Goldfish Tank Filters
So you’ve decided that a goldfish is right for you and you need to make sure you have everything they need. You’ve got the tank, the fish, the lid, a light and what else do you need? I will tell you, you need a filter. Why? Because goldfish are very dirty. Not only are the messy eaters and don’t always finish everything, but because they have no stomachs, they poop a lot. Goldfish don’t like to live in dirty water. In fact, it’s very bad for them because dirty water can cause illnesses and invite in bacteria that can be harmful.
A filter will help greatly in keeping the tank sparkling clean for them. There are two types of filters that you can use. An internal or external.
An internal filter is set inside the tank. It can either be placed on the bottom, or suction cupped to the side. You attach an airline to the inlet of the filter, attach to the air pump outside the tank and turn it on. The air is pumped into the filter and it is this action that causes water to be circulated through the filter allowing dirt and debris to get stuck among the rocks or sponges in the filter.
Another type of internal filter is an under gravel filter. Again a water hose is attached to an air pump that sits outside the tank. Air circulates and helps to move the yucky down to the bottom, but because it sits under the gravel and goes nowhere it can still leave a lot of bacteria in the water. This can be very unhealthy for your fish
An external filter is just that. External. It sits outside the tank. Usually hidden from sight. External filters can be quite powerful.
The canister filter is a tall narrow box that is connected to the tank with two hoses, one for input one for output. One hose sucks in water, passes it through a series of filtering materials, then pushes it back into the tank as clean, fresh water.
A mechanical or biological filter hangs on the edge of the tank and pulls water through a solid tube into a small box. There is a filter that sits inside the box and the water runs through it. Bacteria and debris is caught on one side while clean water is sent through to the other. It then pours back over into the tank. A big problem with this type of filter is that the filter material itself can get clogged very quickly and then the water simply runs over the filter back into the tank, not cleaned and not free of bacteria. Some of these filters have a bio wheel as well that allows water to pass over it. This provides extra biological filtration.
With any internal or external filter, you will still have to clean the tank out often. A filter will remove a very large amount of dirt, debris and bacteria, however, there is always some that will be left behind. A vacuum is your best bet for doing this. Please do not use your household vacuum. They make a very special vacuum that filters out all the dirt and debris using suction and water. It is attached to your water faucet and then can be reversed to refill the tank very easily.
No matter what filter system you choose, you must keep watch of all the materials within the system to make certain that filter material is not clogged and all is running though well.