Home Aquarium Can Fish Live Without A Filter? (Fully Explained)

Can Fish Live Without A Filter? (Fully Explained)

by gvald

An aquarium is a living environment, in perpetual evolution… but in a closed system. It is therefore essential to change the water regularly. The volume, frequency and preparation of the new water will depend on the type of aquarium and its population.


It is quite possible to have fish in an aquarium without filters, however, it will be necessary to change the water and clean it much more often. We explain it all to you.


Is it possible to have fish in a tank without filters?

An aquarium can be quite livable for your fish, even without a filter, however, it will be imperative to make regular water changes.


Although a filter system does not protect against various bacteria, you will need to change the water in your fish tank regularly in any case. An unfiltered aquarium will naturally require more attention (because bacteria develop more quickly).


How to clean an aquarium without filters?


Set aside some water, fill water cans and treat it with a chlorine-free product purchased at a pet shop. By doing this, the water will be at the right temperature and free of products that are harmful to your fish.


Next, take some water from your aquarium and gently pour it into another container. Catch your fish with a landing net and put them in this other container, in their old water, while waiting for the cleaning to be completed.


How do I clean the tank properly?

You have taken water from the aquarium and “reserved” the fish. Don’t throw away all the remaining water, as you should replace no more than a third of the aquarium’s contents. The ecosystem of your fish depends on the bacteria that have developed in it, so do not remove them. Remove all the elements and clean the tank with a clean cloth or sponge. Do not use detergents. There are commercial aquarium cleaners available.


If you want to make your own, dilute 1 tablespoon of baking soda in 300 milliliters of water and clean the edges with this mixture. Remember to use a cotton swab for the corners.


How to change the water in an aquarium without a filter?



Except in exceptional cases, bring the new water to the temperature of the water in the aquarium beforehand.



The new water should be close to the water in the aquarium in terms of density (sea water), hardness and pH, to avoid sudden changes that are not appreciated by the fish. The only differences are the nitrate and phosphate levels, which are lower in the new water. It is also possible to use bacterial solutions to prepare the change water.


Changing the water

Whether it is cold or warm water, water changes are of great importance.


Please note that each aquarium is biologically unique, so the following advice can be modified according to the biological cycle observed in your tank. Before defining the volumes of water and the frequency of water changes, it is indeed necessary that you know your aquarium well. Take the time to study the natural drift of the water composition, and in particular the rise of nitrates and phosphates.


Except in exceptional cases, the temperature of the change water should be close to that of the aquarium water.

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