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Home » Water Fountain Cleaning Guide and Removing White Scale

Water Fountain Cleaning Guide and Removing White Scale

Cleaning and caring for your water fountains is the most important thing you can do to keep them in working order.  Whether your fountain is large or small, indoors or outdoors, you must regularly clean it to remove white scale and algae for it to continue working properly.  Below you will find a general step by step guide to cleaning your fountain.  Keep in mind, if you have a fountain made out of a material you aren't sure how to care for, refer to your fountain instructions.

How Often Should You Clean Your Fountain?

Fountains should be cleaned once a month or every couple months, depending on the size, to keep water clear and to keep the pump clean and free of algae or white scale build up.  Clean smaller, tabletop fountains at least once a month, as they have less water to dilute algae and white scale.  You can probably clean larger wall and floor standing fountains every other month.

To clean your water fountain take the following steps:

  1. Turn fountain off
  2. If there are stones in your fountain, take them out and clean them as well
  3. Once you have access to your pump and water, remove the pump from the fountain. This will need to be cleaned as well (see below for cleaning pumps)
  4. Empty all water out of the fountain, if you have a wall fountain or large floor fountain, empty water out of the fountain with a shop vac (you can get water out however you wish, this is just the way we have found to work best)
  5. Clean your fountain in the sink or for wall fountains and large fountains, take a bucket of water and a non-abrasive sponge to clean the inside of the pan. I recommend using a mild soap or a product such as CLR on the inside of the pan to remove any buildup. For the outside of the pan, be sure there are no water drops left to sit on the outside of the fountain.  For copper, you can always “dust” it with a furniture polish as often as you would like to keep the outside of the fountain looking polished.
  6. Wipe and scrub until you have gotten rid of the algae and/or white scale build up you may have.
  7. Once the pan is clean try to rinse out any soap or cleaning product by just wiping with clean rags or cloths. Now you are ready to replace your “clean” pump.

Don’t Forget to Clean the Fountain Pump

Cleaning your pump is very important as this is what makes the fountain tick!  Your pump will be the first thing to see build up as this is what the water is flowing through and filtering the water.  

  1. Once your pump is removed from your fountain, place your pump in the sink to clean.  Remove the back of the pump, most fountain pumps should have a removable face on one side of the pump. This is where the propeller is. 
  2. Once removed, take a toothbrush or some other type of brush that will get in the small holes of the pump to clean out any debris. Hard running water over the pump usually will clean most of this out as well.
  3. Place the cover back on and hook your pump back up in your fountain. If you can, it is good to clean out the tubing that connects the pump. This is a little trickier as it is hard to get inside it, but even hard running water through the tube will clean out a lot of build up. 

Prevent & Eliminate White Scale Buildup & Algae Growth:

White Scale/Hard Water Mineral Deposits: White scale can be hard to get rid of in water fountains if it is allowed to build up for too long.  The best suggestion is to prevent is from forming. To do this, you can use distilled water in your fountain or use a fountain care product such as Protec Scale and Stain Remover.

Once you have mineral build up on your fountains you can try the following to remove it:

CLR - Calcium Lime Remover - This is something you will find at a home improvement store or a discount store such as Wal-Mart or Target.  It is a general kitchen/bathroom cleaner used for removing mineral deposits.  Be sure you use a soft, non-abrasive sponge to scrub your fountain.  We also have a fountain cleaning kit that works great and contains a non-abrasive sponge and a small bottle of lime remover.

Vinegar and water may help get rid of some of the deposits as well, you will want to leave this sit on your fountain for awhile to let it work and break down the deposits and then scrub with a non-abrasive sponge. 

Algae in your fountain: Algae is going to occur over time in your water fountain because anywhere there is water algae will grow.  The best solution is to clean your fountain regularly as explained above and to use a type of water clarifier and algae preventative.  Even though using a fountain care product will slow algae build up, you will still need to clean your water fountain. Algae is easily removed by following the cleaning instructions above and can be prevented by keeping your pump running all the time.  Here is an explanation of the fountain care products that will help prolong algae build-up:

Fountain Fresh
This is a water clarifier that prevents algae growth and colored water.  It is a great for small or large fountains and outdoor water fountains.  Also safe for wildlife and pets.

Fountain Block
This is a good product to control and prevent algae growth in large fountains as one block will clear up to 50 gallons of water.  The fountain block should not be digested as it is hazardous to animals and humans.

FounTec Algaecide and Clarifierlgae Control
This is the perfect product for controlling green water and string algae in your fountains and ponds.  Can be used for indoor and outdoor fountains as well as ponds.  It can be used with plants and ornamental fish when used as directed.

Fountain Cleanser for Large Fountains
If you are looking for a product to keep your fountain clean and is safe for wildlife, pets and small children this is the product for you.  A food-grade enzyme, non-toxic, biodegradable, bacteria free and 100% environmentally friendly. Safe for all surfaces.  Available fro large and small fountains. 

Bird Bath Cleanser
Keep the nasty hard water stains off your birdbath by using this safe, non-toxic water clarifier.  Bird Bath Cleanse contains safe and natural proteins, which safely break down organic contaminate.

 

Additional Fountain Care Resources:

·         Fountain Care Tips & Advice Center.

·         Download our Guide to Fountain Care and Maintenance.

·         Article Series

·         Serenity Health Blog

·         You can also contact us to find our more information.

We look forward to helping with all your water fountains and fountain care needs.  Should you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Author: , Net Health Shops, LLC

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