Last Updated on 1 year ago by Nicky Johnson
A pond pump is an essential part of building a pond and one of the critical elements that keep it healthy. With so many types of pumps to choose from, where do you start? Do you choose a waterfall pond pump or filter pump? Do you need high pressure or not?
If you’re new to ponds and are getting to grips with the question of pumps, we are here to help.
We’re going to outline the main types of pond pump and their benefits.
Hopefully, by the end of this page, you’ll have a much better idea of the type of pond pump you need!
Types of pond pump
There are multiple types of pond pumps with some crossover. What follows are the main types of pumps you’re likely to come across.
Fountain or waterfall pond pump
A fountain or waterfall pond pump is designed to power a water feature. Some pumps will be able to supply a fountain or waterfall while other pumps can do both.
Fountains require high flow rates and will need adequate heat for the size of the fountain you’re using. Fountain pond pumps can come with a ‘T’ piece to also feed a filter.
Waterfall pond pumps can be lower power pumps that provide enough flow to keep water moving as well as feed a filter.
A fountain or waterfall pond pump should be sited off the pond floor to help prevent blockages.
A filter pump is your standard pond pump and makes up the majority of the market. They are quiet, low-power pumps designed to work 24/7 with little or no maintenance.
They draw water from the pond and feed it into the filter with enough pressure to exhaust cleaned water out the other side.
A filter pump can be sited on the pond floor or attached to the side depending on your needs.
Submersible pond pump
Submersible pond pumps are designed to sit at the bottom of the pond and feed a filter or water feature.
They are used in all shapes and sizes of ponds, from small up to large, and come in a range of capacities.
Most filter pumps and the majority of waterfall pumps are submersible. They are designed to circulate water to a filter and help prevent algae growth by keeping the water moving.
Submerged pond pumps need very little maintenance but should be checked frequently for blockages and to ensure free water flow.
External pond pumps
External pond pumps are less common than submerged pumps. They sit at the side of a pond outside the water and tend to be a larger and higher power than submerged pumps.
They are often used for larger ponds where a submerged pump wouldn’t have the power to adequately circulate water around the area.
This type of pond pump would require a hard standing of some kind and cover to protect it from the elements.
All in one pond pump
The final pump in the mix is an all-in-one pond pump. This combines the pump and filter in one unit and is often used in smaller ponds.
The idea is to provide a single unit that delivers what the pond needs with low maintenance and low overhead. These units won’t usually have a clarifier but will include a filter.
An all-in-one pond pump can sit at the bottom of a pond and requires very little maintenance.
Can I use more than one pond pump?
Yes, you can use more than one pond pump. If you have a larger pond or want to feed a filter and/or a fountain or waterfall, you can use more than one pump.
Multiple pumps are useful for shaped ponds, larger ponds or where you want a dedicated pump for a water feature and one for your filter and clarifier.
Just make sure the flow rate of the pump is suitable for the size of the pond and you should be fine!
What size pond pump do I need?
The size of the pond pump you need depends on the size of your pond and what you want the pump to do. The popular sizing requirement would be to be able to circulate all your pond water within 1 hour.
There’s a lot of calculation that goes into sizing a pond pump so we’ll write a dedicated article on that subject soon!