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Choose the right pump for your pond

Selecting the correct pump is essential, whether you choose to power a waterfall or simply circulate water through your filter. Most beginning pond-keepers buy pumps for filtration. When choosing a pump for filtration, the gph (gallons per hour) of the pump is the most important consideration. In addition, the type of pond you have will determine what power your pump will need.

How big is your pond? When you know the volume of water in your pond, you know how many gallons per hour a pump must be able to handle in order to move the water to provide sufficient circulation. This includes components that affect the volume of the water. As a general rule, circulate pond water a minimum of once every hour. Insufficient circulation can cause areas of stagnant water, low oxygen levels, and many other problems, which eventually lead to an unhealthy pond.

How far do you need the pump to push the water? To determine the appropriate pump for your particular pond, there are several factors to consider. For example: Are you moving up an incline, through a filtration pump, or other equipment; how far are you pumping the water; how much tubing are you using; and how many elbows, bends, and other plumbing fittings do you need? Such factors will influence the maximum head height required for your system.

How much energy are you using? If you are concerned about energy usage, as most of us are, choose the pump with the lowest wattage that will fit your needs.

What other equipment are you using? Consider what other equipment you may be using and look at additional fittings you might need for tubing and other plumbing supplies. Pipe thread fittings come in MPT (male), FPT (female), or barbed (fit into female fittings to convert them into male fittings). Pumps run 24 hours a day and are the chief piece of equipment responsible for keeping your pond healthy. Read product descriptions carefully to make sure you are making the correct pump choice.

Model Max
gph
Max
head
Inlet/Outlet
Fittings
Watts Cord
Length
Quiet One Pro Pumps
800 220 4 ft 4" sponge 1/2" Insert 13.5 20 ft
1200 296 6 ft 1" sponge 1/2" MPT 25.5 20 ft
2200 594 10 ft 6" sponge 1" MPT 45.0 20 ft
3000 819 10 ft 4" sponge 1" MPT 55.0 20 ft
4000 991 10 ft 1" sponge 1" MPT 65.0 20 ft
5000 1,400 11 ft 6" sponge 1" MPT 115.0 20 ft
6000 1,664 11 ft 6" sponge 1" MPT 135.0 20 ft
Pondmaster Mag-Drive Utility Pump
PM 1.9 190 7 ft 3/8", 1/4" 17 7 ft
Pondmaster Mag-Drive Pumps
PM 5 500 10 ft 6" 1/2" in/out 49 18 ft
PM 7 700 11 ft 6" 1/2" in/out 60 18 ft
PM 9.5 950 12 ft 10" 3/4" in/out 93 18 ft
PM 12 1,200 13 ft 6" 3/4" in/out 110 18 ft
PM 18 1,800 16 ft 7" 3/4" in/out 150 18 ft
PM 24
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2,400 18 ft 1" in/out 265 18 ft

Model Max
gph
Max
head
Inlet/Outlet
Fittings
Watts Cord
Length
Lifegard Aquatics Self-Priming External Pumps
1/2 HP 3,600 38 ft 1-1/2" FPT in/out 793 no cord
3/4 HP 4,860 50 ft 1-1/2" FPT in/out 1,058 no cord
1 HP 5,760 53 ft 1-1/2" FPT in/out 1,380 no cord
Little Giant® Dual Direct Drive
1900 1,900 18 ft 1-1/4" in/out 250 16 ft
3100 3,100 29 ft 1-1/4" in/out 675 16 ft
4300 4,280 30 ft 1-1/4", 1-1/2" in/out 700 16 ft
Model Max
gph
Max
head
Inlet/Outlet
Fittings
Watts Cord
Length
Mag-Drive Waterfall Pumps
2000 1,650 13 ft 1-5/8" slip, 1-1/2" barbed
in/out
140 20 ft
3000 2,550 14-1/2 ft 1-5/8" slip, 1-1/2" barbed
in/out
260 20 ft
HY-Drive Waterfall Pumps
3200 3,250 12 ft 1-3/4", 1-1/2" 150 20 ft
4000 4,000 15 ft 1-3/4", 1-1/2" 210 20 ft
4800 4,750 20 ft 1-3/4", 1-1/2" 280 20 ft

Model Max
gph
Max
head
Inlet/Outlet
Fittings
Watts Cord
Length
Little Giant Out-of-Pond Pumps
1/8 HP 1740 1740 10 ft. 2", 1-1/2" 137 8 ft.
1/8 HP 2760 2760 11 ft. 2", 1-1/2" 174 8 ft.
1/8 HP 4260 4260 20 ft 1-1/2", 1-1/2" 257 no cord
1/4 HP 5820 5820 21 ft. 1-1/2", 1-1/2" 370 no cord
TetraPond Debris Handling Pump
DHP3600 3,690 11 ft N/A, 1-1/4" to 1-1/2" 199 20 ft
DHP4200 4,235 13 ft N/A, 1-1/4" to 1-1/2" 232 20 ft

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Model Max
gph
Max
head
Inlet/Outlet
Fittings
Watts Cord
Length
Little Giant® Stainless Steel Submersible Pumps
1/3 HP 2,500 25 ft N/A, 1-1/2" 455 19 ft
1/2 HP 4,280 30 ft N/A, 2" 590 19 ft
3/4 HP 4,890 36 ft N/A, 2" 847 19 ft
1 HP 6,400 35 ft N/A, 2" 1,210 19 ft
EasyPro High Efficiency Stainless Steel Pumps
1/4 HP 3,100 23 ft N/A, 2" FPT 150 20 ft
1/3 HP 4,100 30 ft N/A, 2" FPT 250 20 ft
1/2 HP 5,100 36 ft N/A, 2" FPT 400 20 ft
1 HP 6,000 46 ft N/A, 2" FPT 750 20 ft
TetraPond Water Garden Pump
325 325 7 ft 2" N/A, 3/4" 22 12 ft
550 550 7 ft 2" N/A, 1" 42 12 ft
1000 1,000 8 ft N/A, 1" 80 16 ft
1900 1,900 16 ft N/A, 1-1/4" 185 16 ft
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