Otterbine Barebo, Inc. – Air Flo 3

Aeration Systems

Air Flo 3

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The Air Flo 3 diffused aeration system compliments Otterbine's line of aeration systems with a sub-surface option to water quality management.

Engineered to offer increased energy efficiency and quieter operation, this "bubbler" type system system is available with 1-disc or 2-disc manifold assemblies.

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Product Features

Diffused air is a simple concept which entails pumping air through a pipe or tubing and releasing this air though a diffuser below the water’s surface. The Air Flo 3 system has no visible pattern allowing landscape designs to remain serene and calm.

Able to operate in depths up to and exceeding 40ft or 12m, the Air Flo 3 is unique to the Otterbine aerators line as it uses quiet on-shore compressors that pump air to diffusers placed at pond bottom. Diffusers release oxygen throughout the water column creating mass circulation that mixes bottom and top water layers and breaks up thermal stratification. Systems are available in a variety of configurations featuring either single or dual disc manifolds, and most allow for future expansion if needed. The result - a healthy, clean environment for aquatic habitat combined with many other benefits:

  • Lake Management:
    The Air Flo 3 system is extremely effective in all ponds with a depth of at least 6ft (2m), and all the way up to of 40+ feet (12m) depths. It breaks down thermal stratification and stimulates bottom aquatic life which feeds on algae and organic nutrients. The Air Flo 3 system is ideal for managing water quality of effluent ponds and lakes without releasing harmful particulates into the air, and is excellent in breaking up thermal stratification in ponds and lakes.
  • Invisible:
    No parts of the system or a spray pattern are visible from the lake's surface. Those concerned with evaporation favor the Air Flo 3 system since no water is released into the air.
  • Safety:
    No electricity or moving parts are near the water; this makes the system entirely safe for swimming, boating, and fishing. Package electrically safety tested and listed with ETL, ETL-C. Products for European Union are also safety tested, approved and carry a 3rd party independent CE mark.
  • Cost:
    Initial cost, maintenance cost, and operational costs are all relatively inexpensive.
  • Versatile:
    One Air Flo 3 System can be used for multiple ponds.
  • Cost Effective:
    Inexpensive in terms of both capital and operation costs.
  • Proven Performance:
    Otterbine is the only manufacturer to have oxygen transfer and pumping rates independently tested and published on their aeration systems.
  • Comprehensive Warranty:
    All-inclusive 2-year warranty on entire package
  • Complete Package for All Systems:
    Includes compressor(s), cabinet, & diffuser(s). (Tubing sold separately.)

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Below are the product specifications for standard Air Flo 3 Diffused Aeration systems. This product is recommended for ponds and lakes no shallower than 6ft (2m) and to over 40ft (12m) in depth. Note that diffused aeration systems are 100% efficient at 15ft or 4.5m and shallower depths will lose efficiency, for more information click here. For further assistance or to answer your questions please contact your local Otterbine distributor or Otterbine direct.

One and two compressor systems available. System selection will be dependent on pond/lake shape, size & depth.
Download: AirFlo 3 System Selection Guidelines

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Product Specifications: Air Flo 3


# of Compressors
Diffuser Pad(s)
# of Discs per Pad
# of Discs per System



 AF3-131 3 3
 AF3-141 4 4
 AF3-112 1
 AF3-122 2 4




 AF3-261 6 6
 AF3-281 8 8
 AF3-222 2

 AF3-232 3 6
 AF3-242 4 8
 AF3-262 6 12

Complete package includes compressor(s) and disc manifold(s), tubing sold separately. All systems are single phase,
50Hz unit specs are for international markets.

PDF Downloads: Specification Form | Sale Sheet

Compressor & Unit Construction

The Air Flo 3 system is protected by an enhanced 18 gauge, 304 stainless steel cabinet enclosure.

The benefits of this enclosure include:

  • Stainless Steel Means No Rust
  • System Components are Vandal Resistant
  • Compact and Low Profile - Out of Sight, Out of Mind


Air Flo 3 Diffused Air Systems incorporate 1/2HP oil-less rcking piston compressors allowing for operating depths up to and exceeding 40ft or 12m.

  • All systems come with self-cleaning 12in (305mm) disc diffuser manifolds (single or dual).
  • Diffuser manifold base is constructed of high density polyethylene plastic and incorporate ballast channels for level sinking of pads during installation.
  • Enhanced 18 gauge, 304 stainless steel cabinet construction is corrosion resistant, provides quieter operation and simplified servicing.
  • Compact & low profile, cabinet footprint for all systems is 16in x 16in x 20.5in (41cm x 41cm x 52cm).
  • Cabinet cooling system includes (2) axial fans that draw air through vented louvers for complete cabinet air exchange at the rate of 225 times per minute.
  • Valve manifolds located inside cabinet allow for future expansion of most Air Flo 3 systems.
  • Cabinet enclosure secured by stainless steel latch that accommodates a locking mechanism.
  • Complete package is safety tested, approved and listed with ETL and ETL-C. Products for the European Union are also safety tested, approved and carry a 3rd party, independent CE mark. Minimum operating depth varies.

Product Installation

Installation is fairly simple, but will require the services of a certified electrician. Tools and materials required can include: a shovel or pick (to bury/trench tubing,) conduit (PVC tubing), thin nylon rope, all-purpose gravel, boat, screwdriver, 5/16" and 7/16" nut drivers or wrenches, adjustable wrench, pump pliers, tubing cutter or utility knife. Complete installation instructions will be provided with the delivery of the product.

Shipping weights will vary depending on the system configuration ordered, but will typically be over 125lbs (57kg) and be shipped on a pallet. To receive the shipment the facility should be equipped with a forklift or pallet jack; otherwise package can be dismantled by 1-2 people. 

Basic Installation Guidelines:

  • Cabinet/Compressor Housing Installation: Unit arrives assembled. Determine location of compressor housing that is not prone to flooding or corrosive chemicals. The cabinet may be placed directly on a level prepared gravel base, concrete slab/pad, or plastic equipment pad. Place cabinet with valves toward the shoreline.
  • Electrical Installation: Electrical work should be performed by a qualified electrician. Steps involved include sizing the branch circuit to local and national codes and feeding it to the Air Flo 3 cabinet. Electrical disconnect should be buried below ground in conduit.
  • Tubing: Connect un-weighted tubing to the heater hose from the compressor housing and run it out toward the shoreline. Weighted tubing will later be connected to run out to the diffuser manifolds and should be placed through conduit/PVC pipe.
  • Diffuser Manifold Assembly: Assemble diffuser manifolds on shore and fill each of the two (2) gravel compartments with 10-12lbs (4.5-5.4kg) of all-purpose gravel or until full. Install plugs provided.
  • Diffuser Placement and Installation: Placement is crucial to the effectiveness of diffused air aeration. Locate deepest areas of the pond and mark distances to assist with tubing placement. Connect weighted tubing to manifolds and secure other end to unweighted tubing. Thread a thin piece of nylon rope through manifolds and place tubing and manifold in a boat. As you paddle out release tubing into water, once in place set manifold into water by nylon rope, remove rope from manifold. Continue with other manifolds.


PDF Downloads:

Air Flo 3 Installation Manual


The Air Flo 3 carries an all inclusive 2 year warranty, and extends to the complete package.

Warranty and service can be performed by more than 100 factory trained and certified Otterbine Service Centers found worldwide, or by Otterbine directly. A copy of the warranty statement for this product can be found within the owner’s manual.

The Air Flo 3 requires periodic preventative maintenance, dome diffusers themselves require no maintenance.

Air Filter:

  • Once a Year: (as needed) Change air filter cartridge.


If you live in a region that experiences cold winters and frozen waters you may want to run your system 24-hours per day to keep the unit from freezing in.

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