10 Tips for Maintaining Your Aerator and Fountain During the Off-Season

Published on January 12, 2015

Freezing temperatures mean that many of you have taken out your aerator or fountain until the weather gets a little warmer and a little more friendly. Winter is a perfect time to service aerators and fountains. Maintaining and servicing your aerators and fountains is essential to ensure proper operation and to extend the life or prevent failures.

Without proper care and maintenance, calcium, scum and algae will build up on the components, reducing the life of the motor.
Without proper care and maintenance, calcium, scum and algae will build up on the components, reducing the life of the motor.
    1. Clean the unit. Before the scum and moss harden, use a power washer to remove the debris. You can also take it to a car wash. Over time, calcium, scum and algae will build up on the components, reducing the life of the motor. Damage also occurs to the nozzles causing premature failure of the propeller/impeller.
    2. Check and replace loose or worn parts. Excessive vibration and old parts affect supporting structures resulting in a possible motor failure.
    3. Replace the shaft slinger located on the shaft of the motor. The slinger creates a seal between the propeller/impeller and the motor. This helps prevent a buildup of sand or grit around the motor shaft seal
    4. Replace the pump gaskets on centrifugal fountains. This will prevent leaks around the pump to insure pressure and volume through the nozzle providing proper height and diameter of the fountain display.
    5. Check the inside area of the throat (aerating fountain only). Excessive wear in this area will cause vibration and cavitation.
    6. Inspect electrical power cable and connections. A worn or damaged power cable is not only extremely unsafe and dangerous, but corroded or loose fitting connections can cause electrical shorts which damage the motor. It’s recommended to apply dialectical grease to all connections during storage and when reinstalling for operation.

      Aquarian aerator unit with the optional propeller guard.
      Aquarian aerator unit with the optional propeller guard.
    7. Store in a sheltered structure (shed barn or garage). Do not store the unit where temperatures will fall below 20 degrees Fahrenheit. The motor should be stored upright with the shaft up. Insure that the unit will not fall over and be sure to protect the power cable from critters that may chew the cable.
    8. Original box/packaging best for storage. The foam blocks support, insulate and protect the motor.
    9. In freezing climates, remove the float and store. This prevents the possibility of ice puncturing or crushing the float and creating leaks.
    10. All light kit assemblies should be removed during freezing conditions. Ice buildup or freezing will damage the lights and the transformer pack. Clean and inspect the light system components and wiring.

*Best practices were provided by Air-o-lator.

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