SOLAR FOUNTAIN PUMP
Although there are hundreds of fountain styles, one that is getting a lot of attention is the solar fountain. As the name indicates, this type of fountain requires no electricity and can be installed in just minutes. The nice thing about going with a solar fountain is that you have amazing choices. If you want a smaller, cascading pond for your deck or patio - no problem but if you prefer something larger, a fountain that you can place in the yard or by the pool, that too is a great option.
Just as with a traditional fountain, solar fountains also run on pumps to help circulate the water during the winter when there is little sun, on rainy days, or simply to operate things such as lights, spitters, etc. In this article, we will talk about some of the types of solar fountain pumps available today. Typically, this type of pump is compact and low maintenance, just like the fountains themselves. Designed as a submersible pump, it works well without taking away from the natural beauty of the fountain.
Although the solar pumps do vary in functionality, many will run on a single 10 watt solar panel, capable of pumping even murky water. This type of pump is designed with an adjustable flow rate, comes with a housing that works as an intake screen, has a built-in adapter, and comes with a 15-foot cord. Remember, just as with a standard pump, you would make sure you choose a pump with the right flow, or gallons per hour (GPH).
Another type of solar fountain pump is capable of pumping 155 gallons per hour, running completely on the sun. With a 10-watt solar panel, the pump would only push water about two feet high. Therefore, you might consider choosing a pump that can run on more than one panel. In this case, for a five-foot spray, you would need a 24-volt system that works on two solar panels. Depending on the type of kit you choose, the price ranges between $250 and $475.
You might also consider an all-day solar pump kit that is capable of 155 GPH. This too runs on a single, 10-watt solar panel although you can choose a dual 10-watt, 24-volt system that pumps up to 190 GPH for a five-foot spray. With this solar pump, you would use one or two, 12-volt, deep cycle batteries. With this, the pump will literally run all day long. Again, if you go with a single module, you would expect to pay around $300 whereas a two module option would be around $400.
Then you have completely submersible, low power solar pumps that are made from polyacetal plastic. With this, the pump is capable of pumping just about any type of liquid. The nice thing about this style of solar pump is that it is very small yet very powerful. This particular pump is made to run on a 12-volt system. The price for this is much less, generally costing less than $100.
Finally, a great solar pump that works great for fountains, fish ponds, and waterfalls, is one that can run power to a remote location. Typically, this type of pump only works during hours when there is sun, meaning you do not have to mess with electronics or batteries for operation. All you need here is a 12-volt solar panel, one with a power rating of 65 watts minimum