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Top 20 Pond Pump Tips To help You Choose Your Pump Well

  1. In general a pump should pump the total volume of the pond every 2 hours. This means all the water in the pond is circulated 12 times a day. This is a good balance between the needs of plants, fish and the biofilter in a pond system.  A pond of volume 6,000 litres would need about 3,000 to 4,000 litres per hour. A flow rate between 700 and 1,600 litres per hour would be fine for a 2,000 litre pond.

  2. If you want an impressive waterfall you need to work out the volume using a simple formula. Consider between 250 and 350 litres per hour of flow per inch (2.5 cm) of overflow lip). Use a hose pipe to estimate water flow for a waterfall. Waterfall pumps are preferred for the following reasons ... the sound of running water, to add character to your water feature, to add oxygen to the water for fish and the biofilter and to make use of the soil excavated when you built the pond. A waterfall with a wide lip will need more water than one with a narrow overflow edge.

  3. An ideal height for a waterfall is between 40 cm and 90 m (3 feet).

  4. Pond pumps are designed to operate in harsh outdoor environments so buy one with at least 2 years guarantee. Do not use a small water feature pump for a pond environment.

  5. A fish pond pump MUST run 24 hours a day 365 days a year without fail.

  6. Sump pumps are powerful and large and best avoided for most ponds - they stand upright and are thus easily recognised. Sump pumps are designed for non-continuous running and if used continuously have a short life span.

  7. If you need to run a fountain in your pond then choose a make that includes the attachments and a 2 way valve in the box. Fountain attachments bought later can be expensive.

  8. If you want to run both a waterfall and a fountain make sure your pump is powerful enough and that the 2 way flow splitter is adequately sized. In general it is better to run 2 separate pumps.

  9. You must run the pump with the sponge in the suction to prevent the holes in the fountain blocking with debris and this can be a hassle in warm summer months when algae might block the sponge and the holes in the fountain.

  10. Avoid the use of fittings wherever possible.

  11. Always try to use ribbed hose that can be bent without restricting flow.

  12. Do not use small diameter pipe or tubing.

  13. Minimise the length of pipe attached to your pond pump

  14. Use 2 pumps in most ponds to save money and have a back up for the sake of your fish.

  15. Before you buy a pond pump compare the total cost between alternative models using a simple formula.

  16. In 99% of cases you will only want to use a submersible pump. Avoid external swimming pool type pumps if possible and if you have a large koi pond system use low pressure high volume pumps like the Sequence series of external pond pumps.

  17. Do take some trouble to understand maximum flow and maximum head to make sure you know how to specify a pump correctly.

  18. Know the basics of how a submersible pump behaves and how to troubleshoot pump problems.

  19. Always measure the height you want to pump to from the pond surface and NOT the bottom of the garden fish pond

  20. The running cost of a pump is generally far more important the purchase price of a pump. Calculate power cost easily as follows ...

How To Work Out Running Cost For Any Pump ... or at least the electricity cost

  1. Most pump manufacturers state the Wattage used by the pump on the box. If not they will certainly provide the amps used on the label attached to the pump body itself. If you do  not see Watts first convert Amps to Watts as follows ...

  2. Here's the formula to work out costs per year:

  3. Pump runs "H" hours per day

  4. Pump power = "W" Watts

  5. Cost per unit of power ="C" in pence

  6. Cost per year = "Y"

  7. Then ... Y=[W/1000 x Hx365 x C/100] in Pounds per year.

Formula: to work out running cost for any pump

Amps x Volts = Watts so if your pump uses .2 Amps and the voltage is 220 volts then the Wattage for the pump is approximately 44 Watts. This also means the pump will consume 44 divided by 1000 units of electricity per hour (1 kWhr = 1 unit)



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