AeroGarden Customer Service & Support - AEROGARDEN FAQs - Water Pump vs Aerator/Bubbler technology
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AeroGarden Customer Service & Support

Water Pump vs Aerator/Bubbler technology

Some AeroGardens are manufactured with a Pump, some with an Aerator.  Both methods are very effective at growing healthy plants!  

Does my AeroGarden have a pump or aerator/bubbler?  

Whichever you have - it must be working properly to ensure that your plants are getting the oxygen they need! See discussion below for details and pictures.

AeroGardens With Pump Technology:

AeroGarden 7*, Pro100, Pro200, Deluxe, Extra**, Extra Elite, Harvest models**, Ultra**, Bounty models**

The pump works by forcing water in the bowl up to the grow deck and into each of the seed pod openings, then trickles back down into the water bowl.  This action provides water to the seed pods, aerates the water and provides oxygen to the plant roots.  

It is important to note that the Pump does not run continuously in many cases.  Depending upon the model and the growth cycle settings, the pump turns on and shuts off automatically throughout a 24-hr period.  If you don't see or hear water flowing, it is likely that the Pump is in an off cycle.  See the Setup Guide for your AeroGarden for details. 

When the Pump is running, you might hear water trickling into the water bowl.  If you cannot hear the water trickling, try lifting up a Seed Pod from the opening and look inside.  You should see water flowing into the seed pod opening.

Seed Pods will receive water by simply resting in place in the pod openings.  The pods are long enough to reach below the water line, and as they become saturated, water is wicked up the seeds. The Pump will provide extra water to the pods, but serves mainly as a means to aerate and oxygenate. If your pump is not working, or if it noisy, read our pump troubleshooting page.

*Some AeroGarden 7 models operate with a pump, some with an aerator.  To determine which you have, lift the water bowl off the base and check the light post. If you see two brass contacts side by side, then your AeroGarden operates with a water pump.  The contacts on the light post connect with the pump contacts on the back of the water bowl, which is how the pump receives power.  See picture below. 

** Harvest, Ultra, Extra (with Miracle Gro logo on hood) and Bounty models all have pumps that plug into the base.  Please be sure the pump cord that exits from the back of the water bowl is securely plugged into the connector on the base as shown on your Setup Guide. 

Photo of undamaged contact

pump contacts on an AeroGarden 7 light post


AeroGardens with Aerator/Bubbler Technology: 

AeroGarden 3, AeroGarden 3SL, Sprout, Sprout LED, SpaceSaver 6, AeroGarden 6, AeroGarden 6 Elite, Veggie Pro, AeroGarden 7 LED, and some older AeroGarden 7 models (if your AeroGarden 7 does not have the metal contacts shown above, it is an aerator/bubbler model)

AeroGarden 3SL, Sprout, Sprout Plus LED

The aerator on the AG3SL and Sprout models operates only when the grow light is on (16 hrs daily). They have a view window in the water bowl where you can see the bubbles - and also use a different assembly from that pictured below.

The AeroGarden 3SL has an aerator shaped like a small, short dome. The AeroGarden Sprout and Sprout Plus LED have bubblers shaped like long white stems. Consult the 3SL page or the Sprout page for more information. 

Other Aerator/Bubbler Models

See the picture below for an example of an AeroGarden water bowl with an Aerator/Bubbler.  The aerator assembly may differ depending upon model. 


image of airstone inside bowl;

Water bowl with an aerator/bubbler (3SL, Sprout, and Sprout LED have different assembly)

The aerator models use a diaphragm pump (installed inside the base) to push air through tubing and into the water bowl.  The aerator runs continuously to produce air bubbles in the water bowl and provide oxygen to the plant roots.

It is a good idea to check the aerator in your AeroGarden occasionally to ensure it is producing bubbles. To do so, lift the lid/grow deck off the water bowl and and look inside - you should see air bubbles in the center of the water bowl.  If you do not see air bubbles, visit our aerator troubleshooting page.

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