LiquidArt’s Glass-Fiber-Reinforced-Concrete (GFRC) fountains are designed to provide years of enjoyment, with very minimal care or maintenance required. Because they are made with portland cement (same ingredient that makes concrete hard), they are very rugged and will withstand the elements without color fade or discoloration, both of which are common in inferior faux stones.
LiquidArt’s GFRC rocks will age in a very similar manner as natural stones. If you need to clean the rocks, a good blast from a garden hose will usually work, although a mild soap and soft-bristle brush can be used as well, if needed.
Cleaning—Algae and Moss
Over time, moss and algae may develop on your LiquidArt rock, just as it would on natural stone. The time it takes will depend on how often you have your fountain turned on, how much shade or sunlight it gets, and how often fresh water is added to the fountain base. If your rock is accumulating more moss or algae than you desire, LiquidArt recommends using an algaecide designed to reduce moss/algae growth. These additives are available at most pond shops. Just remember to make sure they are deemed safe for colored concrete!
LiquidArt’s fountain kits are designed to require very little maintenance. Because of the “pondless” design, there are no filters to change, and very little, if any, debris should get into your water reservoir. However, periodic attention is suggested, to identify any potential issues before they start.
Check and adjust water level periodically, keeping the water level at or near the bottom of grating and no lower than the water pump inlet. Also, remove any dirt, rock or debris from inside the fountain base that may cause damage to the water pump or flexible hose.
Note: Due to overspray and evaporation, clean water must be added periodically. Failing to do so could cause the water pump to run dry, resulting in a damaged pump. Damage to the water pump due to an inadequate water level in the fountain base will void the limited warranty. Periodically inspect the grating and polymesh screen for damage. Replace if necessary.
Winterization of Your Fountain
In colder climates, where temperatures can reach below 32 degrees Fahrenheit on a regular basis, or where temperatures will drop substantially below freezing, even for short periods of time, it is recommended that all water be removed from the fountain kit during the cold months. Also, remove the water pump by disconnecting the pump from the valve/manifold assembly. Store the pump in a temperature-controlled atmosphere (above freezing).
Efflorescence—Causes and Cleaning/Removal
Any material containing Portland cement (precast stone, GFRC products, etc.) has the potential to effloresce. Efflorescence is caused when soluble salts and other water materials come to the surface of concrete and mortar. The most common reaction occurs when calcium hydroxide (lime) formed in the hydration reaction of Portland cement is carried by water to the surface through capillaries in the concrete. There, it combines with carbon dioxide from the air to produce calcium carbonate and water. It can also be caused by hydroxides and sulfates of either sodium or potassium.
Most often, efflorescence will be minor, and can manifest in a couple of ways—either as a powdery, fluffy, substance, which is easily brushed off with a nylon-bristle scrub brush, or as a crystallized deposit on the rock.
To keep efflorescence to a minimum, run your bubblers non-stop for three to four weeks when you first install your fountain. If efflorescence appears, do not let it dry! While it is wet, scrub the area with the nylon-bristle brush, until the efflorescence is gone. This may need to be repeated until all the salt has been worked out of the rock. The key is to not let any efflorescence dry! If efflorescence has been allowed to dry, and has attached itself to the rock, then an efflorescence remover, (such as Techni-Seal, available through LiquidArt) is recommended. Even with that, some staining or efflorescence may remain, which is why rocks should not be allowed to dry until any efflorescence has been worked out of the rocks.
How to Get Replacement Parts
Replacement parts are available by contacting LiquidArt by phone, at 800-974-9586, by email, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by writing to:
5327 N. Michigan Rd
Saginaw, MI 48604
The pump is a magnetically driven centrifugal water pump. It has no seals to wear and contains no oil. All electrical components are encapsulated in epoxy. The energy used is approximately ½ that of regular driven pumps. The pre-filter is provided for use in situations where deposits in the water could clog or damage the pump. LiquidArt highly recommends using the pre-filter for all situations.
Pump Service and Maintenance
Periodically inspect and clean the pre-filter. To clean, remove the pre-filter from the water pump and rinse using clean water. Replace the pre-filter if it is damaged or torn.
The cap over the impeller should occasionally be removed to clean and inspect the impeller assembly. The impeller is the only serviceable item and can be pulled out of the pump body. Do not take the impeller apart. If it is worn or broken, the entire impeller assembly should be replaced. This will restore the pump to its original capacity. Pumps taken out of service for an extended period with fluid inside run the risk of forming a crust, which may prevent subsequent starting. Saltwater should be flushed out with fresh water. Always check the electrical cord for sharp bends, which can cause premature cracking. Do not use the power cord to lift or move the pump.
Always use a properly grounded outlet. Do not immerse the pump plug in water. If the plug falls into the water, DO NOT REACH INTO THE WATER TO REMOVE THE PUMP PLUG. TURN OFF THE CIRCUIT FIRST! A “drip loop” should be used. The “drip loop” is a loop in the electrical cord below the level of the receptacle or plug, which prevents water from traveling along the cord. The National Electric Code requires that a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) be installed in the branch circuit supplying fountain or pond equipment. LiquidArt has several styles of GFCI units available.
WARNING: NEVER REMOVE THE GROUND PIN FROM THE ELECTRICAL PLUG. FOR YOUR PROTECTION, ALWAYS UNPLUG THE PUMP UNIT FROM ITS POWER SOURCE BEFORE INSTALLING OR SERVICING YOUR FOUNTAIN. SHOULD THE UNIT APPEAR TO NOT BE WORKING PROPERLY, DO NOT REACH FOR, REMOVE, OR DISASSEMBLE THE PUMP BEFORE YOU DISCONNECT THE POWER!
When first running your LiquidArt Fountain, you may notice some “soap-like bubbles” building up on the fountain base (at the bottom of the rocks). This is normal and should lessen over time, disappearing altogether in approximately 2-3 weeks of regular use.
Also, you may notice a slight “whitening” of the rocks along the water fall pattern. This is generally caused by either “hard” water (calcium deposits) or slight concrete dust/residue on the rocks from the manufacturing process. This will go away over time, unless it’s caused by “hard” water, in which case, a water softener can be used to minimize the effects of the calcium deposits. This is not unique to faux rocks, and can appear on natural stone as well. In either case, it should not be visible when water is cascading over the stones.
If you have any additional questions, please call LiquidArt, at 800-974-9586.