Choosing the right aquarium filtration is as important as finding the right tank and livestock. The filter creates a healthy environment in your aquarium. It is a life support system that must be appropriate for your tank and stock. It should also be reliable and simple for you to maintain. We would like to help you properly understand aquarium filtration so that you can make an informed choice. Filters are either internal or external and either air powered or powered.
Internal Aquarium Filters
Internal aquarium filters can be air powered or power filters. Sub types include air powered sponge filters, undergravel filters and canister filters. Canister filters are the most popular choice as they are affordable, powerful and quiet. These filters typically feature a sponge for both biological and mechanical filtration but premium models will have two sponges to keep bacteria levels high. These filters may also include adjustable flow and adjustable nozzle direction. Internal canister filters are fine for tropical and coldwater tanks up to a capacity of 200 litres but can struggle to cope with messy fish like cichlids or to cleanse larger aquariums.
Air Powered Internal Filters
These have now largely been superseded by internal power filters but are still useful for tanks with very small fish and fry as they produce a more gentle flow. Undergravel filters can be problematic as all of the waste is drawn into the gravel covering the filter plate and must be removed regularly to prevent the plate from blocking up and depriving bacteria of oxygen. Undergravel filters can be upgraded with the addition of a powerhead.
External Aquarium Filters
External aquarium filters are always power filters and are larger models. They are the best choice for aquariums with a capacity exceeding 200 litres as they feature a larger sponge for mechanical filtration, more biological media for breaking down ammonia and some extra room for additional media like carbon. External filters are great for messier tanks as they siphon away waste as soon as it is produced. External filters can be fitted in the cabinet beneath your tank and can be very quiet. They are, however, more complex than other filters and so it is important to read the instructions carefully or to seek advice before you use them.
Auto Top-up Systems
Automatic top-up systems allow for the topping up of aquarium water levels when water has evaporated. To see our range, visit our aquarium Auto Top-Up category.
Further Information on Aquarium Filtration
You cannot over filter your aquarium but you can expose your fish to too much flow and this can tire species which swim slowly. Internal filters are the cheapest option but will not clean the water as effectively as external filters. External filters are more costly and have higher running costs but will generally run for longer without clogging. Internal air powered filters are cheaper than internal power filters but the cost of the required air pump and non-return valve can increase the overall cost.
We have an excellent choice of aquarium filters and filtration accessories for you here at Romsey World of Water . Our range features both internal and external filters together with filter media, RO units, Skimmers, spare parts and other filtration accessories. Our stock and spares are available to order. We have chosen our filters from the highly regarded Eheim, Fluval, JBL, Superfish, Dennerle and All Pond Solutions collections. If you have any questions about aquarium filtration then please do contact our expert team for the right advice.