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The Best Aquarium Sponge Filters


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Maintaining an aquarium takes a lot of work and dedication. Without a running water inlet and outlet, the water cannot recycle itself without intervention, and when that doesn’t happen as regularly as it should, then all the inhabitants of the aquarium will be doomed.

There are many filtration processes and guides for cleaning aquariums, and they all use different cleaning materials called filter media. Today’s focus is going to be on sponge filters; we are going to look at some of the best sponge filters for aquariums that are in the market that you can try on your aquarium back at home. The following are some notable sponge filters that you can look at

Table of Contents

Hikari Bacto Surge Sponge Filter

Hikari Bacto Surge Sponge Filter

Source: Amazon

The Hikari brand of aquarium products is well known among aquarium keepers around the world. They manufacture and supply some of the best filter materials, and the Hikari Bacto Surge sponge filter is not any different. It makes use of a high purpose design that increases the surface area for biological filtration, providing a home for beneficial bacteria to increase their numbers.

Their construction is also one of the most convenient as you are allowed to make as many modifications as you want to suit the needs of your aquarium.  You can even make them much more silent by simply inserting an air stone inside them.


High-quality foam material

Allows modifications

Known brand name


Quite expensive

Lacks chemical filtration

Hygger Aquarium Double Sponge Filter

Source: Amazon

Hygger is a recent entrant in the aquarium filtration scene, and within a short time, they’ve been able to create a name for themselves thanks to their efficient filtration products. The Hygger double sponge filter comes with a media chamber made of high-grade ceramic materials. This gives it the ability to be used both for mechanical and biological filtration, increasing the efficiency of cleaning your aquarium twice over.

You can further increase the filtration ability by adding carbon filter media, transforming it into a 3-stage filter. With this inside your aquarium, you can go much longer without having to clean the water as the Hygger double sponge will handle most of the work for you.

It has a telescoping tube for reducing noise, and that can further be refined by the addition of an airstone.


A telescoping lift tube

It can be turned into a 3-stage filtration system

Dual sponge


It doesn’t allow modifications

iMountainTree 3D Filter Pad

This filter pad from imountaintree was designed for the sole purpose of making a good filter at an affordable price. Despite the discounted price, it still packs very impressive filtration capabilities. For a start, it has a superior filter pad that supports all forms of beneficial bacteria on its surface.

The sponge filter pad is very elastic, a quality that allows it to be washed as many times without breaking apart giving it one of the longest life spans of any filter material on this list.


Very affordable

Soft and elastic

Made using polymer chemical fiber to stop clogging


Large surface for bacteria colonies

Allows for smooth water flow


Frequent washes destroys bacteria colonies

Aquarium Technology Hydro-Sponge Filter

Aquarium Technology Hydro-Sponge Filter

Source: Amazon

Aquarium Technology is a company involved with aquarium filtration that was founded in 1991. For close to 30 years, they have been a mainstay figure in the sector, churning out quality filter media over the years. The Hydro-Sponge filter is one of their latest creations that has all the features you’d expect in a high-quality sponge filter.

It has a high surface density that provides more than enough space for both mechanical and biological filtration to take place at the same time. It has a free-standing heavy base that ensures the sponge stays in one place even when the flow of water is aggressive. It allows for some modifications like increasing the flow by switching out the air pump with an aquarium powerhead.


Premium-grade materials

Modifications can be made

Can work in larger aquariums

Supports biological and mechanical filtrations


Very expensive

No chemical filtration

Complicated setup

AquaNet Sponge Filter

Source: Amazon

AquaNet is another well-known brand, and its sponge filter is one of the best around. It is a dual media filter and has media chambers, each with its own media filter. You can choose to add chemical media too and turn the whole set up into a dual or a tri-stage filtration unit. It has a lift tube that can be rotated 360 degrees

The filter comes with two media containers that are filled with ceramic balls that give a home to the beneficial bacteria for biological filtration; you are free to switch out these ceramic filter media with either carbon or ammonia absorbers for better results. This sponge filter is ideal for a small aquarium that houses small fish like cichlids and guppies as well as hatcheries.


Dual biological media

Media chamber can be switched out

Lift tube can rotate 360 degrees

Allows modification

You can add carbon to turn it into a 3-tier filtration system


Low-quality suction cups

The colors are a bit odd.

There’s no way of making them quieter

Benefits of using Sponge Filters

There are many reasons why sponge filters should be what you need to go for your aquarium needs. Some of the benefits of using them include the following.

Inexpensive: Sponge filters are cheaper compared to other filter media, and not only that, but they also stay for very long. This is the reason why they have fallen out of favor with aquarium shops since you only need to buy it once, and you’ll never need anything else for quite a while.

Allow Modifications: You can modify the sponge filters in various ways to increase efficiency and reduce the things that make it lag. For example, you can add carbon to a dual sponge filter and convert it into a 3 stage filtration system that cleans the water better without upsetting the balance in the aquarium.

Ideal for Small Fish: One of the biggest challenges of entering small fish is that they keep getting sucked up by the filtration system, and this kills them. Sponge filters, on the other hand, don’t need an aggressive flow of water, they do well with gentle flows, and this makes them the ideal filter media for aquariums with small fish, shrimps, or hatcheries.

They are Quiet: An aquarium can be very loud at times to the point they become a nuisance. The sound made when the water goes through the filtration system can be unsettling. Sponge filters have a way of making aquariums silent. All you need to do is insert an airstone into the telescoping tube, and the noise goes down.

Can Work with other Filter Types: Sponge filters are very versatile. They can work independently on their own, and at the same time, they can work alongside other filter media types. They can come in very handy in crowded aquariums as they can be tucked anywhere and work without taking up too much space.


It takes a lot of trial and error before finding a good filtration system that works for you; sponge filters are one of the easiest filtration applications you’ll have the chance to work with. You simply need to figure out what it is your aquarium lacks, and that’ll lead you to the right sponge filter.

For more information on sponge filters, how they work, and where to more types, visit our website anytime you get a chance, and we will be happy to take you through what we have.

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