Winterizing Your Fountain

Generally speaking, we refer to a fountain as a feature with running water and no fish or plants. While some fountains may have plants in them, it is rare.  Water runs over the top of the the feature, into a basin and recirculates back to the top and repeats.  We have two primary types of fountains:  Cast-Stone Fountains or Disappearing Fountains.

Both types of fountains seem to be safe with temperatures as low as 30 degrees.

Cast-Stone Fountains

Extreme and rapid changes in temperature affect all cast-stone adversely.  It has an adherent tendency to expand and contract with climatic conditions.  Your cast-stone features has been designed with weather in mind.  The cast-stone mix contains fibers and additives which enhance the elastic qualities of the cast-stone.  Occasionally, normal unharmful surface shrinkage cracks may sometimes appear, but your feature will not crack due to weather if these simple rules are followed:

  1. Do not allow water to collect and freeze in the bowls or shells
  2. Do not allow water to collect or freeze in birdbaths, saucers or planters.
  3. Do not allow statuary to sit in a pool of ice.

Cast-Stone fountains should be turned off and drained when temperatures go below 30 degrees to avoid breakage due to the expansion of water caused by it forming into ice.  As an extra precaution, towels or kitty litter can be placed in the “bowls” of the fountain to absorb excess moisture.

Disappearing Fountains

All of the Asian pottery sold at HCWG is glazed and kiln-fired.  This process is very weather hardy.  However, in extremely cold weather conditions it is recommended that you drain the pottery of water.  This can be done by unplugging the pump and removing the “standpipe”.  To do this, simply unscrew it from the bulkhead attached to the bottom of the pottery.  This will allow the water to drain in the the box below.  It is unlikely that the water will freeze solid in the box.  Wait for freeze to pass, then replace standpipe, refill pottery with water, refill box-kit with water and plug-in the pump.

By following these simple and sensible precautions during the winter season, you will protect your fountains for years of beauty and enjoyment.