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For most consumers, the energy-saving and simplicity of solar water fountains, solar pumps and solar garden accessories far outweigh the few drawbacks. The most obvious requirement for a solar fountain to work properly is an adequate supply of sunlight. Therefore, location of solar fountain with a built-in solar panel or a separate solar panel is important. Solar powered fountains do not work well in heavily shaded locations or in climates that rarely enjoy sunny days.
Basic solar fountains consist of a built-in panel and pump that operate only in direct sunlight. They do not store solar power. No sun, no water movement. If the sun goes behind a cloud or the fountain falls into a shade, water flow ceases shortly. For water flow during cloudy periods and evening hours, a solar fountain pump with battery backup is needed.
And, while solar fountains can be used most of the year in most of the world, when temperatures fall below freezing and during periods of snow and ice, it is best to disconnect the solar panel from the pump and move them inside to prevent potential damage to the solar panels.