Hydroponic water pumps have one of the most important jobs in a hydroponic system. Without the water pump, we would be unable to send nutrients from the reservoir into the grow tray or flood table.
What is a hydroponic water pump?
The water pump is responsible for circulating the nutrient solution in the reservoir, ensuring it is adequately mixed.
The water pump sends the solution from the reservoir to the final destination. This is a grow tray or flood table for ebb and flow or drip systems. In an aeroponics system, the solution is sent into sprayers.
What kind of water pump do I need for hydroponics?
There are three main types of water pumps that hydroponic growers should consider, and each has its place.
If you have a larger system, an inline water pump is probably your best option since they generally have more power. An inline pump sits outside of the tank and is air-cooled.
Hobby growers tend to use submersible water pumps, as smaller gardens don’t require as much power to pump water. Submersible pumps sit directly in the water of a hydroponic reservoir, and use fittings and hoses to move water around.
A third type of pump is a sump pump. A submersible sump pump is specifically for sump systems. This is essentially a collection reservoir for all the runoff from the hydroponic system. The pump helps move water to and from the tanks, and can also be used to mix nutrients in the tank.
Water pumps that can perform multiple functions across the three mentioned above are referred to as utility pumps. Remember to clean your water pump regularly, with every nutrient solution change to prevent pollution of nutrients!
How do you determine what size pump you need?
The size of your pump is going to depend on two variables. It will depend on the size of your garden and the type of hydroponic system you are operating.
A flood and drain (ebb and flow) system is going to require a higher volume pump than a simple NFT method. Likewise, an aeroponic system has different specifications than a deep-water culture system.
What is GPH of a pump?
GPH stands for gallons per hour, and is the measurement of gallons of water per hour. Hydrobuilder offers a wide range of pump sizes. We have flow rates from 1 to 200 gallons per hour all the way up to over 1,000 gallons per hour.
When deciding the gallons per hour, you need to know how much water you want to move. You will also need to know the head height of your system. From here, you can use the chart or specifications listed on a specific pump to see if it works for you!
We advise growers to purchase a pump twice the size of what you suspect you may need. Worst case scenario, your pump is larger than you need, and you can reduce the water flow on the pump. However, if you have a small water pump, you will not be able to pump more water through it.
Start by calculating how much water you are going to need to pump through your system, and shop accordingly! Another piece of information is to use a float switch to help monitor the water level in your tanks and reservoirs.
Not sure which pump is right for you? Our review of the best water pumps is a great resource. We offer just about every option for every type of grower out there.
Give our experienced growers a call today at 888-815-9763 and we can help you decide! If you want to learn more about hydroponics, check out some of the articles in our learning center!