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The Best UV Sterilizer for Aquarium (Review) in 2021

Last Updated June 9, 2021

UV sterilizers are important equipment used in eradicating the presence of bacteria and other microorganisms in an aquarium. This is made possible due to the germicidal ultraviolet light rays that are being emitted by the UV sterilizer. No doubt, it is an essential process needed to attain cleaner and clearer water, after the free-floating algae and other parasites have been actively killed and the process of sterilizing an aquarium also helps to guarantee a healthier and safer environment for the fish inside to live in. Are you in need of a suitable UV sterilizer which will be effective at giving your aquarium a cleaner appearance? Then this list of the best UV sterilizers for aquariums is a worthy read.

The Best UV Sterilizer for Aquarium

1

COODIA Internal Green Water Killer Filter Aquarium Tank

When the water of your aquarium becomes cloudy or green in color, it’s extremely likely that your current filter isn’t handling its job properly. The COODIA Internal Green Water Killer Filter has the ability to clean any tank that has up to 75 gallons of water inside of it. Installing this water filter will ensure that your fishes or other aquatic pets have clean, clear water.

The filter starts working immediately and will show noticeable results within a week of installation. After that week is over, users will notice that the filter continues working and clearing the water inside the aquarium that it’s in. Typically, it takes a maximum of two weeks for the water of the tank in question to go from cloudy to completely clear and cleaner that you may have ever seen it.

Clearer water in 7 days

Perfect for saltwater and freshwater

Can clean tanks up to 75 gallons

Built-in water pump

Specification:
  • Brand: COODIA
  • Model: N/A
  • Weight: 1.59 pounds
Pros

Fast results for clearer tank water

Works for tanks up to 75 gallons

Doesn’t need to be active 24/7

Cons

Can take up to two weeks to fully clear tank water

Will not fully treat algae without assistance

You will still need a regular filter

2

SunSun Group was established in 1998, and with just 20 years in the business, they have been able to manufacture over 100 types of products for many to benefit. They have multiple factories and offices which oversee the factories from Hong Kong, to the USA and with over 28,000 employees, SunSun products come out with exceptional effectivities. One of such products with high functioning capacity, is the SunSun Group JUP-01 UV Sterilizer.

This sterilizer features a powerful technique towards eliminating free-floating algae in an aquarium, as well as other bacteria. This pond UV sterilizer possesses a pre-filter sponge which adequately traps floating debris in the water, in order to ascertain the most effective UV penetration for maximum results. This process guarantees that all obstructions are out of the way, and a clean and microorganism-free aquarium is guaranteed. What’s more, the SunSun Group JUP-01 UV Sterilizer also features an extremely compact appearance, suitable for either horizontal or vertical mounting in the aquarium and also requires no circulation pump to be attached, as this UV sterilizer was perfectly crafted to have all the pre-installed features for direct use out of the box.

Adequate for 75Ga aquariums

9 watt light power

210gph flow rate

Submersible pump

Specification:
  • Brand: SunSun
  • Model: JUP-01
  • Weight: 2 pounds
Pros

Pre-installed pump

Has a built-in pump

Features a pre-filter sponge

Cons

Intense water flow for aquarium

Plastic parts prone to breakage

Large size for most aquariums

3

Coospider Sun JUP-01 Aquarium Submersible Filter Machine

Before using this product, the seller advises that you must remove a sponge from inside the product that is placed there to ensure that the Submersible Filter isn’t hazardous during transport. Leaving the sponge will only stop the filter from functioning correctly. The small motor that is a part of the filter’s design creates a, somewhat loud, whirring noise when active. Once the filter has been submerged into the tank, you should not hear this sound anymore.

This Submersible Filter by Coospider is designed to complete four different tasks while it’s working. It acts as a water and air pump, a water filter, and a tank cleaner. Though the filter won’t be able to handle algae that is growing on the décor inside the tank (as this growth won’t pass through the filter to be eradicated), it will clean anything that processes through its filtering system. You’ll have clearer tank water in a matter of days.

Four functions in one product

Creates bubbles for tank

Filters and cleans water

Cleans 210 gallons of water per hour

Specification:
  • Brand: Coospider
  • Model: N/A
  • Weight: 2.3 pounds
Pros

1-year warranty

Air valve increases oxygen in the water

Cleans all water flowing through the filter

Cons

Contains a shock-proof sponge that must be removed before use

Won’t clean algae growing on surfaces in the tank

Not suitable for disease management

4

Aqua Ultraviolet is a renowned manufacturing company which was established in 1975, with headquarters in Temecula, CA. They are well known for their ultraviolet sterilizers, as well as other products and the major reason behind their success is that their products are adequately produced and tested for effectivity. The manufacturers also provide adequate control, ensuring that users get the utmost best and the Aqua Ultraviolet Advantage 2000+ Aquarium Sterilizer has proven itself in those tests.

This product comes from Aqua Ultraviolet’s Advantage Series, which are best sellers in the market and comes with a 15 watt power lamp, which effectively penetrates the bacteria, and free-floating algae, in order to deliver clean and sanitary water in the aquarium. This UV light sterilizer is also effective for small ponds, and has an amazingly fast rate of delivery. Within the span of 3 – 5 days, this sterilizer actively kills or renders the microorganisms inactive for use and the major advantage about this product is that it is uniquely lightweight and compact, ensuring ease of installation for the users.

Inline ¾” Barb

8  feet power cord length

Sterilizes freshwater from 200 to 500 gallons

Sterilizes salt water up to 75 gallons

Specification:
  • Brand: Aqua Ultraviolet
  • Model: 617750002675
  • Weight: 1 pounds
Pros

Lightweight

Great flowrate capacity

High quality product

Cons

Does not control green algae at sides and bottom

Extended period without water flow will damage sterilizer

Not submersible

5

Coralife BioCube UV Sterilizer for Aquarium

This mini sterilizer from Coralife is the perfect water-cleaning solution for smaller tanks that don’t have the wall space for a larger filter. As a UV Sterilizer, this product can kill any free-floating algae that exists in the water of your tank. To make the BioCube even more ideal for small aquariums and tanks, the bulb within the product is just 5 watts, and the ballast is low voltage. In addition, there is a universal adapter included with the product.

The UV Sterilizer is attached to the BioCube pump to create a unique product that is fit for multiple purposes. Once water comes into the product’s sterilization chamber, the emitted UV light kills any bad microorganisms that could be harming your aquarium set-up. Coralife’s BioCube UV Sterilizer is simple to set-up and can be used in freshwater and saltwater tanks and aquariums.

Mounting brackets included

Can be used in freshwater or saltwater

UV sterilization

Ideal for small aquariums

Specification:
  • Brand: Coralife
  • Model: 100115640
  • Weight: 9.6 ounces
Pros

Works in freshwater and saltwater aquariums

Sterilizes using UV light

Compact design

Cons

Cannot filter algae growing on surfaces in the tank

Expensive replacement bulbs

You may need to purchase additional parts for a good connection

6

Here is the third product from the Aqua Ultraviolet for effective aquarium sterilization, the Aqua UV 15-watt Advantage 2000+ Hang On UV Sterilizer. This product belongs to the advantage series line of products, with an effective microorganism killing rate and has a wonderful 15-watt lamp power, which emits the ultraviolet germicidal rays that are responsible for sterilizing the water. What’s more, it has excellent features accompanying it and can be used for both aquariums and ponds. For the best effectiveness, this UV sterilizer has been empowered with a great freshwater sterilization capacity, as well as salt water sterilization capacity. From 5 to 200 gallons of water, freshwater is guaranteed of being clear and clean.

Also, for water rates up to 70 gallons, this pond sterilizer actively makes saltwater aquariums clear and clean and has a high penetrating capacity which adds to its effectiveness, making it an outstanding product for use. Alongside other sterilizers from Aqua Ultraviolet, this product has a durable lamp with a long span and can last up to 14 months, before there is a need for replacement. This ensures longer periods of usage, and maximum satisfaction. Furthermore, this UV light for fish tank can also actively serve as a sterilizer and a clarifier.

90 degrees elbow barb provided

Sterilizer weighs 4lbs

Can be used as a sterilizer or clarifier

Great for both saltwater and freshwater aquariums

Specification:
  • Brand: Aqua Ultraviolet
  • Model: 617750002866
  • Weight: 1 pounds
Pros

Extremely lightweight

Easy to install

Easy maintenance

Cons

Not submersible

Does not control green algae at sides and bottom

Extended period without water flow will damage sterilizer

7

Coralife has a trusted reputation, based on product delivery. They produce various lines of marine aquarium supplies and equipment, for essential needs and have an array of effective products ranging from protein skimmers to filters, as well as LED aqua lights, and light fixtures. Their intuitive manufacturing processes and the delivery of these products, have bridged several gaps in marine resource needs. An insightful product form Coralife, which effectively provides results on the topic of effectiveness, is the Coralife Turbo Twist UV Sterilizer.

This sterilizer has an intuitive design which was specially crafted to enhance productivity level. What’s more, the twist design enables a more pronounced and effective amount of water flow, in order to eradicate several microorganisms in the water of aquariums faster. This twisted design also ensures the water flows at an even rate to properly deliver effective results. Another resounding feature is that it has a high ultraviolet light ray emission, guaranteeing effectiveness. Overall, UV sterilizer comes uniquely designed with a quartz glass used in the construction of the bulbs, in order to enhance the effectiveness of the emission of the germicidal light rays.

Twist flow design

Features mounting brackets

Suitable for aquariums up to 250 gallons

Has an operator indicator light

Specification:
  • Brand: Coralife
  • Model: 100115601
  • Weight: 5.6 pounds
Pros

Adequate for both saltwater and freshwater aquariums

Has a suitable hang-on feature

Channels even water flow rates

Cons

Prone to leakage

Leakages prone to causing shocks in the aquarium

Bulb fittings are unstable

8

AquaClear Fish Tank Filter

The AquaClear Fish Tank Filter is a slightly larger aquarium filter design that is suitable for tanks that carry from 20 to 50 gallons of water. The product includes a unique filtration system that offers more contact time for the water flowing through it, meaning that your aquarium’s water is being filtered more thoroughly. The pump is energy efficient, which should help reduce your tank’s operating costs.

Installing AquaClear’s filter couldn’t be easier, though the manufacturers do recommend cleaning the filter every two weeks or so – this is to keep the product operating at maximum efficiency, though it will also stop the filter from getting clogged up with anything coming through it with your tank’s water. The filter also comes with some special features to keep your aquarium’s water at a superior quality level; these include an activated carbon filter.

Equipped with AquaClear Foam

Includes an Activated Carbon Filter

Filters up to 7 times more water than other filters

Lifetime warranty

Specification:
  • Brand: AquaClear
  • Model: A610
  • Weight: 2 pounds
Pros

Filters more water than comparable filters

Lifetime warranty included in purchase

Energy efficient water pump

Cons

Needs to be cleaned every two weeks

Only suitable for tanks up to 50 gallons

Noisy

9

Aquarium Clean Light Submersible Waterproof Lamp

Though our readers may be confused at the sight of this UV lamp, but we assure you that it’s among the best product solutions for sterilizing the water of your aquarium. This submersible lamp by Coospider works by using UV light to sterilize the water instead of chemicals. It’s best to combine the light with a standard water filter and you should also immediately separate all of your fish from this product. No fish should be able to swim up to or near the submersible lamp because it will be detrimental to their health within seconds.

The 254nm wavelength of the light helps remove the green tone of your aquariums water by eliminating bacteria and other nastiness. It should, over a period of a week or two, be able to fully clean the water of your tank until its clear again. This will only happen if you use a water filter in tandem with the submersible lamp, and it will not be able to treat the algae growing on surfaces in your aquarium.

Fully submersible

Suitable for tanks up to 3000 liters

1-year warranty

Works as a deodorizer

Specification:
  • Brand: Coospider
  • Model: HUV-11
  • Weight: 9.3 ounces
Pros

Deodorizes and sterilizes

Only needs to be on for 1-2 hours a day

Fully submersible

Cons

Will kill fish on contact

Should be used with an additional filter

Has to be separated from all tank life

Best UV Sterilizer for Aquarium Buying Guide & FAQ

Things to Consider When Buying an Aquarium UV Sterilizer

  • Wattage of bulb

The wattage of bulb that a UV sterilizer possesses actively determines the amount of light rays to be emitted. The higher the wattage, the more UV light rays will effectively kill the microorganisms in the aquarium.

  • Size of the aquarium

The size of the aquarium to be used with the UV sterilizer is to be greatly considered. This is because UV sterilizers come with specific features that work according to the size of the aquarium. In order to ensure the effectiveness of the UV sterilizer, it is important to effectively ensure that the size of the aquarium correlates with the specifications of the UV sterilizer.

  • Span of bulb

All UV sterilizers come with several time frames for which the bulb can fully operate. After this period of time, the bulb will need a replacement. It is important to consider the span of bulb of a UV sterilizer before purchasing, as it will determine the maintenance level the sterilizer requires.

  • Installation process

An important feature to consider when purchasing a UV sterilizer, is that of installation. It has to be generally convenient, as this will determine how well the sterilizer can be maintained.

Aquarium with fish plants and rocks

Benefits of UV Sterilizer for Aquarium

  • Cleans green water

The functionalities and processes by which the sterilizer operates, helps to eradicate the microorganisms causing the water of the aquarium to turn green overtime. Most UV sterilizer actively sterilizes the water, and serves as a clarifier.

  • Kills bacteria

Aside from killing protozoa and algae in the water, UV sterilizers are effective at killing floating bacteria in the aquarium. These bacteria are termed as harmful microorganisms, which tend to give infections to fish, and are highly detrimental to their health. Hence, the major benefit involved in the use of a UV sterilizer is to prevent fish from having infections by killing the bacteria in the water.

  • Kill Parasites

Sterilizes that are extremely effective, help to eradicate the presence of parasites in the water. UV sterilizers are also great at eliminating the floating materials that serve as food for the parasites. This is an important process because the floating materials they feed on, aids infection of fish in the water.

Types of UV Sterilizers

  • Hang-on or in-line sterilizers

These are sterilizers that involve mounting via a hanging process, in a specific position, in order to actively channel the water flow for sterilization.

  • Horizontal and vertical UV sterilizers

These are sterilizers that require mounting in either a horizontal position, or a vertical position for full effectivity. There are some, however, that come with the advantages of being placed either horizontally, or vertically.

  • Double helix UV sterilizers

These sterilizers have a unique method of functionality, ensuring the water passing the UV light, does so in a double motion. This guarantees pronounced effectiveness, at an increased time rate.

Best UV Sterilizer for Aquarium FAQ:

Q: How Does a UV Sterilizer Work?

A: A UV sterilizer work via the emission of germicidal rays. The lamp used for the production of the UV sterilizer produces this light at an extremely high wavelength. The process of the water being sterilized first starts with the water in the aquarium passing through or around this lamp. Then, the germicidal light which is emitted from it, kills the bacteria or free-floating algae, or any other harmful microorganisms in it. Then this process continues over a period of time, until the water in the tank is completely sterilized.

Q: How to Install a UV Sterilizer?

A: The first step of installing a UV sterilizer is ensure it matches the size of the aquarium to be mounted on. After this step, it is essential to set up the housing of the sterilizer according to the specifications given by the manufacturer. This will ensure the full effectivity of the sterilizer, and that replacement and maintenance will be an easy breeze. Then, it is required to install the UV sterilizer bulb accordingly, after which will follow the power supply. Then, the fittings should be properly checked, if tightened enough, and then the valves are opened, for the suction of the pump to begin.

Q: Can UV Sterilizer Kill Fish?

A: UV sterilizers are only engineered to kill the free-floating microorganisms which are situated within the aquarium, and does not have the specifications or features to harm the fish in any way.

Q: How Long Does a UV Sterilizer Bulb Last?

A: Depending on the type of UV sterilizer, and the nature of the bulb being used, lamps used usually last from 6 – 14 months. After then, a replacement is required to enable the UV sterilizer continue in its working process. Some UV sterilizers come with indication lights that inform users of when it is time for a replacement, while others have to refer to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Q: How do You Clean UV Sterilizer?

A: The most essential part to be cleaned in a UV sterilizer is the quartz sleeve. The UV lamp is to be unscrewed, as well as the bolts surrounding the sleeve. Then, the quartz sleeve is to be cleaned with a cloth which has been fully immersed in a subtle acid, such as vinegar.

Source:

  1. UV Sterilizers Control Bacteria and Algae, Animal Planet
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