Although aquariums remain the most popular home environment for fish, fish owners are increasingly opting to house their fish in outdoor ponds.
A pond is likely to be the best environment for your fish’s physical and mental health. This is because ponds are larger than aquariums, on average, and are able to more closely mimic their natural habitat.
However, making a fish pond look appealing can be more difficult than decorating the inside of an aquarium. You’ll have a larger area to work with for a start, and choosing decorative features that stand out can be a challenge.
One of the most visually striking and functional centerpieces you can choose for your fish pond is a fountain.
Not only will a fountain look elegant and eye-catching, but fountains can actually be beneficial for any aquatic life living in the pond. This is because fountains help to aerate pond water, ensuring that all your fish are getting enough oxygen to promote healthy growth.
You can find fountains on the market for both small and large ponds, and we’re going to be sharing our top 6 pond fountains with you today!
OUR TOP PICK
The Pond Boss Floating Fountain is, without a doubt, one of the best pond fountains money can buy.
This fountain’s ¼ HP motor delivers powerful aeration, rated at 2000 gallons per hour.
3 fountain heads are included with the purchase of this fountain. You will receive a trumpet head, a 3-tier head, and a single-tier head.
By fitting these heads onto your fountain as needed, you can choose the kind of foam or spray that you want in your pond.
The floating design of this fountain makes it one of the easiest models to install, with no complicated wiring or professional installation required.
Thanks to the 3 built-in LED lights, the Pond Boss Floating Fountain can illuminate your pond automatically. The automated lighting system works through the use of a built-in light sensor, which detects lighting conditions at sunset and triggers the light system.
Measuring 18 x 13.38 x 12.5 inches, this fountain is decently sized. It has a minimum operating depth of 2.5 feet, which is only 0.5 feet over the minimum recommended depth for fish ponds.
Therefore, a bonus of the Pond Boss Floating Fountain is that it is suitable for larger ponds. On the other hand, this does mean that it won’t be suitable for small fish ponds.
- 2000 GPH - Powerful
- Floating design - Easy installation
- 3 fountain heads - Versatile aeration
- LED lighting - Decorative illumination
- Light sensor - Automatic lighting trigger
- 2.5 ft operating depth - Not for small ponds
If you’re looking for a pump-style pond fountain for your fish pond, we would recommend COODIA’s Submersible Pump Pond Fountain.
This is a very versatile pond fountain, with 4 detachable fountain head extensions. Using the provided extensions, you can adjust your fountain to deliver 2-tier, frothy, mushroom, and blossom spray action.
Another adjustable feature of this fountain is the water flow itself. The COODIA fountain features a flow adjustment knob so that you can manually tailor the water flow to your preference.
In addition to this, the COODIA Submersible Pump Pond Fountain comes with a detachable RGB LED lighting system that turns your fountain into a colorful, dynamic display.
Since it can be removed, though, it’s entirely up to you whether you want to incorporate this feature into your pond.
One of the best features of this fountain, in our opinion, is the built-in sponge filtration system that helps to prevent clogging. This minimizes the amount of manual maintenance you’ll need to do to keep your fountain operational for years to come.
The magnetic, ceramic rotator mechanism also happens to be very energy-efficient, so running this fountain won’t have a detrimental impact on your energy bills.
However, as this fountain is constructed to be relatively compact, it isn’t the best choice for larger ponds. We’d recommend this fountain primarily to fish owners with small ponds.
- 4 fountain heads - 2-tier, frothy, mushroom, and blossom jets
- Adjustable flow - Tailorable functioning
- RGB LED lighting - Visually dynamic
- Built-in filter - No clogging
- Magnetic rotator - Energy-efficient
- Compact design - Not for larger ponds
OKMEE’s Solar Fountain is one of the best purchases you can make if you’re looking for an eco-friendly solution to a pond fountain.
This fountain, which is best suited to small ponds and birdbaths, is 100% solar-powered and can generate up to 2.2 watts of power. Therefore, it is both eco-friendly and effective in small amounts of water.
Thanks to the 14-in-1 fountainhead, you can adjust your solar pond fountain to spray in 3 different modes or turn on the bubble mode.
The OKMEE fountain is made of laminated PET, which is a very durable and weather-resistant material. This bodes very well for the longevity of the product.
Speaking of durability, the fountain comes with a built-in filter that stops debris and dust from clogging the system. This makes the OKMEE fountain a low-maintenance addition to any small pond and prolongs its longevity.
Something else we appreciate about this solar fountain is the suction cup attachment. This type of attachment makes for an easy DIY installation that won’t take up too much time or energy.
Please be aware, however, that at 6.3 inches, this fountain will not be effective in larger ponds.
- 100% solar-powered - Eco-friendly
- 4-in-1 fountainhead - 3 spray modes and bubbles
- Laminated PET - Durable and weather-resistant
- Built-in filter - Prevents clogging
- Suction cup attachment - Easy installation
- 6.3-inch diameter - Only for small ponds
AISITIN’s Solar Fountain is another eco-friendly pond fountain option that we would recommend if your priorities are quality and the environment.
This fountain is able to operate at 5.5 watts, which is very powerful for a solar fountain. Although this fountain still won’t be well-suited to very large ponds, it can be used in small and medium-sized ponds with impressive results.
The AISITIN Solar Fountain comes with 7 detachable nozzles, each of which provides a different spray mode. This means that you have a lot of control over the appearance and everyday functioning of your pond fountain.
The durability of this fountain is extended by its water shortage protection function, which allows the fountain to go into protection mode in the event of a water shortage.
AISITIN’s Solar Fountain also comes with a built-in filter, although this filter does get clogged quite frequently, so you’ll need to be prepared to maintain your fountain regularly if you want it to last a long time.
8 LED lights are built into the fountain, producing a multicolored lighting effect guaranteed to liven up your garden.
- Solar-powered - Environmentally friendly
- 5.5 watts - Comparatively powerful
- 7 nozzles - Multiple spray modes
- Water shortage protection - Extends longevity
- 8 LED lights - Multicolored lighting
- Weak filtration system - Needs frequent unclogging
This Magic Pond Floating Fountain from Ocean Mist is definitely one of the best pond fountains on the market for larger ponds.
The motor is capable of putting out 1580 gallons of water per hour, which is powerful and efficient.
Ocean Mist’s Magic Pond Floating Fountain comes with 2 different nozzles: a 3-tier nozzle and a trumpet nozzle. The 3-tier nozzle produces a spray that is 9 feet tall and 7 feet across, while the trumpet nozzle produces a slightly more modest spray of 6 by 8 feet.
And the spray volume isn’t the only thing that’s impressive about this floating fountain. The RGB lighting system consists of 360 individual lights, resulting in a beautiful visual display that will turn your fish pond into a stunning centerpiece at night.
Thanks to the 33-foot power cables, and the fact that the fountain is designed to float, installation is simple and non-restrictive.
Unfortunately, the one downside to this fountain is that the price is very high-end for a floating fountain, meaning that it isn’t a budget-friendly purchase.
Ultimately, though, you get what you pay for in terms of quality and functionality, so if you’re prepared to part with more money for increased quality and longevity, this is the pond fountain for you.
- 1580 GPH maximum output - Powerful
- Large-scale design - Suited to larger ponds
- 2 nozzles - 3-tier and trumpet spray
- RGB lighting - Vibrant light display
- 33 ft power cables - Minimal installation restrictions
- High-end price - Not budget-friendly
The Half Off Ponds’ Aqua Marine Floating Fountain is another premium product that retails for a premium price.
Rated at 3,000 gallons per hour, this powerful floating fountain can be installed into large and small ponds due to its shallow minimum depth of 1.5 feet combined with its powerful (adjustable) spray of up to 13 feet tall and 18 feet wide.
The fountain comes with 3 nozzles so that you can switch up your preferred spray mode as needed.
Because the Aqua Marine Floating Fountain runs at a relatively low wattage considering its powerful operation, it is also an energy-efficient product that will beautify your pond without consuming too much energy.
A lighting kit is included with the purchase of the fountain so that your new pond centerpiece can be visible both during the day and at night.
Again, this fountain is not a budget buy, but it’s certainly worth every cent.
- 3,000 gallons per hour - Powerful
- 3 nozzles - 3 different spray modes
- Low-wattage - Energy-efficient
- Includes lighting kit - Visible at night
- Suitable for small and large ponds - Flexible application
- Premium price point - Not a budget buy
Best Fountains for Small and Large Ponds Buying Guide
The type of fountainhead(s) included with your pond fountain will determine the appearance and spray function of your fountain while it’s in operation.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to understand which heads or nozzles come with your fountain before you purchase it so that you can have an accurate picture of what your fountain will look like once it has been installed.
Common head types included with pond fountains are 1-tier, 2-tier, 3-tier, trumpet, froth (foam), blossom, and mushroom water action. Bubble action can also be created with some nozzles.
One important thing to bear in mind is that while some fountains operate on a 4-in-1 basis, meaning that a single nozzle or fountainhead can produce several spray patterns.
Alternatively, other fountains require a change of nozzle to alter the spray pattern. The latter will definitely require more effort to switch between patterns. However, most high-quality designs will allow for a relatively easy changeover.
When choosing a fountain, make sure that you know how far the fountainhead(s) extend from the pump.
This will determine the minimum operational depth, although this should be stated in the product guidelines. Speaking of minimum depth, let’s move on to our next key feature for consideration…
Before purchasing a fountain for your fish pond, you’ll need to take some measurements so that you know what size fountain will be compatible with your pond.
The minimum recommended depth for a fish pond is 2 feet, so any fountain that is exclusively operational at depths shallower than this will not be suitable for your fish pond - and if it is suitable, then your fish pond is most likely too small.
Your fountain’s head will need to rise above the surface of the pond water in order to produce the desired effect.
Therefore, you’ll need to add a couple of inches to the measurement from the bottom of your pond to the water’s surface in order to determine the appropriate fountain height for your pond.
The fountain’s diameter will also be instrumental in determining whether it will be suitable for small, medium, or large ponds.
For example, a circular fountainhead with a diameter of 6 inches is unlikely to provide enough water power for a large pond - although, of course, part of this comes down to the wattage produced by the motor.
Whilst we’re on the subject of fountain motors, this is a good time to discuss the aspect of power.
First and foremost, the amount of power you will require from your fountain depends on the kind of effect you want to produce in your pond as well as its size.
Therefore, before you begin your search for the perfect pond fountain, it’s best to have an idea in your mind of how substantial you want your fountain’s spray action to be.
This also pertains to the size of your pond, which is another reason why it’s important to have a solid understanding of the size of your pond prior to purchase.
Setting your expectations for fountain power alongside the size of your pond before you start your product research is also helpful. This is because it allows you to rule out certain types of fountains early on in the process.
For example, solar fountains typically generate the least power, which means that the resultant spray action is less substantial. There are 2 solar-powered fountains on our list of top 6 products with wattages of 2.2 and 5.5.
While the latter is certainly impressive for a solar-powered fountain, it is still unlikely to produce the effect that you’re looking for if your pond is on the larger side. The former rating is definitely only suitable for small-scale ponds.
Now, if your priority is energy efficiency and eco-friendliness, and you have a relatively small pond, then a solar-powered fountain could be absolutely perfect for you.
However, if you own a larger pond and want a very striking water feature, then you are likely to struggle with solar-powered units.
With all of that being said, you can’t simply rely on wattage to give you an accurate indication of how powerful the spray function(s) will be. To get a clear picture of this aspect of your new fountain’s functionality, you will also need to look at gallons per hour.
Gallons per hour, or GPH in its abbreviated form, is a measurement of how many gallons of water pass through the fountain’s filter every hour. The higher the number, the more powerful the fountain is.
If you have a larger pond, we recommend a GPH rating of at least 1,500 to 2,000, although some fountains built specifically for large ponds can have GPH ratings of 3,000.
Please bear in mind that the water flow rating stated in the product guidelines may not always be accurate representations of the power of the unit because water flow is reduced according to spray height.
To get a more accurate picture of how your fountain will perform once in operation, seek out a flow rate to spray height chart on the manufacturer’s website or contact the manufacturer for further clarification.
If you want your pond fountain to last you several years (which we assume that you do), you’ll need to prioritize certain features.
Namely, you’ll want to ensure that the materials that your fountain is made of are strong enough to withstand the test of time and that there is a filtration system to prevent clogging.
In terms of materials, you will want to avoid plastic components because these are unlikely to be durable enough for long-term, intensive use.
Therefore, the primary materials you should be looking for are metals and ceramic. If you choose a metal fountain, however, please make sure that all components are rust-resistant for prolonged pond use. Both ceramic and metal are durable and, when properly treated, corrosion-resistant.
A simple sponge-based filtration system will also go a long way towards keeping your fountain operational for as long as possible.
Because water has to pass through the rotator inside the fountain in order to come out through the fountainhead, any debris, dirt, dust, or other contaminants in the water can present a clogging hazard.
In serious cases, a blockage can cause irreversible damage to the internal mechanics of your pond fountain.
It is important to remember that not all filters are created equal, so while some filtration systems will be able to run for weeks or even months at a time without needing to be cleared out, others will become clogged much more quickly.
Therefore, before you purchase a fountain, we always recommend reading reviews like the ones we have provided above for information regarding the efficiency of individual built-in fountain filters.
After you first install your new fountain, you should keep checking it regularly to make sure that it is not clogged.
If you notice that your fountain’s filter has become blocked, you will need to clean it as soon as possible, both to ensure its continued longevity and clear away any debris that could eventually present a hazard to your fish.
For more information on how to maintain a pond fountain’s filter, see our FAQ section below!
All pond fountains use energy in one form or another to work. Because some fountain systems use more energy than others, you’ll need to think about efficiency and affordability before you commit to a fountain unit.
If you’re concerned about the impact of your energy or electricity consumption on the environment, we recommend opting for a solar-powered pond fountain.
You can get these compact, eco-friendly fountain units for very affordable prices through online retailers, as showcased in our review section above.
Remember to check the rated wattage of your chosen fountain to get an estimate of how your energy bills will be impacted by your purchase.
By far the easiest types of fountains to install in ponds are floating and suction cup units.
Floating fountains only require the use of power cords, which will usually be included with the purchase of the fountain.
There is normally no other mounting process to complete. We would recommend checking the lengths of the included power cords before you complete your purchase, however.
Suction cup installation is most common in solar fountains. You might need to do some very minor threading using a fishing line or similar material, but detailed instructions on the correct process should be provided in your user manual.
Having a lighting system working in conjunction with your fountain is totally optional, but if you want your fountain to be visible at night, built-in or attachable lighting is definitely a feature to consider.
Most pond fountains that include lighting use LED lights because this type of lighting is highly energy-efficient and long-lasting.
If you have a solar-powered fountain, please be aware that any built-in lighting may only be visible during the daytime, when the fountain collects its energy from the sun. The same goes for the actual operation of the fountain itself.
Frequently Asked Questions
How does a water fountain work?
Water fountains work using two key components: a pump and a fountainhead (nozzle).
The pump channels the water up through the nozzle so that the spray comes through the surface of the water, creating a fountain effect.
When the water comes back down, it should fall back into the pond so that the water levels are not diminished. If your pond loses water, it may eventually incur a water shortage, which is obviously very dangerous for your fish but may also damage your fountain.
For this reason, we recommend choosing fountains with built-in water shortage protection.
Are electric water fountains safe?
While the idea of submerging an electrical unit into a pond may sound counterintuitive, rest assured that fountains produced by reputable manufacturers are totally safe to use.
This is because any electrical wiring will usually have watertight protection in the form of epoxy.
Pumps for pond fountains can produce anywhere between 12 and 120 volts, but no matter what your fountain’s voltage rating is, a block of epoxy should make it completely safe when used correctly and under the right conditions.
Please refer to the safety guidelines provided with your fountain for unit-specific instructions on how to use the fountain safely. The main things to remember are not to let the power outlet get exposed to water and not to touch any live wiring.
How can I build a platform for my pump?
If the bottom of your pond is uneven or you need to raise your pump to prevent clogging, you can construct a platform for your pump.
The best material for this is red brick (specifically, clay brick). Stack the bricks at the bottom of the pond so that they form a stable and level surface for your pump. Remember to keep submerged pumps at least 12 inches under the surface.
How can I maintain my pond fountain?
No matter how high-quality your fountain is, you’ll need to do some maintenance now and again to keep it running smoothly.
The most important thing is to check your pond regularly and try to fish out any debris or algae that might clog your filter. You should also be checking your filter to make sure that it isn’t blocked or about to become blocked.
If you notice any clogging, take your fountain apart and clean it thoroughly using a small cleaning brush (if you have a spare, soft-bristled toothbrush, this could also work) and running water.
Don’t introduce any harsh chemicals into the filter since any residue could impact the quality of the water in your pond.
Remember to take your fountain out of the pond as the weather gets colder to prevent any damage as a result of freezing temperatures.
Remember, the key features to consider before purchasing a fountain for your fish pond are fountain type, nozzle/fountainhead type, size, power, durability, energy consumption, and installation. If you want nighttime visibility, you’ll also need to think about LED lighting.
To keep your fountain in good working order for years to come, remember to check it frequently for clogging and clean it thoroughly when required. Don’t leave the fountain exposed to freezing temperatures, and always read the provided electrical safety instructions.