Selecting Your Fountain:
Each and every fountain Nick’s Garden Center sells comes with it’s own pump and “pump kit” that includes all necessary tubing, connectors, and shims for leveling. From late April through September Nick’s has a great selection of fountains up and running to help in the selection process. After all, the sound the water makes is just as important as how the fountain looks. Once you select a fountain Nick’s can either load it up in your vehicle or schedule a delivery and installation.
Getting your Fountain Home and Setup:
Nick’s can deliver and setup your fountain for a fee which includes delivery, setup, and ensuring it’s running properly before we leave. All the fountains Nick’s carries are made out of concrete and the most difficult thing about installing them is their weight, this is why the delivery and installation fee is different for every fountain. Large fountains my require 4 or 5 team members to lift and smaller fountains only 2 so Nick’s charges accordingly. Nick’s Fountain Installation fee is quoted for prepared sites.
No water line is required for fountain installation. Once filled, water is recirculated via the included pump. The pump should be plugged into a properly grounded 110 volt (AC Only) GFCI protected receptacle. Consult an electrician if one is not in your desired area.
A flat level surface is critical to ensure proper water flow. It is best to install large basin fountains on a layer of sand. Pedestal fountains can be installed on a level stepping stone. In general, a well prepared base of flagstone or other hardscaping is best to ensure stability.
When assembling your fountain yourself be sure to test the pump first to ensure it works. Kinked tubing is also a trouble area when setting up keep an eye out for this. Finally, most fountain pumps have a flow control that will enable you to lower or raise the flow of water going through your pump. If the flow seems low check to make sure the flow is turned up or if the flow is too high and there is excessive splashing lowering the flow will save you from having to fill your fountain constantly.
Enjoying Your Fountain:
Once your fountain is up and running it’s important to keep it full of water. How often you need to do so depends on how much it splashes and how fast the water evaporates. Some fountains can run for days on end and others only a half day before going dry. Keep a close eye and only run your fountain when you are home to see how it behaves. To be sure it does not run dry you can use an available outlet remote to conveniently turn on and turn off your fountain without plugging and unplugging it each time, these are available at Nick’s. Be sure the pump is fully submerged in water for optimal fountain performance.
In addition to filling your fountain as needed it’s important to keep the pump intake free of debris. All fountains Nick’s carries will have access to the pump via a pump door. If your fountain is full of water but not properly flowing it may be clogged with debris. Access the pump and clear the intake of accumulated debris. Falling leaves, falling tree blossoms, cotton woods, mulch, and countless other organics surprisingly find their way into fountains.
The water in your fountain can eventually turn green or a green film will cover the underwater fountain surface. To combat this you can simply use a rag or a plastic brush to light scrub the algae film off and drain the water and refill. There are also algae treatments specific for fountains that can be added.
Be sure to use an algaecide specific for fountains that will not leave a residue, Nick’s caries these and will be happy to show you. We have seen algaecides for ponds leave a white coating on fountains making them unsightly. If hard water stains are troubling you there is a treatment for that too, fountains with darker finishes can have noticeable buildup. DO NOT use bleach to prevent algae as this can also leave a harsh residue altering the stain.
Winter Fountain Care:
Colorado can be harsh on your fountain and little precaution can ensure your investment lasts for years. Although a drained empty fountain can withstand freezing temperatures it’s still in danger of cracking from freezing snow melt. In the fall drain your fountain completely and cover it with a tarp that’s tied down or use a fountain cover that’s available at Nick’s. Covering it will ensure it not only stays clean but that it also does not crack.
If left uncovered snow that lands in your fountain melts and the water pools when it’s warm out. If there is enough water that pools the next time there is a frost or the night is cold enough the water will turn to ice which will then expand and possibly crack your fountain. We usually see this in the smaller blows that have another concrete part in them. The freezing and thawing began to “eat” away at the concrete and the part is ruined and no longer usable. This can of course be prevented by covering your fountain once it’s unplugged and empty. The pump can stay in the fountain all winter long if the fountain is emptied and covered. What would damage a pump is freezing water from snow melt. If it is kept dry there is no danger of it being damaged by expanding freezing water.
For further information give Nick’s a call we are here to help. 303-696-6657
Useful information From Manufacturers Links
Al’s Garden Art FAQ
Al’s Garden Art Helpful Hints
Campania International Fountain Care