Winter Adversaries: Pond Heaters vs. Pond Pumps

Your pond pump and your pond heater. Both essential parts of your backyard water garden. Both incredibly important to you. Both necessary for your pond life's health and happiness.

So why can't they just get along?

Well, as it turns out, it's not that pond heaters and pond pumps don't want to be friends. It's just that they are not designed to work together.  

Pond heaters are thermostatically controlled. They pump out heat to keep an area of your ponds' surface free of ice. This allows critical gas exchanges to occur, without which your pond life would suffer and possibly die.

 So how does your pond pump get in the way? It's by no fault of its own, but pond pumps are designed to keep water constantly moving in your pond, and this causes problems for pond heaters.

Think about it. If your pond pump is consistently moving cold water around, your pond heater is going to go crazy trying to heat that water. It will pump out tons and tons of electricity/energy, but there will always be more cold water coming at it. It will be a never-ending cycle, and you will not get the results you are really looking for.

Basically, you need to choose one or the other. If you live in an area that doesn't get incredibly cold during winter, you can probably get away with leaving your pond pump running year-round, which will keep your pond water moving and eliminate the need for a heater. However, if you consistently get ice forming on the surface of your pond, using a pond heater during the coldest months is your best bet for keeping your pond life healthy.