The question of which filter is better to choose: external or internal, arises both before aquarists and beginners, as well as experienced aquarium owners. In our article we will try to consider both options and find out which of them and in what situation will be the best solution.
So, let’s first understand what are these filters for and how are they different.
An aquarium is a closed system, so it is very important to maintain its homeostasis. It is necessary to remove from such an environment everything that can lead to an imbalance, because it can be fatal to the inhabitants of the aquarium. Therefore, filtering includes the following components:
- mechanical filtration;
- biological filtration;
- chemical filtration.
All filters operate on the pump principle, pumping water through it. Mechanical filtration removes large debris from the water, such as pieces of plants. To do this, the water passes through the sintepon, foam rubber or ceramic filler. Biological filtration serves to remove rotting food residues and the like, but since porous ceramics serve as fillers for such filters, in order for such filtration to be effective, water must be driven through a mechanical filter beforehand. Chemical filter removes harmful substances due to adsorbent fillers contained in it. All of these types of filtration are available for both internal and external filters for the aquarium.
Which filter is better: internal or external?
As a rule, external filters are more productive, and therefore are excellent for large-volume aquariums. For an aquarium with a volume of less than 30 liters, it is advisable to purchase an internal filter; For aquariums larger than 400 liters, only external mounted filters are suitable. For volumes located between these values, you can select any filter.
When choosing a filter, first of all it is necessary to focus on its allowable volume and performance. Experts advise you to select a filter so that in an hour it will pump 3-4 volumes of your aquarium. That is, when the capacity of the aquarium is 300 liters, the optimal performance will be 1200 l / h. For very large aquariums, it is recommended to install several filters.
External filter for a small aquarium is not very different in performance from the internal. However, the external filter is still better as a minimum because it is easier to handle: installing an external filter in an aquarium is easy, cleaning is much easier, and cleaning itself does not affect the inhabitants. In addition, the external filter does not take up the volume inside the aquarium. The internal filter is limited in size, and because of this, its power can suffer. External filter for aquarium – silent.
In addition, during operation, the electric motor of any filter heats up, which can be a problem in the summer. If the external filter can dissipate heat into the surrounding air, then the internal filter dissipates heat into the water, thereby increasing its temperature. This can lead to the death of the aquarium fauna.
The external filter is suitable for both marine aquarium and freshwater. In addition, it may have advanced functions – for example, heated water or the possibility of exposure to ultraviolet rays.
The following filter manufacturers are represented on the aquarium market: Aquael, AquariumSystems, Tetratec, EHEI, SeraSerafil. If the decisive question for you when choosing a filter is price, you should know that the internal filter will be cheaper.