How Much Does it Cost to Build a Fountain?

Having a water fountain built as part of your backyard’s landscape design can add a fresh, lively, and serene vibe to your home’s outdoor space. The sheer range of sizes and styles of pre-fabricated fountains is enough to inspire your own DIY water fountain project. However, how much does it cost to build a fountain?

There are many factors at play when calculating the cost of building a water fountain. This includes the materials used, the features installed, and many other variables such as the size of the fountain, the plumbing and electricity fixtures, and the extent of landscaping required for installation.

This comprehensive guide will outline all the factors involved in installing a water fountain so that you can have a better idea of how much it costs to build a fountain in your yard. So, let’s get into it!

Water Fountain Costs by Material

The average cost of building a water fountain is between $50 and $4000. Notably, the exact price of the project will depend largely on the material used to build the fountain. The table below lists the average price range for water fountains built out of various materials.

Material Used

Average Price Range

Plastic or Resin

$100 – $400


$100 – $1600

Rock or Stone

$200 – $1200


$300 – $3000


$300 – $4000

Therefore, the most affordable fountains are made of plastic, resin, or fiberglass, while a premium, luxury fountain is usually made out of concrete or marble.

Water Fountain Features

Some types of water fountains will cost more to build and install than others due to the various installed features. Depending on the fountain features you select and how long the installation process takes, your overall cost will vary.

Below are some of the most common water fountain features, their price range, and some noteworthy details regarding each feature.

Feature Type

Price Range


Freestanding Wall Fountain

$600 – $1200

  • Too heavy to hang
  • Sits on the ground against a wall

Hanging Wall Fountain

$150 – $500

  • Lightweight
  • Hangs from wall/fence

Precast Stone/Concrete

$300 – $1000

  • Premade from molds
  • Available in many sizes/styles/colors

Traditional Spanish Tier

$250 – $1000

  • Series of stacked basins in resin or concrete
  • Used as a standalone centerpiece

Pedestal Tier

$50 – $6000

  • 2 – 3 tiers in resin or concrete
  • Can be used in outdoor gardens or sunrooms

Small Garden Bird Bath

$25 – $300

  • Standalone unit
  • Installation not required
  • Available in many sizes/styles/colors

Solar Bird Bath Fountain

$150 – $300

  • Uses solar power to recycle water
  • No plumbing required
  • Least expensive fountain option

Fire Features

$100 – $1000

  • Available as bowls, vases, or pits

Sheet Fall

$250 – $1900

  • Simple to install
  • Simple design
  • Uniform stream of water
  • The price depends on sheet width
  • Optional lighting features

Water Fountain Installation Factors

Generally speaking, the cost of the fountain installation is correlated positively with the price of the fountain itself. In other words, the more expensive the fountain, the more installation will cost.

Having said that, there are several noteworthy factors associated with fountain installation that can make the overall cost to build a fountain vary significantly. Below are some of the most critical factors to consider.

Size and Height

The primary price factor for your fountain will be the size and height of the water fountain. This holds whether you install a small birdbath or large marble centerpiece fountain.

The table below lists various sizes of water fountains, of various materials, along with the average price range for each one.

Fountain Material and Size

Average Cost

Small Rock (3 sq. feet)

$125 – $350

Medium Rock (12 sq. feet)

$400 – $1800

Large Rock (20 sq. feet)

$1000 – $5250

Small Concrete/Cast Stone (34” diameter)

$250 – $1000

Medium Concrete/Cast Stone (35” – 62” diameter)

$1200 – $3500

Large Concrete/Cast Stone (63” – 100” diameter)

$3000 – $10,000

Indoor vs. Outdoor

Indoor fountains typically cost less than outdoor fountains, largely due to their relatively smaller size. Indoor fountains also cost less because they are easier to install and maintain. Most indoor fountains are pre-fabricated and only need to be filled with water and plugged in.

Therefore, most indoor fountains do not require special plumbing fixtures or dedicated electrical hookups. Nor do they require any landscaping to install. Lastly, because indoor fountains are not exposed to rain, sunlight, dust, and other elements, they are extremely easy and cost-effective to maintain.

Meanwhile, most outdoor fountains require some degree of landscaping alongside installing dedicated plumbing fixtures and electrical hookups. All these factors, alongside the added maintenance cost, mean that outdoor fountains are typically more costly than indoor fountains.

While indoor fountains can have added features such as lighting and programmable settings, these features still won’t bump up the total cost to surpass the average cost of most outdoor fountains.

Plumbing and Electricity

If you choose to build a fountain as a DIY project, make sure you get a professional to set up your fountain’s plumbing and electrical components. A professional plumber usually costs around $45 – $65 an hour, while a professional electrician typically costs around $65 – $85 per hour.

However, it is worth noting that the plumber will give you a higher rate for their services if your fountain is relatively far away from the nearest water source. Similarly, the electrician will also charge a higher rate if the fountain is relatively far from the nearest power source.

Installing Solar Water Fountains

If you are considering installing a solar water fountain, it is worth noting that these models are typically more costly than non-solar units of the same style, size, and materials. The average cost to build a solar fountain is between $50 and $200, depending on several factors.

A small and simple solar water fountain will lie at the low end of the above-given price range. Meanwhile, multi-tiered solar water fountains will lie at the higher end of the price range.

Nevertheless, despite these relatively higher costs, the amount of money you save on operating your solar water fountain is likely to offset the relatively higher initial investment. Solar water fountains use solar panels to convert sunlight into electricity which the fountain uses to run, thereby helping you save money on electricity bills.

Notably, the exact savings you will experience through installing and running a solar water fountain depends largely on the wattage of the pump, the rate of electricity in your area, and how many hours a day your solar water fountain runs.

A small pond fountain, for example, makes use of a 44-watt pump to run 24 hours a day. If we take the electricity rate as 24 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), we arrive at the following operating costs for a small solar water pond fountain.

  • 44 watts/1000 = 0.44 kilowatts
  • 0.44 kilowatts x 24 hours = 1.056 kWh
  • 1.056 kWh x $0.24 = $0.2534
  • Operating Cost/Savings = $0.25 per day or $91.25 per year


If you have a chance to build a fountain on a pre-existing landscape, you should definitely go for it, as this means you don’t have to pay additional charges for landscaping costs. However, an outdoor fountain can often not be built or installed without first undertaking proper landscaping in your outdoor space.

For example, the cost of re-sloping your lawn can run you anywhere between $1000 and $3000, depending on the size of the area to be landscaped and the extent to which the lawn needs to be re-sloped.

In other cases, you may not be able to install your outdoor fountain without first excavating the surrounding land. If large areas of your yard need to be dug up and tiled or paved to accommodate the fountain, you can expect to pay hefty additional landscaping costs before the fountain is even installed.

How Much Does it Cost to Build a Fountain?

So, how much does it cost to build a fountain? Given all the factors at play, it is not easy to give a straightforward answer to this.

The cost to build a fountain can vary between $150 and $4000 depending on the size of the fountain, the materials used, additional features, plumbing, and electrical fixtures, whether the fountain is indoors or outdoors, and the extent of landscaping required before installation.

DIY vs. Professional Fountain Installation

While a homeowner with seasoned skills in plumbing, electricity, and landscaping can potentially turn their fountain installation into a DIY project. However, elaborate fountains require highly skilled labor and adequate planning to make the installation successful.

Therefore, depending on the extent of the work required, you can either opt for DIY fountain installation or professional installation. However, if you don’t have the necessary skills and knowledge, it’s usually better to hire a professional to do the job for you.

Final Words

While the cost to build a fountain varies tremendously depending on the size, materials, and extent of plumbing and landscaping work required, the end result will be a beautiful and serene outdoor space that is both welcoming and peaceful.

So, if you are considering building a fountain in your home, ensure that you have a solid understanding of all the factors and costs involved so you can plan accordingly and build a fountain that will last.

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