How To Select The Best External Pond Pump For Your Pond

How To Select The Best External Pond Pump For Your Pond

Learn more about how to find the right external pond pump for your pond with these helpful tips and recommendations.

Ponds are an excellent addition to your home or commercial property - whether you want to hold unique fish species, grow aquatic plants, or simply add a tranquil touch to your outdoor space. 

However, maintaining a pond requires regular upkeep and proper equipment. The last thing you want after investing in a beautiful pond is for it to become stagnant and unsightly. That's why selecting the right external pond pump is crucial in keeping your pond clean and healthy.

How Pump Ponds Work

A pond pump offers a convenient and efficient way to circulate water through your pond, keeping it oxygenated and free from debris. 

As the pump draws in water from the bottom of the pond, it also picks up any dirt or debris that may have accumulated at the bottom. The water is then pushed through filters, which remove any impurities before returning the clean water back into the pond.

The Benefits of A Pond Pump

Obviously, a pond pump can help keep your pond clean and healthy, but it also offers a variety of other benefits that may surprise you:

  1. Prevents stagnation and algae growth: Stagnant water encourages algae growth, which can harm your pond's ecosystem. A pond pump keeps the water moving, preventing algae from thriving and keeping your pond clear.
  2. Oxygenates the water: Fish and other aquatic creatures need oxygen to survive, and a pond pump helps provide this essential element to their habitat.
  3. Reduces mosquito breeding: Standing water is a breeding ground for mosquitoes, but a continuously moving surface prevents them from laying eggs.
  4. Enhances overall appearance: A well-functioning pond pump creates movement in the water, adding visual interest to your pond. It also helps prevent debris from collecting on the surface, keeping your pond looking clean and inviting.

What Is An External Pond Pump?

Pond pumps come in a variety of types - including submersible and external pumps. 

External pond pumps are installed outside of the pond, usually on land or in a pump house. They work by drawing water from the pond through an intake hose and pushing it back into the pond through an outflow hose.

External pond pumps offer a few benefits over submersible pumps:

  1. Easier maintenance: Since external pumps are located outside of the pond, they are easier to access for cleaning and maintenance.
  2. Less heat transfer: Submersible pumps can generate heat that can harm fish and plants in your pond. External pumps keep this heat away from the water, protecting your pond's inhabitants.
  3. Can handle larger flow rates: External pumps have a higher flow rate capacity, making them ideal for larger ponds or those with waterfalls and other features.

Understanding Pump Capacity

Pond pumps are rated by their flow rate, measured in gallons per hour (GPH). It is important to choose a pump with the right capacity for your pond size. Using an undersized pump may result in insufficient circulation, whereas an oversized pump could lead to unnecessary disruption and strain on fish and plants.

Other Considerations for External Pond Pumps

In addition to flow rate, there are a few other factors to consider when choosing an external pond pump:

  • Head height: This refers to the vertical distance the water must be lifted from the pump and back into the pond. Make sure to choose a pump with enough head height capacity for your specific pond setup.
  • Energy efficiency: Look for pumps with energy-efficient motors to save on electricity costs in the long run. They may cost a bit more on the front end, but can save you money in the long run.
  • Noise level: Some pumps can be quite loud, so if you have a quiet backyard or are sensitive to noise, look for models with lower decibel levels.

Top External Pump Options

So, which external pumps are worth considering for your pond? At Living Water Aeration, we offer a lineup of excellent external pond pumps that are sure to meet your needs. Check out some of our top picks below:

Artesian Pro External Pump - Self-Priming High Flow

Living Water Aeration's Artesian Pro line offers self-priming external pumps ideal for medium flow, medium head applications where the convenience of an external, self-priming design is desired. Key features include:

  • Self-priming ability up to 5' above water level for easy startup
  • 3" inlet/outlet unions included
  • Extra-large strainer basket to reduce cleaning frequency
  • Very quiet operation thanks to an open drip-proof motor design
  • Available in 3/4 HP, 1.5 HP, 3 HP, and 5 HP models with varying flow rates and max head heights

These versatile pumps are great for ponds requiring medium water flow while still providing enough head pressure for water features like small to medium waterfalls or fountains.

Great Value External Pump - Self-Priming Option

For those seeking quality and value, the Great Value line provides affordable yet reliable self-priming external pond pumps. Highlights include:

  • UL-listed, energy-efficient 115V motors
  • Large strainer basket with a clear lid for easy inspection
  • Safety rated for pool use
  • 1.5" inlet/outlet with free unions included
  • One-year warranty
  • Available from 1/2 HP up to 1.5 HP self-priming models

With a combination of performance, convenience features, and competitive pricing, these pumps are an excellent choice for budget-conscious pond owners.

EX Series External Pump - High Head

When you need to move serious amounts of water or have extremely tall water features, Living Water Aeration's EX Series high head external pumps deliver incredible power. Features include:

  • Capable of flow rates up to 13,200 GPH and head heights over 70 feet
  • Continuous-duty, weatherproof motors require no additional protection
  • Non-self-priming design for flooded suction or use with check valves
  • Dual voltage 115/230V models available (EX11200 and EX13200 are 230V only)
  • Perfect for tall waterfalls, fountain nozzles, and long plumbing runs

With their combination of massive flow capacity and high head pressure, the EX Series pumps allow you to create striking, high-output water features like nowhere else.

Shop The Best in External Pond Pumps - and More - with Living Water Aeration

From our top-of-the-line pond pumps to essential aeration equipment, Living Water Aeration offers the best selection of high-quality products for your pond or water feature. 

Plus, our expert team of pond specialists is always happy to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have. Shop now and see the Living Water Aeration difference for yourself!

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What are the main advantages of external pond pumps?

External pond pumps offer several key benefits over submersible pumps, including easier maintenance access, reduced heat transfer to the pond water, higher maximum flow rates, and often longer lifespans.

How do I determine the right pump size for my pond?

The main factors are your pond's volume (gallons) and desired water turnover rate per hour. Also, consider any water features like waterfalls that require higher flow rates. Living Water Aeration has a handy pond calculator to recommend properly sized pumps.

What is pump "head height" and why is it important?

Head height refers to the maximum vertical distance a pump can push water. For ponds with raised waterfalls or fountains, you'll need a pump with enough head height capacity.

Are external pumps noisy?

Many external pond pumps are designed for very quiet operation. However, larger high-flow pumps may produce more noise. Living Water Aeration's options, like the Artesian Pro, are engineered for whisper-quiet performance.

Do external pumps require more maintenance?

Not necessarily. Since they reside outside the water, external pumps are typically easier to access for routine maintenance and cleaning compared to submersible pumps.

Can external pumps run dry?

No, allowing an external pump to run dry can severely damage it. Living Water Aeration's non-self-priming models require a flooded suction setup, while their self-priming pumps can draw water from limited depths.

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