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Since childhood, my grandfather would spend long hours watching various shows on the aquatic life; and gradually I fell victim to their magnificent world underwater.
It was then when my father fulfilled my yearnings and bought me my first goldfish bowl. Although it hardly resembled a proper tank, I pride myself on having a part of such a civilization.
A few years followed and we brought a little part of the aquatic world to our abode. With schools of red, blue and yellow fish flitting around, sleeping snails and fresh flora swaying lazily, it gifted our home with a soothing and warm tone, paving its way to make the best 20 gallon aquarium for me.
Now, if you are reading this blog, it can be presumed that you are planning to purchase one for yourself. Calculating new investments seem daunting, especially if you have limited knowledge about the particular field.
Do not panic!
Through this article, I present you with thorough coverage of the topic of the best 20 gallon aquarium. Considering this is known as the ideal type of tank for every home, you will be shared scrupulous research which informs you not only about the various enhancers, products- their types- but also a detailed review and guidelines. These will help you make a smart purchase.
Prevention, after all, is always better than the cure.
20 Gallon Aquarium And Its Products
Taking care of these vibrant little pets is not an easy feat. It will help if you have strong vigil, dedication, and passion for making sure they are safe and healthy, lest the water turns sour and poisons your surroundings with a toxic smell – even killing the aquatic inhabitants.
Understandably so, these organisms need your assistance in their safekeeping. A sincere effort unfailingly bears fruit. When you spend on a tank and its residents, they expect you to give them the quality living conditions; for which you need to add some necessary accessories in your list of expenses.
Amenities like filters, air pumps, and food are merely one part of the additional investments; other requirements constitute a stand, lighting, water heater, algae cleansing removers, neutralizers, flakes, glass top, pebbles, corals, temperature controller, plant food and so on.
To crown your aquarium as the best 20 gallon aquarium, you need to understand the importance of the following maintenance supplies:
It is a piece of essential equipment for all the aquarium products. A filter comes in a plethora of shapes and sizes- some being a hang-on while others are canisters, fully submerged in the water. Every filter should be relative to the size and volume of the aquarium. This accessory frees you from the time-consuming method of cleaning.
It keeps the water crystal clear, and the accompanying aerobic bacteria prevents the growth of ammonia and nitrates, thus, extending the oxygen content. The inhabitants of your aquarium have a healthy environment to swim around and live.
Various brands provide additional media with the filter to help in all the three filtration processes (biological, mechanical, and chemical). They come as bio-scrubbers, mesh, activated carbon, etc, conditioning the water flow in and out of the filter.
Similar to every living creature on this Earth, fish too need oxygen for survival. Here the air pump comes into play. It is one of the most versatile pieces of accessory among the others, that incorporates mechanical means to such in the fresh air from outside and release it under the water.
The light ripples and bubbles formulated due to such a process give an enticing effect to your fish tank, while at the same time, it can work as a filter in some cases. The air pumps and filters emit a comfortable bubbling sound that engulfs your home, sometimes effectively putting your mind at ease.
LED lighting is comparatively safer for the aquarium and its residents than a regular glow bulb. Not to forget that these LEDs provide you with an array of colorful lights to choose from. Adding colored lamps to your tank can revamp it in a refreshing manner, especially if you purchase one with different modes- such as a night light, incandescent or the likes.
There is another important reason for this belonging to an essential category. LEDs usually come with timer control and consume a limited amount of power in its wake. With the timer, you can control the amount of time the fish is exposed to the light; this also helps in managing the temperature of the tank as it emits next to no heat.
Additionally, you do not feel the pocket pinch.
With the filters and air pumps doing their work, enhancers or supplements usually get overlooked. These are as much essential as the previous three products. The enhancers ( also called as supplements or conditioners ) help in the biological filtration procedure alongside the filters. They cultivate an environment, friendly enough to support a biological ecosystem of the flora and fauna to thrive.
The water conditioners remove toxic substances like chlorine from the tap water, indirectly acting as a stress-buster for the fish. They protect the fins and scales from acquiring any fatal ailments. The wastes generated and impurities housed, on one hand, in the filters are reduced, and on the other hand, excreta including decaying materials, are cleansed.
Silt, debris, and pollutants are prevented from dirtying the water- giving you sparkling water.
Plant Micronutrients: micronutrients for plants assure them of health and vibrancy that are washed away by the tap water. Chlorine or heavy cleansing elements can strip the marine flora from minerals they require to survive. Therefore, these plants too deserve a quality dose of supplements.
Factors To Consider Before Buying the Best 20 Gallon Aquarium
Your tank could also be the best 20 gallon aquarium once you take proper care of it. The recommended method of doing so, especially for the beginners, is to have adequate knowledge about the procedure of supervision and the gravity of it. r To do so, first, you have to make sure you tick the guidelines written below:
The most important point has to be the cost of the aquarium. After you purchase an aquarium, the cost might not be worrisome, however, your expenses are merely starting. To maintain an aquarium, the investment ranges between $150 to $200.
You will search for the best maintenance kits and types of equipment for your tank. Remember they will increase your initially prepared budget. If you find the cost too much to bear at the moment, it is advisable to gather the funds before taking the final step.
You must be wondering why I kept harping on the best 20 gallon aquarium; it is because this type of tank is the appropriate size for both the beginners as well as hobbyists. These tanks are best suited for providing ample space to affix the accessories. The maintenance is easy and you receive enough space to house as many fish as you want.
Compared to the mini aquariums or those measuring 10 gallons, the size in question does not cause sedimentation frequently. The2 to 5-gallon tanks are indeed economical, but they build up toxins rapidly making the place unlivable.
Next comes the weight of the tank. Glass tanks are usually heftier than the acrylic ones. Adding water and the ornaments will cause an increment in the weight. A 20-gallon tank may weigh more than 200 lbs.
Funnily enough, the weight of the aquarium is directly proportional to the location where it is situated. For a tank as large as 20 gallons a mere bookshelf will not suffice. It needs to be placed according to its weight, a sturdy stand or a table is an ideal object to carry it.
Correspondingly, there are a few dos and don’ts related to the location of your aquarium. Avoid stationing the tank anywhere near sunlight, as it is prone to algae development. Any form of temperature extremes should not be in a direct line as it will be fatal for the inhabitants- make sure it is far away from doors, windows, vents or drafts.
Before purchasing a tank, plan out the location. It should be convenient and not adding to the list of expenses. Usually, a secluded corner of a room accompanied by an electrical outlet is the best place.
The selected location is prone to get wet due to maintenance work. Ergo, waterproofing is the utmost essential. You must have an abundant area to move around tending to the fish.
Type And Number Of Fish
Fish too differ in personalities and temperaments. While there are aggressive kinds, you also find peaceful species. This difference is startling among the freshwater breeds. Map out a checklist as to which type of fish you are interested in. A random collection of fish might not be compatible and it can adversely affect their wellbeing.
Compatibility keeps a healthy environment around the tank. The fish who like to have sufficient space for swimming requires a large tank- 20 gallon is appropriate in such a case. Others include skittish fish who prefer hiding and search for small corners and nooks to feed their purpose.
How can you rule out the growth factor? Once they achieve their full size, space becomes an issue. An overcrowded tank will pose a threat to the weaker ones.
Aquarium Starter Kit
Among the pieces of equipment mentioned above, two are habitually overlooked. An algae remover and a water heater constitute similar significant features like a filter and lighting.
Algae remover comes handy as their growth is inevitable. These unwanted groups can be eliminated using a scrubber or a magnet. The magnet cleans the clusters of algae collected on the glass body of the tank. The magnet is more convenient than a pad as it can be used outside the glass as well, although it is on the expensive side.
A stable water heater to maintain the correct temperature of the tank is significant for a flourishing ecosystem. However, this object is quite often sidelined by the other parts available in an aquarium kit.
We have established that fish have different personalities, similarly, they thrive on different temperature conditions. The variety of fish you plan on adopting should receive a consistent flow of temperature, you have to carry out extensive research.
The heaters have an assortment of sizes and shapes, depending on their price. Make sure you are confident in your spending.
This section differs from people to people. It is your choice that will determine what sort of decorative item you will spend your bucks on. Whether you prefer vibrant colored stones or abstract items to be spread around, it should be safe for the inhabitants. Every item must be clean and rid of any materials that are harmful to the fish.
You have to make sure the list of the products is carefully thought of; because it will need periodic washing. Thus, the more the number, the more hassle you face.
Plants are a common decor for the fish tanks. They give a natural outlook as if an underwater colony brought to your corner. They also help in keeping the water clean, the live ones clear the place of ammonia and nitrates simultaneously acting as a shed for the fish.
Corals, rock caves and shipwrecks are some other objects than add to the rustic look of your aquarium. Furthermore, the fish get a place to hide their eggs and rest comfortably.
Food And Flakes
Feeding the fish a regular diet of flakes might seem healthy but it gradually kills their taste buds. Resultantly, they refuse to consume any. Imagine eating the same dish every day and every hour. Sounds bland, does it not?
The fishkeeping brands work tirelessly to provide mealtime relief to these fellows. They have introduced a variety of flavored flakes ranging from vegetables, meats, low fat, to staple flakes, frozen or live food.
Fish can be herbivorous, carnivorous or omnivorous. You have to feed them accordingly. However, consistently feeding them one particular food is unwise. High-quality flakes give the prescribed nutrients and vitamins to your fish, while they can also consume dry food, frozen goods, live worms, and dried shrimps.
Top 10 Best 20 Gallon Aquariums 2019
1. Marina LED Aquarium Kit
Marina is a phenomenal innovation. A moderate, rectangular glass tank appropriate for both personal and commercial spaces, is perfect for a first timer’s inaugural to the world of fishkeeping.
Being one of the best 20 gallon aquariums this kit is stocked with a brilliant LED light affixed to its glass top, giving off a captivating daylight effect in your tank. Although it boasts a radiancy the LED is energy efficient and will not produce unnecessary heat.
Along with the lighting facility, comes the Fluval Max fish food containing all the vitamins and minerals for their health. The Fluval Aqua Plus Water Conditioner prevents toxins like chlorine from harming the fish and a Fluval Cycle Biological Supplement to give the environment a healthy dose for survival.
An easy changing filter cartridge along with a Slim clip-on filter is packed. This makes the installation a child’s play, benefiting the novices. Maintaining clean water is no trouble as the filter performs biological filtration at regular intervals.
Besides encouraging the beneficial bacteria to drive out the ammonia and nitrates, the kit includes a thermometer determining whether the temperature is suitable for any particular species of fish.
2. Tetra 20 Gallon Complete Aquarium Kit
Tetra is a popular name among the hobbyists as it is well known for the fishkeeping ventures and the unbeatable types of marine equipment it has showered us with. Their aquarium kit is an ideal starter kit with a heater, thermometer, and fishnet.
The ColorFusion Universal Color Changing LED gives your aquarium an ethereal feel as it brings customized settings associated with each pause. This unique LED is built in the canopy and is exceptionally energy efficient.
Unpacking a plant mat, artificial plant and a filter show how thoughtfully Tetra has stocked this kit so that you are capable of keeping the best aquarium ecosystem. The beginners do not have to venture to various sites trying to find the accessories. Samples of food and water conditioner, apart from the Whisper multi-stage filtration system will successfully assist the amateurs in caring for their tank.
The installation and maintenance of the filter are commendably user-friendly. The powerful filter silently continues its filtration process involving flossing, carbon filtering, and Biofoam. The cartridges are changeable in specific periods while the heater determines the temperature of the tank and whether it is suitable for the fish to survive.
Such professional features scream the best 20 gallon aquarium, but the glass tank is prone to cracks due to careless packages and the pumps are unreliable.
3. Coralife LED Biocube Aquarium
Probably the best 20 gallon aquarium for saltwater fish, CoraLife Biocube offers some unique features regarding their LED lighting system.
An integrated 24-hour long timer consists of three options- white, blue and vibrant LEDs- that give an eye-catching appeal to your aquarium. They also sport an automatic light switching mode to replicate the natural day and night lighting.
While the LEDs are hung on the sleek underside of the roof, the inbuilt filter is attached to the back of the aquarium. This filter washes away all your worries with a three-stage filtration system – mechanical, chemical and biological. It works without emanating any whirring loud noise ad the pump is characteristic of an adjustable nozzle.
You need to purchase the rest of the necessary equipments separately. Also, the filters are inappropriate for small fishes and stops working after a short while.
4. Aqueon LED Aquarium Kit 20H
The fourth most popular brand Aqueon presents a complete kit for amateurs that can be used to house both freshwater as well as saltwater fish. The starter kit attracts the attention of hobbyists with its sensational features.
The rectangular-shaped glass tank gives a sparkling clarity to observe the water quality inside the tank. A canopy hood makes the feeding process convenient but the medium bright QuietFlow LED lighting does not feature the moonlight stimulation.
Other than the user guide, fishnet, thermometer, fish food, water conditioner and heater you also receive a QuietFlow PRO power filter. Through a Penta-stage filtration procedure, you can hope to find a premium quality ecosystem thriving. The water flows at a high rate in and out of the filter, soundlessly, as the filter eliminates odors and discoloration.The bio-holster mechanism in the third stage rids the tank off the toxins leaving behind a high oxygen content.
Every object suffers some kind of performance issue. This kit is no less different than the others. Glass tanks are prone to cracking quite easily and the filter attached is more apt for a 10-gallon tank leading to frequent leakages or breakdowns.
5. Hagen Exo Terra Short All Glass Terrarium
The name suggests as to which use the Hagen’s Exo Terra is created for. If you have an inclination towards adopting reptiles or small amphibians and are yet to find an appropriate home for them, this large rectangular glass will come to your rescue.
Unlike an aquarium, this Exo terrarium has a front door that can be opened separately, giving access for an ease of feeding and maintenance of your domestic; the doors have a custom designed lock to prevent your pet from escaping.
The horizontal position and low roof mostly acts as an ideal dwelling ground for desert reptiles; it also sports an Aluminum UltraViolet Reflector Lamp and heat bulbs that keep the reptiles warm inside.
When I speak of the manner of lighting, I mean a removable Exo Terra Light Dome infrared penetration along the hood vents. Although, a glass box of such a size can potentially crack if not taken proper care of.
The bottom of the glass box is waterproof. The background is covered with removable rocky wallpaper made of foam. It is advisable to use only the specified lamps (PT2055, PT2077) and their brackets (PT2223), as any other might potentially harm the animals.
The European herpetologists worked hard to design a plan according to the comfort of the species along with the house as you receive five closable inlets for tubes and wires on two sides. This comes handy while installing sensors or decorative pieces like Heat Wave Rocks and Waterfalls.
6. Marineland (Aquaria) AMLPFK20B Biowheel Aquarium Kit
An upgrade from the previous Marineland aquarium kit, this offers a whole new set of features. The kit is well furnished and packed with each of the necessary equipment, thus proving itself to be the best 20 gallon aquarium for beginners.
Like the previously mentioned top-notch aquarium kits, this too comes with the LED light affixed to its hood. There is no replacement required for the bulbs and you have three options to choose from ranging from cool midnight effect to daylight stimulation.
The sleek tank is befitting for freshwater organisms more than the saltwater ones, as the lighting system will hinder coral growth. The hood exhibits a panel for feeding purposes and adding tank accessories.
Regarding the accessories, this kit contains a thermometer, fishnet, user guide for set up, samples of food and cleansers, submersible heater (200 W) and a stand-alone filter.
The filter along with its specialized Bio-wheel function performs a sound biological filtration driving out the harmful toxins from the water. Although the loud vibrations caused by the filter can affect the inhabitants.
7. Aq Ascent LED Kit
This aquarium kit sports a frameless exterior. It flaunts a sleek and modern look with a unique floating base and sparkling edges.
The back glass measures 19″ as it tapers down to 17″ in the front. The slant from the front to the back is prominent as well as the floating base which takes up 2″ from the bottom. However, this slant makes it a little harder to clean the tank as well as feed the fish.
Such an aesthetic design has a half-moon shaped opening cut across the top lid, which is also made of glass. This helps in placing the filter in the water, accompanying the kit.
The LED lamp is only adequate for low light plants. The dull lamps are attached to the glass lid and are placed as a cover for the tank. The kit, however, does not include anything besides the internal filter and LEDs.
Although ranking in the bestsellers, this kit is popular among the users for having quite a number of flaws. The LEDs burn out within a short period and in order to replace them, you would have to buy an entire glass top.
8. Aquarium Masters 20 Gallon Long Aquarium
This black-framed 20-gallon tank gives an artistic appeal when set up completely. These tanks are run through relentless tests to ensure high-quality products are exclusively sold out.
If the frame is not enough, the tank wears distortion-free glass with Diamond Polished edges and a silicone sealant of commercial grade. Such precautions are added to ensure the user’s safety as well as to hinder any form of leakage.
Another top characteristic of this kit is its accessories. Both the lights and filters available, come in different shapes suiting the varying tank sizes.
Although such tasteful features are lucrative, the kit can be a little expensive.
9. Perfecto All Glass Aquarium Tank
The packaging by Perfecto is commendable due to their impeccable care in handling a glass object. The entire tank is cushioned between inflated airbags and foam nestled in the corners. Such a compact and professional wrapping is successful in winning hearts the moment the box is opened.
Ideal as a saltwater habitat with its corrosion-proof framing, it collects considerably little dust. This tank can also house turtles and amphibians.
The sturdy material, although a little expensive, makes it appropriate for classroom use, as well.
10. Innovative Marine Nuvo Fusion Peninsula Pro 20 Gallon All in One Aquarium
The package includes:
- 1 Aquarium
- 1 Controllable Return Pump (DC 326GPH, 15W, 24V)
- 1 Desktop Custom Caddy Filter media basket
- 1 Desktop Purity Pack Filter media
- 1 Desktop Micron Water Polishing Sock (200)
- 1 Pre-installed Mesh Screen Lid
- 1 Pre-installed Rubber Leveling Mat
- 1 Registration Card
- 1 User Manual
Apart from such a well-furnished NUVO PRO kit, Innovative Marine boasts of an assortment of AUQA Gadgets that are essential for the caretaking of the aquatic life at your home.
The 6mm high clarity glass frame gives a breathtaking aquatic experience which is characteristic of such an advanced All In One filtration system.
This NUVO tank is a strong contender for being the best 20 gallon aquarium with an award-winning design that supports not only freshwater but also a saltwater civilization.
A top-notch aquarium that satisfies every kind of hobbyist – whether a novice or professional – it gives a soundless pump and plenty of freedom to move around without worrying about the tank.
A wise choice seldom goes wrong especially when it is about an aquarium kit. It is foolish to think that an aquarium serves as a mere show. Keeping an aquarium and filling it with your choice of domestics is a passion.
We know that passion needs to be fed and kept alive. When you decide to merge two worlds, you have to provide the first-class service and at the same time warrant that it is not causing you unnecessary stress.
Reading the manufacturers’ instructions, and reviewing each product will assist you in selecting the best 20 gallon aquarium and setting it up effortlessly.
The primary motive of this article is to give you a clear insight into the tank cosmos. Hopefully, the aim was fulfilled with you now purveyed with the complete information.