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3 Best Windmill Pond Aerator Kits (Windmill Aeration Guide 2021)

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Windmill pond aerators are an environmentally friendly way to provides huge amounts of oxygen to your pond or lake at zero running cost to you.

And while that is certainly enticing, I mean, who doesn’t want to save money AND the planet at the same time, they do come with some drawbacks.

Here we‘re going to look at how windmill aerators work, the pros and cons of using wind power to aerate your pond, and we’ll even review three of the best aerators on the market today.

Plus, we’ll cover some of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to windmill aeration.

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Pond Windmill Comparison Chart

Description Output Price
Outdoor Water Solutions 12-Feet Pond Aeration Windmill Outdoor Water Solutions 12-Feet Pond Aeration Windmill 4.5 CFM SEE PRICE »
Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit 4.5 CFM SEE PRICE »
American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill Up to 12 CFM SEE PRICE »

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Best Pond Aerator Windmill Systems

Here are three of the best windmill aeration systems on the market today based on feedback, reliability, and how easy they are to install. Whether you have a small or large pond, one of these models should work for you.

Outdoor Water Solutions 12-Feet Pond Aeration Windmill

The Outdoor Water Solutions 12-foot windmill aerator is made with high-quality 18-gauge galvanized steel in the U.S.A.

This is Outdoor Water Solutions' smallest windmill tower at 12-feet high, but it still creates an air output of up to 4.5 CFM at a maximum of 30 PSI. This makes it ideal for ponds up to 3 acres in size in ideal conditions.

It operates in low wind conditions, as low as 3 to 5 mph, and can be placed up to 1,000 feet away from your pond before it starts to lose CFM.

Their patented Balcam II technology was designed to help minimize bearing fatigue, which as we discuss below, is an issue with all windmills.

All of the Outdoor Water Solutions windmills come with a 73” head, no matter the tower height, which is one of the largest windmill heads in the industry. The self-governing head was also designed to protect the unit in extremely high winds.

It also features larger check valves and recently upgraded ½” airline to handle the increased air that’s produced. And an air stone diffuser to push that air into your pond water.

The industry-leading 5-year warranty covers the compressor, bearings, and cams.

Specifications

  • Height: 12 ft
  • Fan head: 73 inches
  • Air output: Up to 4.5 CFM
  • Airline: 100 ft at ½ inch in diameter
  • Diffuser: One air stone
  • Warranty: 5-year warranty

Pros

  • A great option for backyard ponds
  • Works in low wind conditions as little as 3 MPH
  • An affordable windmill kit that supplies the same CFM as more expensive models
  • Made with high-quality materials in the U.S.A.
  • Industry-leading warranty

Cons

  • Not suitable for areas that need the extra height to get an ample amount of wind.

Outdoor Water Solutions 12-Feet Pond Aeration Windmill

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Outdoor Water Solutions 12-Feet Pond Aeration Windmill

Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit

The Outdoor Water Solutions 20-foot windmill aerator is made with high-quality 18-gauge galvanized steel in the U.S.A.

This Outdoor Water Solutions windmill is one of their taller models at 20-feet high and produces 20% more wind than the 12-foot model. Similar, to the 12 ft model, it still creates an air output of up to 4.5 CFM and is ideal for ponds up to 3 acres. It can also produce a maximum of 30 PSI allowing these windmills to aerate ponds up to 30 ft deep!

It operates in low wind conditions, as low as 3 to 5 mph, and can be placed up to 1,000 feet away from your pond before it starts to lose CFM.

Outdoor Water Solutions patented Balcam II technology was designed to help minimize bearing fatigue, which, unfortunately, is an issue with all windmills.

It also features larger check valves and recently upgraded ½” airline to handle the increased air that’s produced. And an air stone diffuser to push that air into your pond water with the option to add extra air stones.

The industry-leading 5-year warranty covers the compressor, bearings, and cams.

Specifications

  • Height: 20 ft
  • Fan head: 73 inches
  • Air output: Up to 4.5 CFM
  • Airline: 100 ft at ½ inch in diameter
  • Diffuser: Airstone (you can add extra airstones)
  • Warranty: 5-year warranty

Pros

  • A great option for small to large ponds
  • Works in low wind conditions as little as 3 MPH
  • The added height produces 20% more wind
  • An affordable windmill kit that supplies the same CFM as more expensive models
  • Made with high-quality materials in the U.S.A.
  • Industry-leading warranty

Cons

  • Can be difficult to install by yourself

Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit

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Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit

American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

The American Eagle Windmills by Joe Mescan Windmills are some of the best aeration windmills on the planet.

These windmills come in several different sizes, 13 feet all the way up to 33 feet, and come in either single bellow or double bellow models. The single bellow models are rated for ponds up to 2 acres while the double bellow can be used for ponds up to 4 acres.

They are constructed from 14-gauge galvanized steel to prevent rusting.

The 23-foot model comes with a generous 72-inch fan head. But, the 28 and 33-foot models come with one of the largest fan heads we’ve seen in aeration windmills at 78 inches!

Their bellow compressors are able to produce more air than most diaphragm compressors and they have a life expectancy of 15-20 years. These compressors can create up to 3 to 6 CFM which is suitable for ponds up to 2 acres. The double below models are suitable for twice that and are perfect for ponds up to 4 acres!

These windmills include heavy-duty high-speed bearings that are inside the compressor (not exposed to the outside elements) for longer life.

The ideal diffuser depth for all the models is 1 diffuser at 16 feet, 2 diffusers at 8 feet, or 4 diffusers at 4 feet.

Specifications

  • Height: 23 feet (more sizes available from 13 ft to 33 ft)
  • Fan head: 72 inches (23 ft model)
  • Air output: 3-6 CFM for single bellow, 6-12 CFM for double bellow
  • Airline: 100 ft of ½ inch tubing
  • Diffuser: One airstone (Additional airstones available)
  • Warranty: 5-year Warranty on the bellow, 4 Year Warranty on floating & sinking UV Air Hose, 3 Years on the Compressor Double Check Valve, 2 Years on the Compressor, Crankshaft, Bearings, Foot Valves, Tower, Wheel, Tail & Blades, and 1 Year on the Air Stone Diffuser, Assembly, Installation, Promotional & Compare DVD Video.

Pros

  • Excellent aeration potential for large ponds and lakes
  • Huge fan head design
  • Made from high-quality materials
  • Multiple sizes to make it easy to find the one best suited for your specific pond
  • Long life expectancy

Cons

  • Warranty is all over the place
  • Installation is difficult without help (they do have several videos and manuals on their website to help with installation though)

American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

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American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

How Do Windmill Pond Aerators Work?

Simply put, a windmill pond aerator converts wind energy into electricity to power an aerating compressor that pumps oxygen into your pond’s water.

If we look a little closer, they work similarly to those enormous wind turbines you see popping up in the countryside, but instead of powering homes and businesses, windmill aerators power air compressors. These air compressors then pump air through a hose and out a diffuser that sits in your pond.

This process adds essential oxygen to your pond’s water at a zero-running cost to you. And it’s environmentally friendly!

There are many benefits to using a windmill for pond aeration. However, there are a few drawbacks, as well.

Benefits of Windmill Pond Aerators

Let’s first look at some of the main benefits of using windmills for pond aeration. This is by no means an exhaustive list and you may think of a few benefits not mentioned here, but these are the big 4 that tend to sway people to make the initial investment in wind aeration.

Provides Aeration For All Pond Sizes

Windmill water aerators are a great option for smaller backyard ponds… but, what some may not realize is that they can easily provide huge amounts of oxygen to a large pond or lake.

The American Eagle aerator listed above can aerate a 12-acre pond (the double bellow model)! And it provides a huge amount of aeration without electricity which is impressive no matter how you look at it.

American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

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American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

Environmentally Friendly

Wind power is an environmentally friendly and renewable energy source, like solar power.

Because of this, windmill aerators are better for the environment than grid-powered aerators. Plus, you are not required to tie into the grid either.

did you know Did you know...

Many windmill aerators also have an optional pump accessory, so you can run a pond pump on renewable energy at zero running cost (similar to solar pond pumps).

The American Eagle Windmill Aerator can pump 200 plus GPH at winds of 10-15 mph.

American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

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American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

Save Money In The Long Run

The upfront costs to a windmill aeration system may scare some away. However, since the system runs off essentially free, renewable energy, the only cost is the initial purchase price (and any maintenance), which can lead to some pretty significant savings. This is especially true if you have a large pond and require a lot of aeration.

Remote Area Installation

Windmill pond aerators can be installed just about anywhere there’s wind, even in far away, remote locations away from any electrical grid.

In fact, there’s a good chance that they will actually work better in these remote locations due to increased winds and a minimal amount of obstructions.

Drawbacks of Windmill Pond Aeration

Unfortunately, windmill aeration does come with its own set of drawbacks. Again, you may have reasons not listed here for why wind-powered aeration is not for you, but these are the main reasons people choose your typical electrical pond aerator or solar-powered aeration over a windmill.

Requires Wind

The first and most obvious drawback is that they require a certain amount of wind to operate.

Essentially, no wind = no aeration.

However, the best windmill aerators will be able to perform in very low wind conditions. The Outdoor Water Solutions windmill aerators operate in winds as little as 3 mph!

Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit

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Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit

If you have a pond that requires aeration, for example, a koi fish pond, then we definitely recommend that you have some sort of backup for when there’s no wind. For example, an electrically powered aerator could be switched on until wind conditions improve.

Requires Open Space

Windmills require an open space with good airflow to operate at their full potential. This can be difficult if you have a backyard pond or any pond for that matter, that has a lot of obstruction around it.

There are a few ways to circumvent this issue, however, including:

  • Opt for a taller windmill. If you have a 7-foot-tall fence in your backyard blocking the wind, then one option would be to get a windmill that is taller than that to increase the potential amount of wind hitting it.
  • Windmills can be placed up to 1000 feet away from the pond it’s aerating before you see a loss in CFM. If your pond is surrounded by trees, then see if there’s an area within 1000 feet of your pond that is less obstructed.

Harder To Install

Compared to solar pond aerators and even electrically powered aerators, pond windmill aeration systems are typically harder to install. So, take this into account before making a buying decision.

The American Eagle windmills do have installation videos to help the process. I recommend watching the installation video prior to purchasing a windmill to get a good idea if it’s something you want to try and tackle yourself. You may even find installation to be relatively easy!

American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

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American Eagle 23-feet Pond Aerator Windmill

Bearing Failure

All windmills suffer from something called bearing fatigue. And it makes sense. Bearings are what allow the fan head to rotate and overtime they will start to wear down and fail.

Unfortunately, the only thing you can do is purchase a windmill with bearing protection, like the Outdoor Water Solutions patented Balcam II technology, which was designed to help minimize bearing fatigue. And to make sure you have a solid warranty in place.

Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit

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Outdoor Water Solutions 20-Feet Windmill Pond Aerator Kit

Windmill Pond Aeration FAQ’s

Will a windmill aerator still work in low to no wind conditions?

The best windmill aerators will operate in extremely low wind conditions down to 3 mph! But, they will not operate if there is no wind.

If your pond requires aeration (koi ponds are a good example) then we always recommend you have a backup aeration source in the event that your windmill aerator fails.

That could be as simple as having an electrically powered aerator on standby that you can switch on in low wind conditions or even a solar-powered aerator could be a viable back-up option in some cases.

Can I use windmill aeration in my small backyard pond?

Yes, if the conditions are right, you can absolutely use windmill aeration in a backyard pond.

Keep in mind, if you have a lot of obstructions (trees, houses, buildings) blocking wind currents then a windmill aerator might not be your best option.

What sized windmill pond aeration system do I need for my pond?

When sizing a windmill for your pond, you’ll want to look at windmill height and CFM. There are other factors to look at, but these will help ensure your pond gets the aeration it needs.

Getting the proper height will ensure that your windmill gets the maximum amount of wind to operate at its potential. If you have a lot of obstructions, then you’ll want to consider a taller windmill. If you don’t have any obstructions for roughly 200 feet around your windmill, then a lower height model should work just fine (and you'll save some money).

Also, the more CFM your windmill produces, the larger sized pond or lake it will typically be able to aerate. There are other factors, but CFM is a good indicator. Windmill manufacturers will specify the CFM rating of their windmills, as well as, what sized pond or lake it’s rated for. Typically, this number is in acres. Just remember that the CFM and pond size they specify is typically the maximum. So, be sure to over-size the windmill for your pond to ensure your pond is getting adequate aeration and to allow for those times when wind flow might be minimal.

How close does the windmill need to be to my pond?

For all three windmills featured above, they can be placed as far away as 1000 ft before they start to lose CFM. That really comes in handy if you have poor airflow near your pond and need to put your windmill farther away for best performance.