Aquarium filters are one of the crucial accessories with an insurmountable role in balancing the water temperatures. These systems remove wastes in the form of fish excrement, algae growth and debris from food remain for a healthy and clear tank.
However, just like most of the aquarium accessories, there is no do-it-all filter. The systems come in a wide range of specs, sizes, and types. There is no better filter. Rather, you can choose from the list of available options, a filter that heeds to the demands of your tank. Here are five filters that should not miss in your list of options.
If you are looking for an efficient filter with more than four stars rating and impeccable filtering capability from 5 to 110-gallon tank, the AquaClear is a great choice. This filter comes in five different models, suitable for different size aquariums.
This system uses a filtration system that features a superior contact time with filter media to cut down the operational energy and costs.
Inside its package are the aquaclear foam, Biomax, Cycle Guard and Activated Carbon that allows for both biological and mechanical filtration.
All these components are easy to install using a user manual that is also an integral part of its packaging.
This filter stands out when compared to large variants out there. It can filter up to seven times of water volume. Models for small to medium-sized tanks of up to 30 gallons come handy with a 2-year warranty.
Looking for a sponge filter with multi-filtration functions to keep your water safe, then this is made for you. Consisting of two removable fine sponges, the system combines both bio-filtration, physical filtration and oxygenation to make the aquarium both germs and debris-free.
One thing that stands out in this filter is its small size. The small sponge measures about 6” in width and 9” to 13” in length. On the other hand, the bigger sponge measures 6.3” in height and 9” to 13” in length. In diameter, the sponge measures 0.59” in the inside circle.
When you buy the system, it comes with additional package components that consist of 2 containers, 1 bag of ceramic media balls and 2 Spare sponges. For an aquarium tank of up to 55 gallons, only one double sponge is adequate. However, for the bigger sized tank, you may need two filters of the same size.
However, for the desired quality results, you must install an air pump alongside this double sponge filter. Additionally, you will need a standard-sized air hose bought separately with the pump.
Otherwise, once clogged, all you need is to remove and squeeze the filter to remove the excess debris and return it into the aquarium.
Dennerle corner is a nano filter with a power consumption of about 110V, 2 Watts on a US plug. Assembled and designed by Dennerle, this nearly quiet system features a pump delivery rate of about 39.6 gph (150l/h).
It comes with an adaptable filter with an adjustable flow rate and filter outlet that can be rotated up to 90 degrees.
Other than the nozzle tube, the filter is modified with extra precautions in mind when filtering baby shrimps. Its intake opening is very narrow and features extra-fine pores made up of bio-farms that are ideal for catching the young shrimps.
Dennerle corner filter is very easy to operate. You can clean it by simply grabbing the outflow pipe and removing the filter. When the filter is removed, its back half usually remains inside the aquarium to avoid exposing the beneficial bacteria to danger. The filter must be cleaned in a bucket of aquarium water.
The sponge is highly capable of trapping larger waste particles from aquarium water without any possibility of trapping the fries.
The high-density sponges also feature larger surfaces that are ideal for colonization of beneficial bacteria. They facilitate nitrogen circle and allow for proper flow of oxygen in the tank to mimic the natural fish environment.
This filter is suitable for 20 to 40 sized gallon tank. It works well when placed at the corner or behind plants in shrimp tanks, Betta tank, breeder tank or any other tank with species such as goldfish, snails, guppies, discus, fry or baby fish.
The sponge is not only easy to install and use. You can also effortlessly clean it by simply taking out, rinsing and squeezing the sponge in aquarium water.
The filter works under the “airlift” principle–uses a stream of bubbles to move the water up the tube and into the media filter where filtration occurs.
Other than being highly versatile, the filtration media provides clearer water as compared to most of the powered filters in the market. Its multilayered sponges combine both biochemical and physical filtration mechanisms to come up with waste-free water.
At the very top of the filter is a white filter pad for mechanical filtration of most generated wastes. In the middle and bottom parts are the black bio-sponge and ceramic rings for biochemical filtration. The two layers also offer an ideal environment for the colonization of beneficial bacteria inside the tank.
Unlike the standard corner filters, this system uses air stones for quieter filtration. This makes it an ideal option for use in breeder tanks. For each unit, you will be required to use an air pump and airline tubing. The two are sold separately and operate together.
How to Choose a Filter for Shrimp?
With a shrimp tank, you are free to use any type of filter. What matters is the individual preferences.
Generally, five types of filters can be installed in a shrimp tank. These are sponge filters, canister filters and hang on back filters and under gravel filters.
Sponge filters are the safest and affordable for shrimp tanks. They use an air pump to draw water into the filter media, then the sponge contracts and mechanically removes waste products from the water. However, over time, the filters allow for colonization of the beneficial bacteria hence enabling biological filtration inside to take place.
When choosing a sponge filter for your shrimp tank:
- Make sure that it is hardy enough to prevent floating
- Go for a filter with suction tap for ease of maintenance
- For big tanks, multiple sponges may be necessary for faster and efficient filtration
- Go for a filter with an adjustable spray outlet and height
- Choose an appropriate shape depending on the size and shape of your shrimp tank
- They suit most of the shrimp tanks since they work well with small fish species
- They hardly disturb the fish since they do not generate storms or bubbles in the tank
- They may not be a suitable option where chemical filtration is a major cause for concern.
Canister filters are mostly used in large aquarium tanks. Since they exclude both return and intake tubes, they are also ideal options for shrimp tanks. Only that, you will need to install a pre-filter sponge at the intake of your shrimp tank to prevent the little pet from being sucked.
You can also use Bonkeytroy 2 Pcs Stainless Steel Mesh to cover the water inlet in the place of sponge for added safety.
Some canister filters come with up to five filtration levels. For a shrimp tank, a standard canister with three filtration level is more than enough. Otherwise, the chosen filter should be that which suits the needs of your tank.
When choosing a canister filter for your shrimp tank:
- Check its specs to ensure whether it is the best fit for your tank size and water parameters
- Go for a multi-filtration filter that combines both biological, mechanical and chemical methods
- Choose an appropriate air-tight sealing to prevent leakages
- Go for a relatively silent motor for minimal disturbance
- Strong mechanical filtration for clear water
- Ideal for small-sized tanks since they are installed outside the aquarium.
- Minimal evaporation of the tank water
- Flexible and customizable to meet a wide range of needs
- Wide range of accessories e.g. an inbuilt water pump with numerous cartridges.
- With time some canister filters experience leakages under their clutch
Undergravel filters come with standard filter plates, lift tubes and filter intakes that work well for most shrimp tanks. They use gravel for biofiltration and to protect shrimps from the intake.
For the required efficiency, you can add an airline tubing to seal the gap existing between the lift tube and intake.
Otherwise, when choosing an under gravel filter for your shrimp:
- Go for a medium-thick media base that is neither too fine to clog nor too coarse to trap nothing
- Choose an appropriate air pump that complements the media perfectly
- Go for a pre-filter to help with removing free-floating particle
- Make sure to install an additional siphon tube to help with easy maintenance
- Consider UGFs with reverse flow set-ups first. This feature provides an upper hand when it comes to ease of maintenance.
- Check for carbon cartridges–they help with odour-reduction
- Adjustable flow rate
- Easy to set up and maintain
- Some filters can be used together with power filters
- They can be a real hustle to install in tanks with already laid substrates
- Vacuuming the substrate often can be an overwhelming task
Hang on Back Filters
In the list of the most used filters for shrimp tanks is the hang on back filters. These types of filters are mostly powered and come in a wide range of specs and models.
When choosing a hang on a filter for your shrimp tank:
- Make sure that it’s specs augur well with your tank’s requirements based on the volume of water it carries.
- Your budget plan matters a lot since these filters may be pricey than their counterparts
- Go through the improvements in terms of power inputs, design and general functions
- Adaptable flow control
- Submerged silent motors in some filters for high efficiency
- Effortless setup and maintenance
- Additional features such as cartridges and memory card capsules in some filters to eliminate odours and other pollutants
- Some HOB filters are delicate with hard-to-find spare parts
Can You Keep a Fish Without an Air Filter?
Eliminating air filter from your aquarium set up means there will be no mechanism to remove generated wastes. This can lead to a spike in ammonia level hence causing the death of fish.
However, with a sizeable tank, you can surely keep some species of fish (those that can breathe up the surface of the water). Moreover, to do this, you must:
- Install heavy vegetation inside the tank for both biological and chemical filtration
- Carefully place your tank in light spot e.g. at the window. The sun’s rays normally absorb ammonia. However, the intense heat can raise your tank’s temperatures, so keep that in mind.
- Replace the water regularly.
Do Shrimps Need an Air Pump?
In as much as shrimps may look tiny, they are hypersensitive to poor water parameters. Just like any other fish, they need oxygen to survive. With stagnating water just like in tanks, the shrimps may be deprived of enough oxygen hence causing their deaths.
To avoid this, you must either install a water filter or air tank. With an air filter, you do not necessarily need to install an air tank.
Whether you are going to have clear water or not highly depends on the type and efficiency of the filter you choose to install. An appropriate filter should set an ideal environment to set the filtration materials without hurting on the aquarium space.
Additionally, it should enable refiltration by providing longer contact. Consider any option in the list above for a better aquarium environment.