It is time to beautify your surroundings that will not only please your senses but will also bring zen calmness to your life. What better way to achieve this than to revitalize your outdoor space that’s been left out in the cold, literally that is, for several months during winter. I’m talking about breathing life back to what was once an awesome water fountain of yours sitting amidst your garden landscape.
But now it is probably an empty basin, and about to become an eyesore in your front yard, with all the dried leaves and nasty insects scattered around it. It is almost begging for a much-needed resurrection, wanting to reclaim its glory. Don’t worry, though. It wouldn’t take a lot of heavy lifting on your end because all you need is this nifty device to make it all happen – a solar pond pump.
A pump serves as the heart of any home water feature, may it be a garden fountain, a ceramic birdbath, or a koi pond. This tool prevents stagnation and algae formation by recirculating water in its place. This resulting motion creates soothing water sounds that help screen outside noise. And the orchestrated water jets simply make for a stunning visual entertainment.
Of course, there are different pump options available that beg the question, which one is better: the conventional plug-in pump or the solar powered fountain pump? To me, the answer may already be obvious, and this article will hopefully convince you to go for the solar-type, too, given the following points:
1. Solar power means big savings
Harnessing solar energy as alternative electricity is nothing new. Unless you live in the arctic or antarctic, sunlight is abundant in most places. Best of all, there is no extra cost to have access to it. As such, many household items already have their energy-efficient counterparts from rechargeable flashlights to music speakers. In fact, some people have gone off the grid with their solar-powered homes that allow them to shift from one location to another whenever they want to.
So it makes perfect sense to have a solar powered pond pump as well. Without the use of conventional electricity, its usage translates to hundreds of dollars in savings on your monthly electric bills. While there are solar pumps that may be a bit pricey to acquire, there are other choices that might suit your budget, but ultimately, it will depend on your needs. In any case, you will still get your money’s worth even if you buy the expensive ones in the long run.
2. Installing it doesn’t have to be too complicated
Read: hassle-free. It’s not rocket science folks. You will only need space for this device, and it will do its job efficiently, well, almost. But it’s really quite easy because you don’t have to do any of that wiring stuff or require the services of an electrician even just to install it properly. You don’t need to figure out where the power lines are or any of that stuff you won’t bother learning about. This is why it is the perfect tool to work with for a DIYer because everything is already in the setup.
These pumps typically work within seconds of sun exposure, although many manufacturers will suggest “baking” the panels under direct sunlight for half an hour before operating it. In other words, If you can read and follow the simple instructions on the user manual, you should be fine. What’s more, the solar panels are sufficient enough to operate your pond pump without a supplemental source of electricity such as fuel.
3. … Nor its maintenance and aftercare
As if it could not get any better, solar pond pumps are just as fuss-free along with their straightforward design when it comes to maintenance. Such a pump system is capable of operating for years on end without meticulously monitoring it. Electric devices typically require regular checking after use and one expects that their components would break down with age. And you know what this means – unwelcome repair costs on your part.
Fortunately, you can rest easy because this is not the case for this type of water pump. If at all, you’ll just have to clean the filter once in a while, which is such a breeze in order to ensure its efficient functionality. Troubleshooting would usually involve making sure there is optimal sunlight to power it. That is if the solar pump you have does not have a battery backup (more on this later). Otherwise, you can pretty much leave it on its own.
4. It is durable and has a long lifespan
Don’t you just hate it when you bought something that cost you a lot of money only to last you a couple of months? Not this one, though. Being that it is virtually maintenance-free, it follows that a solar pump is built to last just as long as your pond itself.
You see, solar pond pumps in particular have fewer mechanical components compared to traditional pumps hence, the rate of their deterioration would be very slow. Let’s not forget that their solid construction will enable them to perform in any kind of weather.
Many solar powered fountain pumps have integrated brushless motor systems that assure the buyer of their durability and prolonged use. For as long as there’s plenty of the sun’s rays hitting your PV (photovoltaic) panels, they will be able to produce a sizable stream for your fountain, with most of them having the capacity to pump more than 100 gallons every hour.
Although the solar energy source costs zero, a solar fountain pump manages to be efficient with its low energy consumption, making it last beyond 20,000 hours. This is ideal, especially for those who are running pumps in their ponds around the clock, which can easily take a toll on a low-quality pump.
Solar energy translates to sustainability being that you can rely on that the sun will not run out of its heat, at least not in the next 5 billion years, theoretically speaking. Its proponents emphasize its importance of not adding to our ever-growing environmental hazards, deeming it the preferred choice moving forward into the future.
For solar powered pond pumps, the accompanying solar panels convert the sun’s energy into electrical energy to provide power to the device. As such, there is no industrial waste or harmful byproduct released in the air in the process compared to using conventional electricity or fuel sources. This is why one feels great without any guilt using a renewable energy source such as solar power.
When you use this type of pump in your biological pond, you will almost be certain that it will not negatively impact aquatic life. It even promotes water conservation because you are not continually sourcing freshwater from the depths of the earth. This way, your fish can safely swim around as the pump supports a healthy ecosystem by aerating the surrounding water. Without it, your expensive koi will not survive for long.
And while you’re at it, you can even throw in a solar spotlight or downlight for good measure, which will add that dramatic touch when it is turned on at night.
6. Versatile and allows greater reach
The humble solar powered pond pump has a lot going for it. It is versatile enough such that it does not only pump water in your man-made stream, but it does many other important things as well. On top of its functions is to recirculate water from your pond’s reservoir, which means you are not running up your water bill because of your device.
Meanwhile, the amount of wattage is directly proportional to the water pressure. It will depend on the effect you want to create in your stream. If a gentle waterfall is what you are after, you will then need just a low amount of water pressure. On the other hand, water jetting out a few feet higher than your fountain entails high pressure from your pump, which comes with extra nozzles that will create different water shots. You can get these flexible functionalities from a good quality solar powered fountain pump.
With all its useful features, it’s all interesting to point out that many of these solar powered pond pumps also have that aesthetic value, so they make your tiered towers or modern orbs even more pleasant to look at.
7. Calm and silent
You know how relaxing it can be to just listen to flowing water generated by waterfalls, ocean waves, and the like. You’d be fortunate if you happen to have a meandering stream at home or live in the oceanfront for that matter. For urban residents, this is one reason you might also want to have your own personal body of water at home, just like a pond or a fountain.
But when you are using an electrical pump for your fountain, the sound of its running motor kind of ruins the zen vibe that it is supposed to exude. You won’t have this problem with a solar-powered type. With not many mechanical parts, all you will hear is the natural music it creates, which can vary from bubbling, trickling, to splashing sound of water that will surely relax you at that moment. These provide subtle ambient audio even when you are having those patio conversations with friends and family nearby.
8. It has the right size
Typical home fountains and artificial water streams are relatively small. Hence a solar pump can be a perfect fit. It can be small enough to fit even your glazed ceramic bowl, or that playful urn with water sheeting off it.
You should note, however, that it’s not really a one-size-fits-all device. Technically speaking, the right size will depend on several factors, one being the size of your fountain itself. Another would be how much water you would like to be pumped, which again will depend on which water pattern you’d like to be generated. How high your water projects from a jet should also be considered when getting the appropriate size of the pond pump.
9. It can provide continuous water motion during nighttime
While it’s true that most solar powered fountain pumps will only function during daytime, reaching its optimum when there is a lot of sunshine, there are models which can operate even at night. These types have backup batteries that can store solar energy in their solar cells during the day to ensure your fountain can still carry on with its magnificent water display even when the sun has set. It’s good that there are submersible pumps that allow you to position your solar panels in a spot where you can get intense sunlight, all within your cord length to the pump.
You can rely on solar powered pond pumps for use even in fish ponds or concrete fountains where there is a presence of aquatic creatures. Be sure to get the higher end product for this purpose as consistent water aeration is a must in these situations.
10. You can transport it or relocate without hassle
A solar pond pump is a portable tool that allows you to switch over to another spot due to a seasonal change or body of water without much fanfare. You can simply move it and not have to worry about reinstalling it, unlike a regular wired pump, which is deemed stationary and carries a lot of complications with it.
There you have it, the most compelling reasons for going down the solar route. Listen, it’s not a perfect device, but it surely meets most criteria of home fountain owners who want nothing but convenience aside from beauty in styling their homes. And it helps that it caters to the environmentally conscientious as well, with its virtually non-existent operating cost and carbon footprint. Anyhow, please note that you’ll get the most out of these benefits only when you buy a good quality product. If you don’t have it yet, it’s time to grab one.