The Solar Power Expert Blog

Do Solar Pond Pumps Work?

by Chris - June 5th, 2011.
Filed under: Solar Products. Tagged as: , , .

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Do solar pond pumps work? Yes! And they are easy to build, too. This guide covers the basic principles for building a pond with a solar powered pump. It also showcases a few pictures and YouTube videos of real DIY solar powered ponds.

Solar fountains are pumps powered by the energy of the sun. Their construction is not rocket science and anyone with any skill level can make them operate in a jiffy. All you need to do is connect wires from the PV module to the wires of the DC motor pump and you are done. Now all that is required is the sun. Place it in an area with bright sunlight and it works!

Solar Pond Pump

A Public Display of How a Solar Powered Pump Works

Solar fountains are not that different from the usual fountain systems. A basic fountain system is comprised of the following parts:

1. Fountain ( which includes the water path)
2. Reservoir of water
3. Pump
4. Tubing for water flow
5. Wiring
6. Power source

Some fountains use upper reservoirs to keep some water in storage, thus when the fountain has access to a limited amount of sunlight it uses the water stored to even out the water flow. On bright sunny days when the fountain can extract more power from the sunlight, it uses the extra energy to fill up the reservoir.

Fountains running on solar energy can be built in any size and any place, be that in your house or outside in the garden. Choosing a bigger size may mean more money but the whole project can be a do-it-yourself and won’t be one bit more complex than a small one. In the end you get a beautiful looking, gurgling water fountain.

Gift shops and nurseries are the perfect places for you if you want to make up your mind on how you want your fountain to look. They provide you with whole range ready-made fountains. Although the largest decision is how big you want your upper reservoir to be, because the bigger in size it is the more water you can store and thus your fountain flows for more time without sunlight. Then again you might not want a reservoir at all. That way you can ‘hear’ when there is sunlight and for how much time as your fountain stops functioning without sunlight.

Solar Pond Pump 2

A Homebrew Solar Power Fountain

The amount of power required can always affect your budget. The more power the higher the cost since more power requires both a large PV module and a large pump. Fountains that are taller require more power and more work to keep the flow of water perfect.

In order to keep the fountain running in a perfect condition you have to have water in it at all times and prevent it from running dry. The best solution for this is to connect a drip valve to the main water supply and the lower reservoir of the fountain.

With some effort and using natural material you can build a good size fountain for about $300. If you don’t want to design anything and just want an easy to install fountain, go for a fountain/pond kit which includes detailed instructions, suggestions and specific design suggestions like part lists and working instructions. You can also go for installing your own solar components and pump, by buying a readymade fountain.

Here are a couple YouTube videos of people showcasing their own home built solar pond pumps:




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