Installing Your Fountain

Fountains are typically easy to set up.

Assemble the Fountain

Usually, assembling a fountain involves simply putting together a base reservoir, fountainhead, pump, tubing, and any additional decorative material. Read and follow all instructions that come with your fountain.

The reservoir container or pool usually serves as the base of the fountain. Set the pump in the bottom of the reservoir container and secure it. Most pumps have suction cups on the bottom which help hold the pump in place, if the inner surface of the container is smooth. (The suction cups also act as sound insulators between the pump and the reservoir.)

Look for the adjustment dial on your pump and examine how it operates. Probably you will need to use it later. It’s easier to get familiar with it now, before it’s submerged in water.

If you add any rocks or shells, thoroughly rinse any debris off of them first.

Add Water

Add water to the base - the reservoir container - of your fountain up to about one-half inch to one inch below the top edge (follow manufacturer's instructions). In any case, be sure there is enough water to completely submerge the pump.

Because most, if not all, of the fountains and waterfalls listed on this site are self-contained and recirculate the water, you do not need to attach them to any plumbing fixtures. As water evaporates over time, simply use a cup, jug, or similar container to pour more water into the fountain.

Using regular tap water is fine, but mineral deposits may reduce the performance of your pump over time. So it’s preferable to use distilled or reverse osmosis water. Also consider adding to the water a product called Protec. This popular additive prevents white scale deposits and mineral stains. (Note: Do not use Protec if fish are in the water.)

Plug in and Adjust the Pump

Two safety rules. First, never run the pump unless it is submerged in water. Second, take your hands out of the water and make sure the plug and your hands are dry before plugging the cord in to the electrical outlet.

When you plug in the pump, the water will begin flowing. Probably you will need to adjust the rate of flow to achieve a desired visual and audible effect and possibly to control splashing. Look for the adjustment dial on your pump and adjust the setting as needed.

Note: A pump has a motor, and no motor is silent. A slight humming sound is natural.