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Aquarium Filters

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Canister Filters: AquaTop Filters SALE!! Canister Filters: AquaTop Red Devil Hang-On
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums from 40 to 175 gallons
AquaTop has a wide variety of filters for tanks of many sizes. The AF, CF400 & CF500 come with an integrated UV sterilizer.
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums up to 30 gallons (60 gallons with the RD-PRE Pre-Filter)
The AquaTop Red Devil Hang-On (RD-30G) Canister Filter is a compact, quiet and energy efficient filter for aquariums up to 30 gallons. Add the RD-PRE Canister Filter PRE FILTER to double the filtration capacity.
Canister Filters: Fluval Canister Filters: Hydor SALE!!
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums up to 100 gallons
The Fluval 06 Canister Filters deliver many practical benefits—including better filtration, less maintenance, faster setup, and quieter operation—all designed to make fishkeeping more enjoyable. This filter provides enhanced functionality and filtration performance to create the cleanest, healthiest aquariums ever.
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums from 20 to 150 gallons
This Hydor filter comes complete with all necessary plumbing equipment & media. Integrated priming pump, telescopic intake and adjustable shut-off valves make installation & cleaning a cinch. Tight-fitting filter baskets maximizes performance & eliminates water bypass. 5 sizes of filters.
Canister Filters: JBJ Reaction 4-Stage SALE!! Canister Filters: Magnum
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums from 50 to 175 gallons
The JBJ EFU-25, EFU-35 & EFU-45 Reaction 4-Stage Canister filters utilize mechanical, chemical, biological filtration, and a 5 Watt UV sterilizer for a balanced aquarium.
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums from 25 to 100 gallons
The Marineland Magnum Canister Filters are efficient, powerful and compact canister filters. The only filter of its kind with a patented flow through design, and self-priming, bottom-mounted motor.
Canister Filters: Marineland C-Series Canister Filters: Nu-Clear
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums from 20 to 150 gallons
The Marineland Multi-Stage C-Series Canister Filter forces water to pass through the filter media trays and not around them. With virtually no bypass and a three-stage filtration process, only sparkling-clean water can recirculate into your tank—regardless of size or type of aquarium.
Aquarium & Pond Canister Filters
For aquariums from 25 to 90 gallons & ponds up to 600 gallons
The Nu-Clear 500 Series Modular Canister Filters provide the ultimate in aquatic life support systems for consumer and commercial freshwater and saltwater aquariums, fountains, or ponds. Several mechanical, chemical and biological options to choose from.
Canister Filters: Ocean Clear Canister Filters: Tom Rapids Pro SALE!!
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums from 25 to 90 gallons
The Ocean Clear canister filters provide chemical, mechanical or biological filtration, and are suitable for freshwater and saltwater fish only tanks.
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums from 50 to 150 gallons
The TOM Aquarium Products Rapids Pro RP3 & RP3 Plus Aquarium Filtration Systems are complete filtration systems, including protein skimmers.
Power Filters: AquaClear Power Filters: AquaTop (UV)
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums from 20 to 110 gallons
The AquaClear Power Filter provides mechanical, chemical and biological filtration through their multi-stage filtration system. Filtration volume is up to 7 times larger than comparable Filters. For freshwater and fish only marine tanks.
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums from 5 to 40 gallons
The AquaTop Power Filters with UV are the industry's first hang on filters with integrated uv sterilizers.
Power Filters: AquaTop Internal Power Filters: AquaTop PFE Power Filter
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums from 10 to 80 gallons
AquaTop's IFS Series internal filters are compact and fit snugly into the back corner of the tank (suction cups are on two faces). These quiet and efficient filtration devices come equipped with an optional use spray bar attachment.
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 80 gallons
AquaTop’s PFE Power Filters comes equipped with all the necessary filter media to ensure superior filtration: mechanical, chemical & biological. They come in sizes appropriate for tanks from 10 to 80 gallons.
Power Filters: AquaTop Zero Bypass Power Filter (3D-HOB) Power Filters: Aqueon QuietFlow
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 20 gallons
The AquaTop Zero Bypass Power Filter is a compact, powerful, yet quiet hang-on back filter that takes a three-dimensional approach to zero bypass. Water enters the enclosed filter cartridge filled with activated carbon and can only exit one way, past the activated carbon and through the filter cartridge.
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums from 10 to 90 gallons
The Aqueon QuietFlow Power Filters feature four stages of filtration–mechanical, chemical, biological and wet/dry–for the cleanest, clearest, healthiest water. Higher flow rates ensure higher dissolved oxygen content for healthier, more active fish.
Power Filters: Emperor SALE!! Power Filters: Fluval C Series
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 90 gallons
The Marineland Emperor 280 & 400 Bio-Wheel Power Filters powerfully clean your aquarium water through mechanical, chemical, and biological filtration mechanisms to remove debris, water impurities, and dangerous toxins. For freshwater and fish only marine tanks.
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 70 gallons
Hagen Fluval C Series Power Filters feature a cleaning indicator that rises when the poly/foam pad requires rinsing. For freshwater and fish only marine tanks.
Power Filters: Fluval Nano Power Filters: Fluval Underwater
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 15 gallons
The Hagen Fluval Nano Filter is an optimal water filtration system for small aquatic environments. Ideal for delicate fish and shrimp.
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 65 gallons
The Hagen Fluval Internal Underwater Filters can be used as as a primary filter in smaller aquariums or as a supplementary filter for larger aquariums. Also great for tanks with low water levels. For freshwater and fish only marine tanks.
Power Filters: Marina Power Filter Power Filters: Penguin Bio-Wheel
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 20 gallons
The Hagen Marina Slim Power Filters comes equipped with an adjustable flow control so you can control the water flow level in your tank. Its motor is submerged in the tank for a quiet operation and an easy start-up since no priming is required. For freshwater and fish only marine tanks.
Aquarium Power Filters
For aquariums up to 70 gallons
Penguin BIO-Wheel Power Filters deliver easy, three-stage mechanical, chemical and biological aquarium filtration. For freshwater and fish only marine tanks.
Power Filters: Tetra Whisper SALE!! Biological Filters
Aquarium Canister Filters
For aquariums up to 60 gallons
The Original Classic Tetra Whisper Power Filters are once again available. Uses the Large Bio-Bag filter cartridge for mechanical, chemical and biological filtration. For freshwater and fish only marine tanks.
The Bashsea Bio-Reactor, Pellet Master and No-Trate are stand alone bio filters for larger tanks. The Bio-Reactor is a general use biological filter, No-Trate is a Nitrate removal system & the Pellet Master a bio pellet reactor.
Sponge Filters Chemical Filtration: Reactors
The AquaTop CAF-10 Internal Sponge Filters are a simple, classic and economical sponge filter for beginner and advanced aquarists alike. The specially developed foam materials of each CAF sponge filter supports the colonization of bacteria, allowing for mechanical and biological filtration. The process breaks down harmful ammonia and nitrite material resulting in a cleaner living environment for your fish.
Aquarium Reactors
Two Little Fishies PhosBan Reactors, Via-Aqua Poly-Reactors & Bashsea Media Chambers
Sump Accessories Wet Dry Filters & Sumps: CPR

Various filter socks and filter sock holders that can clamp to the sump wall

Aquarium Wet-Dry Filters
The CPR Aquatic Wet-Dry Filters feature a drip plate, Bio Bale biological media and separate compartments. The Cyclone Bio-Filters come with an integrated protein skimmer.
AQUARIUM FILTRATION GENERAL INFO

RECOMMENDED FILTRATION FOR REEF,
SALTWATER FISH ONLY AND FRESHWATER AQUARIUMS


REEF AQUARIUM FILTRATION
Use the following equipment:
Filtration in a reef tank is best done with live rock (for biological filtration), activated carbon (put into the sump or in tank behind rock), a protein skimmer and a UV sterilizer. Do not use a wet/dry filter, undergravel filter or a canister filter or any other type of aquarium filter, other than a protein skimmer, for a reef tank. A reef tank is defined as any tank with even a single coral.

We often hear customers talk about formulas for how much live rock to use, based on a ratio of pounds of live rock to gallons. Since the best live rock is often the lightest, we do not subscribe to this ratio theory. Basically, you need enough live rock to build a structure that reaches from the substrate to near the top of the water. We do not sell live rock--it's best to buy it locally.

The total pumping capacity of all the pumps and powerheads, not including the protein skimmer pump, should turn the water over at least 10 times per hour.

A wavemaker will improve your filtration by creating varied water movements that will better stir up trapped debris.

For proper sizing of the protein skimmer, pumps and UV sterilizer, visit those respective sections. For more info on filtration theory please read the Aquarium Filtration Theory section below.

SALTWATER FISH ONLY TANKS FILTRATION
Use the following equipment:
Systems under 50 gallons can use a Marineland Penguin BIO-Wheel, Hagen AquaClear Power Filter or Hagen Fluval Underwater Filter. The Penguin BIO-Wheel and Hagen AquaClear hang of the back of the tank while the Fluval Underwater Filter is an in tank filter.

Systems over 50 gallons can use an Ocean Clear or NuClear canister filter These filters will require that you have a way of getting the water out of the tank using a a plumbed through the bottom tank or with an over the back overflow box.

Instead of the Ocean Clear or NuClear you could use a Fluval canister filter for a tank over 50 gallons. This filter includes the pump and plumbing and are relatively easy to set up. The filter either come with or can be purchased with biological and chemical filtration media as well as mechanical filter media.

The total flow of all the pumps should turn the tank over 7-8 times per hour.

A wavemaker will improve your filtration by creating varied water movements that will better stir up trapped debris.

For proper sizing of the filter, protein skimmer, pumps and UV sterilizer, visit those respective sections. For more info on filtration theory please read the Aquarium Filtration Theory section below.

FRESHWATER TANK FILTRATION
Use the following equipment:
Systems under 50 gallons can use a Marineland Penguin BIO-Wheel, Hagen AquaClear Power Filter or Hagen Fluval Underwater Filter. The Penguin BIO-Wheel and Hagen AquaClear hang of the back of the tank while the Fluval Underwater Filter is an in tank filter.

Systems over 50 gallons can use an Ocean Clear or NuClear canister filter. These filters will require that you have a way of getting the water out of the tank using a a plumbed through the bottom tank or with an over the back overflow box.

Instead of the Ocean Clear or NuClear you could use a Fluval canister filter for a tank over 50 gallons. This filter includes the pump and plumbing and are relatively easy to set up. The filter either come with or can be purchased with biological and chemical filtration media as well as mechanical filter media.

The total flow of all the pumps should turn the tank over 5-6 times per hour.

A wavemaker will improve your filtration by creating varied water movements that will better stir up trapped debris.

For proper sizing of the filters, pumps and UV sterilizer, visit those respective sections. For more info on filtration theory please read the Aquarium Filtration Theory section below.


AQUARIUM FILTRATION THEORY
Aquariums are small bodies of water with a greater density of organisms than real environments--leading to the build-up of waste products to toxic levels. Filtration removes these unwanted compounds from the tank's water--making the environment more suitable for keeping corals, fish, invertebrates, and any other life forms that you may be planning to add to your aquarium.

All aquariums require biological, mechanical and chemical filtration. Each of these types of filtration requires different methods for reef tanks, saltwater fish only tanks and freshwater tanks. Below is a general guide to help you decide which products you need for your aquarium.

TABLE of CONTENTS

About Biological Aquarium Filtration About Chemical Aquarium Filtration
About Mechanical Aquarium Filtration
Other

About Biological Aquarium Filtration
Biological filtration deals with the removal of nitrogen breakdown by-products from the water. These nitrogen compounds appear in the tank as a result of the animals added to the tank; the food that is added to the tank, the algae that die off, and the respiration and metabolism of the fish and invertebrates. Even though the water quality is usually excellent when an aquarium is first started up, as soon as animals are added the water quality starts deteriorating quickly. Biological filtration counteracts these negative effects and removes whatever noxious compounds may have been added to the water as a result of populating the tank, feeding the animals, biochemical activity taking place, etc. Biological filtration is best done with live rock, live sand, undergravel filters or biological. Read on more more in on when and how to use various types of biological filtration.

Biological filtration has four goals:
1. removal of nitrogen breakdown products, such as ammonia and ammonium
2. conversion of ammonia to nitrite
3. conversion of nitrite to nitrate
4. removal of some of the nitrate from the system

Bacteria is used to eliminate ammonia and nitrite. Ammonia present in the water is broken down to nitrite by a form of bacteria called Nitrosomonas. These bacteria appear spontaneously, or their proliferation can be sped up by the addition of a batch of seeded gravel or rock from another tank. Seeded gravel is gravel, or rock, that comes from an aquarium that has been running for a while, and already has a great deal of bacterial life. Transferring some of the gravel (rock, coral pieces) also transfers bacteria. Ammonia tests should always show zero mg/l, or ppm. Even small amounts are unacceptable in reef systems, as they will definitely harm fish and invertebrates alike.

Nitrite must also be removed. Nitrobacter species appears spontaneously in tanks and convert the nitrite to nitrate, a compound that is less damaging. Should nitrite tests of the aquarium water show the presence of merely low amounts of nitrite, such still is an indication that somewhere in the aquarium, or in the filters, the natural breakdown cycle has been, or is being, interfered with. The hobbyist should immediately determine where this interference is coming from and remedy the situation. This may entail cleaning all mechanical filters, ensuring that the gravel or substrate is clean and does not harbor trapped detritus and other organic matter, removing dead or dying algae, checking the cleanliness of corner overflow boxes and/or surface skimming siphons, etc. The presence of nitrite may also suggest that you are feeding too much or the tank is overloaded to such a degree that the filters can no longer deal efficiently with that biological load. This should prompt the removal of lifeforms, or the increase of the filter capacity by adding additional biological filtration.

Nitrates are another problem altogether. Traditionally nitrate has been regarded as a compound that is not harmful. Such may be the case in fish-only tanks, but it is not so in today's living reef aquariums. Nitrate is definitely a pollutant, and it does affect the well being and appearance of corals and other invertebrates. Levels as high as 8 ppm of Nitrite result in both Catalaphylia jardinei and Discosoma species corals not opening as much as they do at lower levels, respectively not lifting themselves as far off the rocks to which they are attached, and not stretching out as much as usual.

LIVE ROCK AND LIVE SAND FOR REEF TANKS
For reef aquariums, using live rock and live sand are the best methods of biological filtration. Aquarium-supply.biz does not sell live rock or live sand. It's best to purchase these products locally.

How Does Live Rock Perform Biological Filtration?
1. Live rock immediately introduces into the aquarium numerous algae, bacteria and small invertebrates--all of which contribute to the overall quality of the aquarium water.
2. Ammonia, nitrate and phosphate are readily assimilated by algae and photosynthetic corals growing on and in the rock.
3. Ammonia can also be quickly converted into nitrate by the bacteria on and in the rock.
4. This nitrate can be either absorbed by the algae and corals, or it can be denitrified by bacteria in close proximity to the nitrate producing bacteria.

At the same time live rock enhances the look of the aquarium and provides shelter for the inhabitants.

CANISTER FILTERS & POWER FILTERS
Fish only saltwater and freshwater tanks might use a mechanical aquarium filter to perform biological filtration. You should never use a mechanical filter with a reef aquarium.

Mechanical filters, such as canister filters and power filters, are containers that usual have filter pads/media and often have some sort of filter media, such as a biological filter pad or bio balls. The mechanical filter pad traps waste, which needs to be periodically washed off the filter pad. With some canister filters, such as the Nu-Clear Model 547, all of the media is biological media. When using filters such as the Nu-Clear 547, you would want to use a mechanical filter in line before the biological filter. For freshwater or saltwater fish only tanks over 100 you'll definitely want to use one or more Nu-Clear Canister Filter or Ocean Clear Canister Filter (and for tanks from 50 to 100 gallons you might still want to use one). The Nu-Clear and Ocean Clear brands will take some knowledge of plumbing to set up as they need to be use with plumbed through the bottom tanks or with an over the back overflow box.

For smaller tanks and for simpler installations you will want to use the Hagen AquaClear Power Filter or Hagen Fluval Canister Filter, all of which have some sort of biological filtration.


UNDERGRAVEL AQUARIUM FILTERS FOR FISH ONLY SALT WATER AND FRESHWATER
An effective method of biological filtration in fish only saltwater and freshwater tanks is an undergravel filter.

An undergravel aquarium filter is a slotted piece of plastic (undergravel plate) that sits on the bottom of the aquarium and lets water flow between the plate and the bottom of the tank. There is a tube that is attached to this bottom piece, known as the lift tube. Gravel is placed on top of the filter, and the filter, lift tube and gravel work together to provide filtration.

Water is pulled down to the bottom of the tank, through the gravel, and then the undergravel plate. Then it flows back up to the top through the lift tube. The water is again pulled down through the gravel. This allows beneficial bacteria to thrive on the oxygen laden water flowing through the gravel.

When using an undergravel aquarium filter you should purchase at least 1.5 pounds of gravel for each gallon your aquarium holds (a little less than that for tall hexagon-shaped aquariums). If you are using a power filter or some other type of filtration and no undergravel filter, you may purchase slightly less gravel. One pound of gravel per gallon in your aquarium should be enough.

3. Wet/Dry Aquarium Filters
Also known as trickle filters, wet/dry aquarium filters operate on the principle that the beneficial colonies of ammonia neutralizing bacteria grows best in the presence of well oxygenated water. By "trickling" water over un-submerged plastic gizmos (such as bio balls) or other media, wet/dry filters provide a very large air/water surface area. Many things can used for the media, with the best providing great amounts of surface area, while at the same time having large openings to reduce the tendency to clog and ensure efficient gas exchange. The problem of clogging of the media can also be reduced by pre-filtering the water with an efficient mechanical filter and by use with a protein skimmer.

Wet/dry aquarium filters have been used on reef tanks, but reef hobbyists understand that bacteria will colonize any porous substrate (such as live rock). Oxygen is provided by protein skimming. Also of concern to reefers using wet/dry filters is that particles and debris get trapped in the plastic medium used in wet/dry filters, and this nutrient-rich debris provides an unwanted food supply for algae.

The wet/dry filters are best for fish-only tanks, where you need a large area for colonizing bacteria. The open design allows easy access to pre-filter material.


About Chemical filtration

Activated Carbon
Chemical filtration is most commonly accomplished by means of activated carbon. The carbon's micro-porous structure absorbs dissolved organics, chloramines, fish odors, toxic metals, toxic gases and growth inhibiting enzymes. We carry the Inland Seas, Kent Marine and ESV activated carbon.

Tips for using activated carbon:
  1. MAKE SURE IT IS ACTIVATED CARBON. Many types of carbon are sold in pet stores. For a reef aquarium you need carbon that has been activated--a process that substantially increases the porosity of the carbon, and as a result greatly increases the total active surface area, allowing it to be much more effective at absorbing compounds that need to be removed from the tank's water.
  2. FLOW WATER THROUGH, NOT OVER. Your activated carbon will work much better if water is actually forced to go through the amount used, rather than just flowed by, and over it. More contact between the activated carbon and the water obviously results in a more efficient cleansing process.
  3. REPLACE YOUR CARBON. Activated carbon has a maximum adsorption capacity, which is the reason that it should be replaced from time to time. How frequently is hard to determine, because it is dependent on the quality of the water that is flowed through the carbon.
  4. IN REEF TANKS, PUT THE CARBON BEHIND THE LIVE ROCK OR IN THE SUMP.
Phosphate & Nitrate Removers
Besides activated carbon, a wide variety of resins, minerals, and other media have been employed by aquarists in an effort to remove either specific ions like phosphate or a wide range of largely unidentified substances from aquarium water. As you might guess, the Kent Marine Nitrate Sponge removes nitrate, and the Kent Marine Phosphate Sponge removes phosphate. Two Little Fishies PhosBan can be used by itself to remove phosphate, or it can be used in the Two Little Fishies PhosBan Reactor.

Media Bags
Boyds Chemi-Pure and Chemi-Pure Elite come pre-bagged inside the jar. All other products need to be bagged using one of the Emperor or South Ocean Five media bags at the end of this section. All bags have ties sewn into the top for easy closure.

Poly-Bio-Marine Poly Filters
The Poly-Bio-Marine Poly Filters are pads that absorb and adsorb contaminants and other toxic materials that are found in nature or added to fresh and salt water with or without fish and invertebrates. Medication added to aquariums for treatment of diseased fish will automatically be removed by the Poly Filter (after serving their intended purpose). The pads are placed in any filter in a place where chemical filtration media is intended (generally, after the larger sediment has been filtered out).

About Mechanical Aquarium Filtration
Mechanical Filtration is the removal of unwanted particulate matter from an aquarium by trapping it in a dedicated location, such as a filter pad, which must be cleaned periodically. The key to this is the cleaning. A mechanical filter is useless unless it is cleaned.

Mechanical filtration is recommended for all freshwater tanks and saltwater fish only tanks. Because reef aquariums are very delicate and require cleaner water, we recommend using a protein skimmer instead of a mechanical filter with a reef aquarium. Protein skimmers are also recommended for use with saltwater fish only tanks. They can not be used with freshwater tanks because protein skimmers require saltwater.

Keep in mind that mechanical filtration:
  • does not directly remove dissolved ammonia
  • does not remove microscopic bacteria and algae from the water
  • does not remove any solids trapped by gravel, plants, or decorations
Many mechanical filters also perform the functions of biological and chemical filtration if special filters are used for those functions.

There are three basic types of mechanical aquarium filters:

1. Protein Skimmers (for saltwater tanks)
Protein skimmers are not always listed as a method of mechanical filtration (perhaps because they work very differently than canister and power filters), but it is the best form of mechanical filtration for any saltwater reef or fish only tank. Protein skimming is a process analogous to the production of sea foam. The motion created inside the skimmer injects air bubbles into the aquarium water, creating a meringuelike foam on which organic molecules collect at the air-water interfaces of the bubbles. This foam is captured in the collection cup and disposed of. It is the only method that actually removes dissolved organic compounds from the tank before they break down into toxic ammonia and nitrite compounds.

2. Canister Filters (for freshwater and saltwater fish only tanks)
With a canister aquarium filter water is pumped at moderate pressure through a filter media, such as a micron filter cartridge. The waste in the water is trapped by the filter media. Canister filters are especially useful in aquaria with large or numerous messy eaters that generate a lot of waste.

For these filters to be effective they must be frequently cleaned to avoid the decomposition of waste in the water stream. Clean the filter(s) at least once a week. (As noted above, you should not use a canister filter for a reef tank). Cleaning the canister filter media involves removing all the material that you placed inside, except biological filtration material, and rinsing it thoroughly in fresh water before placing it back in the canister. These filters usually sit in a cabinet below the aquarium, or on the ground next to the aquarium.

In order to make the cleaning process as easy as possible, it is suggested that you use quick disconnect shut-off valves on either side of the canister filter. This will allow you to take the canister filter out of service without having to worry about water spillage, except for the very little water that is between the canister and the quick disconnect valves.

Some filters use some form of pleated bag, or pleated device, to increase the amount of surface area through which the water can flow and be filtered. The more surface area, the better the filtration. Cleaning is a little more involved, as these bags usually need to be bleached to remove the accumulated detritus. This takes more time and requires that you make sure all the bleach is removed, before putting the bags, or other material, back in the canisters. It is, actually, a good idea to have an extra bag or pleated cartridge around. Because of the way they need to be cleaned, the pleated bags or cartridges will wear out.

Some units come with pressure gauges. This allows you to determine when it is necessary to clean the cartridge (pleated bag or other device) based on what the manufacturer suggests. Increased levels of pressure inside the canister are an indication that it is plugged, and needs cleaning.

Aquarium-supply.biz carries four brands of canister aquarium filters, which can be separated into two distinct categories:
  • The Inland Seas Nuclear Canister Filters and the Ocean Clear Canister Filters are for tanks from 50 to 90 gallons. These filters are commonly used by professional aquarium service companies and for commercial locations. By using multiple filters in series or parallel, or by using the Nu-Clear Extension Kit, these filters can provide filtration for tanks much larger (i.e. four filters for a 360 gallon tank). The Nu-Clear and the Ocean Clear filters come without a self priming pump and must be used with a plumbed through the bottom tank or with an over the back overflow box.
  • The Hagen Fluval Canister Filters are listed as handling tanks up to 158 gallons and 400 gallons. However, keep in mind that although these are all quality filters, in every case the Fluval filters have less surface area than the Nu-Clear and Ocean Clear filters (which are only rated for tanks up to 90 gallons by the manufacturer). The disparity in ratings illustrates the difference in how professional and consumer filters are rated. The Fluval filters come complete with a pump and plumbing equipment and can easily be hooked up over the back of any aquarium (without an overflow box or the tank being plumbed through the bottom).
3. Power Filters.
Power filters typically hang on the back of the tank. A siphon tube pulls water from the tank into the filter box and passes the water though a mechanical filter, typically a porous foam sponge or fabric. An internal pump then returns the filtered water into the aquarium.

Power filters are easier to maintain than canister or wet/dry filters and can be as economical as undergravel filters. Depending on the filter and manufacturer, the filter can also act as a biological filter and chemical filter.

Because the power filter hangs on the back, the filter cartridge can be easily inspected for clogging or removed for cleaning or replacement. You must clean the filter regularly to remove the solid wastes before it decomposes and dissolves back into the water.

We carry the Hagen AquaClear Power Filter.

Other
None of the above-listed methods will remove solid wastes from the nooks and crannies of your aquarium. One of the easiest methods for cleaning these areas is to gravel vac the aquarium as part of your regular water change routine. Those marine aquariums which use "live substrates" are an exception.

Some people install wavemakers to improve the chance of catching solid wastes in the mechanical filter.