What to Consider When Choosing Your Otterbine

System Selection & Sizing

Choosing and selecting the right aerator or fountain system will depend on a few common factors; listed below is what to consider when choosing a system. It's important to remember that an undersized system will not provide the results you're looking for.

Surface Area

How Big Is Your Pond?

Typically the larger the surface area of the pond or lake, the bigger the system to be recommended. When water quality management is desired reference the horsepower (HP) per surface area recommendations. In these instances we will often break the total HP requirement into several systems to strategically place units/diffusers throughout to insure uniform mixing and circulation throughout the water basin.(Surface area can be determined by measuring length x width.)

Pond Size: Recommended Products

Ponds/lakes more than an acre (4,000 square meters) in size will often combine multiple systems for desired effect.

less than 1 acre 1 acre +
All-in-One Aerating Fountain & Circulator Aerating Fountains (2HP+)
Aerating Fountains (1HP) Pond Aerators & Circulators (2HP+)
Pond Aerators & Circulators (1HP) Diffused Aeration (see size chart for specific system)
Diffused Aeration (see size chart) Giant Fountains
System Sizing for Water Quality Management

When looking to improve water quality, we recommend the following HP per Surface Acre within product lines.
Chart displays 1-5HP systems and is for depths 6ft (2m) or greater; in shallower waters increase HP requirement. Air Flo Diffused Aeration system sizing combines surface acreage and water depth, refer to this sizing chart.

Recommended HP per Surface Acre (or 4,000 square meters)
1 to 1.5HP 1.5HP 2HP 3HP
High Volume
(Pond Aerator)
Aerating Fountain
(Aeration Line)
Aerating Fountains
(Decorative Line)
(Pond Aerators)

Water Depth

Water depth will help us determine your product options. It's important to know the average depth throughout the basin to effectively size an aeration or fountain system.

Minimum Operating Depth
All-in-One Fountain & Circulator (1/2HP) Aerating Fountains (1-5HP) Pond Aerators (Floating 1-5HP)         Pond Aerators (Sub-surface 1-5HP) Giant Fountains (10-25HP) Air Flo Diffused Air
16in (41cm) 30in (75cm) 36in (92cm) 30in 75cm) 40in (1m) 6ft (1.8m)       

Pond Shape & Unit Placement

As mentioned above, it is important to divide the total HP requirement down into several units to insure uniform mixing and aeration demand created by irregular shaped ponds. This can be done by breaking the pond into zones. An improperly sized or placed unit will not be able to effectively improve water quality.

Additional Considerations

  • Quality of Incoming Water: This is a critical question if there are effluent or brackish conditions, and we will need to look at more specialized criteria.
  • History of the Pond: Has the pond had water quality issues in the past? does it now? If the answer is yes to either question we will want to review details to properly size your aeration system.
  • Shallow Ponds are Impacted More: Light and temperature will contribute to aquatic conditions. Shallower waters (ponds less than 6ft or 2m) offer a greater challenge to water quality management. When sunlight is able to penetrate to the pond bottom it allows the entire water column to be productive from an aquatic vegetation perspective; combined with the fact that warm water is less capable of holding oxygen you will want to take additional considerations when sizing your aeration system.
  • Power/Electric Available: What is the power voltage and phase available at the site? Knowing this is imperative in determining your Otterbine system, it will also determine the cable gauge required for the installation. (See Maximum Cable Runs). If unsure contact your local electrician to find out.

Need More Help in Selecting a System?

Talk to any of our 300+ factory trained sales and service centers throughout the world to find out your options!