Goofy Fish Swimming Near Aquarium Decoration

Aqueon QuietFlow LED Pro Filter (2020 Comprehensive Review)

Aqueon QuietFlow LED Pro Aquarium Power Filter

Aqueon’s filter is available in five different models: 10, 20, 30, 50, and 55/75. As you’d expect, the lower-numbered models are designed for small aquariums, whereas the higher-numbered sizes are targeted for large aquariums.

The Aqueon QuietFlow power filter is a popular choice among fishkeepers, particularly those on a budget. The filter is extremely affordable and comes in a range of sizes to suit small and large aquariums.

Despite not being the most powerful or high-quality filter available, the Aqueon QuietFlow can filtrate your tank very well. To help you decide whether this filter is a good match for your aquarium, I’ve provided an in-depth review of its features, positives, and negatives.

Aqueon QuietFlow Pro LED Power Filter 

Aqueon’s filter is available in five different models: 10, 20, 30, 50, and 55/75. As you’d expect, the lower-numbered models are designed for small aquariums, whereas the higher-numbered sizes are targeted for large aquariums.

Each size filter has a different flow rate. The 10 has a flow rate of 100 GPH (gallons per hour), the 20 has a flow rate of 125 GPH, the 30 has a flow rate of 200 GPH, the 50 has a flow rate of 250 GPH, and the 55/75 has a flow rate of 400 GPH.

RECOMMENDATION

As a rule, your fish tank filter needs to filter at least four times the capacity of your aquarium. For example, if you own a 10 gallon tank, then you’ll need a unit with a flow rate of at least 40 GPH. The Aqueon 10 is suitable for tanks up to 20 gallons, so it’s an ideal option for small aquariums. 

The unit offers chemical, mechanical, and biological filtration via replacement filter cartridges. When the cartridge needs changing, an LED indicator light flashes to notify you. 

The device is self-priming, so it starts up automatically after cleaning or power interruptions.It uses an internal pump design to help reduce noise and prevent leaks.

Pros
  • Filtrates efficiently
  • Self-priming and quiet pump
  • Easy to clean and install
  • LED light indicator
  • Lifetime warranty and great customer service
Cons
  • Not very durable
  • Non-adjustable water flow rate
  • Can become noisy over time

If you’re looking for a more in-depth review of the unit’s positives and negatives, I’ve jumped into all the details further down.

Fish Tank Inside a Dimly Lit Room
Fish Tank Inside a Dimly Lit Room

Are Aqueon Filters Good?

For the most part, Aqueon filters work pretty efficiently. They perform relatively well to keep your aquarium water clean. The Aqueon QuietFlow uses filter replacement cartridges, which is ideal for those new to owning fish. Beginner aquarists might find the different types of filtration and media confusing, so cartridges are a good introduction.

Additionally, the unit is inexpensive, so it’s a great choice for fishkeepers on a budget. They’re not the most high-quality power filters available, but they perform well enough for their price. 

Features

Multi-Stage Filtration and Filter Media

The unit filtrates your tank very efficiently. This includes biological, mechanical, and chemical filtration, as well as extra assistance from speciality pads.

Bio-Holster

This device is made from plastic and encourages beneficial bacteria to grow on its surface. Beneficial bacteria is necessary for converting dangerous toxins into less harmful forms (ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate).

Replaceable Carbon Insert

Carbon provides your aquarium with chemical filtration. It’s helpful for removing discoloration, foul odors, and excess medication. The carbon cartridge fits easily into the unit to keep your water polished. 

Diffuser Grid

The diffuser grid has three different purposes. It provides a good area for beneficial bacteria to grow, helps with aeration, and reduces splashing and noise from the unit itself. 

See all these features in the unboxing video below.

Aqueon QuietFlow Led Pro

Self-Priming and Quiet Pump

The device is self-priming and instantly starts back up if the power is interrupted, or after you’ve cleaned it. Water instantly fills inside the unit’s reservoir as soon as it’s plugged in. This is handy as you don’t need to prime the device manually. 

The device is self-priming and instantly starts back up if the power is interrupted, or after you’ve cleaned it…

The pump is attached to the unit’s intake tube to allow water to flow through the water chamber. For the most part, the pump is very quiet and shouldn’t emit a huge amount of noise. 

The diffuser grid also contributes to the device’s quietness by reducing the amount of sound from the output waterfall. The 55/75 model appears to be the quietest, so if even a small amount of noise is an issue to you, then this size might be a good option.

LED Light Indicator 

The device has an LED light indicator to alert you when the filter cartridges need replacing.

When this light flashes, it means you need to change your cartridges. If you have trouble knowing when to change your cartridges, then this is a really handy feature.

Easy Setup and Maintenance

All of the filters in the Aqueon QuietFlow series are simple to clean and install. Every one of the components fit together with ease. As the unit is self-priming, there isn’t much work involved in terms of maintenance.

All of the filters in the Aqueon QuietFlow series are simple to clean and install…

A lot of hang-on-back/power units have to be primed manually, which can be a hassle as you need to fill the filter chamber up with water and press a primer button. On most standard (non-self-priming) devices, you have to press the primer button multiple times to get it to work properly.

It’s great that the Aqueon QuietFlow unit completely eliminates this nuisance. Its self-primer also makes it very easy to maintain. 

Advantage of Self-Primer Feature

When you perform maintenance on any power filter, you have to turn it off at the plug in the process, to prevent it from breaking or giving you an electrical shock.

This requires you to prime the device once you turn it back on. On non-self-priming devices, this whole process can take some time.

In addition, when the unit is turned off, it automatically starts up when it’s switched back on. I really like this feature as it’s much more convenient and saves you a lot of time. 

The impeller on the filter is magnetically attached inside the motor unit so you can easily remove and insert it during cleaning and maintenance.

The Positives

5-Stage Filtration 

The device provides your fish with crystal clear water to keep them happy and healthy. It offers mechanical, chemical, and biological, as well as additional assistance from specialty polishing pads.

You get a wide variety of media with the device, including a bio-holster, diffuser grid, and activated carbon. This is useful as you don’t need to purchase it separately. 

Self-Priming 

Aqueon’s unit is self-priming, which removes a lot of effort when it comes to maintaining the device. You don’t have to manually prime the filter after cleaning or installing it. When the device is plugged in, it immediately starts priming without any assistance. 

This feature contributes to the filter’s very easy maintenance and installation.

Quiet Operation

The pump on the device is relatively quiet, as is the impeller. Noisy filters can be irritating, especially if your aquarium is located in your bedroom. I like that the QuietFlow doesn’t suffer from this issue.

The unit isn’t completely silent, but it definitely doesn’t produce a huge amount of sound. The diffuser grid for the device also helps reduce its sound levels by dampening the noise made from the output waterfall.

TIP

Out of all the models, the 55/75 seems to have the quietest operation. It’s a good option if you require an almost silent filter for a large tank.

Easy Maintenance 

The unit is very easy to setup and maintain. It’s normally a good idea to clean your aquarium filter every week. This involves taking the device apart and wiping away any grime or dirt that might have built up.

Obviously, as you’ll be cleaning your filter frequently, you want it to be simple to take disassemble and assemble. The QuietFlow is a breeze to maintain as all the components fit together easily. 

Additionally, the impeller is attached to the motor unit magnetically, which makes removing it to clean very simple. 

See how to clean the Aqueon | QuietFlow in the video below.

Aqueon | QuietFlow – Filter Pump: Maintenance and Cleaning

LED Light Indicator

To help you remember when to change your filter cartridges, the unit has an LED light indicator to let you know when your cartridges require replacing.

When the light begins to flash, this means you have to change your cartridge. It’s a simple but nice added touch.

Warranty

The device comes with a lifetime warranty. Most aquarium filters don’t offer this type of warranty, so it’s great that Aqueon does. The warranty covers any defects with the material or functionality of the unit. 

The warranty begins from the date you purchased the device, so make sure you keep your receipt in a safe place. The company will require it if you send the filter off for repairs. However, the warranty is void if the unit breaks due to the fault of the owner, such as from poor maintenance or handling.

Customer Service 

Aqueon’s customer service department is excellent thanks to their attentive and helpful advisors. You can contact an agent via email or phone to assist you with any queries or questions regarding the company’s products.

The company’s great customer service makes the warranty process for your unit a smooth and simple experience. 

The Negatives 

Non-Adjustable Water Flow 

Unfortunately, the water flow rate for the filter isn’t adjustable. This isn’t a huge problem unless your tank has inhabitants that require a slower or faster current. Personally, I require a gentle current in my tank as I own a honey gourami. This type of fish prefers slow currents, so a light water flow rate is necessary.

As the unit’s flow rate is non-adjustable, I’d worry about the output on the filter being too harsh or fast for my honey gourami. 

Durability 

The device can break fairly easily and frequently, which can affect its lifespan. The impeller and intake tubes can also become clogged easily.

However, when you factor in the price of the unit, I think this is to be expected. The quality is good, but not as high as some more pricey fish tank filters. 

NOTE

Thankfully, the device has a lifetime warranty to cover any problems that aren’t caused by the fault of the owner. Aqeuon’s fantastic customer service makes solving these types of issues easy and worry-free.

Developed Noisiness 

Normally, the device functions quietly, but it can become loud over time. Some models can be noisy from the beginning, but this might be due to a manufacturing fault. 

NOTE

The impeller can sometimes develop a grinding sound, which can make the unit operate more loudly than usual. As the impeller and intake tubes can become clogged very easily, this also affects the filter’s overall nosiness.

Fortunately, the lifetime warranty also covers these issues. 

LED Light Indicator Durability 

Despite being a cool additional feature, the LED light indicator that flashes when you need to change your cartridges can malfunction frequently. It can sometimes become unreliable over time or even stop working altogether.

Alternatives

If this power filter doesn’t seem like the right fit for your fish tank, then here are three alternatives worth checking out. I’ve listed the positives and negatives of each unit compared to the QuietFlow.

Fluval C Power Filter

The Fluval C hang-on-back filter comes in three sizes: C2, C3, and C4. They’re a little cheaper than QuietFlow filters, so they’re a more affordable option.

Fluval C Power Filter

The Fluval C hang-on-back filter comes in three sizes: C2, C3, and C4. They’re a little cheaper than QuietFlow filters, so they’re a more affordable option.

The C1 is suitable for tanks around 20 gallons with a fluid rate of 119 GPH, while the C3 is appropriate for aquariums between 20 and 50 gallons with a fluid rate of 153. The C4 has a flow rate of 264 GPH, making it suitable for tanks between 40 gallons and 70 gallons.

These flow rates are higher than the QuietFlow’s equivalent models. The fluid rate can also be adjusted on the filter, which is a feature the Aqueon QuietFlow lacks. 

Fluval’s C hang-on-back filter has 5-stage filtration and comes with filter media, including polyfoam, biological c-nodes, and activated carbon. It features a cleaning indicator to notify you when the polyfoam needs to be rinsed. 

Unlike the QuietFlow, Fluval’s C hang-on-back filter needs to be primed manually. Additionally, the unit operates quite loudly and has a very noisy impeller.

Pros

  • Higher fluid rate
  • Adjustable fluid rate
  • Cheaper

Cons

  • Noisy impeller
  • Loud operation
  • Needs to be primed manually

Penn Plax Cascade Hang-On-Back Aquarium Filter

Penn Plax’s Cascade power filter is less expensive than the Aqueon QuietFlow. It comes in a few different models: 20, 80, 100, 150, 200 and 300. Each one has a different fluid rate.

Penn Plax Cascade Hang-On-Back Aquarium Filter

Penn Plax’s Cascade power filter is less expensive than the Aqueon QuietFlow. It comes in a few different models: 20, 80, 100, 150, 200 and 300. Each one has a different fluid rate. For example, the Cascade 20 has a flow rate of 20 GPH, making it suitable for a 7 gallon tank and under. The Cascade 300 has a fluid rate of 300 GPH, so it’s adequate for an aquarium between 55 and 300 gallons. 

Each model features an adjustable water flow rate and adjustable intake tube, which can’t be said for Aqueon’s filter. However, this filter only offers 3-stage filtration, whereas the QuietFlow provides 5-stage.

The unit includes filter media like bio-balls and activated carbon. Unfortunately, the filter is quite noisy and has a short lifespan. 

Pros

  • Cheaper
  • Adjustable fluid rate and intake tube

Cons

  • Can’t filtrate as much
  • Loud operation

Tetra Whisper Power Filter

This filter from Tetras is available in a variety of sizes, including 20 gallon, 30 gallon, 40 gallon, and 60 gallon models. All of them are a bit less costly than Aqueon’s equivalent units.

Tetra Whisper Power Filter

This filter from Tetras is available in a variety of sizes, including 20 gallon, 30 gallon, 40 gallon, and 60 gallon models. All of them are a bit less costly than Aqueon’s equivalent units. 

You get a mixture of filter medium with the filter, such a activated carbon and bio-foam. It provides 3-stage filtration, which isn’t as much as the Aqueon QuietFlow filter. The water flow on the unit can be adjusted, which is useful if you require a slower or faster current in your aquarium.

The biggest downside of this filter is its durability. It breaks fairly quickly and has a short lifespan. The filter also operates quite loudly and has a very noisy impeller.

Pros

  • Adjustable fluid rate
  • Cheaper

Cons

  • Can’t filtrate as much
  • Loud operation

Conclusion

Overall, I think the Aqueon QuietFlow is a good aquarium filter that’s ideal for fishkeepers on a budget. It might not be the highest quality power filter available, but it cleans your tank water efficiently and effectively.

It comes in a variety of different models to fit tanks of all sizes.The unit’s best feature is its 5-stage filtration, which keeps your tank crystal clear. You get some filter media with the device, which is convenient. 

To help you remember when to change your filter cartridges, the device has a built-in LED light indicator that flashes when it’s time to replace them. However, this LED indicator is prone to malfunctioning.

For the most part, the filter is quiet in operation, making it a good choice if your aquarium is located in your bedroom. 

There’s a chance that the unit could become noisy over time, especially as the impeller and intake tube becomes clogged easily. Fortunately, this can be easily fixed thanks to the device’s lifetime warranty and the company’s fantastic customer service department. 

The biggest downside of the power filter is it does not come with an adjustable flow rate. If you keep species of fish that prefer gentle or strong currents, then this is something to be wary of.

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