As it staggers towards its 50th birthday, the Captain Cook memorial jet has been hit by a few malfunctions, but Canberrans are keen to see the instantly recognisable fountain remain a feature of the skyline.
It is not only a spectacle, it has a practical benefit, National Capital Authority attractions manager Roslyn Hull said.
"A little over 60 per cent of the water that goes into the air comes back again, and what does evaporate into the atmosphere gives off a little bit of humidity that makes the city more liveable," she said.
"It's just a spectacle and beautiful, it enhances Lake Burley Griffin."
Ms Hull isn't alone in her appreciation of the jet, which will turn 50 year next year.
Canberrans overwhelmingly want the memorial jet to remain part of the Lake Burley Griffin landscape, despite mounting repair costs.
The jet was closed in March to replace its flow control valve, with repairs expected to cost $250,000.
Issues with the valve were first detected in December 2018, with the valve having to be operated manually.
National Capital Authority staff had to turn the valve on and off by hand every day the jet was operational during the four-month period, except when the lake was closed due to blue-green algae concerns.
However, turning the jet on and off over time became increasingly difficult, with staff physically unable to turn the levers that controlled the valve.
A spokeswoman for the authority said a decision was then made to shut the jet altogether until the valve was replaced.
"Upon being able to operate the jet again, it became apparent that manual start-up had become unsustainable as the jet became increasingly harder to start," the spokeswoman said.
"A decision was made in March 2019 to cease running the jet until the valve could be refurbished."
Replacement valves are being flown in from Britain, with the jet expected to return to its former glory by mid-2019.
Despite the jet once again being out of action, a survey of The Canberra Times readers said the jet should stay, regardless of the repair cost.
"The water jet is too much a part of Canberra to be turned off," one reader said.
"I hadn't realised how much I like the jet until I saw that it might be switched off," another said.
The jet was opened in 1970 to commemorate the bicentenary of Captain Cook's discovery of the east coast of Australia, and was inspired by the Jet D'eau on Lake Geneva.
More than six tonnes of water is pumped into the air, reaching speeds of 260 km/h. The jet can reach heights of up to 152 metres when both pumps are fired up.
John Randall knows better than most about the inner workings of the famous jet; his late father Ken was the lead engineer behind the project.
"It really is quite unique," Mr Randall said.
"For me personally, when I drive across the lake and see the jet firing up into the air, it reminds me of my Dad.
"It's become more significant since his passing because it's a constant reminder of him."
Mr Randall said the works would allow for the jet to return to its former splendour.
"I'm sure it's disappointing to people that within a few years of major refurbishment that it's had another failure, but you have to remember it's drawing in water from the lake and it has sand and grit through it," he said.
"With the pump and the moving parts, there's the potential for parts of the system to wear out."
The jet had to be operated manually by National Capital Authority staff from December to March while a replacement part was sought for the flow control valve, meaning it ran only intermittently.
The valve was replaced as recently as 2015, but a spokeswoman for the authority said the valve had failed earlier than expected.
"Preventative maintenance was conducted on the valve in 2015 while the major upgrade works were being carried out," the spokeswoman said.
"The current failure of the flow control valve has unfortunately expired well in advance of its anticipated life span."
Issues with the valve are the latest in a long line of repair works for the famous jet, which has seen it out of action for many years.
A "sudden and unexpected failure" of the pump in February 2015 stopped the jet until May that year.
It was shut down again in June following flooding due to a mechanical failure after the jet operated while the pump chamber was flooded. It remained dormant until March 2017, when it underwent a $2.7 million repair.
Repair works were also carried out in 1995 as part of a 10-month restoration, which cost $100,000 at the time.
With next year marking the 50th anniversary of the memorial jet, Ms Hull said it would take on extra significance.
"I think everyone realises just how beloved it is and it's an icon of Canberra," she said.
"It's just like anything, it's worn down a bit with age, but the works will make it more reliable for the future."