The Winter season is just around the corner! Have you already thought about the preparation measures to keep your fish happy and healthy? Perhaps, you’re still looking for the right product? Worry not! We’ve compiled 7 of the popular, best pond heaters in the market today, plus buying guide to help you make an informed decision.
- Pond Heaters Introduction
- What is Pond Heater?
- How Does it Work?
- Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Pond Heater
- Reviews of the Best Pond Heaters for Winters
Pond Heaters Introduction
An outdoor pond is every household’s dream. It provides excellent benefits to relax our minds. Not to mention the sense of watching the lovely fish swimming around and hearing the sound of moving water are just so elating, right? But there’s a problem: winter releases ice and ice tends to bring harm to your pond. It is crucial to keep your pond’s surface areas ice-free so as to allow vital oxygen to come in, for venomous gases to escape, and most importantly, to keep fishes stay comfortable.
In case the pond has frozen over, it is not recommended to pour down boiling hot water or break the ice as you’ll only hurt the fish. You have one solid option – invest in a pond heater.
What is Pond Heater?
Commonly relates to de-ice, pond heater is a device usually installed in the pond to help your fish survive the winter season. It can heat the surface area within a specified amount of time, depending on the unit’s range and power. This is specifically ideal for those living in a colder climate.
No, it is not designed to keep away or melt all of the ice, though they will do so in a particular radius surrounding the device. What they do is keep your pond’s surface from completely freezing over throughout the winter period.
Don’t be confused with pond de-icers and heaters. They usually refer to a similar thing and are used interchangeably. Heater sometimes denotes to a much more costly, bigger units intended to heat the entire ponds, while de-icer is ideal for keeping a small area warm.
How Does it Work?
The device makes use of an inline electric heating unit, which produces heat to the entire pond. Hence, keeping your Koi or other fish completely safe and comfortable during icy months. It is important to follow the general rule of installing it. Otherwise, you can seek professional help. The heater should meet the minimum depth required, plus it must be placed at the pond’s deepest area.
Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Pond Heater
Note that pond heaters are not cheap investments. So, make sure to consider these important factors before owning one to avoid costly mistakes.
Submersible or floating? The former is a nice option as it is protected from various elements such as animals, wind, snow, etc., whereas the floating heater is ideal for a pond with a plastic liner. There are gas boilers and electric water heaters available too.
A single heater is more than enough for a small pond. But if it is bigger – wide and deep – then going for multiple units is recommended.
Of course, you want a long-term investment. So, look for a product that is built to last. Those made of solid stainless steel are gaining popularity due to their high impact resistance level.
Temperature & Wattage
The temperature varies from where you live. For instance, a small 100 or 200-watt pond heater is fine for a temperature that never gets at a lower place -10°C. Though if it plummet to -30°C, so look for 750-watt or 1500-watt device.
Modern pond heaters feature temperature control or thermostat so as not to injure the fish once it gets too hot as well as prevent gas buildup when it doesn’t get warm enough. This will add more cost, surely, but is worth the penny.
Numerous types of energy sources are used for powering up heaters – electricity, oil, and gas. Choose one which you think would simply complement well with your budget. Electricity could be a bit expensive. Gas and oil, on the other hand, are the ideal long-term cheap solution.
Especially if your schedule is so tight, you’ll want a pond heater that is easy to maintain to make your day less stressful.
Reviews of the Best Pond Heaters for Winters
Without further ado, are the top pond heaters highly recommended by users.
A simple, nice floating pond heater. The overall design has a resemblance to rock intended to enhance the pond’s beauty – which it really does. TetraPond is thermostatically controlled that functions on 300-watt power, hence, keeping your electricity bill as low as possible and saving your fishes from potential hurt. It can work on -20° temperature. While it is not made of stainless steel or aluminum, it can prove to be a great long-term investment.
- Efficient and reliable
- Extremely easy to use
- Has in-built thermostat
- Energy saving
- Works perfectly in small ponds
- 3-year warranty
- Can be prone to some elements like wind and rust
- Some find the fake stone shape less attractive
Made from stainless steel, Laguna PowerHeat has 500 wattages, LED indicators, as well as suitable to use for preformed and liner ponds. The thermostatic control ensures energy efficiency as well. The material it’s made up of makes the device highly resistant to snow, wind, etc. and in dealing with temperatures of negative 20 degrees F and below. It is well bound for plants and fish in the water.
- Durable, made of stainless steel
- Very powerful
- Simple to use and install
- Features LED indicator light
- Works well in -20° temperature and below
- Great for large ponds
- Not suitable to smaller ponds
- Might cause short circuits due to its design flaws
The K&H de-icer operates on 100-watt only and is ideal to use for up to 1000-gallon ponds. It is equipped with an internal thermostat that automatically turns the device back off once the temp warms up and turns it on one the temp gets close to freezing. Extremely safe to use outdoors since it is MTE-certified. Also, it won’t burn the pond liner.
- Has rugged design
- Easy to use, clean, and maintain
- Safe to use
- Submersible and floating
- Built-in thermostat
- Doesn’t harm fish or ponds
- Durability issues
- Not energy efficient
- Only comes in a 1-year limited warranty
Another floating pond heater we have, the Farm Innovators, is such a perfect unit for making fishes of any kind totally safe and comfortable as well as the pond itself during winter. Thanks to its 1250 power watts with a long 10ft cord. Available in tons of sizes to fit any homeowner’s needs. Aluminum-made, so expect the device not to get rust or decay.
- Fairly robust and solid
- Built-in thermostat
- Comes in various sizes
- Ease of use
- Good for large ponds
- Includes cord to cover the additional length
- Not extremely energy efficient
- The 1-year warranty is not too appealing to many
Aquascape is another product you surely don’t want to overlook. It is made up of superior quality stainless steel – resistant to corrosion and won’t crack under extreme weather. It has an auto-shutoff feature too, which prevents damage to the unit. It comes with a nice 300-watt power along with an LED light that notifies you when it is running. Generally, Aquascape is a good quality floating pond heater that will give years of dependable service.
- Highly durable design
- Features LED light
- Long power cord
- Easy to operate
- Energy saver
- Up to 3-year warranty
- A bit pricey
A powerful pond heater that utilizes 1500 watts, Allied Precision, is thermostatically-controlled similar to other units above. Hence, it will only run when it is necessary, plus the amount of energy you can save is tremendous. Mostly great to install for ponds with Koi or goldfish within the water. Great for garden ponds.
- Strong, durable stainless steel
- Thermostat included
- Very powerful
- Good value
- Works well in extremely low temperatures
- Ideal to use in koi and goldfish ponds
- Short power cord
- Could likely damage the liner of a pond if installed improperly
Completing our list of the best pond heater for winter is the API Floating device. It ensures that all plants and fish in the de-icer water are safe. This has a built-in thermostat for added security. It’s constructed with a little floater that’s completely cased in plastic, therefore, keeping it stable and durable. The guards included in the package helps protect the plastic tank, fish, and elements around the heater.
- Strong 1500 wattage
- Features a built-in thermostat
- Can be used both for liner and preformed ponds
- Guards and extra cable for additional support
- Reasonably priced
- Prone to short circuits
- Might not be a good option for small and mid-sized ponds
And that’s a wrap! I hope our review of the best pond heaters has helped you make an informed decision. Each has its own set of benefits and drawbacks, but it’s upon your pond requirements and budget on which device you should invest in. All of them make a great addition to your outdoor pond, helping you to fish prosper throughout the colder months.
Have your pond winter-ready!