The best aquarium water pump is important to power the filtration system and create the necessary currents to sustain a healthy fish tank.

However, finding the best one can be very challenging considering the variety of options available.

To help you out, we have created a list of the best aquarium water pumps that you can buy for your fish tanks. Read on.

Comparison Chart

Name Color Flow Rate (GPM) Sizes
Eheim AEH1001310 Compact Water Pump

Grey 2.65 One Size
Aqueon Quietflow Submersible Utility Pump

Blue 0.833 8 Sizes
Hydrofarm AAPW1000 92-Watt Pump

Black 18.5 6 Sizes
SUNSUN JP Aquarium Power Head

Black 5.283 3 Sizes

Detailed Reviews of the Best Aquarium Water Pumps

1. Eheim AEH1001310 Compact Water Pump


  • Suction cups to stick to the tank
  • They are less noisy
  • Compact and highly effective
  • Flow can be altered


  • Slightly expensive
  • Only one size is available

The Eheim Compact is one of the best water pumps for aquariums available in the market in terms of build quality, durability, and nifty features. This small fish tank pump has a lightweight design that encloses a powerful suction motor that can pump over 2.65 gallons of water per minute.

One of the most common issues fish tank owners face is the loud noise or disturbance created by the water pump while releasing bubbles in their tanks. Strong vibrations can disorient the fish that can cause health issues. That is not the case with the Eheim Compact Water Pump, as it works effectively but silently without disturbing you or your fish.

Many pumps available in the market start rusting, or their coating erodes just after two to three months of use. Especially if they are put in saltwater tanks. However, the Eheim pump is made out of high-grade PVC plastic and stainless steel shafts that make it durable and effective in all tank environments.

However, premium quality also comes with a premium price, making it slightly expensive compared to other options available in the market. Also, unlike other pumps, it is available in only one size, restricting the size of the tanks it can cater to. Irrespective of that, this is an excellent product for fish tank owners looking for a silent but powerful pump.


If you are looking for an easy-to-use and silent water pump, the Eheim Compact is an ideal choice. After torture testing it, we can confidently say that it is one of the most durable water pumps out there in the market.

2. Aqueon Quietflow Submersible Utility Pump


  • Multiple sizes available
  • They are cost-effective
  • Suction cup included
  • Quiet aquarium water pump
  • Requires less maintenance
  • Connecters included with the pump
  • Fully submersible
  • It can also be used for waterfalls


  • The flow rate of the smallest model is low compared to other brands producing same sized pumps
  • No built-in control

The Aqueon Quietflow Submersible Water Pump is very versatile, affordable, and comes in many size options. This aquarium water pump is best known for its flexible features, which function ideally not only in freshwater and saltwater aquariums but also in small waterfalls and reef setups.

It is one of the few pumps equipped with auto-cut technology, which shuts down the device in case of overheating. This is extremely useful for fish tank owners who are working individuals and don’t spend a long time at home as they can be carefree when it comes to the safety of their fish and their house.

Aqueon Quietflow comes in eight different sizes and offers a lifetime warranty for all their pumps. You can get a flow rate of 30 GPH to 600 GPH depending on the model that you choose.

Another standout feature of this pump comes into play while changing the water. Apart from pumping water, Aqueon Quietflow can also suck up the spilled water, making it easier for you to clean up or extract water from your tank. It functions very silently and is made up of high-grade plastic that you can count on to last for years.


The Aqueon Quietflow Submersible Utility Pump is an excellent option if you are looking for a one-time investment pump that offers a lifetime warranty. Additionally, you get multiple size options which makes it very easy to choose the perfect model according to your tank’s size.

3. Hydrofarm AAPW1000 92-Watt Pump


  • Available in multiple sizes
  • Best flow rate amongst competitors
  • Oil-free
  • Comes with one-year warranty
  • Environmentally safe
  • Multipurpose as it can be used for man-made ponds as well
  • Durable


  • Slightly expensive

The Hydrofarm Reservoirs Submersible is one of the strongest and easy-to-install water pumps available in the market today. They have the highest flow rate and suction power compared to their competitors and offer competitive prices, which make them a great value for money.

The pump can not only be used in freshwater and saltwater aquarium tanks but also in custom-made ponds. Hydrofarm Reservoirs Submersible water pump is available in six different sizes.

Each model has a different flow rate that ranges from a maximum capacity of 40 GPH to 1100 GPH. This makes it very easy for you to choose the right one according to your tank’s size. All models are black in color and extremely strong and durable.

Hydrofarm is the only brand that makes environmentally safe pumps that can be completely recycled. This makes it an ideal choice for people living a green lifestyle. It also comes with a one-year warranty, but according to our tests, it should easily last for a much longer time.

The best part about these pumps is that they are designed in a very modular manner. This means that all of their parts, including foam filters, rubber feet, and impellers, can easily be removed in case you need to clean it.


The Hydrofarm range of submersible water pumps is one of the most robust and premium quality pumps we have ever tested. They are powerful, quiet, easy to install, and have an excellent power rating.

4. SUNSUN JP Aquarium Power Head


  • Comes in multiple sizes
  • Extremely cost-effective
  • Have additional features such as air regulators
  • Silent operation
  • It can be used for large-sized tanks
  • High flow rate


  • Lacks versatility
  • Current may be too high for small-sized aquarium tanks

The SUNSUN JP Aquarium Power Head is a great choice for large-sized tanks. It comes in three different sizes that have a maximum flow rate of 158 GPH to 422 GPH. The smallest model is equipped with an 8 W motor, and the largest model has a 35 W motor.

To make the installation process simple, the package includes all the adaptors and suction cups that you will need to set up. Surprisingly, even after providing all the accessories and best-in-class quality, this water pump manages to beat the competition by its super competitive pricing.

It has an inbuilt gravel filter and air valve that helps control suction and debris. Even though this looks like a perfect deal for everyone, this pump can be a little too strong for smaller fish tanks as it has a relatively higher flow rate that can disturb the interior decor of your tank ad also stress the small fish.

To make the deal even more exciting, the SUNSUN JP Aquarium Power Head comes with an air regulator, which gives you complete control to fine-tune its performance.


If you are looking for the most powerful water pump for your medium or large-sized fish tank that is very easy to set up and comes with all the accessories, SUNSUN JP Aquarium Power Head is the perfect choice for you. The best part of this deal is that it delivers superior performance at half the price.

Things to Consider When Choosing the Best Aquarium Water Pumps

The market is flooded with hundreds of aquarium water pumps and most of them are not worth your money. Cheaper pumps generally tend to wear out just after a few months of use. What’s worse is that they can cause the water to overheat or even leak current.

So to help you pick the right aquarium water pump, we have compiled a comprehensive guide that covers everything you need to look out for while selecting an aquarium pump.

1. Silent Operation

Loud noises from bubble formation or the motor can be unpleasant and extremely irritating. This is why it is very important to make sure that the pump you buy is from a reputable brand and has a silent operation.

2. Compatibility With Saltwater Aquariums

Salt usually leads to erosion of metal, steel, platinum, and sometimes even plastic components. Since some water pumps are installed in saltwater fish tanks, they can start deteriorating only after a few months of use.

To avoid such a situation, make sure to use a Teflon-coated water pump as it has a higher resistance to heat and corrosion. However, you can prevent this if you are going to use your pump in a freshwater tank.

3. Internal Control Features

The best quality aquarium water pumps have an internal control panel that shuts off the system if it gets overheated. This is ideal for fish tank owners who are not available throughout the day to look after their tanks.

Many users complain that their system starts to release smoke due to overheating. This often happens because of overuse or faulty wires, which can be extremely dangerous for your fish.

The best way to avoid this is by investing in high-quality aquarium water pumps. Even if they cost a bit more, purchase them for the sake of safety. These features also include air regulators and air valves that make the system more effective.

4. Additional Attachments

Buying a water pump for your aquarium is one thing and installing it is another. The problem with most water pumps is that they do not come with the accessory required to properly install it, which can force you to spend some extra cash to get aftermarket attachments.

However, these attachments might not always be compatible with your water pump as they are all of different shapes and sizes. Thus, you should make it a priority to buy a water pump that comes with all these accessories included.

5. Tank Capacity

Aquarium water pumps come in different sizes and offer a variety of features. However, before making a purchase, there are several things you need to keep in mind. You need to buy a pump that is sufficient enough for your aquarium’s capacity.

For instance, a pump has a flow rate of 40 GPH, it is not the ideal choice for an aquarium with a volume of just about 20 gallons. Yes, you can still use it but you will end up paying a few extra dollars for a pump with higher capacity than you need.

6. Reasonable Pricing

Consider your budget. It will always be one of the deciding factors when buying an aquarium pump. However, this doesn’t mean that you should settle for the items that are less expensive but have low quality. Study which product available in the market is the most cost-effective.

Aquarium Water Pumps: Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions related to aquarium water pumps.

– Are Water Pumps Really Necessary for My Fish Tank?

Yes. Water pumps maintain the oxygen supply in the water, which is very important for your fish. Without a pump, your fish will survive only for a few hours, depending on the number of fish in your tank.

Apart from this, the water pumps keep your water from getting stagnant and make it difficult for several bacterias to incubate. This keeps your fishes healthy and maintains the general hygiene of the aquarium tank.

– How To Select an Appropriate Size Water Pump for Fish Tanks?

The answer to this question is subjective, as it all boils down to your tank size. A good rule of thumb is to look for pumps with a 5 GPH (gallon per hour) flow rate for every gallon of water in your aquarium.

We recommend getting a slightly higher-powered pump with internal control features, as you can always turn down the flow if it’s too much. However, you cannot increase the water flow if the pump you bought is underpowered or if it loses its efficiency over time.

– Do I Have to Purchase Valves, Adapters, Hoses, and Other Parts – Separately?

Usually, manufacturers don’t include connectors and additional hardware required for setup with the pump. This can be additional baggage on your wallet.

However, some brands such as Aqueon Quietflow provide supplementary connectors with the pump as a full package. If you are not a crafty person, going for a pump that includes all the accessories required to set it up is a wise decision.

– How Often Should I Clean My Aquarium Water Pump?

If you want to ensure that your water pump runs smoothly, cleaning it every six to eight months is a good idea. Submerged water pumps require more frequent cleaning and servicing, as dirt and grime collect on it over time and reduce its efficiency and longevity.

– How Loud Are Aquarium Water Pumps?

Contrary to the popular belief, aquarium pumps are not as noisy as many people believe them to be. The submerged pumps are quieter than the in-line pumps and are perfectly suited for people who have a low tolerance for noise.

However, some pumps can get a little loud over time as their ball bearings decorate and they develop internal friction. This is why it is important to timely clean and service these pumps to enhance their longevity.

– What Is the Difference Between In-Line and Submersible Aquarium Pump?

A basic difference between the in-line pumps and submerged pumps is that in-line pumps are installed on the outside of the aquarium and need to be kept dry at all times. Whereas submerged pumps, as the name suggests, are submerged in your tank. Both these designs have their own pros and cons. Some of them are listed below:

In-line pumps Submerged pumps
They are harder to install as they require additional plumbing. Comparatively easier to install.
Since they are installed outside, they do not take essential tank space. They may take considerable space inside the tank.
They are usually noisy and produce strong vibrations. Comparatively silent.
Do not add heat to the water. May add heat to the water.


Having the right aquarium water pump is very important for the overall maintenance of your fish tank. They provide a constant supply of oxygen to your fish, create a slow current in the water and keep your marine life healthy.

While all water pumps mentioned above have their own certain features that make them ideal for a working fish tank owner, one stands out. Aqueon Quietflow Submersible Utility Pump is the best option in terms of quality and value for money.

This is an ideal choice if you are looking for an effective, affordable water pump with simple features that are easy to understand.

5/5 - (8 votes)


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here