Fountain Care

care
Specific assembly instructions are included with the purchase of each Campania fountain. Please check that these instructions and all fountain parts are included before setting up the fountain. The following general guidelines should be followed for every fountain set-up:

  • – The fountain should be set up on a flat, level surface to ensure proper water flow.
  • – A properly prepared base of gravel, flagstone, or other hardscaping material is preferred to maintain stability.
  • – Check that the pump works BEFORE assembly by placing it in a bucket of water and operating the pump.
  • – A fountain pump should only be connected to a properly grounded 110 volt (AC only) GFCI protected receptacle.

Proper care for all cast stone fountains should include the following important tips:

  • – Consistent filling is required to maintain a proper water level and ensure that the pump remains totally submerged. If the level of water is too low, the pump will be damaged. How often a fountain should be filled depends on water flow and specific weather conditions in which the fountain is running. Appropriate water level is also required for proper fountain performance.
  • – Keep pump inflow free of debris to insure proper water flow. Periodic cleaning of the pump will extend its life.
  • – If desired, the fountain may be cleaned with mild soap and a soft bristle brush. DO NOT use bleach as this may affect the patina.
  • – Algaecides available at pond supply or garden shops can be used to combat the buildup of algae.
  • – Always follow general winter care for fountains as described above to extend the life of your fountain.

birdbathsAll of our cast stone pieces are manufactured with a high density cast stone mix with a PSI (pounds per square inch) strength of approximately 7,500.While this high density mixture is designed to produce a strong and durable product, proper maintenance is recommended to protect our product from the freeze-thaw cycles that occur in winter. Any piece which can hold water, snow or ice, such as a planter, birdbath/ fountain top or shell, and any piece which is placed directly on the ground surface, such as a statue, birdbath/fountain base, planter or bench leg, can be damaged by the winter freeze-thaw cycles.

Cast Stone & GFRC Planters – If a planter is to be left planted over the winter, it should be raised up off the ground by placing two (2) pressure treated wood strips underneath the planter, making sure not to block the drainage hole. Attractive pot risers sold by Campania may also be used for this purpose. This will allow the soil to drain and will prevent the planter from freezing to the ground. If a planter is placed directly on the ground and goes through several freeze-thaw cycles, drainage may be blocked. This may cause an expansion of the soil inside the planter, which in turn may cause the planter to crack or crumble. We always recommend that drainage materials such as small stones or terra cotta chips be placed at the bottom of the planter before filling with soil to ensure proper drainage. If a planter is not to remain planted over the winter, we suggest that it be stored in a covered area where it will be protected from the elements. If a planter must be left outside unplanted, we suggest that it be emptied and turned upside down onto wood strips. It should then be covered or wrapped with burlap or any absorbent material (old blanket/towel) and then wrapped with dark plastic. This will prevent moisture from accumulating in the planter. Please note that even if a cast stone container is raised off the ground, there is always the risk that the container will absorb water through its surface which, when frozen, can cause the planter to crack or break.

art-shot-left-sideOur glazed and terra cotta pottery is high fired between 990 (terra cotta) and 1000 (glazed) degrees centigrade to ensure frost resistance and durability. They are also subjected to rigorous testing in freeze-thaw conditions to ensure quality. Due to the processes used in the manufacturing of our hand-made and hand-glazed containers, all variations with respect to firing, color, size and crackling are not deemed to be defects but are natural occurrences in the manufacturing process. The glazes on our containers consist of natural, not chemical, components and therefore the final color of the product will vary. This process creates the unique beauty of each piece.

Terra cotta and earthenware are always slightly porous. Although this allows plant roots to breathe, it also constitutes a risk in winter. When the temperature drops below freezing, any water present in the pot walls will freeze and expand. This will cause the pot wall to spall and can ultimately destroy the pot. Whether this actually happens or not, depends upon the quantity of water that can be absorbed by the fired clay. This, in turn, depends upon the quality of the clay and the way it has been processed.

Machine-made terra cotta planters can absorb a lot of water and are the most vulnerable to winter damage. Hand-made containers, like those offered by Campania, absorb far less water because the clay is processed differently. They are frost-resistant if handled correctly. However, because any water held in a pot from rain or melting snow will freeze and expand, any pot made of a non-elastic material is at risk if left outside unprotected in winter. Accordingly, while the high firing temperature and quality of our glazed and terra cotta containers results in a durable and frost-resistant product, we still recommend that they be stored in a frost-free covered area in winter. If left outside, water may accumulate in the container and freeze, causing the planter to crack and break.

Iron Planters- Always place a Campania planter on a solid level foundation and not directly on grass, soil, or an uneven surface. While our iron is durable, proper winter care is recommended for all Campania iron planters for protection in environments with potential freeze-thaw cycles. If a planter is to be left planted over the winter, ensure proper drainage by: (1) placing a layer of coarse gravel or other appropriate drainage material in the bottom of the container
(2) making sure the drainage holes are not blocked. If the planter remains in contact with the ground surface over the winter, the freeze-thaw cycles may cause the planter to crack. All cast iron pieces will rust over time, which is part of the inherent beauty of iron containers. If you wish to retain the finish as purchased, we recommend applying a commercially available clear sealer to preserve the finish.

Steel Planters- Campania’s Lightweight Steel planters are made of steel sheets 1.2 mm thick. If used outdoors, it is recommended that an appropriate sealer is applied to maintain the surface finish and prevent oxidation. Note, if oxidation occurs, rust may leach onto the ground surface with the potential to stain. Avoid collection of standing water in the bottom of the planter which can cause rusting and deterioration.

Zinc Planters- These planters are fire galvanized by dipping them into a hot zinc bath to protect the steel from rust. These planters are not designed for directed planting and are intended to be used with an interior grow pot or liner.

Always place a Campania planter on a solid level surface and not directly on grass, soil, or an uneven surface.

Proper winter care is recommended for all Campania fiberglass planters for protection in environments with potential freeze-thaw cycles. If a planter is to be left planted over the winter, ensure proper drainage by:

(1) placing a layer of coarse gravel or other appropriate drainage material in the bottom of the container
(2) making sure the drainage holes are not blocked.

If the planter remains in contact with the ground surface over the winter, the freeze-thaw cycles may cause the planter to crack.

Always place any Campania product on a solid level surface.

These products are unaffected by freeze/thaw conditions. The planters do not have to be emptied at season’s end.

This material can be easily cleaned using water and/or a mild non-abrasive cleaner. Marker and paint can be removed with a pressure washer or any non-abrasive industrial strength cleaner, mineral spirits or acetone.

Polyethylene planters are made of recycled raw materials which produce an environmentally friendly product that is resistant to extreme temperature fluctuations. Because our polyethylene planters are UV resistant, they will not become brittle and crack over time, nor will their color fade. They are designed with micropores which allow plant roots to breathe. While our polyethylene planters can be left outdoors in winter, we recommend that they be raised up off the ground surface to ensure proper drainage.

CAMPANIA WILL NOT BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGES DUE TO WEATHER CONDITIONS