10 Best Saltwater Aquarium Filter

Updated on: August 2021

Best Saltwater Aquarium Filter in 2021


Marineland PF0350B Penguin Power Filter, Upto 75 Gallons, 350 GPH

Marineland PF0350B Penguin Power Filter, Upto 75 Gallons, 350 GPH
BESTSELLER NO. 1 in 2021

Marineland Magniflow Canister Filter 220 GPH For aquariums, Easy Maintenance

Marineland Magniflow Canister Filter 220 GPH For aquariums, Easy Maintenance
BESTSELLER NO. 2 in 2021
  • 3-STAGE FILTRATION: Water flows through media layers to filter water and ensure a clean aquatic environment.
  • FAST SETUP: Water-tight canister lid lifts up for easy removal.
  • THREE SIZES AVAILABLE: Comes in 220 GPH, 360 GPH and 360 GPH sizes.
  • MARINELAND FILTRATION PRODUCTS: Count on Marineland brand for the most reliable, technically advanced aquariums and accessories on the market.

Penn Plax Cascade CCF3UL Canister Filter For Large Aquariums and Fish Tanks – Up To 100 Gallons, Filters 265 GPH

Penn Plax Cascade CCF3UL Canister Filter For Large Aquariums and Fish Tanks – Up To 100 Gallons, Filters 265 GPH
BESTSELLER NO. 3 in 2021
  • CASCADE CANISTER FILTER FOR FRESHWATER OR MARINE ENVIRONMENTS: the Cascade 1000 (CCF3UL) has 3 media baskets, works at 265 GPH, and is recommended for Aquariums up to 100 gallons. It measures 11.5 x 17 x 10 inches.
  • STATE OF THE ART FEATURES OF THE CASCADE 1000: ♦ flow valves that rotate 360 degrees for easy maneuvering in even the tightest aquarium cabinets ♦ large capacity media baskets allow aquarists to customize to their media needs ♦ push button primer allows for a quick and easy prime of the filter ♦ includes a spray bar, tubing, directional spout for customization, and filter medium.
  • USE ANY COMBINATION OF MEDIA: floss pad for removing particulate matter and a course sponge that provides abundant surface for promoting bacterial growth (to remove ammonia and nitrites) included free with purchase
  • SEE BELOW FOR DIAGRAM, THE CASCADE 1000 INCLUDES: ♦ Flow rate control cut-off valves ♦ two independent directional 360 degree rotating valve taps ♦ swimming pool – style hose clamps ♦ quick, easy, push button self-primer ♦ extra-large capacity stackable filter medium containers with lift-up handles ♦ floss pad and coarse sponge included, free with each canister filter ♦ easy lift alignment clamps that release vacuum suction ♦ sturdy tip-proof base
  • FILTER MEDIA OPTIONS BY CASCADE AVAILABLE ON AMAZON, SOLD SEPARATELY: see below for details, sold separately is media such as: bio-floss, bio-sponge, bio-rings, filt-a-pack pro-z, and filt-a-pack pro-carb-z.

Penn Plax Cascade Hang-on Aquarium Filter with Quad Filtration System Cleans Up to 100 Gallon Tank (CPF5)

Penn Plax Cascade Hang-on Aquarium Filter with Quad Filtration System Cleans Up to 100 Gallon Tank (CPF5)
BESTSELLER NO. 4 in 2021
  • Hang on aquarium filter quietly delivers 300 gallons per hour of crystal clear water for your fresh or marine aquariums from 55 to 100 gallons in size.
  • Revolutionary Bio-Falls Quad-Filtration system provides efficient filtration with anaerobic bacteria for additional ammonia and nitrite removal providing maximum oxygenation.
  • Activated carbon cartridge removes harmful chemicals, toxins, odors, discoloration, and other contaminants for your aquarium.
  • Internal sponge optimizes colonization of beneficial anaerobic bacteria and polyfiber floss cartridge traps floating particulate matter.
  • Adjustable flow knob allows you to reduce filtration during feeding times or as needed. Aquarium filter is recommended for both freshwater and saltwater applications.

Coralife Marine Filter with Protein Skimmer

Coralife Marine Filter with Protein Skimmer
BESTSELLER NO. 5 in 2021
  • All in one power filter and protein skimmer for 30 gallon aquariums
  • Motor equipped with needle wheel impeller optimizes skimming
  • Multiple filtration layers with adjustable air flow for diminished microbubble entry into aquarium
  • Reduced maintenance with optimally designed skimming collection cup
  • Skimming not affected by water level fluctuations in your saltwater fish tank

Marineland Penguin Bio-Wheel Power Filter, Multi-Stage aquarium Filtration

Marineland Penguin Bio-Wheel Power Filter, Multi-Stage aquarium Filtration
BESTSELLER NO. 6 in 2021
  • WITH ROTATING BIO-WHEEL: Patented Bio-Wheel technology provides excellent wet/dry biological filtration.
  • MULTI-STAGE FILTRATION: Delivers mechanical, chemical and biological aquarium filtration to maintain a clean aquatic environment.
  • COMPATIBILITY: Use with Marineland Rite-Size Filter Cartridges (see individual filter for sizing recommendations).
  • FIVE SIZES: Available in 75 GPH, 100 GPH, 150 GPH, 200 GPH and 350 GPH sizes.

Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon

Aquatic Life RO Buddie Three Stage Reverse Osmosis, 50-Gallon
BESTSELLER NO. 7 in 2021
  • Add-On Drinking Water Kit with 2.8 Gallon Tank available, Amazon item B07371N7PT
  • Sediment and Carbon cartridges are up-front and easy to replace
  • Membrane Housing accepts standard 11 3/4 IN membrane filters
  • Faucet Adapter makes it easy to connect to standard male hose thread
  • NEW YORK CITY ONLY - Due to high city water sediment, additional pre-filtration required before use.

SeaChem – Large Aquarium Fish Tank Filter, Tidal 75 Gallon (300 Liters) by Sicce

SeaChem – Large Aquarium Fish Tank Filter, Tidal 75 Gallon (300 Liters) by Sicce
BESTSELLER NO. 8 in 2021
  • VENTILATION SLOTS – Additional aeration slots in the lid as well as the outflow ensure maximum gas exchange for fully oxygenated water up to 75 gallons.
  • SURFACE SKIMMER – Includes a skimmer to capture debris floating just below the surface such as fish oil, algae, and other contaminants for crystal clear water.
  • EASY MAINTENANCE – Automatic maintenance alert mechanism lets you know when the filter needs cleaning or maintenance, fully removable basket makes the cleaning process a mess-free breeze.
  • FULLY ADJUSTABLE – Adjustable telescoping intake pipe, flow regulation, and intake regulation make it easy to draw water through from any level of the tank.
  • FRESH OR SALT WATER – Includes a clip to easily add a heater to the device to create the right environment for fresh or salt water fish.

Macro Aqua M-50 Mini Hang-on External Protein Skimmer, 60 Gallon

Macro Aqua M-50 Mini Hang-on External Protein Skimmer, 60 Gallon
BESTSELLER NO. 9 in 2021
  • High quality protein skimmer for up to 60 gallon tank (depends on stocking)
  • Small hang-on back skimmer; Water Flow: 238gph
  • Effectively eliminates organic waste. Simply remove the collection cup to dispose tank waste
  • Easy to install and operate. No priming required
  • Needle-to-wheel impeller - increases air to water contact

Marina S10 Power Filter

Marina S10 Power Filter
BESTSELLER NO. 10 in 2021
  • Power filter for aquariums up to 10 gallons
  • Self priming
  • Easy to maintain
  • Adjustable flow control

How to Build a Plenum for a Saltwater Aquarium

A plenum serves as a place to grow nitrate eating bacteria in your saltwater aquarium. This article explains, step by step, how to build a plenum for your saltwater aquarium.

Nitrates build up in a cycled aquarium as a result of bacteria processing fish wastes into nitrites and then nitrates. Nitrates are a harmful waste product if their levels get too high. Fortunately, there are also bacteria which eat nitrates. Unfortunately, those bacteria can't thrive in the same water conditions your fish and invertebrates need to survive. Nitrate eating bacteria require very low oxygen concentrations to live.

A plenum is basically a riser that is placed under the sand or crushed coral of the saltwater aquarium to make an "empty" gap between the bottom of the tank and the bottom of the sand or crushed coral. A plenum provides a separate area of poorly oxygenated water for the de-nitrifying bacteria to thrive without depriving the fish and invertebrates in your saltwater aquarium of the oxygen they need to breathe.

Building a plenum yourself is one of the least expensive and easiest do-it-yourself projects in the reef aquarium hobby.

Before you begin, measure your aquarium bottom (length and width) so your plenum can be custom fit to your fish tank.

To make your own plenum you will need these hardware materials:

One roll of fiberglass window screen - the smallest roll you can buy should be enough.

Four-PVC elbow joints for joining one inch PVC pipe.

One sheet of construction eggcrate, the plastic material sometimes used to protect fluorescent light fixtures.

At least 20 eight inch cable ties (a.k.a. zip strips)

Two pieces of one inch PVC pipe three inches shorter in length than the length of your aquarium.

Two pieces of one inch PVC pipe three inches shorter in length than the width of your aquarium.

Three six inch long pieces of PVC pipe for each one foot of aquarium length - round up.

You should be able to find all of these materials at any Home Depot, Menards, or Lowes or any other large home improvement or hardware store.

You will also need these tools:

A pipe cutter - unless you can persuade your hardware store to cut the PVC pipe into the lengths you need.

Heavy scissors.

Tin snips.

To assemble the plenum:

Lay out the materials for your plenum in a flat workspace. Attach two of the PVC elbow joints to the ends of each of the two pieces of PVC pipe that are three inches shorter than your aquarium's width. Then attach the two longer lengths of PVC pipe using the elbow joints to create a rectangle of PVC pipe. This will serve as the frame for the plenum.

Hold the eggcrate over the PVC rectangle and cut it to the same size as the plenum frame using the tin snips.

Attach the eggcrate to the top edge of the plenum frame using 4 cable ties around the PVC and through the squares of the eggcrate material, one cable tie at each corner. Cut off any excess length of the cable ties using the tin snips after pulling them as tight as possible.

Attach the six inch long pieces of PVC pipe evenly spaced on the underside of the eggcrate using a single cable tie around the middle of each piece threaded through the eggcrate squares. Tighten the cable ties and cut off the excess length using the tin snips. When this step is completed you will have a piece of eggcrate attached on top of a rectangular frame of PVC supported by additional pieces of PVC pipe underneath.

Cut a piece of window screen large enough to completely wrap around the plenum frame and eggcrate with about an inch of excess on all sides using the heavy scissors. Wrap the window screening all the way around the unfinished plenum box and bring the edges of the screening together at the narrow ends of the plenum and along one long side of the plenum at the PVC pipe. Use the remaining cable ties to loop through the window screening, the edge of the eggcrate, and the PVC frame. You may need to cut small holes in the window screening using the scissors to fit the cable ties through. If this is necessary, don't cut the holes too close to the edge of the screen. Tighten the cable ties and cut off any excess.

Now your aquarium plenum is completed and ready to use. Simply place it in the bottom of your fish tank and layer the live sand or crushed coral on top of it before filling the tank with saltwater.

Sources:
Over twenty years in the aquarium hobby plus experience in marine aquaculture and saltwater fish breeding.

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