Below is a list of aquarium accessories and tools which you may find useful if you’re thinking about maintaining an aquarium or simply need more information about a certain piece of equipment.
Every tank needs a filter. It’s essential in removing decaying matter, fish waste and excess food from the tank as these could build up, create a toxic environment and poison your fish if not filtered properly from your aquarium. It also aerates the water so the fish can breathe and keeps the water from getting cloudy thus creating a more beautiful tank. One of the most essential aquarium accessories, a fish tank without a filter will not last long.
There are many types of filters available depending on the type of tank you have and these days they are fairly cheap online.
Using an aquarium substrate is highly beneficial to your tank as it not only makes the tank more beautiful but it is essential in harboring beneficial bacteria that will improve the health of your tank. Certain substrates are also better for growing aquatic plants than others as they will contain nutrients which are released slowly throughout the substrate’s life.
You can read our guide to aquarium substrates here.
Another one of the popular aquarium accessories which is very important a lot of tanks. A heater will keep the water temperature from dropping below a certain point, which is essential for certain fish which cannot live in low temperatures.
A heater comes with a thermostat which will monitor the temperature and switch the heater on or off as is needed. There are many types of filters and by far the most common and least expensive type is the hanging heater which simply hangs into the water from the edge of your tank. Other types of heaters may be more beneficial depending on the type of fish and the size of your aquarium.
A stand is something to put your tank on. Of course you can choose to place your aquarium on a table, dresser or anywhere you find which is suitable, but some people prefer to buy a stand specifically for their aquarium. While it is not one of the most essential aquarium accessories, you can choose to indulge in one if you’ve got some spare cash lying around.
This is one of the aquarium accessories everyone should have. A gravel vacuum is one of the most important tools for aquarium maintenance. No matter how good your filter is, every experienced aquarium enthusiast will tell you that debris and waste will eventually start building up in the gaps and cracks of your substrate and you need to clean it before it becomes toxic and harms your fish.
When buying a gravel vacuum always remember to get one long enough for your tank, because the last thing you want to do is dip your hands into the water and make it even dirtier. Also, never clean all your substrate at one go as this could run the risk of killing off too much beneficial bacteria at once, instead, clean it over a few days or weeks if possible.
Aquarium accessories such as decorations are important for 2 reasons. One is that they’ll make your aquarium look more beautiful, thus enhancing the soothing affect they can have on people. The other reason is because most fish will live more comfortably if they have sufficient cover, since fish are prey animals and they will feel stressed if overexposed and out in the open too much.
There are also several types of aquarium decorations which have more functions than the two listed above such as spawning holes and caves which will give your fish a comfortable place to lay their eggs.
You can read our aquarium decorations guide for Cichlids here.