We get this type of call all the time. Here’s some steps you can take if you notice that your pump, the lifeblood of your aquatic ecosystem, has stopped working.
Step 1: Verify the pump is plugged in and that there is power at the outlet
Step 2: Check for clogging
Step 3: Make sure enough water is getting to the pump
If the pump is in a skimmer the water level in the pond needs to be high enough to allow the proper flow of water into the skimmer opening while the pump is running. If you’ve lost enough water due to evaporation or a leak then your pump will quickly outpace the flow of water coming into the skimmer.
Step 4: Check the outflow
Sometimes debris or filter media can black the opening at the bottom of your biofalls. If this is the case, you’ll need to take out the media in the biofalls to investigate. This would also allow you to make sure the plumbing below ground is not crushed or blocked. Run a garden hose into the top of the pipe and disconnect the pump from the plumbing to see if water runs all the way through the piping.
Step 5: Motor Troubleshooting
If nothing is clogging the pump’s screen, impeller, or outflow and there’s definitely power at the outlet it’s plugged into, try to listen for any humming or vibration coming from the pump. This would be a sign of life. Many pump models have a capacitor that acts as a battery to help initially jump start the pump. If this has broken then the motor will not start without it being replaced. Call the manufacturer for details.
If you can’t hear any humming or vibrations coming from the pump when plugged in then it’s very likely your pump will need to be replaced. Consult this pump sizing guide to make sure your replacement is the right fit for your situation. It’s possible that the broken pump wasn't initially sized properly and therefore died prematurely.
Give us a call here at AWM Water Features if you need any help through the pump troubleshooting process!