|Average Customer Review: ( 835 customer reviews )
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289 of 293 found the following review helpful:
Great to have, even with pump problems Nov 14, 2004
My 4 cats love this fountain and they drink a lot more water now. Depending upon how you have the flow lever adjusted, the water stream can either be silent or a gentle trickle noise.
I have had 3 of these fountains in 3 years. The only problem I have had is with the pump. Like any water pump, the water level must be above the pump so the pump will not be damaged. I burnt out the first pump this way (shame on me). The second pump became severely clogged and stopped when one cat vomited grass into the dish while I was away (naughty kitty). The third pump dying is a mystery to me. It wasn't even a year old. Unfortunately, I just returned it today before reading one reviewer's directions on taking the pump apart for cleaning.
Even with the pump issue, I'll buy this product again. The cats love it, it is easy to clean, and fresh water is good for my cats' health. By the way, I can't imagine how some people are getting algae, etc., with this system. Basic cleaning is required of any food or water dish. The only part of this unit that cannot be cleaned with a sponge is a narrow plastic funnel that brings the water up to the fountain head. A Q-Tip works great for cleaning that.
311 of 336 found the following review helpful:
There are much better products out there Sep 23, 2005
By E. Blake
I had a Drinkwell fountain for awhile, for my two cats at home. I also have two cats at work and decided to bring the Drinkwell in for them and I got one of these Fresh Flow fountains for home. I switched at home because I thought the Drinkwell was a pain to clean. The first time I changed out the Fresh Flow I was wishing I had just gotten another Drinkwell. The two main components of the Fresh Flow are easier to clean than the Drinkwell but the benefits stop there. The reservoir is very small and impossible to clean. The water in the bowl gets full of crud the very first day and it all just sits in the bottom (Fur, bits of food, dirt from one cat's paw who likes to dip his paw into the bowl). It needs to be cleaned constantly. The bowl part is too shallow and the water doesn't seem to move out of the reservoir correctly, and the water level in the bowl gets too low and the pump makes sucking noises. The pump itself gets coated in slimy goo.
My cats also prefer the actual waterfall the Drinkwell provides. I've never seen them lap water from the plastic slide in the Fresh Flow. I gave it to a friend and bought another Drinkwell for home. Drinkwell filters are cheaper and easier to find, so even though it's more expensive initially it turns out to be the better deal.
106 of 112 found the following review helpful:
Great at First - But Lasted Only Four Months Mar 21, 2006
I received the PetMate FreshFlow in November, 2005, and put it to work right away. My wife and I have six cats, ranging from longhair to shorthair to haireverywhere, and I am pretty sure they all drank from it. They became accustomed to it very quickly, the youngest being absolutely fascinated by it. The entire time, I also had a high-capacity gravity-fed waterer in another room, so it wasn't the only source of water being used.
Most noticible is that the FreshFlow is almost silent when the water is topped off, but if the water level falls, there is a very discernable motorized-gurgling noise. This goes away as soon as you refill the reservoir tank by removing the lid, pulling out the tank (which reminds me a bit of a gerbil waterer on steroids), unscrewing the cap, filling it up, then doing all this in reverse; a 30-second process.
The gurgling happens every day, and I would rinse the unit every couple/few days, and completely wash the unit out once every two weeks. I also changed the filter regularly, at least once a month. Beyond this, I made a point of pulling cat hair away from the little plastic screen in the water bowl, well, all the time. In short, I thought I did a pretty good job in maintaining the equipment. Any more than what I did, and honestly, I would rather buy surgical steel dishes and rotate them on a daily basis for the cat's use.
Still, after taking the machine apart completely every few weeks to clean as instructed, the submersible pump failed after exactly 19 weeks and three days of use. I liked the machine... when it was working.
I just purchased a pet fountain from a different company (I can't recall the make offhand... I should be receiving it soon) that ran in the $40 neighborhood, and I think it will be worth the extra money, but time will tell.
All in all, I don't think this purchase was worth it. Maybe it's because of all the cats and cat hair, but for those of us at least who do have a multiple cat household, I think it's wise to consider buying a higher-scale unit.
45 of 46 found the following review helpful:
Great Product As Long As It Is Maintained Feb 02, 2007
By D. Bowles
Like most other products on the market with moving parts, this fountain works well as long as a few simple steps are followed. I have three cats, all drink out of the fountain regularly. I've had this product for almost three years, and so far it has operated flawlessly. I refill the water reservoir daily - even if there is water left in the reservoir I empty it and refill it with fresh water. The entire unit gets taken apart and washed out probably once every 6 weeks to 2 months, and I replace the charcoal filter three or four times a year. The most important thing with this fountain is to keep it clean of fur - the loose fur tends to clump at the inlet of the submersible pump, starving it of water. Rather than taking the pump completely out every month to clean the hair out of it, I used an old pair of my wife's panty-hose to make a bunch of little pre-filters. I put put a small hole near the top of the piece of material, slide the hole over the speed control, and anchor the bottom in place with the removable housing. The home-made screen catches the pet hair and other debris before it enters the pump chamber, and I just scoop it away every couple of days with my fingers (sometimes I use the tines of a fork).
27 of 28 found the following review helpful:
Exactly what I had hoped for! Sep 12, 2005
By Lola Bird
Even after reading several reviews, I was still skeptical that my cats (both of them sink drinkers for 3 years) would switch over. My husband and I were worried about the amount of water they were getting, since we were not home during the day to give them fresh water and they would *not* drink from their bowl. One week after purchasing the waterer, both cats were drinking from the fountain like they had their entire lives. Training was relatively easy as well, we would just pick them up from the sink and take them to the waterer each time they jumped up on the counter. The unit is very quiet and simple to assemble, also seems easy to clean so far. Well worth the money, plus it is cheaper on Amazon.com than some other sites I found.
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