How To Prevent Pump Burn Out

Your pump is one of the most important pieces of equipment in your water feature. The pump helps your feature work efficiently to create a beautiful water feature. So, knowing how to prevent pump burn out is important.  

What is Pump Burn Out? 

Pump burn out happens when your pump does not function at full capacity or prematurely dies out. This happens when the pump is frequently turned on and off or there is improper care and installation. The leading cause of pump burn out is from running dry. Submersible pumps require water to keep cool and maintain the proper operating temperature. If the water level drops below the impeller (also known as the rotor), the motor will overheat and burn out. 

Low-quality pumps tend to burn out faster, as they are not built for longevity. Inferior models may have poor casing that will crack and cause water to seep in and damage the components.  Buying cheap may mean spending more money in the long term because you must keep buying new pumps. Buying a high-quality and high-performance product, like TotalPond pumps, is an effective way to prevent this. A high-quality pump will withstand the elements it is exposed to and increase its longevity.  

How to Prevent Pump Burn Out 

One of the most important steps to preventing pump burn out is to ensure all electrical connections are working properly. We recommend using a GFCI outlet whenever possible to prevent electrocution or fire. GFCI outlets are different from regular outlets because they cut the power to a device if they detect an electrical problem. Remember, when the pump is frequently turned on and off, pump burn out can occur. The next step is to ensure the pump is installed correctly. Submersible pumps should always be submerged in water fully when in use. Buying a pump that has an automatic low water shut off feature is a great way to prevent the pump from running dry. TotalPond Fountain Pumps with Low Water Shut-Off are high-quality, quiet, and energy-efficient pumps designed with a sensor that shuts off the pump when the water reaches a certain level.  

How to Prime a Pump 

When installing and using a pump for the first time, remember to “prime the pump."  Air can get trapped and debris can get caught in the impeller chamber, which may cause the pump to hum and push little water, also shortening its life span. To make sure the pump is not air locked, tilt the pump while it is being submerged in water to allow air to be released from the chamber. You can also prime the pump under a faucet or hose and then install it in your water feature, ensuring that the impeller chamber is flooded with water.  

Routine Pump Maintenance 

Routine maintenance will keep your pump working at peak performance. This maintenance entails getting rid of any debris that has collected on the internal and external surfaces of the pump. You may need to scrub gently with a washcloth or old toothbrush and warm water.  Pump disassembly is quick and easy! Watch our helpful videos here  

Proper Pump Storage 

Storing the pump properly during winter weather will help increase overall performance.  If your water feature is exposed to freezing weather, remove the pump from the water prior to the freezing point. Frozen water will expand and break the pump body and internal mechanisms. 


By installing and maintaining your pump properly, you can ensure that it has a long life. Now sit back, relax, and enjoy!