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A 20-pound fountain with 2 levels. Works off of solar power or a battery pack that charges in sunlight. It is 23 inches wide and 35 inches tall. Sturdy with fiberglass and resin construction. Includes backup battery pack.
May be challenging to ensure parts are level when setting up.
Birdbath-style fountain made of polypropylene and resin. The pedestal is 28 inches high and birdbath is 20 inches in diameter. Features interchangeable heads to achieve a wide variety of spray patterns.
The fountain's spray mechanism has a tendency to shift positions.
Concrete fountain flows water into one basin. Works off of sunlight. Includes pump, filter, and cord for connecting the pump to the solar panel. Recycles the water. About 16 inches long and 13 inches high.
The pump may not be powerful enough.
The black resin and fiberglass fountain features a pedestal with a ball and fountain on top. It is 13 inches long and 32 inches high. Works off of sunlight. Saves energy for use when the sun is not out.
The charging feature may not work well.
The solar-powered round fountain uses 3.5 watts of energy and is 7.1 inches across. Includes 6 jet attachments for different spray styles. Water shoots up to 2.62 feet high. Works on pools, ponds, birdbaths, and more.
May not hold any power or work when there is no sunlight.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
A fountain or similar water feature is a great addition to any yard, whether compact or expansive, but installation can be a pain. However, solar fountains don't need an electricity hookup for power or plumbing connected to the main water supply, making them the simplest choice for anyone who wants a garden fountain. You can find all kinds of solar fountains, from simple pumps to large decorative stone extravaganzas, and everything in between.
Once you've decided to buy a solar fountain, there's still plenty to think about. You'll need to decide what you want your fountain to look like and what type of material it should be made of. Beyond aesthetics, you also want to consider the wattage of the solar panel and whether it can charge a backup battery for those times when there is no sunshine. Read on to learn more about solar fountains and what features are worth the money. Check out our favorite solar fountains, too.
Solar fountain pump: A large number of the solar fountains on the market are simply pumps with an integrated solar panel. These aren't freestanding models; they need to be placed in a container of water to work. People often put them into birdbaths, but you can also use them in ponds, pools, or any decorative item that can hold at least a few inches of water, such as a large urn.
Solar fountain: Solar fountains include the whole body of the fountain, in addition to the solar pump. These are usually quite decorative and designed to be garden focal points, although some models are smaller and simpler than others.
If you're opting for a full solar fountain, what material is best? While you can find stone and ceramic models, those made from resin are more common and significantly cheaper, too.
Watts: The power of a solar panel is measured in watts (W). Because the pumps that run solar fountains don't use a huge amount of power, the solar panels on these fountains are usually fairly low wattage because that's all they need. Expect basic solar pumps to have solar panels of between 1 and 3 watts, and full solar fountains to have 5 to 15 watts. The greater the wattage, the more electricity it can produce when exposed to the same conditions.
Battery backup: No place is sunny 24/7, which is why a large number of solar fountains have a battery backup. The solar panel charges the battery with the power it harnesses from the sun, in addition to running the fountain. When the sun goes down or is hidden by clouds, the battery kicks in so your fountain can keep running. A fully charged backup battery can last anywhere from a couple hours to half a day. Most solar fountains indicate the battery life in the product specifications.
Spray type: Some solar fountains allow you to choose from a number of different spray types, from a sprinkler style with plenty of height to a slow trickle. Occasionally, you'll find a fountain with a switch or dial to change from one spray to another, but often you need to change the nozzle to change the spray. You can find fountains that include three or four nozzles to give you a variety of spray types to choose from.
Style: Solar fountains range from simple and contemporary with clean lines to classic, ornate styles, not unlike what you might find in a historic Italian garden. The style of solar fountain you choose comes down to your personal preferences, in addition to the style of your yard. For instance, an extremely modern solar fountain might appear out of place in a traditional cottage garden.
LED lights: You can find solar fountains that also have LED lights that turn on when the sun goes down. While it isn't an essential feature, it does look attractive and adds another element to your fountain.
The price you pay for a solar fountain depends on the type, size, and quality.
Inexpensive: Basic solar pumps cost around $15 to $30, but you need to place them in some kind of vessel.
Mid-range: Resin solar fountains cost roughly $100 to $200.
Expensive: High-end resin, stone, or ceramic models are priced in the region of $300 to $500.
We've listed our top five solar fountains above, but you can find more that are worth closer examination. The YONSIEO Solar Birdbath Fountain Pump is another simple solar fountain pump you can add to a birdbath, pond, or water-filled statue. Its 2.5-watt solar panel is plenty powerful to run a basic pump and is more powerful than many similar options. It also features an 800 mAh battery backup to store power for use when the sun goes down. The Sunnydaze Solar On-Demand Water Fountain is made from stone-like resin and fiberglass, which is affordable yet durable and attractive. The cascading design flows water between bowls on three different levels. The movable solar panel can be positioned in a sunny spot, and the backup battery can store enough power to run for four hours without sunlight. The Kenroy Home Tiered Solar Fountain is an excellent option in a classic style with a gorgeous sandstone finish. Measuring 44 inches high, it's large enough to be a notable centerpiece in your garden. The solar panel is easy to position in a convenient, brightly lit spot.
Q. Where should I position my solar fountain?
A. If your solar fountain has fixed solar panels built into the body of the unit, you must place it in a spot that gets sun for as much of the day as possible. If the solar panel is movable, you can be more flexible about where you position the fountain. As long as the cable is long enough to set the solar panel up somewhere sunny, the fountain itself can be in full shade if you prefer.
Q. Will a solar fountain work all year?
A. That depends on the amount of sun you get throughout the year. If you barely see the sun from October to March, it's likely that your solar fountain won't work in the winter or will only occasionally work if you have an unseasonably sunny day. However, if you have plenty of bright days in late fall and winter, even when it's cold, your solar panel should work for the majority of the time.
Q. Is it difficult to install a solar fountain?
A. No, solar fountains are extremely easy to install, if you can even call it that! There's no need to hook it up to a water or power supply. Simply place the fountain in your desired spot, position the solar panel (if it’s separate), fill it with water, switch it on, and you're done.
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