling it with water. You can use well water, hose water and many other sources. Mother Earth News mentions that some counties allow you to use your local fire hydrant as a quick source of water, but you should always call the fire department ahead of time.

Steps for How to Dig A Pond with A Bulldozer


Digging a pond with a bulldozer is an easy but time-consuming task that many landowners have accomplished. Without a doubt, it is one of the most rewarding processes you will experience on your land, especially when you add fish and plants to your ecosystem. Promoting new forms of life on your land helps the environment and the aesthetics of your visitors.

Remember, you can use a bulldozer blade to dig a pond, but it is far more efficient to install a backhoe to excavate the soil. Map the land, examine the soil, prepare the bulldozer and start digging!

Wanna know more tips on using bulldozers? Please contact us today.

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