DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

My DIY solar fountain hummingbird bath works so well for such an easy project that I had to share. You can easily do this and what is great is you don’t need anywhere to plug in for electricity!

My DIY solar fountain hummingbird bath was a hit on Instagram and Facebook.  It is so easy and economical.  When I thought up this idea I knew I wanted to use mostly things I had on hand.  So I scrounged around my garden supplies, basement treasures and even took apart other things I had made. (the terra cotta dish came from my Terra Cotta Pot fountain) Don’t worry I will replace it.

Now I have created a centerpiece planter with a galvanized tub solar fountain on top. It’s beautiful, click here to check it out!

UPDATE: see the update on my fountain at the end of this post

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

Get Started on the DIY solar fountain

Start with a deep container, I used a galvanize vintage tub.  Mine is about 24 3/4″ across the top and 12 to 18 inches deep.

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

I wanted to use the larger size tub so I could fit a terra cotta dish in it for the birds to land on.

the Fountain

I bought this Solar fountain from Amazon. (this is the latest one I bought, I have been testing a few) I wanted solar as there is no plug out here and I did not want to drag an extension cord into the garden.

Several spray pattern heads come with it so use the one you like.  I chose this one as it has the finest spray which I thought would work best for hummingbirds. (the other tips will get tested to see which I like the best).

I put the tip on at an angle for a reason which you will see later.

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

Items I had on hand

The other items in my DIY hummingbird bath fountain are a terra cotta dish with some stones in it and an ordinary black pot.

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

Putting the solar fountain bird bath all together

I used a pot that was nearly the same height as my tub. I sunk it down into the water upside down and let it fill so it would stay under.

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

Next I place the dish and stones on top of the submerged pot and place it so the fountain spray will hit into the dish.

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

I tilt the dish so it will drain into the tub.

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

The solar fountain has a bit of room to move in front of the dish and sometimes it turns and sprays outside of the tub but since the tub is so deep it doesn’t run out of water.  It just waters the flowers around it.

DIY Solar Fountain Hummingbird Bath

Now that I have had this running for several weeks I can say I love it and so does the birds and bees.  The Hummers now come looking for the spray each morning before the sun has even risen over the trees to get it going.

I just created another for my front garden and tried a different solar fountain. It was a few dollars cheaper but it does not have as powerful of a spray and so far the hummingbirds are not using it. I could try elevating the tub but I think I would rather just purchase the same solar fountain that I used for this one in the post.


I have removed the terra cotta dish.  The bees liked it but the other birds go to another shallower dish for their bath instead of this one. Plus it created shade when the water receded stopping the pump.

Let me know if you make one! I think there is so many ways we can take this idea.

FYI: Some have commented that they got one that did not work.  First, there is a protective film covering the top of the fountain that needs to be removed and sometimes air gets trapped in the pump. Fully submerge the unit into the water until no bubble erupt from it. Then let it float to the top and it should begin working. I call this “burping” the pump. 

Happy Gardening and Hummingbird watching!

Pin and share, I am sure there are plenty of others that would like to try this.

PS: want more DIY bird baths See Here Or Visit this article: Bird Bath Fountain Ideas

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  1. Love it, Pamela!!! I just showed my husband and I’m going to order the solar pump from Amazon. Thanks so much for this great idea.

    1. It is so easy and simple I wasn’t even going to do a post on it but then I figured others would really love this so I tossed together the post at the last minute. I am going to do another, never enough water features in the garden!

  2. Thank you for sharing this. I think it’s something I could handle! I wanted to get a solar fountain thing and did search Amazon, but most reviews would say that the container would run out of water too fast, and then ruin the fountain as it would keep running and not shut off. But using a big tub like that may solve that problem! I love the idea of “solar” and not having to run a cord across the yard or patio, etc. I’m going to tour some thrift stores and see if I can find a big tub! Marilyn

    1. Awesome idea as I feed the hummingbirds..they are so beautiful to watch..ty

  3. Great idea and will be making one. So cute and love the solar. I can put it anywhere in my yard. Thanks!

  4. Love the idea to cool off my humming birds and butterflies ……… Went and bought stuff, ordered mini sprayer and set it all up in perfect spot in my cottage garden. BUT it doesn’ work!!!! It’s been 2 days now in full sun, sprits a few minutes at first when I first put it together and now nothing!!! Galvanized tub is 10 1/2 gallons so plenty deep enough. I don’t usually order very much from Amazon so guess I’m stuck with a defective fountain???


    1. Amazon has an excellent return policy, just like any major retailer, especially if a product is defective merely return it for a refund.

  5. Such a cool idea — I have all of the “ingredients” in your “recipe” already at home, just need to get a solar fountain. But question about mosquitoes — is the water moved by the sun-powered fountain enough to keep mosquitoes from laying eggs in the water, or does the tub of water need to be changed frequently to avoid mosquito hatching?
    Dumping and refilling the tub often may not be so eco-friendly — hmmm, unless I use it to water plants or something?
    Thanks for your help!

    1. The water is replaced often enough that no mosquitoes lay eggs in the water and I have it in my garden so even when water splashes outside of the tub it is not wasted, it waters for me.

  6. Hummingbirds might be afraid of the sprinkler or the deep water. Try turning down to a mist or purchase a mister instead. Maybe a bigger dish on top would also work. They are small but very territorial the bigger dish will give them more territory. They also look for anything red, maybe add red rocks or a red ribbon to catch their eye. Don’t paint anything red though it might hurt them. The red flowers are good make sure they are something they will like. Check out the best time of year they travel through your area to make sure you get them when they are looking for a resting place. Lastly don’t give up keep fine tuning till they find it once they do keep it the same place they will remember you every year.

    1. LOL, the hummingbirds that live here are tough customers and aren’t afraid of anything, they love to shower in my larger fountain that is like an old hand pump. I first thought of this idea because they would come up and get into the spray of my hose when I was out watering in the back garden. They love all the larkspur blooming especially and it was only about an hour after I set up this little solar fountain that they were dashing through the spray and the mama’s have started to bring their fledglings through it too. It is like a bunch of little kids running through the sprinklers. My hummers live here year round, we live in the Sierras of California.

  7. I bought this fountain a few weeks ago and absolutely love it. I have it in a pot that has to be filled everyday but I’m getting ready to put it in a big tub like you did. You have such great ideas. Thanks so much. My yard is looking good because of your tips.

  8. Thanks for those excellent tips. After reading reviews of the Solar fountain, I began to second guess them. Now, I will definitely give it a try!

  9. I have tried similar with one of these wonderful solar sprayers but no matter how I set it up the wind takes the water out of the bath area and in an hour the bath is empty. I have not found a way to anchor it in the middle so the spray stays within the confines of the bath,

    1. That is why I chose a deep tub for mine, it would take 2 days or more for it to empty out and the plants I have around it like to be kept moist so it is actually a good thing. I fill the tub up each morning and I am good to go.

  10. I am getting everything ready. Got the tub today and ordered the solar pump foundation today. Trying to find a pot to out in the tub. Bought to tear cottage dishes today. Where did u get your rocks?

    1. Found the rocks I want. I do have one more question. Do use regular tap water for the bath or bottled water?

  11. Thank you for your DIY. Bird bath. I put it together last night and it was awesome today w as itching the fountain

  12. So excited to try this! Question: We have started a butterfly and hummingbird garden, and my research says the butterflies drink by puddling and they suggest a dish with wet sand or mud…. instead of rocks do you think I could do rocks and sand… is the water flow gentle enough it wouldn’t wash the sand off the dish into the barrel? Also, we are trying to not be too inviting to birds who are going to use my butterfly and caterpillar guests as an open buffet….

    1. That is a very good question. I have not tried sand in the dish. The water flow is fairly gentle and when the tub is large enough it intermittently gets into the dish (I have been experimenting with different tub sizes) so that makes it even more gentle. I am going to have to give it a try and see.

  13. I love this idea! I have a galvanized tub leftover from my wedding. This would be a great use! I would like to maybe add some aquatic pants. Anyone have any suggestions? Also, I am a little worried about this breeding mosquitoes. Any thoughts?

    1. so far I have had no issues with mosquitoes but if I did I would just add mosquito dunks or bits.

  14. How do you keep the deep water clean of algae and scum

    1. I haven’t had an issue with that, maybe because I need to fill it up frequently or add clean water. It there were an issue I would use my garden hose to syphon out the dirty water and use it to water my garden then refill with fresh water. It would take probably 5 to 10 minutes.

  15. i did this last year. i am planning to get it put back together. i do not think i had any hummingbirds on it but they were around it some times. i loved the setup. my problem is when every anyone decided to mow the grass i am constantly cleaning THE tub ,dishes,rocks. i do not have anything to to cover my tub.or they will not let me know when my 93 yr old father decides to get on and mow..

  16. I’m on my second fountain, it’s in a saucer with a rock for the little birds. It just bubbles. Had not thought to let it just come up and if wind blew it out of the tray, their are flowers that would benefit. The big birds love to take a bath. There are days it gets filled 2-3x a day. It’s all good for the birds. Am waiting on a solar pump with solar pad, want to use a 5 gl bucket, a pretty tray with holes burned into it to let water flow back into bucket. Then will feel more like using one of the different sprays. Saw the idea on You tube Robbie and Gary Easy Gardening. Such a cool idea.
    Love your idea, that is next…thank you for the idea.

  17. love the video. i did make mine last year. i am thinking about doing a bigger round one for this year.

  18. How often do you have to clean this out so it doesn’t become a mosquito magnet? I’m in Texas — West Nile Virus is rampant but I’d LOVE to make one of these! 🙂 I keep a bird feeder sitting outside my office window because seeing it just makes me happy. So thinking… a nice fountain would be a great addition

    1. I don’t clean it out but a couple times of year, the water flow is enough here that I have not gotten mosquitos in this one. But I do use mosquito dunks in other tanks I have water in and that works well.

  19. Hello Pamela, love this DIY project, but then galvanized tubs are so expensive. Is there a way to find a budget friendly one? Please help. Would love to make this ……

    1. Prices have been increasing for anything made of metal lately so I understand. I found some this size at a local farm supply when they had them on discount for $35. The others I got at yard sales, local barn sales etc. It is a treasure hunt. Wal-Mart has galvanized drink tubs that are smaller yet they would work too.

  20. i made your humming bird bath. used the gavinized tub from walmart. my question in the summer my brother mows the grass. i am looking for a cover to put over the tub so it will not get grass in the water. i love the tub. i sometimes have doves sitting in the water dish.

    1. Good for you. I suppose a tarp thrown over the top while he mows would do the trick. How often does he mow? Maybe it would be a great time to clean it out and refresh the water anyways.

  21. Also if after awhile it doesn’t seem to be working as well, wipe off the solar panel occasionally as it can get dirt/fingerprints on it, and keep container free of leaves, etc

  22. mosquito problem—no problem
    Go to the bait store and buy a dozen minnows. Put them in the water and they will eat the mosquitos .If some of the minnows die (and some will) just take the dead ones out and drop them on the ground. I use minnows in the little pool for my dog and after 4 months the minnows that had survived had gotten at least three times bigger . The mosquitos love the water and the fish love the mosquitos.

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