Providing enough pressure to your koi pond filtration system is critical to keeping your fish happy, healthy, and thriving in the ecosystem, you have created for them. If your koi pond filter and pump aren’t able to handle the increased load, you could be dealing with a literal mess.
Nobody wants to spend hour after hour cleaning their pond because they found out that the pump they purchased is not able to keep up with the demands their fish put on it.
That’s why we’re helping you cut to the chase and find the best koi pond pumps that provide enough power and flow to keep your filtration system operating at peak efficiency. If you are on the market for a new pump for your koi pond, you’ve come to the right place.
Best Koi Pond Pump Reviews
Each of the koi pond pumps listed below was hand-selected based on a few different criteria that nearly ever koi pond owner will require. We have based the choices on our own experience as well as the experience of hundreds of other customers just like us.
Did You Know?
Keep an eye on your pump. If you do not spot problems before they are given time to grow out of control, it could cause your pump to fail prematurely.
The Aqua Pulse is a hybrid pump utilizing both direct-drive and magnetic-drive technologies to deliver increased energy efficiency and power. This pump is perfect for smaller Koi ponds with a single water feature. The 1,200 GPH rating works excellent with lower numbers of fish.
Pros & Cons
Did You Know?
When you’re thinking about purchasing a pump, make sure you have calculated the average monthly cost of operating the unit. If it is too high, consider adding solar power.
Another great pump from Tetra Pond is their Water Garden Pump. It’s designed for use in smaller Koi ponds with a single water feature, fountainhead, or filtration system. The pump features a small internal filter, but we recommend using an external filtration system, as well.
Pros & Cons
Did You Know?
If you can afford it, we always recommend buying more pump than you need. You can use a valve to control the amount of flow and grow into the pump as your pond grows.
4. Little Giant 1900 GPH Dual Discharge Waterfall Pump - unique dual-discharge design
Did You Know?
Your filtration system can place an incredible strain on your pump, especially if you have large numbers of fish. Ensure you are keeping it clean and well-maintained to avoid problems.
5. Aquanique 1250 GPH Waterfall Pump - ideal for small waterfalls
6. Alpine Corporation PAL2100 Pond Pump - Ceramic Impeller Shafts
If you have a larger Koi pond and you’re looking for a pump that is strong enough to handle your filtration system with more significant numbers of fish, the Alpine PAL2100 is perfect. It is recommended for use in ponds up to 2,100 gallons in size but has been used in ponds significantly larger, too.
Pros & Cons
7. Laguna PowerJet 600 Fountain/Waterfall Pump - high efficiency pumps
When your budget is smaller than most, but you need a pump that can handle your smaller pond, the Laguna PowerJet 600 is a good option. This is one of the most affordable pumps that we have featured on this list and is rated for use in ponds up to 1,200 gallons in size.
Pros & Cons
Did You Know?
The more water features you have in your pond, combined with the more fish you have, means you’re going to need a pump that is exponentially more powerful.
8. EcoPlus 6657 GPH Submersible Water Pump - Reliable pump
Finally, the EcoPlus 6657 GPH Submersible Pump is designed with a balance between features and price. The internal ceramic impeller and magnetic-drive system are designed to be relatively low-maintenance and easy to clean, making this unit excellent for beginner pond keepers.
Pros & Cons
Did You Know?
With submersible pumps, you want to ensure you are using an extension cord that has a GFCI circuit to avoid potential electrocution issues. The breaker will fault if there are problems.
Koi Pond Pump And Filter Buyer’s Guide
With so many different koi pond pumps and filters available, choosing the right one for your specific pond can be a frustrating experience. While building our list of recommended koi pond pumps, we looked at a few criteria that we believe affect every pond owner in some way.
The factors below will need to be considered before you spend your hard-earned money on a new pump. We’ve used each of those criteria to help determine which pumps were worth recommending and which pumps were not worth the money being asked for them.
Even though there are quite a few different types of pumps that will work in your koi pond, certain features make one pump better than another. This is especially true if you have more significant numbers of fish.
Unlike ponds that do not contain any fish, the level of circulation and filtration your koi pond will require is substantially increased. Keeping Koi fish in your pond means you’re going to need to be more choosey in the type of pump you select.
To give you an example, the food that you feed to your fish is going to be reproduced as waste that will need to be filtered through your system. If you do not adequately filter the waste being produced, you could end up with sick fish on your hands.
The waste produced by your fish will begin to produce harmful levels of ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. These chemicals will become toxic to your fish and plants as time goes on and will need to be properly filtered out of your water.
The amount of water that will turnover in your filtration system refers to how much water is being passed through the filter via the pump. If you are keeping Koi fish in your pond, you will want to turn over every gallon of water in your pond each hour.
That means, if you have a 2,500-gallon pond, you will want a pump that can adequately move 2,500 gallons-per-hour. Weaker pumps will not be able to move enough water through your filtration system to keep the excess waste from building up.
Once the waste begins to build up to a level that cannot be adequately removed from the water, you will start to see harmful bacteria, ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates growing. You could also face issues with algae blooms and foul-smelling water.
With a Koi pond, it’s always better to have more pump than what you think you are going to need. You can always dial a stronger pump back, but you cannot force a smaller pump to work harder than it is designed to work.
Along the same lines of thought, Koi ponds are typically larger than most water gardens. That means you will need to consider how energy-efficient the pump is, what it is going to cost to operate each month, and the type of pump you want to use in your pond.
When it comes to selecting a pump, you’re going to encounter two main types: external and submersible. Each type has its specific place, and one isn’t necessarily better than another for Koi ponds.
Your choice ultimately comes down to how you have your pond set up, the size of the pump you need, how you’re going to power the pump, and how many fish you are keeping. Each of these factors will determine the pump you end up purchasing.
Rate Of FlowThe amount of water your pond contains will need to be consistently cycled from hour to hour. That means you’re going to need a pump that is rated the same as your pond’s capacity. If you have a 5,000-gallon pond, you will need a 5,000 GPH Koi pond pump. Keeping your water properly filtered is key to keeping your fish happy and healthy and reducing your overall maintenance costs.
As a general rule, the larger the pump, the more it is going to cost to operate it. Understanding what to expect, as far as operating costs are concerned, will help you determine how large you want to go with your pond if you haven’t designed and built it yet.
Depending on the layout of your filtration system, the type of pump you install, how high it is located above the surface of the water, and whether you have any water features, the pump’s lift height will determine how well it can flow the needed water. Pumps with a higher lift height are able to maintain a steady flow rate in larger ponds with more fish.
What’s A Better Koi Pond Water Pump - External Or Submersible?
Since each pond is different, each pond owner may have their preferences as to which type is better, submersible or external koi pond pumps.
For many people, especially those with fewer numbers of fish (1 or 2, for instance), a submersible pump is going to be a cheaper option. For larger ponds with more fish, though, especially ponds over 5,000 gallons in size, a larger external pump is required.
Below are a few pros and cons of each type of pump to help you understand what you’re looking for and when a submersible pump may be better compared to when an external pump is a better option.
Submersible Koi Pond PumpsSubmersible pumps are going to be the first option for most pond owners. They’re often cheaper than external pumps and are easier to install. They also tend to operate more efficiently, which helps reduce your monthly operating costs.
Submersible pumps are, as the name implies, designed to be submerged under the water. They are easier to hide among your aquascape than external pumps but are not able to provide as much power and flow as an external pump can provide.
If your pond is larger than 5,000 gallons in size, you may not be able to use a submersible pump without adding a secondary system. If your pond is smaller than 5,000 gallons and you have lower numbers of fish, a submersible pump is usually the best type for you.
As your pump begins to flow more water, especially in the higher flow ratings, the offset in energy efficiency will become more apparent. The biggest downside to submerged pumps is that their lift height is often lower than a comparable external pump.
Since these pumps are submerged under the water, maintaining them can be somewhat tricky to do. It’s recommended that you put your filtration system head of the pump and install it in a location that is easy to maintain, to help reduce the maintenance on your pump.
External Koi Pond Pumps
External Koi pond pumps may be harder to install than a submersible pump, but they are (usually) a better investment over the long-term. This is especially true if you have a larger pond or more significant numbers of Koi in your pond.
One of the biggest benefits that external pumps have over submersible pumps is that they are more energy-efficient in larger ponds. Comparing the same sized pumps, an external pump will always use less energy than a submersible pump rated for the same flow.
This is especially true as you move into higher flow rates. Once you get above 5,000 gallons-per-hour, the differences between external and submersible pumps are fairly significant, with external pumps using less and less energy compared to the same submersible pump.
External pumps are also more powerful. This is based primarily on the amount of energy required to turn the internal motor. This gives you quite a few more options when you’re looking at larger ponds with higher numbers of fish.
One other thing to consider with external pumps is that they sometimes have more features that you aren’t able to get with a submersible pump. For instance, some external pumps will provide dual voltage so you can run either 115v or 230v, making it easier to install the pump.
One other feature is a self-priming option that helps keep leaves out of the pump and the pump full of water, so you do not have to worry about it damaging itself. Without this priming option, if the pump runs dry, it could destroy itself.
Koi Pond Air Pump Frequently Asked Questions
If you’re new to keeping a Koi pond, selecting the right pump could be just one of the frustrations that you’ll face. In our experience, we’ve found that people usually have a few more questions when it comes to using and maintaining their pump.
Each of the most frequently asked questions has been answered below to help you avoid making mistakes that could potentially cost you hundreds of dollars and wasted hours.
How do I properly install my pump?How you install the pump will depend on the type of pump you purchase. Most manufacturers will include instruction manuals with layout diagrams that are easy to follow. However, if you do not receive them, installing the pump is relatively easy to do.
For submersible pumps, you will need to anchor the pump into the deepest section of your pond and then lay out your plumbing and electrical wiring. You need to ensure that the pump can cover the difference in height between the pump and the filter box.
To give you an example, if your pond is 3 feet deep and your filter box is installed 2 feet above the water’s surface, you will need a pump that has a 5-foot lift height.
With an external pump, you’re going to need to install the pump at a level that is below the water’s surface level. This is so the pump can prime itself before beginning to move water through the system.
How long should I let my pump run?
There’s an easy formula you can use to help you determine how much power your pump is going to require and what it will cost you to operate it each month. The formula below will work for both solar-powered pumps as well as hardwired pumps.
To start, multiple the wattage rating of your pump by 24, the total number of hours that it will be running each day. That number is your daily wattage requirements.
Take that number and multiply it by 1,000 to get the total kilowatt-per-hour rating. This number will tell you how many kilowatts you’re using each day.
Next, multiply your daily kilowatt requirement by 30 days. Then, multiply that number by the average cost of a kilowatt-hour from your electric company.
If you are using solar power, ensure that the system can supply the average requirement throughout the day and that your battery bank can keep the pump powered throughout the evening and during cloudy days.
If possible, your pump should be running 24 hours per day, seven days per week. This will ensure that your pond is receiving constant circulation, and your filtration system can remove harmful bacteria and excess waste from the water column.
The waste produced by fish is always breaking down into ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates, which can harm your fish. It’s still easier to remove these harmful chemicals and toxins before they grow to levels that are out of control.
Without consistent filtration, you are putting your fish at risk. That’s why we recommend spending so much time focused on finding an energy-efficient pump that is designed to be run around the clock. You could also consider adding solar power to your system to save money.
What’s The Best Koi Pond Pump?
We have compared dozens of different Koi pond pumps to create the list you’ve seen above. In our research, we have found the best pump available for most people’s specific situation is the TetraPond Debris-Handling Pump.
Affiliate links & Images from Amazon Product Advertising API. Last update on 2021-03-05.
Top Editor's Choice on Koi Pond Pumps
Subscribe to our Newsletter!
Join our mailing list to receive the latest tips and news of our blog.