After another fix and leaving things to dry overnight, we plugged in the pump today and HOORAAAAAAAY! No leaks! To be sure, we ran the pump for a couple of hours before declaring it leak free. Then we got out duct tape to secure the trash can top with the holes we had to cut for the various hoses, power lines, etc. We tried to be very careful not to jostle the tub as we did this, and then waited again to see if we had any problems.
I’ve just finished add the ‘stuff’ to the bird bath. Since it’s deep, I put bricks in the bottom and then some river rock on top of those so the hummers will have plenty of places to stand if they just want a shower. There are plenty of places they can simply dive in, too.
Here is the set up. You can see the tub above and the trash can on the deck under the tub. The garden hose is always on. There is a float valve inside the can that will trigger the hose to add more water if the level in the can gets too low. The float valve shuts off the water when it’s happy with the level.
The water is attached to a timer. We decided to run it during daylight and let the pump rest when it’s dark, so no skinny dipping or midnight swims for the little hummers. They can always stand in the water in the tub, but there won’t be a waterfall during the night.
We get a lot of gusty winds, particularly during storms, so I made a point of securing things as best I could. I THINK the greenery will stay put. Time will tell.
The last step is planting flowers. A good friend of mine from Lunch Bunch told me about getting hummingbird flower seed packets. I went to WalMart to find them. They had them kind of hidden, but I finally found them and bought several packages. I’m planning to put a big flower pot on the table beside the chair and see if I can get that seed to grow. If that doesn’t work, I’ll fill the bowl with annuals when we get the other flowers for the deck.
We have two feeders out and the bird bath. Come on, hummers!
I’ll put plants on the railing on either side of the bird bath, and also on the table, but you can get a good idea of what the whole project looks like now. The bucket attached to the tub catches the water. The pump at the bottom of the bucket recirculates the water. The timer is ‘on’ during daylight and ‘off’ at dark.
I put bricks in the bottom so the water won’t be too deep. I’m picturing hummingbirds standing on the various rocks, shells, etc. and darting through the water. :0) You can see our cocker spaniel/schnauzer cross, Molly, through the screen of the back porch.
This is a close up of the far end of the bird bath.
I can’t tell you how much we’re enjoying the sound of the water! We have the back door to the porch open to enjoy both the nice weather plus the’water of the ‘waterfall.”
I haven’t seen a hummer yet, but we’re hoping to soon. We have a feeder out, and now, the bird bath, so we hope they’ll feel welcomed. I’ll try to get pics if/when the hummers check this out.
They say, “The third time’s the charm.” Apparently, we didn’t get the memo because we’re on “TRY # 4” to get the plumbing on the hummingbird bath not to leak. We got it back together again, hooked it up and ran it for awhile, only to find ANOTHER place water was seeping out. I logged about 7,100 steps on my pedometer yesterday with all the back and forth to the shop yesterday working on it.
We took that apart and put pipe dope on it and stuck it together again. We turned the water on again and didn’t see any leaks this time. We were going to check it again in half an hour, but then it started to rain. Until everything is dry again, we won’t know if we’ve been successful this time or not.
I’ve taken all the decoration out of the tub twice thus far. I’m not going to put anything in there until we’re sure we have the leak problem fixed. (I did get some nice-looking greenery to add at the store yesterday :0) )
Here is how the system looks now, as we test the plumbing –
If all goes well, I’ll plan to add decorations to the tub tomorrow. I’ll take pics when the decorations are in. Meanwhile, we hung up a feeder in case we have any hungry hummers in our area.
I added the timer to the hummingbird bird bath this morning and took a couple of pictures, because I thought the water looked so pretty in the sunlight.
THEN, I noticed the pump was kind of ‘hiccuping’. I added water to the pump and it got a bit better, but still didn’t act right. When my husband and I looked at it together, we realized we must have a leak somewhere.
Since this morning, we’ve had the whole thing apart and together again TWICE. Right now the tub is in the shop again, with a fourth idea for sealing the water level valve. We also went to a flexible tubing, rather than the rigid pvc pipe set up we had, because it was pushing against the bottom of the tub, causing a bit of strain.
We’re letting the newly sealed valve dry overnight and we’ll try things again tomorrow – or the next day if we get rained out, as forecast, tomorrow.
Meanwhile, I got some more greenery and will rethink the toys and arrangement when they go in again – assuming we can get the system to quit leaking!
The actual hummingbird bath is now finished. I’ll add plants on either side of the bath on the railings, plus a basket of flowers for the table, hummingbird feeder hanging above somewhere, etc., but the main project is finished.
I gathered things from around the house to put into the bath – a ceramic bath tub with a lady in it, three glass hummingbird feeders that were prettier than they were practical, shells, a frog, some aquarium decorations, some rocks, and some bricks – both for the decorations and in the middle for the hummingbirds to stand on, if they wish.
Here you can see the ‘stuff’ I’m hoping the hummingbirds will like. I can see myself changing things from time to time, which will be half the fun of the bird bath!
I LOVE the sound of the water. I really hadn’t thought of that, and I find it very appealing and relaxing. Between that, and the wind chimes from the back porch, it will make a great spot for us most of the year.
When the hummers come, I’m hoping they really like it. I’ll try to get some pics if they do.
We finished the plumbing part of the hummingbird bird bath project today! We had ‘gooed’ the drain pipe fitting last night and let it dry for 24 hours. We had to cut another hole in the bucket lid to accommodate the pipe coming from the bottom of the tub in a straighter fashion. This set up will allow the bird bath to sit quietly when the pump is not on. When the pump IS on, the water recirculates from the tub, down into the bucket and back. The only water we’ll need to replace is from evaporation from time to time. We’ll put a timer between the pump and the electrical hookup so the water will be on in daylight and off at night.
Here we have the water on, making a kind of waterfall for the hummers. The place we ‘gooed’ last night is good. We still had some drips from the place where we attach the pvc pipe to the side of the tub. Tightening the screws more got rid of the leaks. A happy thing we didn’t expect was the NICE sound the ‘waterfall’ makes!
Here’s a close up of the basic tub and waterfall.
Phase 3 will be gathering ‘stuff’ to put in the tub – greenery, rocks, bricks, fun decorations, etc. I’ll take pics again when I’ve gotten the decorating started.
“Dog – Tired” – Michelle Cazares
My husband and I went to get more parts for the hummingbird bird bath project this morning. We have it almost finished. We got it together and tested it, but it was leaking from the bottom of the tub. We took it back into the shop, dried it, and put a really expensive ‘goo’ that’s a good sealer around the fixture in the bottom of the tub. We’re letting it dry for 24 hours and then will put the bird bath together again tomorrow. We got a timer today so that it will be on in daylight and off during the night, making the pump last longer (we hope.)
I’ll take pics when we get it back together tomorrow, and then I’ll start gathering goodies to put into it to entertain the hummingbirds…
I’ve got the sleepies now, so I’m going to step away from the computer and rest a bit.
Hope your day is going well.