|Generally, the following discussion
relates to fountains designed for indoor locations. (Outdoor fountains
have added concerns relating to electrical safety, exposure to
freezing temperatures, debris getting in the water, etc.) Also, this
discussion does not address the special mounting requirements for
wall-mounted fountains. For wall-mounted models, follow the
hanging instructions supplied with the fountain.
Fountains are typically easy to set
Assemble the Fountain
Usually, assembling a fountain involves simply putting together a
base reservoir, fountainhead, pump, tubing, and any additional decorative
material. Read and follow all instructions that come with your fountain.
The reservoir container or pool
usually serves as the base of the fountain. Set the pump in the bottom of the
reservoir container and secure it. Most pumps have suction cups on
the bottom which help hold the pump in place, if the inner surface of the
container is smooth. (The suction cups also act as sound insulators
between the pump and the reservoir.)
Look for the adjustment dial on your
pump and examine how it operates. Probably you will need to use it
later. Itís easier to get familiar with it now, before itís
covered by water and perhaps by other fountain components.
If you add any rocks or shells,
any debris off of them first.
Add water to the base - the reservoir container - of your fountain
up to about one-half inch to one inch below the top edge (follow manufacturer's
instructions). In any case, be sure there is enough water to
completely submerge the pump.
Because most, if not all, of the fountains and waterfalls listed on FountainFinder are self-contained and recirculate the water, you do not need to attach them to any plumbing fixtures. As water evaporates over time, simply use a cup, jug, bucket, or similar container to pour more water into the fountain.
Using regular tap water is fine, but
mineral deposits may reduce the performance of your pump over time.
So itís preferable to use distilled or reverse osmosis water. Also
consider adding to the water a product called Protec. This
popular additive prevents white scale deposits and mineral stains. (Note: Do not use
Protec if fish are in the water.)
Plug in and Adjust the Pump
Two safety rules. First, never run the pump unless it is submerged
in water. Second, take your hands out of the water and make sure the
plug and your hands are dry before plugging the cord in to the
electrical outlet. (Only use a properly grounded outlet. See "Safety
Thoughts" in "Where to Set Your Fountain.")
When you plug in the pump, the water
will begin flowing. Probably you will need to adjust the rate of
flow to achieve a desired visual and audible effect and possibly to
control splashing. You want the water to flow strongly enough to
create a nice effect, but not so strong that water splashes out of the
container. Look for the adjustment dial on your pump
and adjust the setting as needed. (See "Keeping Water Where It
Belongs" for more ideas on controlling splashing.)
Note: A pump has a motor, and no
motor is silent. A slight humming sound is natural.
Small potted plants, bonsai arrangements, stones, shells, and
statuary can be used to create a beautiful, natural setting with
your fountain as a centerpiece. Remember that plants need adequate
natural light. Check to be sure that leaves do not hang into the
fountain and divert the water flow onto your table or floor. Also,
be aware that decomposing leaves in the water can clog your pump.
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