|Best Overall||NICREW Electric Aquarium Gravel Cleaner|
|Best Tool Kit||UPETTOOLS Aquarium Cleaning Kit|
|Best Battery-Powered||EHEIM Quick Vac Pro Automatic Gravel Cleaner and Sludge Extractor|
|Best Multipurpose||AQQA 6 in 1 Electric Cleaning Kit|
|Best Cleaner with Brush Heads||Hygger 5-in-1 Aquarium Gravel Cleaner|
- The #1 Overall Best aquarium electric gravel cleaner for your tank is the NICREW Automatic Gravel Cleaner.
- Aquariums need to be cleaned regularly to keep organic waste from building up and becoming toxic and contaminating the water.
- Electric gravel cleaners can be a great tool for keeping aquariums clean and healthy. The cleaner helps to remove debris, dirt, food particles, and other material from the substrate of the tank. This helps to keep oxygen flowing in the tank and maintain high water quality.
- There are several important factors to consider when choosing an electric aquarium gravel cleaner, such as suction power, ease of cleaning, power source, substrate, size of the tank, animals in the tank, and additional features.
Large or small, an aquarium is an attractive addition to any space. From the gentle sound of the water to the colorful movement of the fish, it adds life and texture to any room. Proponents say a fish aquarium in your home makes you calmer, helps you sleep, and can improve focused creativity. The problem is, to do it right takes some work. You’ll need all the necessary equipment, from filters to bubblers, hiding places, and substrate, like gravel. And of course, you’ll need to keep it clean.
The gravel in your fish tank hides uneaten food, fish waste, and decayed plants, so it can become toxic for your fish if it’s not cleaned regularly. Cleaning the gravel by hand means taking everything out of the tank (including the fish) and thoroughly rinsing most of the rocks. Which of course, is time-consuming and a lot of work.
Fortunately, an effective electric gravel cleaner saves you time and hassle. So, we’ve done the research and made a list of the best aquarium electric gravel cleaners for your tank, including an increasing number of affordable, high-quality electric gravel cleaners.
Top Picks: The Best Aquarium Electric Gravel Cleaners for Your Tank Today
#1 Overall Best: NICREW Automatic Gravel Cleaner
In our review, the best overall aquarium electric gravel cleaner is the NICREW Automatic Gravel Cleaner for its powerful cleaning suction and ease of use. The NICREW Gravel Cleaner filters water as it vacuums your gravel by trapping debris and particles and then releasing the water back into your tank. You can use it as part of your complete aquarium cleaning or for quick spot maintenance.
There is no need for batteries since this electric gravel cleaner uses an electrical plug. But don’t worry, it’s still completely submersible, so you can get all the debris at the bottom of your tank. It also comes with an extension nozzle for hard-to-reach places and bigger tanks, an extension tube, and a suction nozzle.
Suitable for freshwater and saltwater aquariums, the NICREW works in up to 28 inches of water depth without an attachment. For deeper aquariums, you can add the tube or nozzle extensions. It has a 120-volt 6-watt motor, so it doesn’t take up too much electricity. With a flow rate of 90 gallons per hour (GPH), this gravel cleaner will quickly get the job done, whether you are spot cleaning or deep cleaning your entire tank. The parts used are all eco-friendly, and it is easy to assemble and take apart.
However, while this gravel cleaner can be used with saltwater or freshwater tanks, it is not designed to be used with sand. You should only use the NICREW Gravel Cleaner if your gravel is 2 millimeters or larger.
Pros and Cons of the NICREW Automatic Gravel Cleaner
|It uses an electrical plug, so you don’t need to worry about batteries.||This gravel cleaner cannot be used on tanks with sand.|
|The cleaner is completely submersible.|
|It comes with an extension nozzle, an extension tube, and a suction nozzle.|
|You can use this gravel cleaner on both freshwater and saltwater tanks.|
|It works up to 28 inches of water depth without any attachments.|
|You can use it to spot clean or do a deep clean on your tank.|
|All the parts used are eco-friendly.|
|This cleaner uses a 120-volt 6-watt motor.|
|The flow rate is 90 gallons per hour (GPH).|
|It is easy to assemble and take apart.|
2. Best Tool Kit: UPETTOOLS Aquarium Gravel Cleaner
With six different functions, the UPETOOLS Aquarium Gravel Cleaner makes tank maintenance easier. Not only can you clean your aquarium with this tool, but you can also change out the water as well.
Made for freshwater and saltwater tanks of various depths, the UPETOOLS Gravel Cleaner is a powerful tool with a multi-use design. It can change out the water of your tank, clear your tank’s water of debris, and remove toxins and other impurities. In addition, it can perform three extra functions: sand washing, water flow, and water shower. It features a 100-volt, 28-watt motor and 449.09 GPH flow rate. That means you can completely change out the water in a 180-gallon tank in just 30 minutes!
This gravel cleaner uses four unique modes. The 360-degree duckbill head is perfect for cleaning gravel, while the 45-degree corner head allows you to change out the water without sucking up sand. The third mode is strictly a water changer, and the fourth is a water shower to add oxygen to your tank. With all these options, however, cleaning can become time-consuming as you switch between each setting.
The motor is detachable and can be easily cleaned without additional tools. The adjustable pump flow makes it suitable for both freshwater and saltwater aquariums. Plus, this gravel cleaner is lightweight, weighing only 2.2 pounds, so you can move it around easily. However, this model has a tendency to clog more quickly than some of the other options out there, so you may have to clean it more often.
Pros and Cons of the UPETTOOLS Aquarium Gravel Cleaner
|You can clean your aquarium and do a complete water change with this tool.||It is time-consuming to switch between the various modes.|
|It can be used with freshwater and saltwater aquariums.||Customers report that this gravel cleaner tends to clog more often, so it may need more regular cleaning.|
|The motor is 100-volt, 28-watts with a 449.09 GPH flow rate. The company states that you can change out the water of a 180-gallon tank in just 30 minutes.|
|There are four unique modes for cleaning gravel, changing out water, water changing without sucking up sand, and a water shower to add oxygen to your aquarium.|
|This cleaner can change out the water of your tank, clear your tank’s water of debris, and remove toxins and other impurities.|
|There are three additional functions: sand washing, water flow, and water shower.|
|The motor is detachable and can be cleaned without additional tools.|
|It uses an adjustable pump.|
|The cleaner only weighs 2.2 pounds and can be moved easily.|
3. Best Battery-Powered: Eheim Quick Vac Automatic Gravel Cleaner and Sludge Extractor
The Eheim Quick Vac Automatic Gravel Cleaner and Sludge Extractor is battery-operated and easy to use. It is built to stand up to thick sludge and the entire unit can be submerged up to 3 feet deep.
This gravel cleaner is designed for comprehensive tank cleaning. It powerfully suctions dirty water and filters it through an advanced filtration system, then returns it to the aquarium. The vacuum is easy to clean and uses a fine mesh cartridge to trap dirt and debris, releasing filtered water back into the aquarium. From leftover food to plant material and tough fish waste, this device can easily rid your tank of any debris, reaching up to 3 feet underwater.
The Eheim Quick Vac fits the bill if you’re looking for a handy tool for quick substrate cleaning in between water changes. You don’t need any buckets or hoses. It’s battery-operated and comes with four AA batteries, so you don’t need to worry about cords getting in the way. Equipped with a super-fine mesh cartridge, it effectively captures debris while remaining simple to clean. This mesh is also removable and easy to clean.
This gravel cleaner is 24 inches when it is fully assembled. It provides powerful suction for aquariums of all shapes and sizes that are at least 12 inches deep. However, the Eheim Quick Vac is not suited to use with sand or fine gravel. In addition, if your tank is especially dirty, the fine mesh can get clogged easily, so you may have to clean it more until your tank is cleaner.
Pros and Cons of the Eheim Quick Vac Automatic Gravel Cleaner and Sludge Extractor
|It is battery-operated and comes with four AA batteries.||This gravel cleaner works best on aquariums that are at least 12 inches deep.|
|This gravel cleaner has powerful suction and is designed for comprehensive tank cleaning.||It is not designed for fine gravel or sand.|
|It can reach up to 3 feet underwater as it removes debris, waste, and thick sludge.||The fine mesh can get clogged easily if your tank is really dirty, so you may have to clean it more often.|
|The filter uses super-fine mesh to capture all kinds of debris.|
|The mesh filter is easy to remove and clean.|
|It is only 24 inches long once assembled.|
|This gravel cleaner works on aquariums that are at least 12 inches deep.|
- Easy to use
- Entire unit is waterproof
- Easy to clean
- Can handle thick sludge
4. Best Multipurpose: AQQA Aquarium Gravel Cleaner Siphon Kit
The AQQA Aquarium Gravel Cleaner Siphon Kit offers six functions in a single to help make cleaning your fish tank quicker and easier. First, it has a 360-degree rapid water intake strainer that quickly drains the water in your aquarium for a complete water change. The motor is designed to start at the lowest water level of two inches, but it can even suck up water as low as just half an inch!
Next, the 360-degree brush head brushes and sucks at the same time to clean dirt from the walls, rocks, and other types of décor in your aquarium. The gravel washer has a filter sponge so you can remove impurities even in fine sand. The 45-degree corner suction inlet is a great option for cleaning rocks and pebbles in your tank since it can get to the impurities hidden between the stones.
The duckbill suction inlet sucks up food, fish waste, and other impurities that the vacuum missed. It also has a spatula that helps to loosen any persistent debris that might be stuck. Lastly, the water shower and filter bag can help to increase water circulation, clean and filter your tank without absorbing water, or it can be used as a shower for turtles.
The handle of the AQQA Aquarium Gravel Cleaner extends from 16 to 33 inches. However, some customers reported that this gravel cleaner is cumbersome if you are using it with a smaller tank. In addition, many users said that the hose is too short for easy cleaning and can make the angle of the handle difficult to use.
Pros and Cons of the AQQA Aquarium Gravel Cleaner Siphon Kit
|This product comes with six different attachments to provide a variety of uses.||The gravel cleaner can be cumbersome and difficult to use in smaller fish tanks.|
|The 360-degree intake strainer drains water quickly for complete water changes.||Many customers reported that this product needs a longer hose.|
|The motor works even in low-level water.||Since it has so many attachments and parts, it can be more time-consuming to switch between them.|
|The 360-degree brush head can brush and suck at the same time for cleaning dirt off of objects in your aquarium.|
|The gravel washer and filter sponge help to remove impurities even in fine sand.|
|The 45-degree corner suction inlet can get to the impurities hidden between the rocks and pebbles.|
|The duckbill suction inlet sucks up any debris that the vacuum missed. It also has a spatula blade to loosen any persistent debris that might be stuck.|
|The water shower and filter bag help to increase water circulation, clean and filter your tank, and can be used as a shower for turtles.|
|The handle can extend from 16 to 33 inches.|
5. Best Gravel Cleaner with Brush Heads: Hygger 5-in-1 Aquarium Gravel Cleaner
The Hygger 5-in-1 Aquarium Gravel Cleaner is both extendable and powerful, and you can use it in both freshwater and saltwater aquariums. Its handle extends from 11 to 40 inches to reach the deepest corners of your tank. Plus, with its brush heads, you can scrub off the gunk that tends to build up in the corners of the tank.
The Hygger Aquarium Gravel Cleaner comes with a non-slip handle, sand vacuum head, debris vacuum head, brush head, and sand washer, making it easy to tackle any aquarium. You also get 6.5 feet of water tubing that extends up to 32.7 inches for those hard-to-reach spaces. Its 360 GPH flow rate and 20-watt pump help you to clean your fish tank efficiently and effectively. It’s easy to assemble and also comes with a replaceable filter sponge.
Some customers reported that this gravel cleaner may require some careful maneuvering and didn’t have quite as much suction power as they would have liked. You may need to tilt or lift the attachment slightly rather than having it flush with the bottom of your tank for better suction.
Pros and Cons of the Hygger 5-in-1 Aquarium Gravel Cleaner
|It comes with different types of brush heads, including a sand vacuum head, debris vacuum head, brush head, and sand washer.||Some customers reported that the suction is not super powerful.|
|The non-slip handle can extend from 11 to 40 inches.||A few customers said that this cleaner can be hard to maneuver.|
|There is 6.5 feet of water tubing that can extend up to 32.7 inches.|
|The flow rate is 360 GPH and it uses a 20-watt pump.|
|It comes with a replaceable filter sponge.|
|This gravel cleaner is easy to assemble.|
Choosing the Best: What to Look For
When choosing the best electric aquarium gravel cleaner, there are several important factors to consider. These include suction power, ease of cleaning, power source, substrate, size of the tank, animals in the tank, and additional features.
Suction power is more critical with bigger tanks. The faster you can suck up debris and filter the water, the quicker your job is done. However, a vacuum with too much power will suck up the gravel as well as the waste, causing clogs and wasting time.
Ease of Cleaning
If it takes an hour to clean and disassemble the tool you use to clean your tank, you’re not saving a lot of effort and time. The best electric aquarium gravel cleaners are easy to assemble, disassemble, and clean.
With electric gravel cleaners, you can choose either one that is either electrically operated (plugs into the wall) or battery-operated. Battery-operated cleaners are easier to use since you don’t have to worry about the cord. However, you do have to change the batteries out, and you must make sure that no water gets into the battery compartment. Electrically operated gravel cleaners are often more powerful, but you’ll need to make sure you don’t touch the plug with wet hands.
Not all aquarium gravel cleaners can be used with different types of substrate. Many are made for gravel of a certain size and will clog and burn out if you use them with sand. Make sure to check what type of substrate you will be using before purchasing a gravel cleaner so that you get one that is suited to your aquarium.
Animals in the Tank
If you have snails, fish, or other invertebrates that live in the substrate or gravel of your aquarium, you’ll need to be careful when cleaning your tank. A powerful electric gravel cleaner can be more effective than a siphon-action one, but it might also suck up and even kill animals or plants. So, make sure to use the traditional method if your tank has these types of creatures.
Some gravel vacuums just suck and filter, while others come with brushes, scoops, and other accessories that can help with stubborn and hard-to-reach debris.
The Two Types of Aquarium Gravel Cleaners
There are two main types of aquarium gravel cleaners for fish tanks: siphon vacuum cleaners and electric aquarium gravel cleaners. Each model has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s up to you to decide which one is the most suitable for your situation.
Siphon Vacuum Cleaners
Siphon gravel vacuums are a popular and affordable solution for cleaning fish tanks. They are easy to use, rely on gravity, and are cheaper than electric aquarium gravel cleaners. However, as they can suck up both dirt and water, it is necessary to drain the tank each time they are used. While this may not always be convenient, siphon gravel vacuums may be a useful tool when changing the water in your fish tank.
Electric Aquarium Gravel Cleaners
Electric gravel cleaners are more powerful than siphon vacuums, but they are also more expensive. Rather than draining the aquarium, the electric models circulate water through a filter to collect food particles, waste, and other debris. This makes them great for cleaning the bottom of aquariums. Electric gravel cleaners can offer a much smoother user experience than a siphon vacuum, but they also require more setup.
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The Best Aquarium Electric Gravel Cleaners for Your Tank FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Do you have to clean aquarium gravel?
Keeping your aquarium gravel clean not only makes your tank look nicer, but it keeps your fish healthier as well. Cleaning the aquarium gravel in your fish tank removes fish waste, leftover food, and other debris, which helps to keep your water quality high. If those things are left in the tank, they can break down and increase toxins that are harmful to fish.
How often do I need to clean my aquarium gravel?
It’s important to vacuum your aquarium regularly. Once a month or every other week is best. You’ll be surprised by how much junk and dirt can get stuck under rocks, plants, and other decorations in your tank.
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