Want to make your backyard super fun for the little humans in your life? What kid doesn’t love to play with water? We made this wine barrel water pump for our little one, and now she enjoys HOURS of water fun while we work in the garden.
I want my yard to be a welcoming place for the kiddos in my life. So when I saw one of these wine barrel water pumps at one of the Waldorf preschools that we visited, I knew I wanted to make one right away. And I am so glad that we did. I can’t tell you how much fun my toddler has had with this free-standing water pump.
It holds about 25 gallons of water, drains back into itself, and is easy enough for my tiny little 2 and 1/2 year old to pump. We placed it close to her sand box so she can easily fill up buckets of water to pour, play, and splash. This easy and fun DIY water pump project has been such a blessing in our life. It keeps my little one busy and gives me time to work in my garden.
It is also amazingly fun when her little friends come over. They have a blast pumping the water and getting wet. Another great thing about this wine barrel water pump is that it gets my little one engaged in the garden. She regularly fills up her tiny little watering can and waters the strawberries, raspberries, and flowers. A little gardener in training.
And finally, what I love about this wine barrel pump is that it conserves water, as it drains right back into itself through the cracks in the top.
NOTES: I want to say that this is an easy project for anyone who knows how to use power tools. And that is NOT me. I have to give TOTAL credit for this project to my amazing partner, who indulges me constantly as I have new DIY ideas around the house. The tools that he used for the project are: a power drill, jig saw, staple gun, and sander.
This water pump holds about 20-25 gallons of water. We put a piece of aluminum window screen underneath the top to keep mosquitoes and random debris out.
I was able to get most of my supplies for this project at our local hardware store. We already had the half wine barrel and used recycled wood that we had laying around for the top. I encourage you to get creative and see what you can find used or recycled. And please, please use caution when using power tools. Missing digits are a REAL bummer.
How to Make a Wine Barrel Water Pump
What you will need:
- half wine barrel
- 20-25 gallon wine barrel liner OR a pond liner
- old fashioned water pump (like this)
- 2 foot piece of pool hose (like this)
- threaded fitting to attach hose to pump
- clamp to attach hose to threaded fitting (like this)
- 3′ x 3′ aluminum window screen (usually sold by the foot in big rolls)
- 10 feet of 1×6 wooden boards for top (we used recycled redwood fence boards)
- some 2×6 boards to reinforce top
- T50 staples for attaching screen to top
- screws for reinforcing top
- hardware to attach your pump to top (each pump is different but we used 3 big bolts with nuts and washers)
Gather all of your supplies
Drill holes into bottom of wine barrel
Place liner into wine barrel (we cut the lip off of the one we bought)
Place 1×6 boards on top of wine barrel and cut to make a round top, leaving small cracks in between for water to drain through (Tip: place boards on top and trace them from underneath with a pencil. Then flip them over and cut with jig saw)
Place aluminum screen on top of wine barrel and cut it to fit the top exactly
Staple screen t0 boards and use screws and 2×6 boards to attach the top pieces together (be sure screws are short enough so they do not poke through the top) and drill hole into top for pool hose (make sure you visualize where you want the pump to sit on the top)
Sand and smooth the top to make it look pretty
Attach the pool hose to pump by attaching threaded end piece to hose, clamping it to secure, then threading the hose onto pump
Thread the pool hose through the drilled hole. Use appropriate hardware to attach pump to top.
Fill wine barrel with water and place the top on. You are all set to go. The pump may need to be primed by pouring a small amount of water into the top of the pump before use.