The Best Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium in 2021


Finding the best filter for 30 gallon aquarium is essential to ensure a healthy living environment for your tank friends. It can maintain the cleanliness of your tank, provide adequate filtration and minimize your need to clean the tank.

However, there are so many of these products on the market,  so choosing one can be confusing if  it will be your  first time to shop around for a tank filter. It is especially true among beginners that don’t have the experience in buying and setting up such filtration system for their tank. Let us help you pick one with the following reviews and buying guide on how to choose this kind of product. If you’re ready, let us begin.

What is the Best Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium in 2021

Top 6 Best Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium Reviews

1. Penn Plax Aquarium Cascade Canister Filter for 30 Gallon Tank


If you’re looking for a reliable filter for your 30-gallon tank, you should check out this item from Penn Plax. It is a top-rated product that captures the attention and receives the approval of many for an efficient filter.

The filtration system is built specifically for the 30-gallon tank and is of a compact size for ease of use.  It includes two pieces of media baskets, and the filter works great at up to 115 gallons per hour.  You can also have a hassle free installation choosing this filter that performs reliably to keeping your tank clean.

In addition, it has flow valves that can rotate to 360 degrees, allowing for maneuvering without any hassle even in a small tank. The media also has a large capacity so that you can customize it based on your needs.


  • Can be used for marine or freshwater aquarium
  • Quick and easy filter priming
  • Course sponge and floss pad included
  • Easy to install and use
  • 360-degree rotating flow valve


  • Filter media issues

2. Marineland Penguin Power Filter for 20 to 30 Gallon Fish Tank


Another top of the line filter for your fish tank is the Marineland filtration system that is certified to have a flow rate reaching up to 150 gallons per hour. You can rely on it for maintaining the healthy habitat of your tank friends with clean water.

You will appreciate this filter for its efficiency. For one, it has the Black Diamond Premium Activated Carbon that works great in keeping tank water clean and suitable for your tank friends.  It can also offer the biological filtration for its BIO wheel that is tested and proven to remove nitrite and ammonia that would otherwise cause health hazards to your pets.

In addition, this model comes with two pieces of vented covers that reduce noise, something ideal for all tank owners who want a simple and quiet filter operation. Finally, this item can offer three-way filtration for maximum results.


  • 150GPH certified and tested
  • Three-way filtration
  • Black Diamond Premium Activated Carbon
  • Convenient and no hassle set up
  • Efficient water filtration 24/7


  • Loud filter

3. Aqueon QuietFlow LED PRO Aquarium Power Filters


When looking for power filters, you should not miss the Aqueon QuietFlow LED PRO Aquarium Power Filters, which is one of the most chosen tank filters for its reliability and efficiency. It has the solid performance features that you will love about it.

This model comes with a diffuser grid that can eliminate the additional toxins while also adding fresh oxygen for healthier fish. In addition, the Aqueon QuietFlow is chosen for its quiet operation that makes it a wonderful addition to any room.

Every filter is also with LED indicator that tells you when you need to change the filter cartridge.   This feature is one of the most convenient features of the filtration system.   And when you need to use new cartridges, you can buy replacement cartridges offered by the brand. Other great benefits to get for choosing it include self-priming operation and lifetime warranty.


  • Debris and particle removal
  • Bio-holster to remove nitrites and ammonia
  • Reduced water splashing
  • LED indicator
  • With Activated carbon


  • A bit noisy

4. Tetra Whisper EX Silent Multi-Stage Power Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium


The Tetra Whisper EX Silent Multi-Stage Power Filter for Aquariums is another suitable filter for the 30-gallon tank. If you’re shopping around for a reliable and effective filter for the compact tank, you should not miss but check out this whisper quiet filter.

The Whisper EX filter is with a cartridge carrier to keep your hands clean as well as remove any unnecessary drips.  In addition, this model has a Timestrip technology, which indicates when you have to change the filter.    These strips are included in each filter.

More so, the filtration system is a multi-stage filtration that comes with a bio-scrubber.   It has the carbon inside that can remove any discoloration, impurities, odors and other contaminants.  This scrubber is also able to remove nitrites and ammonia, which are toxic for the fish.


  • Can be used for up to 45-gallon tanks
  • Low noise operation
  • Ready to use
  • Easy to install
  • Timestrip technology included


  • Leak issues with the rubber gasket

5. Penn Plax Cascade Aquarium Filter with Quad Filtration System


If you’re looking for a good filter with quad filtration, you should take a look at the Penn Plax Hang-on Aquarium Filter.   It is a valuable choice that offers the Bio-Falls Quad Filtration System. It works by keeping the aquarium healthy and clean.

It has a floss cartridge, which can trap any particulate matter. In addition, it has the activated carbon cartridge that can eliminate   toxins, harmful chemical discoloration and other contaminants. In this case, you don’t have to worry about cleaning the tank frequently.

This product is also easy to install because it is a hang on filter. It can work to deliver up to 150GPH. It is useful for tanks between 20 and 35 gallons.   Overall, it is an efficient filtration system that works effectively in keeping the tank clean.


  • Internal sponge for optimizing of good bacteria colonization
  • Adjustable flow knob
  • Easy to set up hang-on filter type
  • Activated carbon cartridge
  • Delivers 150GPH


  • Complaints about receiving missing parts

6. Fluval C Power Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium


Cleaning your tank often can be a challenge especially if you don’t have much time to do it.   That is why we need an efficient filter that can work in lessening the frequency when we need to clean the aquarium.

This ceramic heater allows for efficient and even heat distribution, making it ideal for cleaning the tank efficiently.   The filter for the 30-gallon tank is can deliver a flow rate reaching up to 119 gallons per hour. In addition, it has a cleaning indicator that tells you when the polyfoam should be cleaned or rinsed.

It also offers easy and quick maintenance because it is a clip on type of filter.  Overall, it is a decent pick for its effective and reliable performance when it comes to providing a healthy and stress-free environment to your tank friends.


  • Efficient and even heat distribution
  • Cleaning indicator
  • Clip on filter
  • Can help in providing a stress-free environment for your pets
  • Easy and quick maintenance


  • Impeller/motor noise

Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium Buying Guide

Especially if you’re a newbie in setting up a tank, you might find it confusing to select a filter for your 30-gallon tank.     As even if there are many of these products on the market now, not all of them are reliable. To help you in the process of selection, keep reading in the following for a guide.


You should opt for a filter that can offer three-way filtration as much as possible. It can offer mechanical, biological and chemical filtration. It has more functions that can help you maintain the cleanliness of your tank, remove harmful toxins and support the colonization of good bacteria.


One of the main considerations in choosing a 30-gallon tank is the size of the filter.  You can benefit from a slim filter that has a compact size and shape. It doesn’t also occupy much space in the tank.  With a smaller size of a filtration system for a smaller tank, you will have more options in decorating your tank. You might also want to go for a hang on back filter that can give you more room for your tank.

Convenience features

Another thing to take a look at when buying a filter for a 30-gallon tank is its convenience of operation. One of those that may help is its self-priming operation that can promote a less hassle operation.  It works by automatically working after a power interruption or cleaning.

Easy to follow instructions

When comparing your options, you should be able to take a look at the instructions. Are they easy to follow even by those without much experience in tank keeping?


In addition, you should think about the maintenance of your tank when selecting a filter. In this case, you must opt for an item that does not require you to clean it more often for its efficient function. With an easier maintenance, you can also ensure that you’re saving much of your effort by not having to spend much time in maintaining and cleaning the aquarium or terrarium.

What is a Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium?



The filter for a 30-gallon tank is a filtration system that works to maintain the healthy habitat of your tank.   It can help in removing contaminants, discoloration, toxins and other impurities from the water.   Depending on the filter, it may work with a three-way filtration, including mechanical, biological and chemical filtration.

Types of Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium

Now that you know what a tank filter is, you might also want to know the types of filters available on the market so that you can make a better decision after comparing your choices.   Knowing the types of filters, you can make an informed choice. Check out the following to learn more.

Canister filter

This type works efficiently but typically more expensive.   Even so, the price tag can be worth it because this filter is high quality and durable. One of its highlights is its three-way filtration, namely biological, mechanical and chemical filtration.

Commonly, this type is with siphon tube, which works by pulling the water inside it, and then filtering it so that clean water can be returned to the tank.    It is also with a separate tube that is what returns the water into the aquarium while also being able to control the water movement or current, especially valuable for smaller fish species.

Power filter

This filter is also called the hang on back type, which is a common type of filter to find now in many offices, households and other places with a fish tank.   This filter is versatile that it can help in biological, chemical and mechanical filtration.

Under gravel filter

As the name says, it is a filter that is placed under the gravel of your tank where it performs the filtration. It is a mechanical filter that pulls debris using a filter media.  But then, there are those that can also support biological filtration by letting the colonization of good bacteria around it.

Why Do You Need Filter for 30 Gallon Aquarium?

Perhaps, you may be asking why you need a tank filter as well as wanting to know its benefits. One of the main reasons that you need this filter is to remove any contaminants and impurities in the water, including decaying organic matter, excess food and dangerous chemicals.

In addition, it can remove fish wastes along with floating particulate.   As you may know, fish wastes can be constantly moving and swimming around in the water, and it is unhealthy for the fish.  If you don’t use a filter, you might not be able to remove these toxins from the water.

When this happens, pollutants will build up and contaminate the water. As the water becomes polluted, your fish can become sick, poison themselves, and later die.   Initially, it can be ammonia stress that then becomes ammonia poisoning.

To prevent that from happening, you need a filter for your 30-gallon tank.  It can help in making a friendlier environment for your pets. With it, you don’t also have to clean your tank more often. As you may also know, you need to scoop out your tank friends every time you clean the tank, and this process can be stressful for them.  Definitely, you need a filter to ensure the happiness and great health of your tank friends, which also include the natural plants in there.

Frequently Asked Questions


What size filter for 30 gallon Aquarium?

At the very least, you need a 30-gallon canister for this tank size, and ideally, it could process at least 90 gallons per hour. This example is just one, but you will basically have an idea.  To get started choosing the right filter size, you might want to get started in our reviews above, as those top picks are ideal for a 30-gallon tank.

How often to change water filter for 30 gallon Aquarium?

You know that you cannot keep filters indefinitely, and you need to change them from time to time.  For example, you need to change specialist filters or carbon filters every few months or more often if your gets dirty more often.

Also, the frequency to change the filter depends on the filter used, as there are some that require less frequent change than others do.    However, it can also be detrimental to your tank to change the filter often because it will also remove the good bacteria accumulated. In this case, you should also consider buying gravel with add bacteria on it.

How often should you do water changes for 30 gallon tank no filter?

A water change is a part of tank maintenance that you need to include in your schedule. Also, the frequency should be taken into consideration, but it varies based on the load of your tank and the usage.  In addition, heavily stocked aquariums will need more water changes especially if it doesn’t have a filter.

Nonetheless, you need to change between 10 and 15 percent of the water each week but maybe 20 percent if your tank is loaded. If yours is a lightly stocked tank, you may have to replace water every two weeks.

Where to buy filter for 30 gallon Aquarium?

You can get this filter for 30-gallon tanks in fish and pets supplies stores.  But for the best prices and deals, you can proceed to


Hoping you have learned something from the buying guide that highlights how to choose a filter for a 30-gallon tank as well as that reviews the top picks on the market now.  Again, if you’re shopping around for a good filter, you should consider the size, filtration process and convenience features, to name some, so that you can make a better decision.

Buying a good filter and using it for your tank, you can be certain of benefits that include proper cleaning and maintenance and a healthy living environment for your tank friends. With it, you can keep a healthy habitat for your tank friends that can also prevent ammonia poisoning and stress in the process. Buy the best filter for 30 gallon aquarium today!




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