And because I’m a big fan of solar energy, I’m looking into these choices. It’s better for the environment and less expensive, among other benefits.
Many people find the idea of having an entirely green solution intriguing, but there are various considerations before purchasing a solar-powered pump.
In this section, we’ll look at the best solar pond pump and the best solar fountain pump.
The Best Solar Pond Pumps
My Natural Pond MNP Aquaplancton 50w Twin Panel Solar Pump Kit
- POWERFUL SOLAR POWERED 898 GPH WATERFALL/FILTER PUMP KIT. REQUIRES SUNSHINE TO RUN. Max. Head 10 feet. Large pump (9x12x8 inches – may be too large for small fountains/water features under 100 gallons) twin 25W solar panels total 50W solar powered pond pump. A battery is available but NOT INCLUDED. You can see it and other solar kits and accessories by clicking “Visit the AQUAPLANCTON store” at the top of the page.
- The complete kit includes the solar pump which weighs about five pounds, two 25w panels, a 16-foot hose, and all connectors. You can be up and running in minutes. The pump has 16 feet of wire between it and the panels, but this can be expanded to 16 or 32 feet with our extenders. Please click "Visit the AQUAPLANCTON store” at the top of the page to see these and all our products.
- All our products are backed up by exceptional after sales service seven days a week based in CA. To contact us please click "AQUAPLANCTON" just under the "Buy" box to the top right. The kit has a one-year warranty. We pride ourselves on our customers service and will respond to calls and emails quickly. Please read all the details here before ordering. Please call or email us if you have questions.
As soon as we got this pump out of the box, we recognized it was a hefty piece of equipment. To begin, twin solar panels are producing 50W output, so we knew the pump would be largely based on that level of electricity.
One of the market’s most powerful solar pond pumps is the Aquaplancton Solar Powered Pump Kit!
Its two 25-watt solar panels (for a total of 50 watts!) can produce up to 898 GPH!
The package comes with a 16-foot hose to connect to your pond’s filtration or water feature and another 16-foot electrical wire to connect your pump to your solar panels. Add-on electrical wire in 16ft increments can be purchased if you require additional length.
This pump was put to the ultimate test, and it never let us down. We tested it on our waterfall, and the amount of water was ideal and powerful. Even after we hoisted the outlet pipe as high as we could, it produced more than 800 GPH nonstop.
The easy-to-clean pump has a dry run cut-off, which means it will never pump your pond dry if there is a leak in your pond, for example. This is critical if you have fish and want to keep your pond environment healthy.
The pump also has a proprietary brushless design, providing extended life and reducing maintenance requirements.
This pump is for you if you have a larger pond and/or wish to power normal-sized water features.
If this pump had a backup battery, which I expected at this price point, it would have been the greatest solar-powered pond pump we’ve ever evaluated.
- Ideal for larger ponds and smaller water features.
- The pump hose and electrical wires are extremely lengthy.
- Pump life is long and maintenance-free.
- One of the most powerful solar-powered pumps on the market, with an automatic dry run cutoff and a 50-watt panel.
- lack of a backup battery
Water Pump with Solar Panels from Sunnytech
- ⛲ PREMIUM QUALITY SOLAR POWERED BIRDBATH KIT - Crafted to perfection made of a highly efficient solar panel (1.8W) that is functional and provides 20,000 hours of lifespan. Plus, belt in brush-less motor with lower power consumption and will last longer compared to the ordinary solar fountain birdbath. In addition, it has no electric outlet or external battery, so it's not only easy to use but also safe for your feathered friends.
- ⛲ ENERGY SAVING FISH AND BIRD BATH FOUNTAIN - Help keep up a safe, fresh and healthy bathing environment for fish and birds and using sunlight energy on the panel. Enable birders to be ready to offer a cool drink or quick dip to their backyard birds without accidental harm. Great for bird bath, fish tank, small pond, pool and garden decoration, water circulation for oxygen which makes your yard looks cozy and inviting.
- ⛲ CONVENIENT & FUNCTIONAL WITH 4 KINDS OF SPRAY HEADS - Pump will start working in 3 seconds once exposed to sufficient sunlight. It comes with fitting accessories and 4 types of sprinkler heads for different water flows and water heights to prevent water splashing. Max water height: 70cm (27.6inch), Cord Length: 9.5Ft. Max water area: 150cm (59 inch). The height of water depends on the strength of the sunlight.
We assumed that this small, low-cost pump would not achieve the desired results out of the box.
It has restrictions, but it was sufficient for running a little water feature.
It came with detailed instructions, and connecting the small solar panel was simple.
It started working within seconds of attaching the panel and placing the pump in our shallow container pond. It arrived with four different fountain attachments, giving us a variety of alternatives.
We discovered that when the fountain was running, it kept tumbling over, which, if left unchecked, might quickly empty a small pond. As a result, making sure it’s steady and firmly in place is critical.
The Sunnytech Water pump is ideal for container ponds and birdbaths if you’re on a tight budget. Larger or deeper ponds are not recommended.
- Comes with four different size fountain attachments.
- The mall panel is ideal for birdbaths.
- A tiny pump with a high water flow rate
- 9-ft cable
- There is no backup battery.
- The small pump needs to be secure
- Limited power
ECO-WORTHY Solar Fountain Water Pump
- 【 20,000+ Lifespan-196 GPH Pump 】 - Max flow rate: 196 GPH (740 L/H). Max lift height: 5.6 FT (1.7 m). Long service life: 20,000+ hours. Cord length: 16 FT (5m). Detachable, safer.
- 【 New Model-12 Watt Solar Panel 】 - Upgrade from polycrystalline solar panels to monocrystalline solar panels. Higher cost, better quality, photoelectric conversion efficiency increased by 5-10%, the service life is more than 15 years if in proper use and storage.
- 【 Our Guarantee 】 - 1 Year Warranty - 100% Money Back Guarantee if our pump kit doesn't meet your water pumping needs! PLEASE READ prior to purchasing: This water pump is powered by a solar panel in direct sunlight (battery NOT included). The flow of water is determined by the sunlight intensity. DOES NOT run at night!
The Eco-Worthy solar-powered pond pump kit is an entry-level item with a very low price. It includes everything you need to start with a solar-powered pond, and the available sizes are sufficiently powerful.
Another 10w solar-powered pond pump and we were again impressed by how compact the pump and panel were. Could anything so little generate enough water to power a powerful fountain or waterfall? To be honest, it was adequate for our purposes. We tested it on a 5-foot waterfall, and it worked flawlessly. It did, however, require a lot of light to function.
It is available in three sizes: 5W, 10W, and 20W solar panel models, with two types of fountain heads to let you modify your spray pattern.
The lack of a backup battery is one of the unit’s major drawbacks. It will not work at night because it does not include a battery.
The packaging and manufacturer claim it has a capacity of 161 GPH (gallons per hour). However, we found it slightly less at roughly 140 GPH. Nevertheless, this was still enough to power the little waterfall.
The ECO-WORTHY Solar Fountain Water Pump Kit was adequate for the amount we paid, but was it significantly better than the prior model, which was significantly less expensive?
- 160 GPH brushless motor
- 16-foot cord with a 10-watt panel
- There is no backup battery.
- Only two fountain heads are included.
AEO Solar Water Pump Kit
- Perfect for Solar Fountain, Fish Pond, and Aquarium
We had heard that this machine was unreliable. However, the one we bought worked perfectly out of the box.
The unit is small, as is the solar panel, but it performed as expected. It immediately created a little trickle, which quickly transformed into a full and strong fountain within 20-30 seconds of the sun hitting the solar panel.
We then measured the water flow GPH and discovered it was adequate, but not the 196 GPH stated on the box. It was somewhere between 160 and 170 GPH. That is appropriate for a small waterfall or fountain.
The solar panel is extremely small, and as with other units, it is difficult to ensure that it receives enough sunlight to run continuously. So the unit did halt for a few seconds 2-3 times while testing.
This is typical among several solar-powered pond pumps. You can increase the size of your solar panel as long as the voltage remains constant. Else, the pump will be damaged. A 12-24V DC power supply powers this pump.
The AEO WATER PUMP KIT is similar to the other ones tested in that it has four fountain head attachments, but it produced a higher water flow of roughly 170 GPH in our tests.
- Power output 196 GPH 10W
- Motor with no brushes
- The pump head is suitable for fresh or saltwater
- has a 16-foot rope
- 5-6 foot reach.
- It did not create 196 GPH but rather 160-170 GPH.
- The instructions were unclear.
Solariver Solar Water Pump Kit
- The Solariver Solar Water Pump Kit moves large volumes of water without ever plugging into the grid! Perfect for large fountains, water features, ponds, streams, waterfalls, hydroponics, aquaponics, greenhouses, rainwater collection, animal troughs, natural pools or anywhere you need to pump water and don't want to run power to or just want to save on expensive energy bills!
- The durable and efficient submersible brushless magnetic pump has a long life (20,000+ hours), adjustable flow control, dry-run protection, removable pre-filter to prevent debris clogging impeller and is non-toxic to fish, frogs and other aquatic life. Maximum lift 6.5 feet (Under optimal conditions).
- The 20 watt solar panel is framed with aluminum, comes with a stake and can be placed up to 16 feet away from the pump with included power cord. Optional 16' extension cord sold separately allows for placement even further away from the pump.
The Solariver Pond Pump Kit has a stronger pump and wattage reaching 20 watts and 360 GPH. The 360GPH pump can lift water from a fountain up to 3 feet. The pump in this package is quite large. It does not appear to be a tiny pump and is extremely strong. In reality, it’s a standard DC pump with ponds, so you’re not getting a watered-down pump.
The pump contains an intake filter that prevents baby fish from entering and keeps the impeller from being clogged with debris.
When the sun is shining brightly, the 20-watt poly-crystalline solar panel is relatively large and capable of delivering adequate energy. Because there is no frame for angling options on this unit, you must position the panel flat on a surface in direct sunlight. However, the wire is pretty lengthy (16ft); thus, positioning the panel should be relatively simple.
It was a ‘plug and play’ solar-powered pump right out of the box. Although it did come with some clear instructions, no instruction was required.
This kit, like the others, does not include a battery backup. So unless you acquire a battery backup option, don’t expect it to run at night.
However, in terms of solar power, the pump is one of the most powerful we’ve tested, and the solar panels are huge enough to provide a significant quantity of current. Therefore, a great solar choice for small and medium ponds is searching for a low-cost solar fountain pump with high water lift heights.
- 360 GPH Plugin with a powerful 20W output
- The setup is simple.
- Outstanding customer service and warranty
- Three-foot-high fountain
- Rather pricey
- The construction quality is uncertain.
Do Solar Pumps Work?
Solar-powered pond pumps, like all other solar-powered products, have limits. Solar-powered pond pumps should not be compared to main-powered pond pumps.
Due to the electricity provided by the small and discreet solar panels, these pumps are low-cost backyard solar-powered pond pumps with substantially lower GPH outputs.
The average solar pond pump provides 100-250 GPH of water flow. This is suitable for operating a modest water feature, such as a fountain or waterfall, but not for running a pond filter system.
They are commonly utilized to offer a feature and a fair bit of water flow to difficult-to-reach garden ponds and patio ponds.
Solar Pump Installation Types
Let’s take a closer look at the two primary types of solar pond pumps now that you’ve better understood them. Solar fountain pumps and solar aerators are classified into three varieties based on how they are installed.
Pumps for External Solar Ponds
External solar pond pumps often provide greater power and are easier to clean and repair (since they do not need to be removed from the water). The disadvantage is that they are more expensive than their floating or submersible counterparts and are more difficult to conceal.
External pond pumps with solar panels are difficult to find, in my experience.
Submersible and floating solar pond pumps are becoming increasingly popular.
Solar Pond Pumps That Float
This pump will dwell on the surface of your pond or water garden, with a fountain or diffuser supplying oxygen to the water. This is an excellent alternative for individuals who want to offer oxygen to certain pond areas because the floating aerator can be relocated (it may also be moved for aesthetic purposes!).
Floating water pumps can also float around the surface naturally or be tethered to a specified spot, depending on the model. Furthermore, they are simple to set up!
Solar Pond Pumps that are Submersible
As the name implies, this pond pump is submerged underwater, naturally concealing it and making it quieter than a floating or exterior pond pump. Submersible water pumps are often less powerful than external equivalents but are less expensive.
The following are some of the benefits and drawbacks of solar-powered pond pumps:
The Primary Advantages of a Solar-Powered Pond Pump
The most obvious advantage of solar-powered ponds is that the solar panels that come with the kits gather energy from the sun and use it to power the pond pump. This is a green solution for your pond with no monthly energy costs.
Another advantage is that they are smaller and quieter than traditional pumps yet powerful enough to power modest water features.
Because they can function on only the sun’s rays, solar-powered pumps can also provide a backup solution for power outages that are not caused by weather. An excellent example would be if your location experiences rolling blackouts during the summer when the solar panels would be able to absorb a lot of electricity.
The Significant Drawbacks of Solar-Powered Pond Pumps
The essential thing to remember about solar-powered pond pumps is that they are not particularly powerful. Therefore, larger pond features will not be able to accommodate the largest solar-powered pond pump.
When it comes to solar-powered pond pumps, a pump with a flow rate of more than 250 GPH is regarded as “powerful.” This contrasts with ordinary pond pumps, which often pump more than 1000 GPH. As a result, they are not intended to replace typical pond pumps but rather to serve as a supplement, such as a fountain pump or aerator.
Solar-powered pond pumps will also have smaller batteries (if provided), which means they will store very little charge if the solar panels cannot harvest energy from the sun on a cloudy day. As a result, a backup system will almost certainly be necessary to operate the pump 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Is A Pump Necessary For A Wildlife Pond?
Wildlife ponds are natural ponds frequently found in inaccessible areas of the garden. This type of pond does not often include filters or pumps, but if you add fish, you may need to add some water movement.
Animals’ ponds do not usually have fish in them, but they sustain various intriguing wildlife such as insects, frogs, and other interesting critters. Furthermore, none of them require pure, clean water, which may be achieved by installing a filter. Thus a pump is not required.
You may, however, choose to include a water feature such as a stream or waterfall. This will necessitate using a solar-powered pump, such as the ones we’ve highlighted and tested.
How Do Solar Pond Pumps Operate?
You must set the panel directly in the sun’s beams, like with all solar panels. Then, when the sun’s rays strike the solar panel, it instantaneously generates electricity, which powers the pumps.
The power decreases when the sun goes down, and the pump slows or stops working.
Some pumps include built-in battery backups that allow them to operate even in low-light conditions.
Solar-powered pumps are appropriate for water features but not filters because they will stop working when it gets dark, potentially resulting in poor or even dangerous water conditions for your fish.
Pumps without a battery backup will cease to function when the sun’s rays cease to strike and charge the pump.
How Much Light Do They Require?
They, like many other solar panels, require direct sunshine to function. If there is insufficient light, the pumps will slow down. If there is no light, the pumps will stop working.
If your pump has a battery backup, it will automatically switch to battery power and continue to work when there is no light. Depending on the model, this can range from 1 to 10 hours on battery power alone.
When the light is good, really good models (pricey) charge the batteries throughout the day, as a result, you receive continuous running throughout the day and at night.
Because most solar panel pond pumps are just used to power a water feature and are not utilized to sustain life, it is not critical that they work at night or in low light. They are mostly used for adornment and entertainment.
Should I Get a Solar Pond Pump or an Electric Pond Pump?
In reality, this is the most commonly asked question, and the answer is dependent on what you expect from the pump.
Most individuals will find solar pumps more than adequate for powering a water fountain in a backyard pond.
If you wish to use it to power the main filtration system in a koi pond, I can guarantee you won’t be pleased with the results because koi ponds require continual filtering. And, as previously said, if your pond relies on an air pump to maintain safe oxygen levels, a solar pump isn’t the greatest option.
A solar pond pump will not be enough to support a healthy environment in these conditions unless you can be certain that enough energy is stored in the battery during the day and the device operates throughout the night.
As a result, an electrical pond pump will be necessary for many circumstances. This isn’t to suggest that a solar pump can’t support any features you decide to install in a larger pond that already has an electrical pump.
What Pump Size Will You Require?
Most solar pond pumps we’ve seen and shown here aren’t designed to power large pond filters, so GPH (gallons per hour) isn’t as critical.
In general, any pond larger than 1000 gallons will require an electric pump directly plugged into the mains to make an impact.
The higher the GPH output, the better the pond pump’s performance and the more water it can pump.
We recommend selecting one with a flow rate of 150-300 GPH since this will be plenty for most waterfalls and fountains.
What Is the Distinction Between Submersible and External?
Submersible pumps are physically submerged in your fountain or pond water, while external pumps are located outside the water.
Submersible pumps are ideal for small ponds, fountains, birdbaths, and so on, while external pumps are ideal for bigger ponds and pools.
When Should You Use a Solar Pump vs. a Conventional Pump?
While I usually encourage solar-powered anything – save the environment! – there are instances when a standard pump is a better option.
You should probably acquire a classically powered pump if you live somewhere where there isn’t a lot of sunlight – whether because of persistent cloud cover or seasonal variations that limit light.
Solar-powered fountain pumps generally have low wattage and are small in size, but this also means they have fewer solar cells and convert less UV radiation into useful energy.
Pond Aeration Using Pond Pumps
Any species, no matter how small, will require oxygen in the water to survive. Plants and water movement oxygenate wildlife ponds as well.
The best technique to increase pond aeration (oxygenation) is to provide water movement via a pond pump, air pump, or by installing a water feature.
Pond pumps powered by solar panels are ideal for this. When you install a wonderful-looking fountain, you not only add an attractive feature, but you also contribute needed oxygen to the water.
If you have fish in your pond, whether large or tiny, you must add aeration.
What Can You Do With a Solar-Powered Fountain/Pond Pump?
You may utilize your pump to power a few modest appliances.
- Ponds for koi
- Ponds with biological organisms
- Garden fountains and birdbaths
- Creeks in miniature
- Other minor ponds
- Fountains on the wall
- Bowl fountains and ponds
You’d need a larger, more powerful pump to run something like your pool. However, several solar-powered pumps can be utilized for this.
Is a Pump with a Battery Backup Necessary?
If constancy in the flow rate for your pond isn’t vital for your enjoyment – or the demands of your fish or turtle – a solar fountain pump, with or without backup power is a terrific option.
If a consistent flow is required, you should look for a solar fountain pump with a battery backup.
When the sunshine isn’t as intense as on other days and at night, the battery can keep things running if the solar cells don’t suck in enough energy to keep things running all night.
Battery Backup Options for Solar Pond Pumps
You’ve probably noticed that there aren’t any kits here that provide a battery backup solution. There are some compelling reasons for this. For one thing, the packages that do include one do not include large batteries, which means the backup option cannot be used at night.
The other issue is that providing a backup solution that allows the unit to work at night or during extended poor weather days can often be more expensive than the kit itself!
Some people connect the solar panel kit to a deep cell battery so that the solar panels can charge the battery. The battery then serves as an appropriate backup, allowing the unit to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Methods for increasing the efficiency of a solar pond pump include:
There are a few techniques to improve the efficiency of a solar pump so that you get the most out of it. Among these are:
- Placing solar panels in areas where the sun shines the brightest (11 am-3 pm)
- Solar panels should be cleaned regularly.
- Regularly cleaning the solar pump
- Fountain height is decreasing.
- Improving the quality of water (less pump work)
How to Select the Best Solar Pump
There are various factors to consider when deciding which pump to use for your yard’s water features.
Maximum Flow or Capacity of Water
Several pumps have multiple maximum flows depending on the voltage used to power them. This is usually expressed in gallons per hour – or GPH. This indicates how much water the pump can send through in one hour.
Larger fountains and ponds will require a higher maximum flow. On the other hand, small fountains and birdbaths are less of a concern, but check to make sure they will accomplish what you need.
The solar panel’s wattage
Because these pumps include a solar panel, you’re stuck with whatever wattage panel is included.
Check if the panel is powerful enough to power your pump in your environment. Low wattage, for example, would not be a good idea in Seattle, but it would be fine in California.
The length of the cord
The length of the cord dictates how far away the solar panel can be placed. If your fountain or pond is in a shady location, you’ll need to determine how far away the solar panel needs to be to power the pump.
Always assume that a little extra length will be required. For example, if your fountain is six feet away from a sunny place, purchase a cord at least eight feet long.
The highest height at which the water on the pump can shoot into the air is referred to as the max head.
That means if you buy a pump for a four-foot-tall fountain, the maximum head should be several inches higher than this, or the water will never flow out of the fountainhead.
How Deep Should the Water Be for a Solar Fountain Pump to Work?
This is determined by the brand and model of the solar pump, as well as whether it is submersible, external, or floating. The water should be at least 4-6 inches deep for most pumps I’ve worked with.
The maximum depth will be determined by the type of pump used. For example, a floating pond pump is not limited by a specified maximum depth because it just sits on top of the water regardless of depth.
A submersible pump requires the fountain spout to protrude above the surface of the water, so if your pond is deeper than the length of the spout, simply place it in a shallow edge of the pond or water garden.
It’s better to stick to the directions for the exact pond pump you’re using.
What Is the Most Effective Solar Pump?
We have tested several solar pond pumps over the years, and there was a clear victor among the Top 5 Solar Pond Pumps we tested in this article.
The My Natural Pond MNP Aquaplancton stood out to us as the best to use.
It had a long (16-foot) hose and a strong pond pump capable of producing approximately 900 GPH, which is more than many main-powered pond pumps.
Yes, it’s the priciest, but you get what you paid for. With its strong pump, this pump can power any water feature and even a filter. It’s the only pump we tested that can achieve this.
All of the others are exclusively appropriate for water features.
One of the most useful features was a dry cut-out mode, which kept the pump from overheating if the water level fell. In addition, the pump shuts down automatically when the water level falls to an unsafe level.
We’ve got a winner… My Natural Pond MNP Aquaplancton
Solar panel pond pumps are an excellent way to add an intriguing water element to your pond.
With these pumps, not having access to main electricity is not an issue. You’ll notice them working as soon as you connect the pump to the solar panel.
Cost, size, and what you want from your pump are all factors to consider when purchasing one. However, if it’s to power a pond filter, don’t bother because they won’t run 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Buy one immediately if you want to add a beautiful water feature to your garden pond. You will not be sorry.
Last update on 2022-09-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API