If you want to keep your fish healthy, then you 100% need to keep your aquarium filter on at all times, 24/7. So you should have it running at all times, and only turn it off when strictly necessary.
Lights, air pumps, and some other items of the aquarium, although also important, can be turned off now and then without causing any damage. But the aquarium filter being off for too long can cause some serious damage to the fish.
However, this does not mean that your fish will instantly die if you turn the filter off. In fact, there are types of aquariums that don’t use filters (although that is because they require a different and more intense type of care).
Your fish can survive having the filter turned off for a few hours at a time. What the filter does, is keep the water clean at a certain level. So turning it off can cause the aquarium to become dirty, and can cause the beneficial bacteria to die, and harmful bacteria to thrive.
So although you can, in fact, turn off the filter, it is recommended that you don’t. And if you have to turn it on for any important reason, make sure the filter isn’t off for more than a few hours, as after that damage to the fish can occur.
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How often should I run my aquarium filter?
In order for the water in the aquarium to be safe for your fish, it needs to keep up an appropriate flow. The filter in your aquarium should be passing through all the water in the tank at least three times per hour, which is quite a lot.
So basically, your aquarium filter should ideally be running constantly, non-stop.
Especially because there are no real issues with over filtering (apart from the expense and cost that it causes). While under filtering, on the other hand, leads to many health issues for your fish, and can seriously damage the bacteria levels within the tank.
If you want to keep your fish as healthy as possible, it is recommended that you try and keep the aquarium filter running 24/7, non-stop.
Leaving the aquarium filter off overnight is a big no. The filter should never be off for more than 5 hours or so. And as to answering how often to run the aquarium filter, the answer is just basically as often as possible.
How do I start my fish tank filter?
To start your fish tank filter, you need to properly install it (following the appropriate method and instructions). And then, most fish tank filters will either have an on and off switch or button or will be plugged and unplugged in order to start and stop.
But what if the filter still isn’t starting up?
If this happens, you first need to figure out what the issue or problem is. It’s usually something very obvious that is easily overlooked. Like maybe the filter isn’t plugged in. Or maybe it’s plugged in but the power switch isn’t on.
Maybe, the filter has been accidentally plugged into another part of the aquarium, like the lights, so it’s on the wrong timer and therefore not starting up when it should. There can be many reasons, so do a full check-up of the aquarium.
If you’ve solved any obvious issue, and everything is properly plugged in, but the filter still isn’t working: check the filter itself. Over time, the filter will begin to accumulate dirt and grime and can become blocked. If this is the case, it might be powered up and working, but no water will be filtering through, so it isn’t actually doing its job.
If this is the case, you need to thoroughly clean or replace the filter, so that it is in working conditions once more.
There can be other reasons why it isn’t starting up. But if they aren’t as obvious, then you might have to call a professional for help!
Can a filter be too strong for a fish tank?
Yes, some filters can be too strong for certain fish tanks, depending on the type of fish you have there. If it’s too strong, the current generated might be too much for the fish, especially if they’re a smaller species.
It’s important to get the right filter for each fish tank, and to ensure it’s safe for use with your specific fish.