<%@ Language=VBScript %> Fountain Pump Maintenance

Eclectic Treasures (TM)
Fountain Pump Maintenance

tips for keeping your fountain running properly



Maintenance of Fountain Pump: Water fountains require very little maintenance. OnceGlass Water Fountains set up, fountains simply need to be wiped clean every now and then, and the water level needs to be maintained to prevent damage to the pump. Here are some tips for keeping your fountain running properly and looking beautiful over the years. To save your fountain from the natural mineral build up that arises when using mineral-rich water, we recommend using distilled or reverse osmosis water. Check the water level daily for the first week, adding distilled water as needed to keep the pump completely covered. Water should be added to the water fountain when needed, making sure the water level does not drop below the height of the water pump. Periodically, clean the fountain, container, pump, rocks, etc. to remove any slime and algae. Some fountains become moist on the underside. If you are placing your fountain on fine wood, you will want to use some form of protection. Alternatively, you could try placing your fountain on ceramic tile or a trivet designed for hot food, to raise it off your furniture.

CAUTION: Always disconnect the pump from the power source before cleaning and servicing.

Clean your fountain every 1-3 months.
An environment of water, light, and air invites algae, and so algae growth is natural to fountains. Unfortunately, algae growth will clog and impede the flow of water through the pump. Therefore it is essential that you clean your fountain pump, bowl, and rocks once every 1-3 months. Keep in mind that algae grows more quickly in bright sunshine, so you may choose not to put your fountain in direct sunlight. Some fountain owners use dilutions of bleach, lemon juice, vinegar or Listerine to kill algae growth. Replacing all the water in the fountain once a month will naturally cut back on algae growth.
How to clean a fountain.
We recommend using an old toothbrush or other suitable brush, dish detergent, and warm water. You will need to disassemble the pump and clean inside of it where algae and mineral deposits build up. Also clean the base of the fountain and rocks in the same way. Pump disassembly is not difficult and takes only a few minutes. You may need to move any tension clips that hold the unit together, but you will generally not need tools such as a screwdriver. Most manufacturers include instructions with the fountain, which discuss how to pull the cover off the pump and clean the inside under running water with a brush. Pumps will run for an average of 2-3 years if kept clean and submersed. Pumps are under warranty for 1 year. Thoroughly rinse with clear water before filling fountain with distilled water and sitting it back up.

1. Your pump must never run dry or be clogged with debris.
2. Make sure that clean water is circulating through the pump. Make sure the pump is properly installed, that the pump is submerged.
3. UL requires three-wire grounded cords for outdoor use.
4. Use only 115 Volt AC 60 Cycle electrical current unless marked otherwise.
5.  When using the pump for the first time be sure to turn it on and off several times to be sure that all the air is out of the discharge line. This is known as "priming the pump."
6. In freezing weather, the pump must be removed from the water prior to freezing as frozen water will expand and break the pump, or pump components.
7. These pumps are water cooled and do not use oil.
8. If the water level drops below the impeller, the motor will overheat and burn out.

CAUTION: Always disconnect the pump from the power source before cleaning and servicing.

Pump Troubleshooting

Noisy Pumps

My pump is noisy. How do I fix it?

First check to be sure the pump is fully submerged in the water. Now be sure that the pump is not vibrating against the side or bottom of the fountain basin. You can isolate the pump by placing a Scotchbrite pad underneath it or beside it to minimize the vibrations, quieting the pump.

Using only top quality fountain pumps and proper maintenance fountain pump noise can be keep to a minimum. But there is no such thing as a completely quiet pump. Here are some pointers for quieter operation.

Make sure your pump is fully submersed. It will be quieter if it is.
Try putting a sponge or other “cushiony” material under the pump.

My Pump is on but no water is flowing

First, check to see if the pump and tubing are connected. They sometimes become disconnected when installing or cleaning. If the connection is loose, wrap some electrician’s tape around the pump’s outflow “nipple” so that the tubing and nipple form a tight connection.

Second, check to make sure there is not a kink in the tubing. This is an often missed problem, especially if a fountain was difficult to install.

Try tapping the pump on a hard surface to see if the impeller is stuck. Sometimes an impeller gets stuck in shipping. Tapping it might loosen the impeller enough to get it to spin again.

There might be air in the line between pump and fountain. Unplug the pump and plug it back in a couple of times to remove air bubbles.

If 1-3 above are not the problem, then your pump might be dirty. Remove the impeller according to manufacturer’s instructions, clean, and replace. Generally, you will need to snap off a cover to find the impeller inside. Usually, the impeller looks like a propeller. 

Pump Life

Submersible pumps require water to keep cool. If water levels are frequently low, or the pump is turned on and off too frequently, the pump’s life will be shortened. Animal hair, leaves, and other debris that enter the pump also shorten the life span. Clean the impeller according to manufacturer’s instructions. Usually all you need to do is remove the impeller, run it under a water faucet, and put it back in.

Tubing Fitting 

As noted above, if tubing is too big, you can usually wrap a little bit of tape around the pump’s outlet nipple. If the tubing is too snug, You can  also use a simple hose clamp to fasten tightly to the pump. Do not overtighten, however, and break the plastic.

If the tubing is too snug to fit onto the pump, you can stretch the end of the tubing by heating it in the sun or in boiling water. Be careful not to burn yourself, however. When the tubing cools down it will tighten again forming a seal.

My pump says it takes 3/8” or ½” tubing. What does that mean?

The tubing size is referring to the i.d. (inside diameter) of the tubing you purchase. If your pump requires 3/8” tubing, then you should buy tubing with 3/8*” inside diameter. The inside of the tubing (3/8) must fit over the outside (o.d.) of the pump outlet.

Why would the pump stop working?

The pumps are submersible, and MUST be used while completely submersed in water. The water acts to cool the pump and maintain the proper operating temperature. Low water levels, frequently turning the fountain off and on, or poor fountain maintenance will contribute to a shorter pump life span. Dust and animal dander that gets into your fountain water can also accumulate inside a pump and cause it to stop working. A good way to keep this from happening is to cut a section of sheer pantyhose, slip the pump inside it, and tie off the ends tightly with rubber bands.

To clear a pump of debris, follow these simple instructions:
Unplug the pump. Remove any debris that has accumulated on the outside of the pump. You may need to scrub gently with a wash cloth. Stubborn algae can often be removed by soaking the pump in vinegar.
2.Remove the pump cover. For most pumps, the cover slides right off.
3.Pull out the magnetic impeller. Remove any debris that may be wound around it or inside the shaft. Often, pet dander, algae and other debris keep the impeller from turning.
4.Replace the impeller and cover. Your pump should now be clean and running optimally.

How to clean the glass stones with water stains:
Using a spray cleaner such as (Kaboom) and a scrub brush or a  toothbrush could also use. First take and spray the cleaner on the glass rocks and gently scrub with brush then rinse with clean water until all the soap a dissipated. In most cases this would only need to be done ever 6 months to a year.   



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