Choosing the right filter for a fish tank can be very confusing for both new and experienced fish keepers.
We have used multiple aquarium filters over the past years. If you are following our blogs, you might have heard us talking about different types of filters already.
Keep reading if you need help choosing the right type and size filter for your aquarium.
Let’s be honest; not all aquariums are the exact same. So, we can not recommend one particular type or size of aquarium filter for everyone. Which filter is the best for you will entirely depend on your specific needs.
So, let me inform you about the most popular types of filters in the market right now and then help you decide which one will be best for you.
Different Types of Filters:
- Back Sump Filter
- Hang on Back Filter
- Sponge Filter
- Canister Filter
- Under Gravel Filter
- Airlift Filters
The list goes on and on. Also, there are different types of filtration processes that these filters use, such as:
- Biological Filtration
- Mechanical Filtration
- Chemical filtration
I will not explain all these types of filters and their mechanism. Let’s not make things more complicated for you.
Which Type of Filter I’d Pick & Why?
Among all these types of filters, I prefer hang-on-back filters.
Hang-on Back Filters are:
- Very easy to maintain
- Relatively low cost
- Good at biological, mechanical & chemical filtration
- Very quiet
Problem with Hang-on Back Filters:
- Tendency to suck up fries (can be solved using an intake sponge)
Some of my guppy fries got sucked into the filter once. So, I don’t recommend using a hang on back filter for breeding tanks unless you attach a sponge at the bottom of the water intake pipe.
If you are not a breeder, trust me, a hang-on-back filter is the best option for you. If you are serious about breeding, then a sponge filter is obviously a better choice.
Our Recommended Aquarium Filter:
Penn-Plax Hang On Back (HOB) Filter
I recommend this filter as it’s really good at filtration, and the water flow is adjustable. Check the latest price of this filter on Amazon by clicking here.
Trust me; adjustable water flow is very important. If you have a slow-moving fish that does not like much water flow, you can reduce the flow as per the need of the fish. Isn’t that great?
Oh, this HOB filter comes in different sizes. So, before buying, choose the size that goes with the capacity of your tank.
Let me provide you with a table to help you with that:
|#||Filter Size||Aquarium Size|
|1.||Cascade 20||3-7 gallons|
|2.||Cascade 80||8 to 10 Gallons|
|3.||Cascade 100||11 to 20 Gallons|
|4.||Cascade 150||21 to 35 Gallons|
|5.||Cascade 200||36 to 55 Gallons|
|6.||Cascade 300||56 to 100 Gallons|
What About a Breeding Tank?
For breeding tanks the safest type of filter is a sponge filter. Trust me, I have lost several fish fries because of choosing the wrong kind of filter. Power filters, HOB filters have a tendency to suck up small fish fries.
If you are serious about breeding and want to have fish fries, then you can go with a sponge filter (Amazon Link).