Pond pumps maintain the health of water garden plants and ornamental fish by providing flowing water and life-giving oxygen from aeration. Pond pumps also add interest to backyard water features by powering waterfalls and fountains.
Below you’ll find some facts about pond pumps that can come in handy the next time you’re considering which pond pumps you may or may not want or need with regard to your outdoor water-garden elements.
A gallons-per-hour (gph) notation indicates the output of water by pond pumps. This number tells you how much water the pump outputs without lifting water above the surface level. Although this number is somewhat confusing, it lets you know the maximum amount of water pushed through the pump with no restricting factors.
A maximum-head rating on pond pumps tells you how high up from the surface of the water the pump is actually capable of making the water that it pumps rise. Also somewhat misleading, this number is calculated by a large-diameter tube or pipe going straight up from the pump with water being pumped through it.
In most real water-pumping situations, the tube would be smaller and almost always turned or bent, which, of course, would slow down the water somewhat and lower the rise of water pumped.
The packaging that comes with most pond pumps can give you a pretty good idea of what size pump to buy for your specific need. Various flow rates and their corresponding spray patterns can help you determine which pump does what. By adding a 20 percent differential to adjust for what is shown on this chart, you’ll get pretty close to the amount of water you want pumped for your particular setting.
It’s a good idea to stay away from pond pumps that offer multi-functional operation. If one feature goes out, the entire pump goes out, thereby rendering your entire water element- pond, fountain, falls, etc.- without benefit of the pump’s aerating features. It’s better to buy multiple pond pumps, one for each feature.
The indispensability of pond pumps goes without saying. Just make sure you’re getting the right pump for each situation. And the best advice? Continue to educate yourself about pond pumps and how they work to your best advantage. Your plants and your fish will thank you!