The water pump of an aquaponics system can be compared to the heart of a body. It will distribute the water to the different parts of the system and by doing so, feed the leaving creatures. Like the heart of our body, it is important to get the adapted water flow and to run the pump 24/7.
The adapted water flow
The water flow must cover the bacteria needs in terms of oxygen. We have a bell siphon in our growbed and therefore once the growbed is full, the water will drop into the fish tank. This flood and drain allows a constant income of nutrients for the bacteria of the system but if also allows a crucial oxygen supply. The water flow must be enough to ensure a good oxygen level to our bacteria but also not be too strong to limit the energy consumption. I offer a method to calculate the appropriate water flow from the free aquaponics training available at the end of this article.
Run the water pump 24/7
If you understand the purpose of the water pump in a growbed aquaponics system, you understand that it ensures the bacteria oxygen supply. As for all leaving creatures, bacteria need to be able to breathe 24/7 otherwise the population will be affected. If you are using a bell siphon system, the pump must run 24/7.
Timer system
If you are not using a bell siphon but a timer system (see this video for more information) then your pump will be on a timer running on and off approximately twice per hour.
This option is not the best one. It is not good for the water pump to be turned on and off several time per hour.
Conclusion: Select an adapted size pump (follow our free training below) and run it 24/7 in order to keep an efficient system.

Welcome here! If you are new, you will probably be interested to discover Jonathan’s six steps to build and manage an Aquaponics system. Click here to access for free! Thanks and good reading 🙂