Keeping a large fish tank is an interesting and popular hobby, but you need some mechanical help to keep the water clean. You can do so by investing in a good aquarium filter.
Your aquarium filter should come with a pump that pushes all the water through the filter several times an hour. The documentation on the filter will say how much water it pumps per minute and how much electricity it uses. The pump setup can cost as little as $15 for a small system, and into hundreds of dollars for huge tanks. Filters must be changed or cleaned regularly, and replacement filters can be as little as $1 for simple systems.
Big Box Stores
Big box pet stores will have a wide selection of aquarium filters, pumps, books and accessories at competitive prices. They are a convenient place to pick up everything you need for your aquarium.
However, the convenience generally comes at the price of personal attention. If you are an experienced fish-fancier, you probably do not need anyone’s advice or help in the store. You just grab what you need with no problem. But if you are new to fish keeping, you might have a few specialized questions that the general staff does not know how to answer.
The Aquarium Shop
A small, individually owned aquarium shop is a nice place to shop for novices. After all, your aquarium filter medium is something that needs regular replacement, so it does not hurt to have a personal relationship with the seller. Fish shop staff generally know a lot about keeping aquariums and can help with any questions you have.
Advanced fish fanciers also like small aquarium shops because of the extremely wide variety of fish and accessories they stock. A small shop specializes in this niche market and has sometimes hundreds of varieties of fish, aquarium filters, pumps, and aerators. Besides, these stores are usually set up with very nice fish tanks to look at and get ideas from.
The internet is an ideal place to buy replacement media for aquarium filters. Filters are light and small, so they are a perfect commodity for shipping through the mail. They are also standardized, so if a seller advertises filters made for your machine, you know they will fit. As with all online shopping, however, look for a vendor that has a good reputation, and an actual phone number and address listed on the web page.