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5 Best Sponge Filter For Aquarium (10 gallon – 125 gallon) in 2023

Don’t you hit the bath or shower when you feel stinky?

Of course, you do.

Ever wondered what fishes do when they feel bad or unclean?

They live in the water and if the water itself is dirty – they got no way around it.

This is where the best sponge filter for aquarium comes in. You can’t hand-clean the dirt and ammonia straight from the water, because the particles are small enough to not even be seen.

By the time you know these deadly particles exist, your fishes will be long dead. That’s why you need a sponge filter taking care of both the seen and the unseen. But finding the best for your aquarium isn’t easy.

For this reason, you need to know everything about sponge filters. You also need to learn about the market well. Let’s get started on the voyage of knowledge.

[amazon table=”7911″]

5 Best Sponge Filter for Aquarium

1. XY-2831 Air Pump Sponge Filter (up to 10 gallon)

[amazon box=”B0056XVF82″]

Want something that deals with the wastes completely?

This air pump sponge filter is your go-to because it provides mechanical and biological filtration.

The mechanical filtration requires a connection to an air pump. Luckily, the installation is super easy. However, the sponge filter unit is pretty big, so it doesn’t look the best inside your aquarium.

On the other hand, larger size provides a larger area for the good bacteria to grow on.

This helps the biological filtration system big time. Rest assured the water will be free from wastes for good.

The airflow might be problematic. The air pump is supposed to aerate the aquarium. However, you might need to make adjustments to the sponge filter to let the air flow perfectly. You may notice the bubbles coming out too slow.

In such cases, there’s a filter that covers the part where the air enters through. If you want the air to flow without obstruction, you need to adjust it slightly. Otherwise, the sponge filter is very adjustable and won’t cause a problem.

Even though it’s not the most durable, it comes super cheap, making it good value for money.


  • Cleanses the water very well
  • Easy to install
  • Two sponges
  • Good biological filtration
  • Great value for money


  • May obstruct airflow
  • A bit large in size
  • Not the most durable
  • Difficult to clean

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Video: “Cheap Sponge Filter Review and How-To”

2. Huijukon Air Pump Double Sponge Filter (up to 55 gallon)

[amazon box=”B06ZZMHCBY”]

Double sponge filters never fail when it comes to biological filtration. Similarly, the Huijukon air pump double sponge filter will save your fishes by keeping the water very clean. Plus, it does a great job of aeration too.

The filter size gives good bacteria ample space to grow. Besides that, it has the capacity to deal with tanks of up to 55 gallons. And while that’s the mentioned capacity, many people doubt it.

Plus, this filter won’t irritate your fishes with the sound. It operates quietly. However, in a few cases, it got noisier over time, which can be an issue.

You will find the filter in a set including an air pump. If you choose the set, the air pump and the tubes aren’t the best of quality.

You can also choose to buy the air pump and the tubes separately. And that’s the best way to go about it.

Other than that, if it fits your pump and aquarium, it will do a great job of cleaning with ease. It’s not the cheapest but has a reasonable price with the air pump included.


  • Provides great filtration
  • Allows good airflow
  • Very efficient valves
  • Very easy to set
  • Good capacity
  • Reasonable price
  • Quite adjustable


  • The pump and tubes aren’t the best quality
  • Might not contain the capacity claimed

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Video: “Unboxing Huijukon Double Sponge Filter: Review + Set Up”

3. Upettools Air Pump Sponge Filter (up to 15/20 gallon)

[amazon box=”B07J4JYC5Y”]

If your fish tank can’t be cleaned easily, you might consider some chemicals. However, worry not because this filter only uses biochemical, meaning your fish will be safe.

These chemicals help keep your tank water crystal clear. There are two sponges containing several layers, giving the good bacteria ample space to grow and live on. So you can enjoy constant filter cleansing.

What’s more, this sponge filter looks natural yet lively. Despite being large, it makes your aquarium look better.

The aeration system is what causes a problem. This 20 gallons’ filter might not be so strong, and sometimes it doesn’t supply enough water but gives out more bubbles. So take a dive and see if something is blocking its way.

Even though it’s easy to install, checking it too often can be inconvenient. The price is reasonable too.


  • Does stellar cleaning using biochemical
  • Ample space for good bacteria to grow
  • Easy to install
  • Easy to clean
  • Affordable
  • Looks great


  • Might not aerate very well

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Video: “Upettools Aquarium Bio Sponge Filter,Ultra Quite Aquarium Biochemical Sponge Filter.”

4. uxcell XINYOU XY-380 Air Pump Sponge Filter (up to 20 gallon)

[amazon box=”B0051XIN78″]

If you’re looking for a high-quality sponge filter, you’ve found just the thing. While it’s not that expensive, it sure has stellar quality.

You get a ton of options and you can pick from one, three and six-packs of the sponge. Plus, the diameter measures 4.5 inches and the height 8 inches.

Some people face issues connecting it to an air pump because of the size – so it’s essential to choose the right size.

Further, it works in tanks up to a 20-gallon capacity. And it does a great job being a biochemical filter. However, it’s not the best of mechanical filters. Even though it’s dense, it comes with holes that can release the smaller particles easily.

Also, it might give out big bubbles, indicating it’s not circulating water in the best way.


  • High quality, dense build
  • Accurate size.
  • Good bio-chemical filter
  • Good value for the price.


  • Not the best aerator
  • Hard to install (no manual)

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Video: “Sponge Filter Modification // Silencing the XY-380 Sponge Filter”

5. Hydro-Sponge Filter (up to 125 gallon) 

[amazon box=”B000NP8W84″]

Do you need a massive fish tank for your home?

Then the Hydro-Sponge Filter Series might be your thing, depending on the version it can handle tanks of up to 125-gallon capacity

While this sponge filter doesn’t take ample space, it does a great job of cleansing – the biological and mechanical – both.

However, mechanical cleaning is the stronger suit because its tubes connect well with the air pump, providing good air and water flow.

What’s more, as it takes less space, this sponge filter can be cleaned super easily and is made from high-quality materials.

However, you might find this a bit expensive. Some say its previous versions were more efficient than the current.


  • A good variety of capacities
  • Small footprint, looks great
  • Quite efficient in mechanical cleaning
  • A good aerator and provides strong water circulation


  • May seem a bit expensive
  • Not the top-notch biochemical performance

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon (Hydro I 10 gallon)

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon (Hydro II 20 gallon)

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon (Hydro III 40 gallon)

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon (Hydro IV 80 gallon)

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon (Hydro V 125 gallon)

Video: “Sponge Filter ATI Hydro Sponge Foam Set Up”

What Exactly Is A Sponge Filter?

It’s an air pump powered sponge. It mainly works in 2 ways inside the dirty water in your aquarium.

The Mechanical Way: The pump plays a big role here. With the flow of air, the sponge sucks in the visible and invisible dirt of the water. Once done, you can take out the sponge to remove the dirt.

The Biological Way: The Sponge filter provides a area for the good bacteria to grow on, which deal with bad bacteria and several other things in the aquarium. It helps keep the aquarium condition ideally safe for the fish. The ammonia generate from the fish’s excretion can harm the fish big time.

This is how the sponge filters save the day in aquariums.

Video: “How to Install a Sponge Filter”

Buying Guide

You can’t just go out and buy sponge filters blindly. You have to think a lot before opting for one. Here’s what you should be looking for:

The Sponge size

Not all aquariums measure the same and you can’t use the same sponge for all of them. And that’s why the sponge size matters – the diameter, length, everything.

You don’t want the water entering wrong places when the sponge doesn’t fit. Plus, you don’t want the sponge floating in the aquarium with other fishes. The sponge works only with an air pump so get the right one for yours.

The capacity of the Sponge

Despite the right size, the sponge might not have the right capacity for the level of water in your aquarium. Thus, the sponge filter must be able to handle the dirt the fishes produce in the water level of the aquarium.

The bigger the capacity, the better, because then you can deal with more dirt. More capacity can tackle more when need arises.

The Price

Luckily, sponge filters are super affordable. You can buy the expensive ones for better quality but you’ll still feel fine replacing it in need. That said, no dollar is worth wasting, so buy one after a lot of research.

In terms of sponge filters, the fit matters more than the price. So no matter the price, choose the sponge filter that best serves you.

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As the owner, you always want the best for your fishes. And you mainly need to take care of two things – their food and their environment. Providing good food is easy but keeping the water clean without risking the fishes isn’t easy.

However, a good sponge filter makes things easier for you.

Now that you know how to pick the best sponge filters for your aquarium and also have a list of the bests, go ahead and pick the one that fits you the best.

Aaron Boyd
Aaron Boyd

Hello, I’m Aaron Boyd, the proud owner and author behind Aqua Movement. I hope my article was able to answer your questions. If you want to learn more about me, click the home icon above.

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