Are you interested in having a fish tank in your house?
And do you care about cleaning the water and eliminate the dangerous organisms inside your aquarium?
If your answer is yes, you are coming to the right place. This article will help you understand about the aquarium UV sterilizer together with how this system works. Moreover, you are going to learn how to choose the most suitable model for yourself as well as what to notice about the UV sterilizer. And lastly, I am going to show you a list of the best UV sterilizer for the aquarium, which will give you an idea of some outstanding models in the current market. As a result, you should hurry to read this article, and you will not regret this decision for sure!
What is an Aquarium UV Sterilizer and How It Works?
For anyone who does not know the aquarium UV sterilizer, it is a piece of equipment that can improve the clarity, the cleanliness, and the overall health of the aquarium. They are very commonly used in the ponds, but they can also be used in the aquariums to eliminate various water-borne microorganisms such as the free-floating algae.
And the concept is pretty simple. It is a tube that contains a fluorescent lamp that produces the light of a specific wavelength. The water flows over or around the bulb, and as the light hits the bacteria or algae, its DNA mutates, which prevents them it from growing. The result is cleaner and clearer aquarium water.
How to Choose a UV Sterilizer for Aquarium
If you want to choose the best UV sterilizer, there are a number of features to consider before making your purchase. Thus, I am going to introduce you some necessary points that you should keep in mind carefully. Let’s check it out!
The size of the tank
The first element to consider when choosing a UV sterilizer for the aquarium is the size of your aquarium. In particular, you should clarify whether the UV sterilizer is suitable for your tank or not. You should carefully check the model to confirm if it fits your aquarium perfectly.
For instance, you can identify the capacity of your aquarium and then compare with the figures of the UV sterilizer. By doing this, you can have the best items for your tank no matter its capacity is 50 gallons or even 150 gallons.
Saltwater and freshwater
Moving to the next factor, you should think about the type of water that you are aiming to clean with the UV sterilizer. For every model, they are designed for either saltwater or freshwater. Or they can be made for both types of water.
And well, my advice is that you should look for the items that are suitable for both saltwater and freshwater, which is the best choice for you. By this way, you do not have to worry much whenever using the specific UV sterilizer for the aquarium that may include different types of water.
The design and the weight
The last matter that you should always remember is the design as well as the weight of the aquarium UV sterilizer. In case you are having a small or medium tank, I highly suggest that you should buy a UV sterilizer with the compact design. But do not forget that this type of UV sterilizer should provide sufficient lighting for the plants and the fish in your aquarium.
Following my tip will definitely help you clean the tank water as well as give your beloved creatures the most comfortable environment. Also, make sure that you will select the models which can be easy to mount or hang on the aquarium.
Things to Be Aware of the UV Sterilizer
There are two common designs for these UV sterilizers. Some of them are self-contained and hang inside the tank. They have their own powerhead and are very easy to install. The larger versions can be plumped in line with your canister filter.
Plumbing them is really simple, especially if the size if the tubing from your canister filter output matches the size of the intake and output of the sterilizer. And in general, the longer the water is being exposed to the UV light, the more effective it will be.
This is referred to as the contact time or the dwell time. Moreover, there are several factors that can influence this. One is the flow rate of the filter. Second is the size of the aquarium which, along with the flow rate, determine the turnover time of your filter.
The third point is the size of the sterilizer and the length of the bulb. And fourth is the power rating of the bulb. As a consequence, if you have a really great filter with a high-flow rate on a big tank and a small or weak sterilizer bulb, then it is not going to be super-efficient at all.
So, my advice is to research what you are buying and read the manufacturer recommendations. Also, make sure to compare them to the specs of your canister filter. Now, there are a few other things to keep in mind with these sterilizers.
The most important tip is that these are not a replacement for the good filtration, the water changes, and the routine maintenance. You should think of them as a supplement to help get you to the next level of clarity. Another thing to remember is that the organisms that are impacted by the sterilizer must actually flow through it.
The UV light has no residual effect and it will not kill the microorganisms attached to the fish, the rocks, and the glass because they do not flow through the unit. And lastly, there are a couple of times when a sterilizer should absolutely not be used.
When first cycling the aquarium, because it can kill the beneficial bacteria before they get a chance to attach to your bio-media or substrate. So, when medicating your tank, as some medications can be rendered ineffective by the UV light.
Our Top 5 Best UV Sterilizer for Aquarium
1. Aqua UV 15 watt Advantage 2000+ Hang On UV Sterilizer
First of all, when talking about the best UV sterilizer, you should remember about Aqua. It has earned its reputation for being one of the most perfect items for the small and medium tanks. In particular, you can use Aqua UV sterilizer for the tanks which are up to 85 gallons in size.
Moreover, this product is made in the U.S with the high quality and designed with the 15-watt bulb. These factors play an important role at preventing the algae, bacteria, as well as the microorganisms from existing inside your tanks.
I have to say that this product is suitable for the small aquariums and ponds since it is very lightweight and excellent at the UV effectiveness. Especially, it can clear up the water in your tank within 3 or 5 days. Besides, it will stay extremely tightly at the back of your aquarium. So, you do not have to worry about the narrow space for your fish when installing this item in your tank.
You only need to connect Aqua UV sterilizer to the outer valve of either the filter or the water pump, and then, it can function properly. And more importantly, you will get amazed to know that this item can handle up to 500 gallons of water per hour.
- Easy and simple to install
- The 15-watt is powerful
- Save the space inside your tank after being mounted
- Function very well after linking to the water pump or the filter
- Suitable for the small and medium aquariums
- Not recommend for the coral tanks
- The useful life of the bulk is quite limited
2. Coralife Turbo-Twist UV Sterilizers
Secondly, Coralife Turbo-Twist deserves to earn a spot in this list due to many reasons. This incredible UV sterilizer for the aquarium is perfect for any capacity of fewer than 250 gallons. Furthermore, you can use this product for the saltwater together with the freshwater. And well, many people are interested in this great feature from Coralife Turbo-Twist.
Besides, the installation is very simple as you only need to mount this item on the side of your aquarium. There are some sections which are for the in-line applications. Therefore, it is very easy for the users to mount this aquarium UV sterilizers themselves without any difficulties.
By using this amazing equipment in your tank, you can keep the water as clean and clear as possible. Also, you do not have to care about the algae, the bacteria, along with the organisms thanks to the 18-watt UV light. It is very powerful and intense.
In addition, this light is designed with the quartz glass sleeve so that the water cannot get into the internal parts. That is why Coralife Turbo-Twist can improve the durability of this light. With all of these outstanding features, you should purchase this item as soon as possible if you are seeking the long-lasting and durable aquarium UV sterilizer right now.
- Suitable for large tanks and aquariums
- Perfect for either saltwater or freshwater
- The 18-watt bulb is intense and powerful
- Offer the hang-on use and the in-line application
- Durable and long-lasting
- The quartz glass sleeve can keep the water from getting in the bulb
- Not include the water pump in the whole package
- The bulbs are a bit loose in the socket
3. AA Aquarium Green Killing Machine Internal UV Sterilizer with Power Head
Next, we cannot ignore AA Aquarium when it comes to the best UV sterilizer. This model is great at keeping your fish reef tank clean and clear without the need of any chemicals. The special point of this item is that it has the disinfection radiation whose wavelength is around 254nm.
This radiation can work well with the support of the water pumps; thus, it can work very excellently with any tanks of 53 gallons. Moreover, it is very submersible with the power head which is designed in a single unit. As a consequence, the whole unit is very versatile, efficient, and simple to use.
Owing to the incredible construction, the water can flow easily within the zigzag path and take advantage of the UV light exposure. Hence, you can eliminate the molds, the bacteria, as well as the yeast in your aquarium.
Furthermore, you can install the entire system with the interior filters without any external plumbing. In particular, you can use the suction containers for the set-up stage. Especially, you can have the LED light which will inform you of when you need to replace the bulb.
- Simple and easy to set up
- Provide the powerhead
- Do not need the additional hardware
- Offer the suctions containers for easy installation
- Powerful disinfecting radiation
- The plastic is quite cheap and poor quality
4. SunSun JUP-01 9W UV Sterilizer Submersible Filter Pump
Going to the next item, you should think of SunSun JUP-01 9W if you are owning the small fish reef tank. In addition, you can use this product for any tanks whose capacity is up to 40 gallons. And of course, this product is popular for being versatile because it can work well for the freshwater, the saltwater, and even the outside ponds as well.
However, what people love about this model is that you do not need the additional pumps or hardware. The reason is that the package provides you with the water pump which is able to transfer about 132 gallons of water each hour. With no doubt, this is a plus point for SunSun JUP-01 9W since you can save more money without buying the extra pumps or hardware.
Again, this item is very easy and simple for installing by yourself. You will be offered the suction cups to link this item with the internal part of your tank. And surprisingly, you can mount SunSun JUP-01 9W in a horizontal or vertical way.
Moreover, you can have the filter sponge to eliminate the debris in the UV light, which can keep the water cleaner and avoid the destructive microorganisms. As a result, you should understand why many people are in love with this versatile and powerful aquarium UV sterilizer.
- Provide the built-in water pump in the package
- No need for the extra pumps or hardware
- Make use of the suctions cups for mounting
- Perfect for the small aquariums
- Can be used for freshwater and saltwater
- Can be hung in your tank vertically or horizontally
- The motor may become worn out after using for a long time
- Not suggested for huge tanks
5. Jebao 36W Aquarium Koi Fish Pond UV Light Sterilizer
Last but not least, Jebao 36W will be the name to end this list. For those people who are having the ponds, this item is the right decision for you at this moment. It is very durable, lightweight, and versatile, which can make the water inside your tank crystal clear.
Moreover, you will become immersed in the ultraviolet lamp that will maximize the contact area between the UV light and the water. As a result, you can get rid of the dangerous algae thanks to the amazing and intense UV light.
Furthermore, I highly recommend that you should use this model for any ponds which are flowing about 8,800 gallons of water every hour. The flow will be enhanced greatly with the double tube connectors which are conical shaped. And also, you can monitor the flow rate with the transparent indicator glass.
- Avoid the contact with UV light thanks to the safety switch
- Regulate the flow rate with the tube connectors
- Control and monitor the flow rate by having the indicator glass
- Simple to mount with the screw holes
- The bulb does not last long
In conclusion, I wish that all of my sharing in this article will actually gain your understanding of the best UV sterilizer for the aquarium. From now on, you can identify what this item is and how it works to clean your tank water. Besides, you are going to know how to choose the best products along with what to be aware of before buying the UV sterilizer. However, in case you have any queries or confusion, please do not hesitate to keep in touch with me anytime.
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