How to Maintain Indoor Fountains

Two Methods:General MaintenanceCleaning Procedure

Your indoor fountain can be kept in clean, optimal condition when you take steps to maintain your fountain on a routine basis. Although indoor fountains may be exposed to fewer natural elements, they can still develop algae and bacterial growth or experience low water levels due to evaporation. In addition to performing general maintenance on your indoor fountain, you must also clean the inside of your fountain and the pump at least once per month to prevent algae and mineral deposits from forming. With regular, proper care and maintenance, you can maintain the functionality and appearance of your indoor fountain and all its working components.

Method 1
General Maintenance

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    Keep your fountain pump submerged in water at all times. This will help circulate the water in your fountain and keep it filtered, in addition to minimizing the growth of algae. Your fountain pump may also become dry and burn out if it is not submerged in water consistently.
    • Examine the water level around your fountain pump on a daily basis. This will allow you to become familiar with how often you need to add water to the fountain.
    • Add water to your fountain as needed. This factor will vary depending on the indoor climate in which the fountain is located. For example, if the fountain resides in a warm, dry indoor climate, you may need to add water to the fountain on a daily basis.
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    Keep your fountain pump powered on constantly. This will help keep your fountain water clean and prolong the life of your pump; as turning the power off and on continually may cause the motor in the pump to wear at a faster pace.
    • Ask a friend or family member to help maintain the water level in your fountain when you need to travel. This will prevent you from having to power off the fountain completely.
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    Use distilled water in your water fountain. Using distilled water is a natural way to keep your fountain clean and prevent algae growth; whereas tap water may contain minerals or other metals that can solidify and build up on the walls of your fountain and the pump.

Method 2
Cleaning Procedure

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    Turn off and unplug your fountain. This will eliminate your risk of electrical shock as you clean the fountain.
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    Remove any stones or pebbles from the inside of your fountain. Stones will need to be cleaned before they are placed back into the fresh water.
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    Remove the fountain pump from the fountain.
    • Consult your fountain's manual or contact the manufacturer directly if you are unsure how to remove the pump safely from the fountain.
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    Remove the water from your fountain. Depending on the size of your fountain, you can either empty the fountain over a sink or use a shop-vac to remove the water.
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    Clean your fountain and its components.
    • Use a soft, non-abrasive sponge to avoid scratching or damaging the fountain's interior and working parts.
    • Clean the fountain, pump, and stones using a cleaning mixture of warm water and mild liquid soap, or use a commercial calcium lime removal product. For an all-natural alternative, spray distilled white vinegar on the fountain's interior and parts, then scrub using a wet sponge.
    • Use a toothbrush to clean any small, tough corners or spots that are hard to penetrate or reach with the sponge.
    • Use a soft, clean rag or cloth to dry and remove any excess cleaning mixture from the fountain's interior and parts.
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    Place the fountain pump and stones back into the fountain.
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    Refill your fountain with fresh, clean water. The procedure for refilling your fountain will vary depending on its size.
    • Pour bottled, distilled water into your fountain or use tap water from a sink. Depending on the size of your fountain, you can refill the fountain from the inside of a sink or use a bucket to transport the water from the sink over to the fountain.
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    Plug in your indoor fountain and power the fountain on.
    • Observe the fountain for a few minutes to make sure the pump is properly re-installed, and that the fountain work efficiently.


  • Do not use a copper cleaning product on your fountain if it is made from copper with a powder-coat finish. Copper cleaning products will remove the powder-coat finish and may diminish your fountain's appearance.
  • Do not clean your indoor fountain with bleach or similar abrasive cleaning solvents or sponges. The properties and chemicals used in bleach and other abrasive cleaning products may cause your fountain's elements and parts to erode.

Things You'll Need

  • Distilled water
  • Shop-vac
  • Soft sponge
  • Mild liquid soap
  • Toothbrush
  • Soft rag or cloth
  • Calcium lime removal product (optional)
  • Distilled white vinegar (optional)

Article Info

Categories: Outdoor Water Features