Check out this DIY solar water fountain we made for less than $30. It has been running on the back patio for two years now, and I find it just delightful. Here’s how you can make one of your own:
What you’ll need:
- Solar Fountain Pump
- Fountain container (with or without hole in the bottom)
- Decorative rock from the Dollar Store
- Silicon (optional, only needed if your container has a hole, i.e. a planter)
- Tubing (optional)
How you’ll do it:
Head on over to your favorite website and purchase a solar fountain pump. They should be no more than $20-30, with shipping (Like this one!). You can pick up a fancier one with a battery backup for improved performance. I recently purchased this one for my larger pond and really like it, but it was a little more expensive.
While you are waiting for the pump to arrive, you can search for the perfect container. I found the planter pictured at Goodwill for $3. I liked that there was no hole in the bottom and it was glazed. It also has a pretty pond scene. I just wanted something simple. The plus to having a hole in the bottom is the cable would be hidden. The downside is it has a possibility of leaking.
You will also need to visit the dollar store and buy whichever filler rock or marbles you like best. Buy more than you need, because you’ll likely use them. Trust me.
When the pump arrives, assembly is quite simple. Connect the solar panel to the pump (if you container has a hole in the bottom you will need to feed the cable through an then connect it, of course). Next, fill with your selected rock. I placed a few pieces of 2×4 blocks we had laying around to help take up some space so I didn’t need as much rock. Then fill with water and place in a sunny location! Easy Peasy!
I had to purchase a piece of tubing to move the water outlet to the top of the planter. If you do too, make sure you take the pump with you to pick the correct size. I had to heat the tubing to get it to slip over the pump outlet, however the tubing was the perfect size for the bubbler attachment.
Since this is a solar fountain with a small panel and no battery backup, water flow will be determined by the sunlight. Low sunlight can cause little or intermittent water flow. Also, most pumps will come with different attachments, so feel free to experiment! I wanted a bubbler. You may find that the attachments result in the water squirting too high in the air. A little cotton under the cap will help.
You can also get really creative if you’d like. These pumps can move water quite well. You could have an old watering can that pours into a basin. Place the pump in the basin and run tubing to the watering can. The possibilities are endless!
I really love solar pumps. Here is another way I use them. This is a little patio pond I created this year out of a stock tank. It is filled with plants and fish, and the bees really enjoy it as well!