Find The Best Filter For Betta Fish – [Buyer’s Guide]

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With that out of the way.

Thanks so much for visiting my site. I just wanted to say I think it’s great you’ve decided to use a filter for your Betta fish. In my opinion here are the best filters for your Betta:

Our Top 5 Filters For Betta Fish

The filters shown in our comparison chart are great for aquariums from 3-10 gallon tanks. However, if you are looking for something smaller here is some additional information.

And, if you are looking for a more natural Betta tank with a filter I suggest reading: 7 Awesome Betta Fish Aquaponics Kits For Your Home

The kits shown in this post don’t actually use filters. Instead, they naturally filter the water using plants and herbs.

You may not know this, but most beginners don’t use filters for their Betta tanks. This is the most likely cause of the issues many new Betta owners encounter.

The filter is an important piece of equipment if you want to set up a Betta tank that will keep your Betta happy and healthy.

However, if you’re not really sure if you have to have a filter for your Betta, then I hope this guide will convince you.

Further Reading: If you’re setting up a new tank for your Betta make sure you know what the ideal Betta Fish tank size is and give your little buddy some room to swim.

Overview Of The 5 Best Filters For Betta Fish

Alright let’s get into the reviews of a few more filters that would be good options for your Bettas tank.

We will be going over the following filters:

  1. Tetra Whisper In-Tank Filter
  2. Tetra Whisper Filter PF10
  3. Rio Mini 90 Internal Power Filter for Aquarium
  4. Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter
  5. Penn Plax Cfu55 Under Gravel Filter

Best Filter For Betta 2.5 Gallon

It might be difficult to find a filter for a tank smaller than 2.5 gallons. For this we recommend either a sponge filter, live plants or try using this flat filter.

Our List Of The Best Betta Filters

1. The Rio Mini Internal Power Pump

Rio Mini 50 Internal Power Filter for Aquarium

Get The Rio Mini Internal

The Rio Mini is well priced new, but there are used options available on Amazon well worth the price, it’s a great little filter for great value.

It has great flow which is adjustable if you need less. If you keep it on full be sure to direct it properly.

This little pump is quiet and more durable than any other pump it’s size. It is versatile, strong and ideal for tanks around 5 gallons or larger.

2. Penn Plax Under Gravel Filter – Best Filter For Betta 5 Gallon 

Penn Plax Premium Under Gravel Filter System - for 10 Gallon Fish Tanks & Aquariums

Get The Penn Plax Under Gravel Filter

This under gravel filter has two filter plate system with a jumbo 1” adjustable lift tube and designed to fit a 5 ½ gallon tank.

This convenient, easy setup filter is designed to have trouble free maintenance while keeping your tank looking crystal clear.

Most Helpful Review: “This is a great filter and actually made much better than other more expensive brands. The filter is build very sturdy. The slits are optimal for the waste particles to be “funneled” below the plates which is where you want it. Undergravel filtration is a great way to keep your tanks healthy”

3. Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter, up to 10 Gallons 

Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter, up to 10 Gallons

Get The Zoo Med Nano 10 External Canister Filter

This external canister filter has a 3 stage external aquarium filter using mechanical, biological and chemical filtration to keep your nano or small aquarium clean and clear.

The spray bar provides great aeration and the removable hose-connection device allows, adjustable flow control system & easy to open filter head make this a great easy to use, filter for a betta tank, nano & small aquariums from 2-10 gallons.

Most Helpful Review: “I needed a small filter for my 6 gallon tank and this filter fit right where on the back hidden from sight. The flow rate is slow and perfect for Betta Fish– Perfect”

4. Tetra Whisper Power Filter – Best Filter For A 10 Gallon Betta Tank

Tetra Whisper Power Filter 10 Gallons, Quiet 3-Stage aquarium Filtration

Get The Tetra Whisper EX Silent Multi-Stage Power Filter

This external power filter comes with a hinged lid for improved ergonomics/ease of use and improved compact aesthetic design.

Bio-bag improvements with an upgraded dual-density carbon filter, time strip indicators and uses three-stage filtration for healthier fish. For use in 5-10 gallon aquariums.

Most Helpful Review: “Compared to other filters I’ve had that either failed within a year, loud this filter did a good job of cleaning the tank. I came across this one and it’s awesome. It’s really quiet, does a thorough job of filtering the water and keeping it clear, especially if I replace the filter regularly”

5.  Tetra Whisper In-Tank Filter – Best Filter For A Betta 3 Gallon Tank

Aqueon 100106991 Quietflow E Internal Power Filter, Black,10 gallon

Get The Tetra Whisper In-Tank Filter

This internal filter is the ultimate in convenience.

It’s quiet, and mounts on the inside of the aquarium, rather than hanging from the outside. Because of this, you can place your tank flush against a wall.

The small 3″ filter moves air bubbles through the airlift and the filter which makes it ideal for small sensitive fish or for breeding. 

It can be adjusted easily to suit high or low water levels with suction cups or mounting bracket.

This filter also comes with the filter, air pump and two feet of airline tube and one bio-bag cartridge.

Most Helpful Review: “This filter is easy to use & changing out the media sacks is simple. Even a child is able to do this. The filter is quiet and easy to install”

Do Betta Fish Need A Filter?

Using a filter for your Betta is really the best thing to do for your Betta fish.

Here are a few things you should know about filters;

  • They provide a place for beneficial bacteria to grow
  • They remove toxins from your tank
  • Keep water moving to prevent dead spots
  • Disturb the water surface and oxygenate the water

The bottom line is, filters are needed to maintain a healthy environment in your Betta tank.

The size of your tank is a major factor when deciding if you need a filter or not and since most people keep Betta fish in small tanks, filters become even more critical to the survival of your Betta.

Did you know: The smaller the tank the faster the toxins will build up in your water and can quickly harm your Betta.

Because of this,  purchasing a filter is largely dependant on the size of your aquarium.

As an example;

If you have anything smaller than a 10-gallon betta tank, then you should consider some type of filtration.

If you have anything larger than 10 gallons, then weekly water changes might be enough to keep the toxins low enough. However, a filter is still the best.

By understanding the benefits and features of all the different types of filters, you will be able to determine the best Betta filter for your needs and if selecting a filter is the right decision for your particular type of Betta fish.

In this post, I will help you determine if you need a filter for your Betta and what type of filter would work best for your situation.

Let’s Dive Right In:

2 Awesome 5-Gallon Betta Fish Tanks With Filters:

For those of you that are looking for the ultimate betta fish tank set up here are two small fish tanks that come with a filter included – which takes the stress of you and your fish.

You get a great small filtered aquarium for your Betta so he can swim for many years in clean clear water.

Both of these tanks come in 5-gallon sizes which are perfect for Betta fish – and if you are still unsure click each tank below and you can read our full review on each of these kits

Video: Beginners Guide To Filters For Your Aquarium

Here is a short video that will help you understand exactly what filters do for your tank, the different types of filters available and the filter media required for each filter.

Best Aquarium Filter Set Up

Now that you have a general idea of the types of filters available, let’s look at each of the best Betta fish filter options for you and your Betta fish.

What Type Of Filter Is Best For Betta Fish

This is a much-debated topic and I am not suggesting one method is better than the other, both have their merits.

However, I will attempt to at least provide some direction and some options for those who would like to use a filter for a betta tank.

There are two main positions on this topic:

1. Filters are used for other fish species so why not use a filter for a betta tank.

By not providing a filter in your betta tank you are not providing them the best environment possible.

2. Betta fish prefer calm waters with little or no current. Filters are not required and by using a filter you may be putting your fish at risk.

Some betta fish of the long-tail species have large fins that can catch water currents like a sail and cause them undue stress and fin damage.

While both positions have valid points, we believe it would be a mistake to paint all situations with only these two viewpoints.

Our opinion is to consider your situation independently and supply what is best for you and your betta.

Video: Do Betta Fish Need A Filter?

Here is an awesome video explaining if betta fish need a filtered tank or not.

Do Betta Fish Need A Filter Video

Can You Put A Betta Fish In A Tank With A Filter

Yes and no!

Consider these points when you decide whether or not you need a betta fish filter.

I have a half-moon betta with very long fins? You may want to set up a betta fish tank without a filter. Or, maybe use a Sponge filter for betta tank which is great for small aquariums. A sponge filter will keep water movement to a minimum if tearing fins is a concern.

My betta is kept in a community tank with many fish? Simply put, more fish = more waste = more toxins. A filter would be recommended in this situation. Also, a community tank is likely to be a little larger providing your betta hiding places to escape water currents.

How many water changes are you willing to complete, weekly or twice a week? If you can’t dedicate the time to change your water more than once a week a filter would be the way to go.

My aquarium has many live plants? In this situation, live plants actually act as a natural filter and can provide oxygen, filtration, food and a place to hide.

Tank size larger than 2.5 Gallons: For this size, a filter would be the way to go. Just ensure the filter has an adjustable flow rate to control the amount of current.

Another option is to select a filter down a level rated for a smaller aquarium.

Tank size smaller than 2.5 Gallons: First of all never keep your betta in anything smaller than 2.5 gallons. In small aquariums the water can foul much faster than larger aquariums, requiring more regular maintenance and water changes. Foul water can lead to multiple issues such as health, disease and even death.

However, if you must keep your betta in something less than 2.5 gallons, we would recommend a sponge filter. To ensure the currents don’t become too strong and cause harm to your betta.  

For tanks smaller than 2.5 gallons we suggest you maintain a clean tank through regular water changes. However, there are filters that can accommodate tanks of this size.

Do betta fish need a filter in their tank? 

All aquariums require clean water and filters are a great way to maintain clean water free from contaminants and allow the build-up of healthy bacteria that are beneficial to your fish.

If you want healthy a Betta fish the water should be kept clean and clear.

When deciding to have a Betta fish filter or no filter at all. Your situation should determine whether or not you need one.

5 Awesome Betta Filter Tips:

  1. The best filter would be very gentle and allow the ability to control the amount of current.
  2. Long-tailed betta fish like the half-moon betta are very fragile and their fins can be damaged form due to water movements. For these types of betta, no water movement is best.
  3. Don’t put your betta in a bowl or a vase. A Betta needs at least 2.5 gallons.
  4. If using a filter keep an eye on your fish to ensure they are adjusting well to the filter without issue.
  5. Under gravel, filters can also be used. However, the debris tends to gather in the gravel and can become toxic and foul the water. In a small aquarium, this can occur quickly and ultimately require more regular cleaning.

In general, a Betta will do best with gentle, low or no flow filtration. High flow currents can harm or cause stress to most betta fish.

Infographic: Do You Know Your Betta FishBetta Fish Filter - Do Betta Fish Need A Filter?

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