Best Filter For 5 Gallon Tank: Review And Buying Guide

Like every aquarist, you’re always looking for new and exciting ways to keep your fish happy and healthy. However, a filter can be the difference between an enjoyable aquarium experience and an endless struggle!

Without a filter, your small fish tank can become very unstable, making the water unsafe for creatures in residence!

Aquariums with an extra layer of protection get safer quickly because they are less likely to have issues regarding chemical stability.

Today I decided to write this blog post about the Best Filter For 5 Gallon Tank.

I’ll be reviewing some of the most popular models and giving you my verdict on each one. So whether you’re looking to buy your first filter or want to learn more about them, keep reading!

Preview
Top Pick
AquaClear 20 Power Filter, Fish Tank Filter for 5-...
Best Canister Type
Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter, up to 10...
Cheapest
Aquapapa Corner Filter Bio Sponge Ceramic Air Pump...
Product
AquaClear 20 Power Filter, Fish Tank Filter for 5-...
Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter, up to 10...
Aquapapa Corner Filter Bio Sponge Ceramic Air Pump...
Price
$32.99
$44.01
$8.65
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
-
-
-
Top Pick
Preview
AquaClear 20 Power Filter, Fish Tank Filter for 5-...
Product
AquaClear 20 Power Filter, Fish Tank Filter for 5-...
Price
$32.99
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
-
Buy On Amazon
Best Canister Type
Preview
Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter, up to 10...
Product
Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter, up to 10...
Price
$44.01
Prime Status
Star Rating
-
Buy On Amazon
Cheapest
Preview
Aquapapa Corner Filter Bio Sponge Ceramic Air Pump...
Product
Aquapapa Corner Filter Bio Sponge Ceramic Air Pump...
Price
$8.65
Prime Status
Star Rating
-
Buy On Amazon

Best Filter For 5 Gallon Tank: Top 10 Picks

AquaClear 20 Power Filter, Fish Tank Filter for 5-...
  • Aquarium filtration system that offers superior contact time with filter media and energy efficient pump lowers...
  • Quick and easy installation; we recommend that you clean aquarium filter every 2 weeks for maximum operation and...
  • Provides optimal mechanical; chemical; and biological filtration
  • Comes equipped with AquaClear Foam; Activated Carbon Filter and BioMax and Cycle Guard for superior water quality
  • Filtration volume is up to 7 times larger than comparable fish tank filters

Because of its adaptability and efficiency as a power filter, the AquaClear 20 Fish Tank Filter is at the top of the list. In addition, due to its innovative re-filtration technology, it does an excellent job of keeping the water pure.

It’s easy to set up and offers mechanical, chemical, and biological filtering methods and foam, carbon filter, and BioMax media to ensure that your water is in the best possible condition.

Cleaning the filter every two weeks is recommended to keep it in good working order. Furthermore, the adjustable flow on this aids you in determining the sweet spot of current flow for your fish’s general enjoyment.

The price is justified when considering everything this device offers, such as its compact and stylish design, innovative re-filtration technology, and dependability. These criteria add up to the AquaClear 20 being the best filter for a 5-gallon aquarium.

Sale
Tetra Whisper Internal Power Filter 5 To 10...
  • UNIVERSAL DESIGN Tetra Whisper 10i Internal Filter is an all-in-one air pump and water filter system
  • INTERNAL FILTER Mounts on the inside of your aquarium with clip (included)
  • CATCHES DEBRIS Dense dual-sided mesh filters debris and fish waste
  • AERATES WATER Air-driven design filters up to 80 GPH while oxygenating water
  • CONVENIENT DESIGN Uses medium easy to change Bio-Bag cartridges filter mounts inside aquarium making it possible to...

The Whisper In-Tank filter is an internal filter that sits on the interior of your tank and filters your aquarium water. Because the motor is submerged and cannot be heard, this filter is perfect for anyone looking for a tranquil environment.

Because it is one of the most affordable filters on this list, there isn’t enough room inside for you to add your own filtration material. Still, it effectively filters the water, so you might not need a customized filtration material. 

It comes with a BioScrubber, which is a tremendous biological filtration function.

This filter is simple to set up and maintain, ideal for beginning aquarists.

The Whisper Internal filter does its job well and is reasonably priced, making it an excellent addition to your tank.

Sale
Marina I25 Internal Filter
  • Clip on filter for aquariums up to 6.6 gallons
  • Provides quiet operation
  • Works to reduce odor and pollutants
  • Comes complete with one power cartridge
  • Cartridge change is fast and mess-free

Looking for a reliable and quiet internal filter for your aquarium? The Marina I25 Internal Filter is a clip-on filter for 5-gallon fish tanks.

This internal filter is compact, powerful, and exceptionally quiet – perfect for your aquarium.

The Marina I25 features a unique design that allows it to fit most standard-sized aquariums, including round and rectangular shaped aquariums. 

It comes complete with one power cartridge that is uniquely designed to enable the water to enter the center of the cartridge for an effective mechanical, chemical, and biological filtration process.

Cartridge change is fast and mess-free, just twist off the old cartridge, a twist on the new one, and you’re done! 

Keep your fish healthy and happy with the Marina I25 Internal Filter.

Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter, up to 10...
  • Water filter for nano tanks and aquariums up to 10 gallons
  • Created for use in both freshwater and saltwater aquariums
  • Designed to be easy for new users to prime, customize, and even open
  • This filter was also built to be convenient with a compact, space saving design and quiet, anti vibration brushings
  • Package includes the Nano 10 external canister filter, spray bar system for greater aeration, mechanical filter sponge,...

This is a filter for the big leagues, and beginners should steer away from it if they aren’t brave enough. However, the Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter has several features that make it a good aquarium filter for a 5-gallon tank.

It occupies no space inside the tank because it stands outside it, with only two water input and discharge hoses. The filter also comes with a spray bar and a standard hose pipe, which you can use to reduce the current strength in your tank.

This tank is simple to set up and clean every two weeks, so you won’t have to open your filter as frequently. 

Simply lift the lid and rinse it under running water to clean the filter.

The filter creates substantially less noise than other canister filters since it is kept in place by suction cups. Although a little pricey, this filter is one of the best for keeping your aquarium clean and neat.

Aquapapa Corner Filter Bio Sponge Ceramic Air Pump...
  • With multi-layer sponge filters, this corner filter combines physical and biochemical filtration for your fish and...
  • Quiet filtering system. Especially good for breeding small fish. Efficiently remove toxic waste and maintain clean water...
  • Easy to maintain. Just take out the sponge and rinse well when it becomes dirty. It's complete set and includes all the...
  • Each unit requires an air pump and airline tubing to operate together (sold separately, not included).
  • Dimensions: 2-7/8”R x 3-3/4”H. Max tank size: up to 20 gal.

The Aquapapa Corner Filter is a good aquarium filter because of its multi-layered design, including mechanical and chemical filtration. In addition, its compact size is appropriate for a modest 5-gallon fish tank, making it an excellent filtration alternative.

The fact that the filter is a sponge filter makes no sound. However, its distinct characteristics, including layers of white filter pad, black bio-sponge, and ceramic rings, help it stand out from the crowd.

The filter necessitates the purchase of an air pump and airline tubing, both of which are offered separately, raising the price. However, this is still the best option for those trying to buy a filter on a budget.

It’s also simple to clean and assemble. Simply rinse it with aquarium water to clean it. If you’re worried about the grill catching fry and trapping within, you should use another sponge filter above the grilled filter.

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AZOO Mignon Filter 60
  • Small compact design
  • Queit performance
  • Ease of maintenance

The AZOO Aquarium Mignon filter is another low-cost option for your fish tank. Because it is simple to set up and maintain, this filter is ideal for beginners.

If you wish to use it with your 5-gallon tank, it is ideal because it can easily filter that much water. It also includes a sponge strainer that may be added to the entrance hose to prevent small fish from being accidentally sucked in.

It also has an adjustable flow control knob to keep the filter’s power at a comfortable level. Even though it comes with sponge filters, you can buy your own BioMax filters to considerably improve the filter’s functionality.

This filter is also cost-effective because it does not require an additional pump. If you’re looking for a compact but powerful aquarium filter, the AZOO Mignon Filter is a great option.

Sale
Hikari Bacto-Surge High Density Foam Filter, Large
  • Works Well For Use In Freshwater Or Marine Applications
  • Highly Porous Sponge Maximizes Bacterial Action
  • Increased Surface Area Offers Maximum Bacteria Colonization
  • Soft Sponge Material Offers Easy Cleaning
  • Sponge Designed For Longer Life

As the name implies, Foam filters are incredibly quiet in operation, making this filter an excellent choice for sensitive environments. Because of its superior filtering mechanism, the Hikari Bacto-Sure High-Density Foam Filter is a fantastic choice for 5-gallon fish tanks.

Water that has been treated with a biological filter has been found to be less toxic than untreated water. In addition, the filter is home to beneficial microorganisms that process waste and aid in the maintenance of a clean tank.

Because there is no pump, there is no noise produced by the filter at all. However, cleaning the filter regularly (every 10 days) is recommended since it might rapidly become clogged.

However, only aquarium water should be used to clean this filter since other types of water, such as extremely hot water, may cause good bacteria to die.

PENN-PLAX Small World Aquarium Air Pump and Filter...
  • GREAT FOR SMALLER SETUPS: The Small World Air Pump and Filter Kit is specifically designed for aquariums and tanks up to...
  • AIR-TECH PUMP: This Kit comes standard with an Air-Tech AT2K0 pump. In addition to being quiet, efficient, and reliable,...
  • ACTIVATED CARBON & ZEOLITE: Supercharged with scientifically formulated Activated Carbon and Zeolite Crystals, the media...
  • BIO SPONGE: In addition to the Activated Carbon and Zeolite Crystals, the included media cartridge also contains a Bio...
  • COMES WITH EVERYTHING YOU NEED: This Kit comes with an Air Pump, Air Tubing, a Filter Mount with Connector, and a Filter...

This fantastic Penn-Plax filter packs a powerful punch despite its diminutive size. Penn-Small Plax’s World Aquarium kit is an excellent kit that comes in a small box, allowing plenty of area for your fish to move around in the tank.

The system comes with an air pump, filter, mounting bracket, and tubing, and it works well to remove toxins and stink from your tank. Chemical filtration is featured by a high-quality carbon cartridge, and for mechanical and biological filtration, it has a foam block filter.

This filter is inexpensive compared to the others on this list, and it ranks in the top five due to its strong value proposition. It also has a unique wet/dry biological filtration mechanism that aids in filtering water by beneficial bacteria.

The filter is simple to install and maintain, making it an excellent option for your tank.

NICREW Aquarium Internal Filter, Submersible Power...
  • Provides effective and thorough biological filtration, creating superior aquarium water environment
  • Fine filter foam trap debris and fish waste, absorb odors
  • Enable to generate abundant air bubbles and water flow, optimal for oxygen supplement and water circulation of aquarium
  • Equipped with adjustable air regulator that distributes a gentle flow of water, making it safe for delicate fish or...
  • Quickly assembles and disassembles, comes with four suction cups for secure in-tank installation, suitable for both...

Aquarium Internal Filter is a robust filtration system that cleans and filters water efficiently in aquariums. And NICREW Internal filter is the perfect way to keep your fish tank clean and healthy. It provides effective biological filtration, creating an ideal water environment for your fish. 

Its spray bar has an adjustable direction, which can be rotated 360 degrees to reach all tank areas. The spray bar also has an airflow adjustment function, so you can adjust it according to your need. So, it distributes gentle water flow safely for delicate fish or shrimp. 

With this filter, the fish in your aquarium will have clean water with excellent oxygen circulation for a healthy life and growth. 

Quickly assemble and disassemble with four suction cups for secure in-tank installation – suitable for freshwater and saltwater tanks! You can use this filter to create a healthier living space for all of your aquatic friends! 

hygger Aquarium Single Sponge Filter for Small...
  • Single sponge aquarium filter, helps your small fish or shrimp to live a happy life
  • This single sponge filter takes up no more room, perfect for use in 5-15 gallon fish tank
  • 1 single sponge filter + 1 spare sponge+ 2 suction cups are included in a pack.
  • Rinse or squeeze the sponges by using the aquarium water
  • All the parts of this filter are detachable, you can easily to assemble them together

Worried about the quality of your fish’s life in the 5-gallon tank?

The Hygger Aquarium Single Sponge Filter is perfect for small fish or shrimp tanks. It helps keep your tank clean and healthy without taking up too much space. Plus, it comes with a spare sponge and two suction cups, so you can always have a backup on hand.

With this easy-to-use single sponge filter, you’ll never have to worry about your fish or shrimp again. It’s simple to assemble and even easier to use – just rinse or squeeze the sponges in aquarium water before attaching them to the filter. 

And if something ever goes wrong, all the parts are detachable for easy cleaning. So, this filter is perfect for your first 5-gallon fish tank.

Best 5 Gallon Fish Tank Filter: Buyer Guide

The best filter for a 5-gallon tank comes down to your needs and personal preferences, but there are a few things to consider before purchasing one. Filter type, space constraints, flow rate, and simplicity of use are the factors to consider.

Best 5 Gallon Fish Tank Filter Buyer Guide

Type Of Filter

To keep the water in your tank in the best possible condition, you may need to use various filtering technologies.

To keep your tank clean, mechanical filtration physically captures the particles. However, small fish, such as guppies may not like the robust flow rate required to function.

Chemical and biological filters help maintain the equilibrium of your aquarium’s internal ecosystem. You can use either one or both, but it’s important to remember that chemical filtration is occasionally necessary if the water you’re using contains harmful contaminants.

You must select what type of filtration methods you need in your tank before purchasing a filter to offer the most significant possible experience for you and your fish.

Space Required

You’ll want a filter that takes up the least amount of space in a small 5-gallon fish tank so that your fish have plenty of areas to swim around.

All of the filters featured in this review take up very little space, but it’s best to figure out which one is ideal for you.

When setting up your tank, bear in mind that some filters may take up more room than you want, so check the size of the filter before purchasing it.

Read also: Best Fish For 5 Gallon Tank – 15 Fantastic Fish With Pictures (And More)

Filter Flowrate

Because small fish tanks housing bettas, guppies, or cherry shrimp can be impacted by a strong current in the water, filters with a lower flow rate are typically advised for small fish tanks.

Make sure your fish are comfortable with the filter you choose and keep an eye out for powerful currents that could drag your fish in and harm them.

If you feel like your filter’s flow rate is too powerful, you can always add a sponge to various portions of your filter to lower the current, safeguarding your fish from any mishaps.

User-Friendliness

Obviously, you’ll want a simple filter to install and maintain. Still, you may be limited in how much you can change your filter’s functionality due to this.

Hang-on-back filters are the simplest to use, but they are limited in terms of filtration material and flow rate control.

Internal filters are similarly simple to install, although they require more frequent cleaning.

Canister filters are the most complicated to set up and are not recommended for most new aquarists, but they offer the greatest possibility of filtration and flow rate modification. These filters, on the other hand, are the most expensive.

Read also: Best Heater For 5 Gallon Tank Review: Everything You Need To Know

Wrapping Up

We all know that a filter is an essential part of our aquariums, but many people tend to overlook them. A good quality aquarium filter will keep your fish happier and healthier and make your life easier as an aquarist!

To get the best all-around experience, you can choose an Aquaclar Fish Tank Filter. However, if money is tight, consider either the cheap but effective Aquapapa Corner Filter or the Tetra Whisper one instead!

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