No one likes a boring pool. Swimming pools today have become just as much about the visual experience as the exercise they can provide swimmers.
With a host of pool water features to choose from these days, there’s plenty of ways you can add some life to a dull and listless backyard pool.
For those that are on a budget and don’t want to break the bank, adding in a pool fountain is a great way to liven things up, providing a mixture of visual style and practical functionality for both swimmers and the pool itself.
What Is a Pool Fountain?
A pool fountain is a water feature that shoots multiple streams of water up into the air, landing in your pool.
Not all pool fountains are the same though.
Some are centerpieces, while others float freely. There’s also models that resemble pool misters, and are installed on the edge of the pool. Depending on the fountain, it can shoot water between 2 and 10 feet high, and have multiple water pattern settings to choose from.
Centerpiece fountains are usually built into the overall design of your pool, and will be the most expensive option. However, the final product is hard to beat.
The Pros & Cons
Installing a pool fountain has very little downsides, and many upsides. Here’s a quick breakdown.
Obviously, at its basic level, a fountain is simply aesthetically unique. They add a visual element that classes up the pool, and are reminiscent of something you’d find in Greece or Italy.
Pool fountains can allow for different patterns of water distribution. Some shoot a single firehose stream straight up, while others fan out to create a more traditional fountain pattern.
There are even fountains that come with built-in LED lights so you can use them after dark. These will have an array of colors that can be cycled or stay static, and you can even have them on timers.
Additionally, some fountains are controlled by remote, making it easy to turn off and on at the touch of a button.
Another bonus of pool fountains is that they’re easy to install. Unless you’re having one custom built for your pool, most of them hook up very easily using a hose (and some don’t even require one!) so you can position it anywhere you’d like.
Fountains also play well with other water features such as bubblers and deck jets. You can pretty much create your own water show ala Caesar’s Palace!
Practically-speaking, the sound of a fountain acts as an insulator, providing relaxation in the pool, while drowning noise outside of it.
The falling water will also pick up oxygen and inject it into the pool, cooling the water temperature. This is vital to prolonging chlorine effectiveness, as it becomes less effective as the temperature goes up. Cool pool water will also be more comfortable to swim in.
Finally, a fountain will help to circulate the water, which is important for keeping the chemicals in the pool mixed, well-balanced, and filtered at all times.
Installing a pool fountain will be expensive if it’s being built into your pool design.
If you’re using a free-floating fountain, some models require an attachment to run water to it, which can be a bit of an eyesore and a dealbreaker for some.
A Cost Breakdown
If you can afford a pool, you can afford adding a pool fountain. Most free-standing fountains run somewhere in the $100 price range.
If it’s designed into your pool, the installation fee will be included in the overall cost, and running it will increase your monthly utility bills as a fountain like this requires separate water and electricity.
With free-floating fountains, they run on a rechargeable battery, and if they’re hoseless, they use a self-contained pump to suck in the pool water and shoot it out, making them the cost effective choice.
Pool Fountain Ideas (And 5 Examples)
As discussed, there are a few different water patterns you can get with pool fountains. A few popular ones are:
- 3-Tier Fountain
- Solar Powered Fountain
- Grecian Fountain
- Spinning Fountain
- Illuminated Fountain
Let’s look at some real examples:
Example #1: 3-Tier Fountain
The 3-tier look is the traditional fountain design, and what many people evision when they think of a pool fountain.
For this free-floating model, they’ve installed it into the pool’s deep end, ensuring it covers as much space as possible. This coverage also lends itself to keeping a large section of the pool water well-circulated.
With triple levels at multiple heights, it towers over swimmers and is easily the most eye-catching fountain design.
Example #2: Solar Powered Fountain
This model is unique in that it uses a solar panel to operate the unit within seconds of exposure to sunlight. While this image shows a firehose stream, the fountain comes with multiple nozzles for customization.
Free-standing fountains like this one tend to work better in the shallow end, so you can relax underneath them without having to tread water.
Example #3: Grecian Fountain
Similar to the 3-tier fountain, this Grecian fountain uses a peacock spray design for a different visual element.
A free-floating model, they’ve positioned it as a centerpiece in the pool for symmetrical effect.
This positioning also works for maximum circulation, as the water will be distributed evenly from the center of the pool outward.
Example #4: Spinning Fountain
This is a rare but interesting fountain design which uses a hose attachment. It’s hooked up to the pool’s return jet so you don’t need a separate water line running into the pool.
Spinning multiple fountain streams also allows for the entire body of water to be cooled down and well-circulated, as it casts the widest net out of all the designs here.
Example #5: Illuminated Fountain
Water features will always look good when the sun is out. But does that mean you can’t use them at night?
Not at all!
Many water features have LED lights built into them, just like this illuminated water fountain. They usually run on a timer, have multiple colors, and the ability to change up the colors every few seconds for a light show in your own pool.
Ready to Jump In?
Adding a pool fountain to your backyard oasis is a surefire way to keep things interesting.
They look good, are cost-effective, and practical at maintaining a healthy state for your pool water.