solar fountain pump ?????

plantmaven(8b/9a TX)August 16, 2013

Does anyone have a solar powered pump?
What are the pros and cons?

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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

guess not :>)

    Bookmark   August 18, 2013 at 10:22AM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

I was hoping someone would respond since I would love to try one of these, too, Plantmaven. I didn't answer because I wanted your post to stay at the top. I think I will keep bumping it up, just in case...

I had a wonderful three level fountain, but had to keep it on the deck in order to plug it in. Very simple, very zen fountain with three concrete bowls. When we adopted our two galloping gardeners, the son somehow got hold of the part that came up through the three concrete bowls and destoyed it. Never was able to find a copper or plastic tube just the right size to fit through and also attach to pump to retrofit a replacement. Now, haha, I have two concrete water dishes down on the upper patio and one concrete planter on the lower patio (yard has multiple levels-pain in the neck).

So, I am hoping you get a response now!

    Bookmark   August 18, 2013 at 11:20AM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

Thanks, I hope so, too.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2013 at 7:15PM
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organic_kitten(8)

I had one and it did fine for a year. It was a pump for the bird bath. I assumed the little solar panel was short lived, but I may get one again.
kay

    Bookmark   August 18, 2013 at 10:26PM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

When I was thinking of adding a solar fountain last year the info I found was not encouraging. This spring I thought I might try one anyway. My local nursery decided not to stock them again as they found them unreliable. Changed my plans.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2013 at 4:37AM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

Thanks for the input. I was checking online sites and the prices are worth considering.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 11:40AM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

OK, I don't have a fountain, but I have a solar pump for my rain barrels. There are certain things you need to take into consideration. #1 - does it have a battery. How long is the battery rated to work without a direct solar charge to the panel (after dark, on a cloudy day etc). How easy is it to buy a replacement battery - does the source of the pump sell the battery (important, since they last about a year).
As with any fountain, you need to size the fountain to the pump but it's even more important when it's solar simply because it's working on less power in general.
Eg. the size of this panel is about 7x7" and I don't see a battery housing. At $17 a review states it's good for 5 gallons, and that's only in direct sunlight on the panel. It won't work at any other time. This is not a good buy at all.
Now this one will work on battery power for 4 hrs. http://www.sears.com/sw-closeouts-3w-solar-powered-water-fountain-pump/p-SPM8016585511?prdNo=3&blockNo=3&blockType=G3 it's $100, you can see the size of battery you need for 4 hours with this extra large panel. It will move much more water and is a better deal for the money, but 4 hrs. is still not very long.
In my opinion this large pump would be http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004YROZMY/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=ecovilgre-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B004YROZMY
This last pump has a battery and a timer, and an energy saver mode. It's pricey but looks well designed. Make sure you can replace that battery with one found easily on the market. My solar rain barrel pumps were sold in many places but nobody had a replacement batteries in a year. We were able to convince our local water reclamation equipment source to find them and carry them.
Lastly I'd recommend contacting http://www.ntwgs.org/ and ask some questions. As if there is a place that carries your pumps locally and someone you can talk to.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 7:29PM
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NHBabs(4b-5aNH)

There's some info in a thread on the landscape design forum, see link below.

In the past I've seen other threads on solar powered pumps on the Landscape Design forum, and the consensus has always been that they don't last more than about a year, even when spec'ed and used by pros who do high end work and so aren't skimping on equipment.

There's been enough consensus that they are the reason that I don't have a solar pump. ;>/

Here is a link that might be useful: solar pump on landscape design forum

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 8:22PM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

I want it to cycle through my antique pump and the dish of an old bird bath

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 1:02PM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

Oh, I hope you can make it work-that would be so cool!

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 3:21PM
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roseberri, z6(6)

hi plantmaven,
I haven't posted in a long while and was just looking in today.
like groupgirl I didn't have a fountain but two solar pumps for two small/medium pond in our garden.
as mentioned by others they don't last more than 1-2 years and a con I had in Ohio that you wont worry about is they only run when there is sun!
The main reason I chimed in is to warn you about where you place the solar panel, I've had numerous accidents where Someone ran over the cord with the mower.
The pumps for both the fountains and pond are all plastic parts and very small and they have to be cleaned often to prevent jamming.
That is about all the info I have
I like your idea, it would be cute.
roseberri

    Bookmark   August 23, 2013 at 11:34AM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

Thanks everyone. My son found one at H****** Freight for $18, so even if it lasts only a few months that would be fine.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2013 at 12:43PM
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flowerladylorraine

Hello PlantMaven ~ We bought a floating solar fountain at H.F. and it lasted maybe a week. Took it back and got our money back. What a disappointment. We had it floating in our jacuzzi.

Have you tried your pump yet?

FlowerLady

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 1:02PM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

Not yet. I need for my son to find time to do this for me. Right now it is being perched on by the juvenile cardinals.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 8:28PM
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