Top 10 Aquarium Pumps To Create a Natural Water Flow in Your Aquarium

By Garrison Hickles Updated

An aquarium pump is nonetheless an essential part of an aquarium though aquarists often skip this. Sometimes aquarists fail to understand that aquarium pumps are mandatory, just like substrates, heaters, and lightings for a healthy life of your pet fish.

Before checking the best aquarium pumps, check what these pumps do…

What Does Aquarium Pump Do?

The pumps supply aerated water or, more specifically, oxygenated water in your tank and keep the inhabitants lively. The aquarium pump creates pressure in the water and keeps the water moving, which keeps the water clean. The different pressure levels are helpful to clean the water as well. It creates bubbles in the aquarium, which looks aesthetically pleasing.

When you are keeping a fish in captivity, the requirement of that fish is the first thing you will need to keep in mind. The aquarium pump will help you create water flow (slow, medium, or high) as per the preferences of the fish.

How to Choose the Best One?

With these aquarium pumps, you can create natural water flow in your aquarium. But, you have to consider the following factors before buying one:


You have to understand what you want from the pump – water flow or water flow and filtration. You need to choose the pump accordingly. Also, the pump has to be compatible with the filter and the inhabitants of the aquarium. 

Flow Rate

You have to consider the water parameters of the fish you are petting. Select the pump according to the flow rate required by them. Water flow indeed makes your tank more beautiful, but make sure the decorations can tolerate the water flow too.


Installing an aquarium pump is not the end; you have to take care of it too. Before selecting a pump, check whether you can manage the time to maintain that pump or not. It will be better to select the pump that requires the least maintenance.

Energy consumption

The budget is a great factor at the time of selecting an aquarium pump. Here budget not only means the price of the pump; rather, it also means energy consumption too. Therefore, it is recommended to check the energy consumption of this device.


Based on the size of your aquarium, you have to select the pump. Just because a pump is providing excellent facilities, does not mean it will be alright for your aquarium. Check the detailed specifications of the pump carefully.


It is always better to get a noise-free aquarium pump irrespective of where you are keeping it – it is good for the fish too.


Users always want an aquarium pump with an easy installation process. Also, you need to confirm which type (in-line, submersible, or air) of the aquarium pump you want.

Before Buying an Aquarium Pump…

You will need to fix a budget before that. You will get a variety of aquarium pumps, but you have to make a wise choice in terms of the requirements of the fish and, of course, of your budget.

Benefits of Keeping an Aquarium Pump

Apart from supplying aerated water, aquarium pumps also stabilize the water pressure so that the rest of the filters can work normally.

The pump will help you to distribute the nutrients of water in the entire aquarium. If you have a large aquarium, the pump will surely make some difference in the tank in terms of distributing nutrients in the entire aquarium. In the absence of these nutrients, some fish may fall ill, but the pump can solve this problem.

Last but not least, the looks of the aquarium will enhance a lot with the help of the flow created by the aquarium pump. Just imagine the appearance of your aquarium with plants and fish along with bubbles created by the aquarium pumps.

Best Aquarium Pumps

Whether you are a beginner aquarist or an experienced aquarist who is going to take this hobby seriously; you have to shake off your doubts regarding the necessity of aquarium pumps. Aquarium pumps are mandatory and so get it installed ASAP.

Are you confused about which one will be the best aquarium pump for you? Well, below, a list of popular aquarium pumps is given. Check these out and choose the best one for your aquarium.


Presently, there are three types of aquarium pumps: in-line pumps (kept out of the aquarium), submersible pumps (placed inside the aquarium and produce less noise), and air pumps (these pumps send air from the atmosphere to the aquarium and produce bubbles in water).

1. Submersible Aquarium Water Pump

These types of pumps contain a magnetic drive, and with the help of it, you can get a great flow of water throughout the day in the entire aquarium. EcoPlus Submersible Water Pump is an example of such a pump for your aquarium. It comes with 7400 GPH, and it will be a great addition to your aquarium.

You can find a ceramic shift impeller in this pump, and for any freshwater and saltwater tank, this pump will be equally suitable.


This pump is an affordable and quiet one. So if you want a noise-free operation in a limited budget, it will work.


The size-chart it provides appears to be a bit confusing; rather, it is incorrect too. Along with that, some filtration issues and strainer issues are there, which may be solved afterward.

2. Hybrid Aquarium Pump

If you do not want a submersible pump and want to fit it out of the aquarium, you can definitely go for a hybrid pump by Reeflo. This pump offers you a capacity of 3600 GPH and 155 wattages.

And the best part is that this pump can actually prevent the unnecessary and disturbing noises inside the aquarium even though it is not a submersible one. It means your fish can live peacefully after its installation.


We like the overall system of this aquarium pump. It is easy to use the device in terms of installation and operation. The almost noise-free operation comes along with this device.

Overall, we believe that it will be a smart choice for the aquarists.


If you want a submersible device, this pump is definitely not for you. Apart from that, we didn’t find any drawbacks here.

3. Aquarium Chiller

Well, Aquarium Chiller from Hamilton Technology will amaze you with the facility of optimum temperature controlling along with maintaining a constant flow of water inside the tank. 

Using this chiller, you can set the temperature according to the requirement of your pet fish, and you will be able to monitor this too. It comes with an anti-freezing feature which will protect the heat exchanger.

Not just that, using this device, you can automatically set the temperature which you set previously and that too with the least effort.


Anti-freezing operation and temperature control are the best part of this pump.

What we like most about this device is its corrosion and rust-free build-up, which makes the maintenance easier.

Even after providing so many facilities, this device comes with an energy-saving feature. It consumes less power, which probably all the aquarists look for at the time of choosing the pumps.  


The worst part after the review is the noisy operation of this pump. Unlike the other aquarium pumps, temperature control is a bit difficult as here you have to set a bit lower than the required temperature.  

We opine that the reason behind the noise is gaps between the ceasing panels. If it can be managed, this pump will be a great addition in any tank.

4. Magnetic Water Pump

If you want an aquarium pump, which will help you to keep your aquarium clean by assisting in the filtration process along with maintaining the water flow, 1110 GPH Magnetic Water Pump from Pan World will help you a lot. Check the pros and cons here:


This device is guaranteed to last for a long time, and you can expect excellent quality service from this product with minimal maintenance. You will not need to compromise in terms of its run time, too, as it is proven to run for longer hours.

Do you think that it will need a huge amount for this device? Well, it will not! This device comes at an affordable price.


The only disadvantage we found after reviewing this excellent device is – it will be unsuitable for the large aquarium. So if you own larger (above 100 gallons) tanks, you will not be able to keep this pump.

5. Aquarium Flow Pump

Aquarium Flow Pump, manufactured by Icecap comes with 1K Gyre Pump, controller, and power supply. It is a complete package that you can easily install in the tanks above 50 gallons. It allows the water flow of 1000 GPH, and it comes with five unique control modes.


It is a quiet and portable pump that performs all the tasks satisfactorily. This flow pump is easy to install, and the overall device is very easy to maintain too.


On the screen, you will get so many confusing symbols that are difficult to understand and operate. Also, the magnet which is placed inside is not that strong.

6. Waterfall Aquarium Pump

The Cal Pump manufactured HP Waterfall Pump is a submersible pump with excellent built quality. The 500 GPH flowrate will be sufficient to create the waterfall-like atmosphere in your aquarium. Some fish prefer such a flow in the aquarium, and you can see them more playful with such water flow.


It is an energy-saving device, and it is efficient in creating an eye-soothing flow in your fish tank.


With this device, you may face some clogging issues. Plus, customers’ review of this product says that the service of this product is not that good.

7. Quietest Aquarium Air Pump

Quietest Aquarium Air Pump from Mylivell is a great choice of aquarium pump in case your aquarium is in your bedroom. You will definitely do not want the unnecessary sound here. The best part of this device is there is no motor or shaft; rather, a ceramic plate runs this device.


It is a lightweight device, and its suction cups are really very easy to attach. It is a high-efficiency device, yet it is an energy-saving one.


You have to keep it dry all through as it is not waterproof. It works better in the small tanks, and in larger tanks, the expected rate of pressure cannot be seen.

8. Aquarium Pump with the Wave Function

If you want to replicate the natural habitat of the fish, creating a wave in the aquarium becomes mandatory in some cases. There are many fish (both freshwater and saltwater), that live in such a water body where the flow is medium to high. Without the wave function pump, it will never be possible to replicate this.

Aquariumstation marketed this Wave Function Aquarium Pump, and it is claimed to be a small but mighty device. Also, it claims to save 65% more energy in comparison to other aquarium pumps and 1056 GPH will be enough to create a low to medium flow in the tank.


Long cords of this pump make the operation easy. By using this device, you will have no complaint regarding the water flow.


Even though it creates a great ambience in the water, but it is not a long-lasting device.

9. Submersible Ultra Quiet Aquarium Pump

KEDSUM claims this aquarium pump to be an ultra-quiet pump, and you can get up to 660 GPH flow from this small device.


It is truly a quiet aquarium pump that comes with an easy and quick installation guide. Again, it is an energy-saving device too.


On the downside, it needs a little bit of lubrication. That’s why it is not safe for the aquariums with sensitive or young fish. You need to be extremely careful regarding the maintenance of this pump.

10.  Quiet-flow Submersible Utility Pump

This pump is exclusively for the small aquarium owners. With Aqueon Quietflow Submersible Utility Pump, you can boost up the filtration process too. It uses 21 watts power, and it can be used in small to larger tanks up to 150 gallons. Here you will get quite a few flowrates between 106-608 GPH.


Customization is very easy in this pump, and it has a quiet operation facility. For any saltwater or freshwater tank, this pump is suitable. You don’t need to worry about power consumption as it consumes less electricity.


Though it comes with a noise-free operation, its function can be noisy during the break-in periods.

That’s all about the best aquarium pumps, but it’s not the end! We have some more information to share so that buying the pump becomes easier for you.

Our Recommendation

It is recommended to use a high-quality pump though it will be costly because the cheaper ones are not that good in terms of quality. Most importantly, the cheaper ones will vibrate, which will not be very comfortable for the fish.

If you still believe that pumps are not essential for your aquarium, take a look at the benefits of aquarium pumps.

Only Filter OR Filter + Aquarium Pump

You should understand that when you are installing a strong filter in your aquarium, a pump becomes mandatory. A filter is unable to function as it should do until and unless a pump supports it.

A single filter does not matter how strong it is, will never be able to reach all the parts of the aquarium. It will need the help of a pump to do that.

Our recommendation is to use a filter with an aquarium pump for a better lifestyle of your pet fish. It is because if you have invested much in the filter, and if it needs the support of a pump to function in a better way, you should provide that too.


So, there are no alternatives when the question is to use or not to use an aquarium pump! Actually, the well-being of the fish is all we, the aquarists want. And aquarium pumps are something that can help you make some arrangements for a better lifestyle of the fish.

If you want your fish to stay lively throughout, it will be mandatory to replicate their natural home. Replicating the natural home does not mean maintaining water temperature, pH, and hardness – water flow is something very important. The aquarium pump will help you in creating that flow. So, without thinking twice, go ahead and get a pump!

Some More Guidance about the Aquarium Set-Up

If you want the well-being of the fish, the following articles can help you a lot: