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Home Aquarium Supplies Index - Aquarium Filters & Filtration

Fish Tank Filters & Aquarium Filtration Systems

How to Choose Your Aquarium Filter or Filtration System

Aquarium filters provide the very important role of removing toxins and chemicals from the water in a home aquarium. This is vitally important for the well being of the fish. A good fish tank filter or aquarium flitration system will provide three important types of filtration. They are biological filtration, chemical filtration and mechanical filtration. To maintain a healthy environment in a fish tank all three of these types of filtration need to be met.

There are several different types of filters to choose from and each has it pros and cons. Most filters today will provide an adequate job with all three types of filtration. You can use power filters, which hang on the outside of the tank, canister filters which are also outside of the aquarium, and undergravel filters which use the gravel for filter media. Powerheads can be used with ungravel filters to improve performance of the filter. Popular and dependable brands include Eheim filters and Fluval filters.

Power Filters

Fish Tank Power FiltersPower filters are the compact and affordable solution to aquarium filtration. Power filters simply attach to the back edge of the aquarium and plug in the closest outlet. They offer adequate filtration in all three areas. There are different styles of power filters to choose from each with advantages and disadvantages. You should consider your budget and tank size when choosing which one is going to be right for you.

Canister Filters

Fish Tank Canister FiltersCanister filters offer better filtration capabilities than power filters but they are also more expensive. If there is room in the budget then canister filters are the smart choice for aquarium filtration. Canister filters are also ideal for grow out tanks. If you are planning on breeding any type of fish, you don't have to worry about the fry being sucked into the filter like you do with power filters.

Undergravel Filters

Aquarium Undergravel FiltersUndergravel filters provide high quality filtration by using the aquarium gravel as the filter medium. Like canister filters, undergravel filters do not pose the problem of sucking fry into the filter if you are planning on breeding your fish. Adding a powerhead can improve the performance of the filter.

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