A Guide on How to keep fountain water clean for birds

Like every animal in the summer, Birds love to cool themselves by going to places where there is fresh crisp water.

But for that water to stay clean and drinkable, You have to adjust some of the things that will help both you and the birds to accomplish what you want.

Here are a list of what you need to do:

  • Choose a shady spot for the fountain or put a cover beside it to minimize algae growth and slow evaporation.
  • Position it where it will not be clogged by grass clippings, falling leaves and other debris.
  • Carefully clean the fountain couple times per month.
  • When refilling the it, dump out the stagnant water instead of just adding more.
Why cleaning your fountain is important

Why a clean fountain is necessary

And remember, Dirty water can spread disease to flocks of backyard birds and encourage mosquito populations that can in turn infect humans and other animals. 

Clean water, on the other hand, is more attractive to the birds and will bring a wider variety of birds to your backyard.

How Often to Clean a Fountain

The first step to having a good clean fountain for the birds is to make sure it does not get dirty.

While you will have to eventually make a cleaning process for it, You can minimize the dirt and lower the times you have to do polish it.

The frequency with which you clean a fountain depends on many factors, including the weather, the quality of your water, the location of the it, and the number of birds using it.

The best advice is to clean it several times in the summer and in the winter every couple of months.

Steps to keep your fountain water clean

What you may need before you start cleaning

  • Water.
  • Something to scrub with (Scrub brush).
  • Some rubber gloves.
  • Chlorine bleach.
  • A hose

1) Dump Out the Old Water

The first step in cleaning a very dirty bird bath is to get rid of the contaminated water.Dump out any old, stagnant water. The water should not be allowed to puddle where birds can use it before it evaporates.

This water is often filled with organic material such as feces, algae and dirt, and it is safe for watering nearby flowers or plants. Dump the water out in an area where it will be recycled to help the rest of your garden.

2) Remove Debris

Remove loose material from the bottom of the fountain.

Use a disposable rag or a scrub brush to remove any large deposits of spilled seed, feces, debris, and other contaminants. Using a pressure attachment of a hose can also be effective.

3) Scrub With a Bleach Solution

A good bleach formula is 1/10 bleach chlorine and 9/10 water. If your fountain is near flowers and other plants make sure you put a cover so that they don’t get damaged.

Make sure you scrub any place where birds might land, drink and bath.

If you forgot to clean it for a long time and is now very dirty. Make sure you allow the bleach to work properly by letting it soak for a couple of minutes.

4) Rinse the Fountain

After you are done with the scrubbing, Rinse the fountain completely with pressure water until you can’t see any foam left.

The smell of chlorine is bound to stay but it would not be so much that it can hurt or repel the birds. The smell still should be far less repulsive than when you started.

5) Allow the Birdbath to Dry Completely

Before you do anything else, Make sure you dry the fountain completely. This way you will be sure all of the chlorine will be gone before you refill it.

6) Refill the fountain

Use fresh, clean water to raise the probability of birds coming and drinking, Bathing …etc.


You are done with the cleaning process and the water is clear, Fresh and clean. and that is how you keep fountain water clean for birds.

how to maintain indoor fountains

Here is a video to show you some types and how to do proper outdoor fountain maintenance so that it always stay fresh for the birds.

Tips & Tricks: Attract More Birds To Your Fountain

  • Keep it in cover: When drinking and bathing, Birds need some protection in case any type of danger comes near them.
  • Choose a shady place: One of the reasons they come to the fountain is to cool off. Specially in the summer. This will also make sure the water don’t evaporate that quickly.
  • Keep It Open: Don’t sacrifice accessibility over anything else. The first goal should be birds being able to drink water without having to wet all of their body.
  • Good Footing: Pea gravel or large stones in the bottom of you bath basin also serve to give bathing birds better footing while using the bath.
  • Well Situated: Siting your birdbath is also important. place the fountain within reach of a garden hose so that it can be simple to get to for cleaning.

vinegar in fountain water for better cleansing

Vinegar will kill algae if you use enough of it. Add vinegar to your fountain water and see if you notice any changes.

it can be sprayed on the algae, resulting in removal of the unsightly green growth while leaving nearby soil safe for other plants.

Vinegar can be used as a safer bleach alternative for some applications, like cleaning. It is also biodegradable.

However, vinegar is not a registered disinfectant and does not kill dangerous bacteria. Hydrogen peroxide has antimicrobial ingredients and can be an effective household cleaner.

Recommended Products

Here is a list of some accessories that will help you tremendously and make the job of cleaning the fountain every time a lot easier:

Drill Brush

These brushes should cut your cleaning and scrubbing time in half or more compared to the rigorous effort involved in hand scrubbing. 

Fountain Blocks

Fountain Blocks remove pond algae and can also help control algae growth in ornamental fish ponds. Fountain Blocks are for containerized ponds and fountains only. Not recommended for use with live plants.

Garden Pressure Hose

A quality water hose that can pump water with good pressure is a big plus when trying to get rid of all the leftover algae and harmful particles from the fountain.

Not only will it save you a lot of time but also make it safer for birds in the long run.

Conclusion: ( How to keep fountain water clean for birds )

In the end, Whether you are regularly practice bird watching or you just do it for the sake of passing time, All that is needed is Having a good sense of cleanliness and it will mostly be fine.

We hope you enjoyed our little guide on how to keep fountain water clean for birds so that the both of you will enjoy the finishing product of your work.

If you have anything you would like to add or any question about the topic we discussed make sure to leave a comment down below.