Tabletop Fountains Tips

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Trouble-Free Tabletop Fountain Operation

When tabletop water fountains are installed correctly and maintained according to the manufacturer's guideline, there are rarely problems. However, if problems do occur, they typically include: inadequate water flow, splashing or pump noise. Use these tips from a do-it-yourself expert to prevent or correct problems and enjoy trouble-free fountain operation:

  • Inadequate water flow: Check pump and tubing connections. A tight connection is required for proper water flow. The fountain pump must also be sized correctly for the volume of the water in the fountain. An undersized pump simply cannot move the water efficiently. And, if the tabletop fountain bubbles from the top of an urn or vase, adjust the position of the tubing closer to the top of the container.
  • Splashing: To avoid or minimize water splashing outside the fountain, make sure it is placed on a sturdy surface and that the fountain basin is level. Adjust water level. Add additional rocks to the basin or side of the fountain. When placing a tabletop fountain on delicate surfaces that are easily damaged by water spots or condensation, use a water-proof foundation, mirror or mat.
  • Pump noise: The sound of a good quality fountain pump, correctly sized for fountain capacity, is typically masked by the pleasing sound of the bubbling or cascading water in the fountain. When pump is too noisy, monitor the water level. The pump must always be totally submerged to operate efficiently and avoid damage. Check water level daily for evaporation and replenish as needed. Make sure the pump is not vibrating against the sides of the fountain. Placing a pump on a small rubber mat or Scotchbrite pad also helps absorb vibration.

If these or other problems persist, contact the fountain supplier customer service department for additional assistance.


Decorating Options With The Table Top Fountain

If you're decorating an outdoor patio in a contemporary setting, consider a cast stone table top fountain with clean linear lines. You can set up a table top fountain outdoors without any plumbing because the water re-circulates within the fountain. All you need is access to a standard 3-prong, 100 volt outlet and an outdoor-rated extension cord if your electrical source is farther away. The best place to put an outdoor table top fountain is on a level surface with a solid foundation. Try a level deck, concrete floor or smooth patio. For areas of softer ground, you can place your outdoor table top fountain on a few inches of pea gravel or tightly packed sand.

What kind of rocks are suitable for a tabletop fountain?

Selecting Rocks For Your Tabletop Fountain

If you're adding rocks to your tabletop fountain, appearance and size are certainly factors, but that's not all you need to be concerned about. Rocks make great decorative filler pieces to any tabletop fountain, but you do have to select certain varieties of rock. In choosing, you'll want to select the rocks that will hold up under daily water movement over the rock's surface area. For instance, flagstone, quartz, polished rocks and many types of beach and river rocks will work nicely in a fountain environment. However, sandstone, lava rocks, mica, and moss rock will tend to deteriorate over time and are not suited for a tabletop fountain.

Can you suggest a do it yourself tabletop fountain that’s simple enough to make?

Create Your Own Self-Contained Tabletop Fountain

If you want to avoid spending the high price tag of buying a high-end tabletop fountain, you can make your own. One version of the tabletop fountain is a self-contained piece that'll provide an instant tranquil lift to your décor. This do-it-yourself version will cost you a quarter of the amount you'll spend on a store-bought version.

What You'll Need:

  • Pump with water flow control
  • Watertight Bowl
  • Tupperware container
  • Tubing
  • Pre-cut PVC pipe
  • Plastic embroidery grid
  • Window screen
  • Assortment of marbles and rocks
  • Copper elbow
  • Chlorinated water

What you'll need to do:

  • Cut out access on the side of the Tupperware container for cord access and on the top for water intake.
  • Place the pump at the bottom of your bowl and put the Tupperware container over it for protection.
  • Add tubing to the pump outlet.
  • Surround the Tupperware container with the PVC pieces.
  • Cut the embroidery grid to fit the bowl and place it on top of the PVC pieces.
  • Next, size the window screen and place it on top of the embroidery grid.
  • Make sure your pump tubing extends through the top of the screen.
  • Place your marbles and rocks on top of the window screen.
  • Attach the copper elbow to the tubing to direct the water flow.
  • Conceal the tip of the elbow with rocks.
  • Fill the bowl with water, plug in the pump and you're ready to go.

What are some tips to get my fountain running smoothly?

Maintenance Tips For A Tabletop Fountain

If you're putting your own tabletop fountain together, it's a straightforward enough task, but it does require some work to make the piece run smoothly. So you don't encounter any difficulties, we're offering a few tips so your tabletop fountain will be up and running perfectly in no time.

1. Before you build your fountain, try out the flow control on the pump. Otherwise, you could find out after the fact that the water runs too fast or slow.
2. Keep your tabletop fountain in low light or direct sunlight if you want. Both are appropriate and won't harm your fountain.
3. Plan on cleaning out your fountain once every year to ensure proper function and appearance.

How do I care for a table top fountain in the winter?

Wintertime Care For Your Table Top Water Fountain

If you live in an area where the winter climate is harsh, you'll want to take some steps to protect your table top water fountain. Winters characterized by freezing nighttime temperatures followed by warmer daytime thawing can cause havoc on your table top water fountain. If you have a table top water fountain made of a porous material, such as concrete, you could be left with chips and cracks. Here's how you keep your precious water feature in good shape.

During the wintertime, water that freezes and then thaws again, can cause expansion and cracking in your fountain. In order to prevent the force of the changes from chipping and damaging your fountain, make sure it's dry if you intend to subject it to the severe weather. Ideally, when it's freezing, bring your table top fountain indoors to make sure it survives the winter.

What are some decorating options for a table top fountain?

Decorating Options With The Table Top Fountain

For an instant soothing fix to the interior of your home or office, consider adding a table top fountain. A table top fountain can dress up a desk at work to help ease your daily stress. It can become a centerpiece on a dining table and a conversation piece for formal meals. Place a table top fountain at the entryway of your office countertop to welcome visitors. Or place a soothing table top fountain in a bathroom nook to create your own spa oasis.

Set-up is easy – you can do it right out of the box and it takes just minutes. You have numerous choices with the table top fountain. Spend as little as $40 on a contemporary aromatherapy fountain that uses ultrasonic waves to bring a mist of delightful olfactory scents into the air. Or splurge on a vertical wall fountain made of copper for $200.

Can you give me some ideas on what kinds of table top water fountains there are?

All Kinds Of Table Water Fountains

With table water fountains, you have a multitude of choices. From the indoor variety to the outdoor variety, table water fountains make great accent pieces or focal points for home and commercial décor. Here are some ideas for types of table water fountains you can pick from.

The Rock Fountain – Composed of a variety of stones arranged just so, the rock fountain can sometimes have an Asian theme with words of serenity and wisdom carved onto the rocks. The base can have a steady soothing stream of circulating water to create a tranquil environment.

The Vertical Wall Fountain – Suitable for a range of décor from contemporary to traditional, the wall fountain features a steady delicate sheet of water flowing down a vertical face. The vertical wall fountain may have a light to accent the water flow.

The Bowl Fountain – Characterized by its main feature - a bowl - this type of fountain may be as simple as a stone fountain with a singular spray of water. Or this could be a copper bowl fountain containing rocks with water continually pouring into the bowl.

The Cascading Fountain – The cascading fountain has steps or tiers so that the water drops smoothly from one level to the next. These types of fountains add a layer of visual appeal to the gentle sounds of moving water.

The Aromatherapy Fountain – This fountain soothes the olfactory senses just as much as the visual and auditory senses. The aromatherapy fountain is perfect for an at-home spa environment.


Building Your Own Tabletop Fountain

Do-it yourself and craft enthusiasts often enjoy creating their own tabletop water fountain. Purchase a book on water fountains or go online for step-by-step tabletop fountain instructions. Here are some pointers on basic tabletop fountain construction:

  • Materials needed for an indoor or outdoor basic tabletop fountain include: a water-proof container, a submersible fountain pump, tubing, small rocks, silicone glue and other decorative touches.
  • Purchase a good quality adjustable fountain pump specifically made for fountain use and correctly sized for the volume of the fountain from a fountain parts supplier. Pump capacity (GPH) refers to how many gallons of water the pump will circulate per hour. Basic guidelines call for a pump that will move about half of the total volume of a fountain per hour.
  • Make certain the pump cord will reach the electrical outlet without using an extension cord. If used outdoors, ensure that the pump is certified for outdoor use and that the outdoor outlet includes a ground fault interrupter (GFI). A WA type pump may be used indoors only. A WT type fountain pump may be used indoors or outdoors. If electrical outlet is necessary, hire a licensed electrician if you are not experienced in working with electric wiring.
  • Once the basic fountain is complete, fill it with water. Test water flow and make necessary adjustments. Then, get creative with decorative fountain accessories for a unique personal touch.


Shopping for a Tabletop Water Fountain

Purchasing the right fountain brings years of enjoyment. Purchasing the wrong type of fountain or a poor quality fountain inevitably results in disappointment. Tabletop water fountains are sold just about everywhere. Discount department stores, drugstore, home improvement centers, garden centers, flea markets and garage sales are just a few of the many places that sell indoor tabletop water fountains and garden tabletop fountains. However, buyer beware! All tabletop fountains are not created equal; quality varies. Customer service advice and assistance is also minimal or non-existent in many stores. It pays to research and compare tabletop fountain styles, specifications and prices before opening your wallet.

Avoid the high cost of gas and wasted time spent roaming all over the city from store to store to find the best deals and compare tabletop fountains. The World Wide Web brings a wealth of water fountain resources to your fingertips. Take advantage of savvy online fountain tips and advice from the comfort of your own home or office. Visit Websites of online fountain suppliers that feature detailed information and specifications on fountain materials, construction, installation, cleaning and maintenance. Look for online retailers that also offer replacement fountain parts and fountain accessories. Read customer reviews on pros and cons of different tabletop fountains. And, compare comparable fountain prices and shipping costs.


Types of Leading Tabletop Water Fountains

A myriad of tabletop styles, sizes, colors and materials make it easy to complement the décor, enhance a decorating theme and reflect personal taste. Tabletop water fountains are created from concrete, fiberglass, resin, natural stone, cast stone, copper, pottery, wood, stainless steel and glass. There are formal, rustic and whimsical tabletop water fountains.

Some tabletop fountains are traditional; others are decidedly contemporary. Tabletop fountains reflect cultures from around the world echoing Old World or New World ambience. And, custom tabletop fountains offer ultimate personalization for home and office.

Need inspiration? Here's a sample of three unique tabletop water fountain styles:

  • Serenity Health's Nayer Kazemi Fire and Water Tabletop Fountain uses water, fire, earth, metal and wood to create a stunning centerpiece for any room. Water flows out of the copper spout supported by wood into the pool of slate and stones in the stunning copper bowl. Small oil candle fire wicks and a miniature ceramic vase round out the Five Elements of Feng Shui.
  • The hand-crafted Rock Pond Desktop Fountain fills an attractive ceramic bowl with a collection of smooth Aqua Cove stones, Arizona Cloud flagstone and Starlight flagstones available in a choice of eight color patterns. Water flows over the rocks and stones with a babbling brook sound.
  • The Encore Water Bell Fountain features the pleasing effect of bubbling water and musical bell chimes. Water bubbles from the center of a stunning black ceramic bowl causing two floating brass bell chimes to swirl among six fixed brass bell bells ringing softly as they mingle.


Best Places for Tabletop Water Fountains

According to popular Feng Shui beliefs, the moving waters of a tabletop fountain positioned properly also attract good fortune to the home or office. Why stop with only one? A tabletop fountain complements virtually any room or outdoor space.

An indoor tabletop fountain requires only a sturdy tabletop or pedestal base and an electrical outlet. Inside the home, an indoor tabletop water fountain placed on a foyer table in an entrance way, a tabletop fountain invites positive energy of chi into the home and welcomes guests. In the dining room, a tabletop fountain on a credenza or decorative corner column pedestal enhances dining ambiance. A tabletop waterfall tucked into a dark corner of a kitchen counter soothes the cook and complements Feng Shui metal and fire elements. In the living room, a tabletop fountain creates a natural focus point. And on a patio, deck, balcony or garden setting, an outdoor tabletop water fountain works with Mother Nature to increase outdoor living enjoyment.

In an office, a tabletop water fountain adds style, welcomes and relaxes clients and visitors to an entrance or reception waiting area. A desktop fountain in an office also improves focus by masking distracting noises from busy streets and other offices.


All Kinds Of Table Water Fountains

If you think table water fountains might be a great addition to your office or home, you're right. Table water fountains work well in just about every environment for several reasons. 1. You can find one suitable for your specific needs, whether it's an indoor space, outdoor space, modern décor or a traditional one. 2. Setup is quick and easy and requires no plumbing. 3. You can find table water fountains with the faintest pump, leaving you only with the soft, tranquil sounds of moving water. 4. You can use them on the table top, but you can also place them on solid landscape, as well. 5. They're compact, allowing you to create a serene environment in any area you choose.

How do I make my own rock tabletop fountain?

Make Your Own Rock Tabletop Fountain

With the high cost of some tabletop fountains, you might consider making your own. Some of the better quality tabletop fountains can be upwards of $200 a piece, so if you're feeling creative, we've got a how-to guide for you. Read on to find out how to make a rock tabletop fountain.

What you'll need:

  • Small pump
  • 2” thick piece of 12”x14” Styrofoam
  • Baking pan
  • Construction glue
  • Plastic tubing
  • Exterior stucco
  • 3 colors of paint – burnt umber, raw sienna, and green glazes
  • Exterior spray varnish
  • Sheet moss
  • Felt tabs
  • Beach glass

What you need to do:
  • Cut an off-center hole in the Styrofoam to accommodate the pan.
  • Glue Styrofoam onto the pan.
  • Carve the edge of the Styrofoam into rough rock shapes.
  • Cover base with exterior stucco and let dry.
  • Glue felt tabs onto base.
  • Cut two small rock shapes onto remaining Styrofoam, cover with stucco and allow to dry.
  • Use paints to create stone appearance.
  • Poke a hole through the two rocks to accommodate tubing.
  • Push tubing into place, making sure the top hole angles toward the bowl.
  • Glue the two rocks together for a layered effect and attach to the base, checking to see that one tubing end goes into the bowl.
  • Spray fountain with exterior varnish.
  • Use moss to decorate and hide edges.
  • Place beach glass into bowl to diffuse the water.
  • Place pump into container, attach tubing, fill your rock tabletop fountain with water, and plug it in.


Tabletop Fountain Safety Pointers

When installing a tabletop water fountain or any type of water feature in the home or office, safety precautions are important. Proper wiring and connections are a must. All outdoor fountain pumps that operate off electricity require a ground fault interrupter (GFI) outlet. GFI outlets are also recommended for indoor fountains. If in doubt, about existing electrical connections, contact a professional electrician. Avoid using extension cords if possible. If an extension cord is used outdoors, make sure it is certified for outdoor use. Never hide fountain cords under carpets or flammable tablecloth. And, locate water fountains so that plugged in cords are away from foot traffic not accessible to small children or pets.

Another key safety issue: Kids and pets love water and are naturally attracted to sound and action of moving water in a tabletop fountain. Children can't resist playing in the bubbling water. Pets often consider a tabletop water fountain their own private drinking fountain. Place tabletop or desktop fountains out of reach so that they cannot be tipped easily. And, never use water or fountain additives that are harmful if swallowed by a child or pet.


Reasons to Buy Tabletop Water Fountains

Tabletop fountains add instant appeal to two of the five senses. They are beautiful to look at and they are delightful to listen to. Though significant, these benefits are not the only reasons to add a tabletop water feature to indoor and outdoor settings.

Tabletop fountains both soothe and stimulate. The soft sounds of trickling water combined with visual appeal provide creates a calming atmosphere that helps relieve stress and anxiety. Tabletop water fountains with increased water flow stimulate the imaginative and creativity. Best bet: Tabletop or desktop fountains with an adjustable pump allow water flow and sound to be increased or decreased according to the mood at the moment.

Indoor table top fountains re-create the fresh feeling of being outdoors after a spring rain or the invigorating effect of a walk along the seashore by adding negative ions to the air. (This is one of those times when negative is good.) Household appliances emit positive ions into the atmosphere. WebMD cites decreased energy, headaches, eye strain, insomnia and difficulty concentrating as common symptoms of exposure to excessive positive ions. Simply put, negative ions are created by rupturing water molecules; thus the splash of water in a fountain add negative ions to the air and helps reduce excess serotonin and its undesirable effects. And, tabletop fountains act as natural humidifiers adding welcome humidity to dry indoor air especially during winter months.

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