Calculating the Electrical Cost of a Pond Pump: Can You Afford It?

When you're considering which pond pump to install in your backyard pond, it's important to keep in mind exactly how much the pond pump will cost. Many people make the mistake of assuming that the initial expenses for a pond are all that they will face. Rather, most pond pumps are designed to run all day, every day, without resting at all. Even if the pump itself doesn't use much electricity over a short period of time, the costs of such extended use can add up very quickly. Read on for a brief guide on how to estimate or calculate the cost of the electricity to power your pond pump.

Tools and Materials

  • Rate for a kilowatt-hour of electricity in your area
  • A working watt meter, or information about the pump that includes the total wattage used
  • Calculator

Step 1 -- Check the Wattage of the Pump

You'll need to first check the wattage rating for your pump. Look to the pump itself, or to the packaging that the pump came in. In many cases, you'll receive a rating in amps, not in watts. If you receive the rating in amps, simply multiply the number of amps provided by 120 to calculate the number of watts used. Jot this number down on a spare piece of paper or commit it to memory for the remainder of the calculations.

Step 2 -- Calculate the Watts Used over the Course of a Year

Next, calculate the watts used over the course of the year. First, you should determine whether you leave the pump running at all times. If you do, simply multiply the number of watts by 24 and then by 365, or simply by 8760. Otherwise, calculate an average of how many hours per day that your pond pump is running, then multiply this number by the number of days per year that the pump runs, then by the wattage that you determined in the first step.

Step 3 -- Convert to Kilowatts

Next, take the result that you've calculated from Step 2 and convert it to kilowatts. You can do this by dividing it by 1000. Be sure that you haven't been working in kilowatts up until this point already, however, before you do this.

Step 4 -- Determine Total Cost

The final step is to multiply the kilowatts of energy that you use for the pond pump and to multiply that by the cost of your electricity per kilowatt hour. If the price per kilowatt hour is not available in the materials from the electric company, look at an electric bill for this figure. To determine your monthly or daily cost for the pond pump, divide this total yearly figure by either 12 or 365, respectively.

Be sure to keep track of any changes in the price of electricity in your area so that you can determine whether the price of maintaining the pump changes too.