Water Fountain Care
Just like our cars need gas, oil, and brake pads, so too will water fountains need some TLC. Some mechanical parts like pumps and hoses will not last forever and they are not designed to.
Using distilled water is recommended to fill your fountain and maintain the water level. Distilled water is pure, and should have no sediment in it and its use will prolong the life of the pump, as well as, the time between cleanings. However, purchasing distilled water can get expensive. The next best solution is using filtered water like through a Brita pitcher or a filter on your sink. Tap water contains minerals and chemicals that will build up and leave residues on your fountain.
The water usage on your fountain will vary depending on a variety of things, and water loss can be radically affected by humidity and heat. The lower the humidity, and higher the temperature, the faster water will evaporate. An outdoor fountain will evaporate faster than an indoor fountain. Also the longer your fountain is turned on the faster the water will evaporate.
One nice feature about a fountain is that the water flows down, that water will actually help clean your air, absorbing dust, floating fiber from clothing, smoke particles …the water sucks all kinds of junk out of the air! So fountains act as an air purifier, much like a good rain helps clear dust out of the air. With the water absorbing dust particles and releasing freshened air while water evaporates, the result is that over time there builds concentration of this dust in the water giving even distilled water a milky or dirty look. When this happens you’ll know that it’s time to clean your fountain and replace the water.
There are advantages to leaving your pump running all the time, but it is not required. When you leave the pump running, it will cut down on the wear and tear of the pump from starting and stopping it all the time. Continuous running also helps stop mineral buildup.
Clean your fountain periodically before problems develop. Using any gentle household cleaner and also vinegar and water will help with the chemical buildup. Use a soft brush or cloth. If you have algae growing in your fountain using a product called Fountec will prevent the growth of algae and is safe for kids and pets.
The pump should always be submerged in water. The water surrounding the pump cools the motor and the water flowing through the pump cools the bearings. At no time should you run the pump for an extended period of time without proper water flow and cover.