Best Small Wavemaker for Aquarium of 2021: Top 6 Picks

As the name implies, wavemakers are a tool to create waves in the water to mimic the natural water movement, hence, creating a healthier living environment for your fish, turtle, and coral. But if you’re a beginner, don’t fret, we are here to help.

Here are the best small wavemakers for aquarium:

  • Best Overall: Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Circulation Pump
  • Most Durable: SunSun JVP-110 528-GPH
  • Best For Medium-sized Tanks: FREESEA Aquarium Circulation Pump Wave Maker
  • Best For Marine Reef Aquarium: Jebao SOW Wave Maker Flow Pump
  • Best For Big-Sized Tanks: Uniclife 2100/3400 GPH
  • Best For Small-Sized Tank: hygger 1600GPH
6 Best Small Wavemakers For Aquarium
Best Overall
Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Circulation Pump
    Most Durable
    SunSun JVP-110 528-GPH
      Best For Medium-sized Tanks
      FREESEA Aquarium Circulation Pump Wave Maker
        Best For Marine Reef Aquarium
        Jebao SOW Wave Maker Flow Pump
          Best For Big-Sized Tanks
          Uniclife 2100/3400 GPH
            Best For Small-Sized Tank
            hygger 1600GPH

              Best Overall: Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Circulation Pump

              Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Circulation Pump
              Pros
              • Versatile – able to work on acrylic or glass, saltwater or freshwater aquariums
              • Support free positioning – patented magnet-suction cup and compact size
              • Offer sophisticated workmanship and decent quality – made in Italy
              • Safe and controllable – wave timers

              Cons
              • Sometimes, it runs noisily

              This small wavemaker is 100% Italy-made with an emphasis on a patented magnet-suction cup that can support for free positioning in your tank, no matter it is acrylic or glass, freshwater or saltwater aquarium.

              Perfect for a 28- to 50-gallon freshwater aquarium or a 15- to 30-gallon saltwater one.

              The best thing about it is the total energy consumption we’ve measured is super-low while the product itself is compact enough to be mounted anywhere wanted.

              Besides, it is safe to use thanks to the wave timer.

              Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Circulation Pump Specifications

              Flow Rate

              425 GPH

              Voltage

              110v

              Wattage

              4 watts

              Recommended Aquarium Size

              15 to 30 gallons for marine aquarium

              28 to 50 gallons for freshwater aquarium

              Highlight Features

              Able to work on acrylic or glass, saltwater or freshwater aquariums

              Patented magnet-suction cup and compact size

              Made in Italy

              Wave timers

              Verdict

              Versatile, energy-efficient, easy to use, and super-quality, Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Circulation Pump is our solid choice as the best overall performer.

              Most Durable: SunSun JVP-110 528-GPH

              SunSun JVP-110 528-GPH
              Pros
              • Super-affordable – priced under $20 for two packs
              • Ideal for both marine and freshwater aquariums - 528GPH + wide-spread range
              • Able to create waves of any full flow directions - suction cup with 360-degree rotation and articulating ball joints
              • Safe for the living environment – oil-free and fully submersible motor

              Cons
              • The pump cannot be mounted
              • It might suck up live plant pieces and winds around the propeller
              • The cord is a little short

              Don’t let the incredibly low price tag of this small wave maker fool you! It is the most durable in this review list and able to create 528GPH with a wide-spread range. That also means no matter your aquarium is saltwater or freshwater, this is always a great choice.

              The biggest selling point of this unit is it can create waves of any directions at full flow, all thanks to the suction cup with 360-degree rotation and articulating ball joints.

              Using it, you’ll get a lot more peace in mind as its motor is completely oil-free and submersible for a pollution-free to the underwater living environment.

              Another shocking fact is at the price of under $20, you’ll receive not one, but two packs of this wonderful wavemaker. Too good to be true!

              SunSun JVP-110 528-GPH Specifications

              Flow Rate

              528-GPH

              Voltage

              110V

              Wattage

              2.5 watts

              Recommended Aquarium Size

              90 gallons

              Highlight Features

              528GPH + wide-spread range

              Suction cup with 360-degree rotation and articulating ball joints

              Oil-free and fully submersible motor

              Verdict

              Designed with heavy-duty construction, SunSun JVP-110 528-GPH is the most durable wave maker that stays with us the longest time.

              Best For Medium-sized Tanks: FREESEA Aquarium Circulation Pump Wave Maker

              FREESEA Aquarium Circulation Pump Wave Maker
              Pros
              • Ideal for a 60-gallon aquarium – offer 1056 GPH of flow rate
              • Provide 360-degree rotation - novel design
              • Easy to fix or move the pump – forceful magnet

              Cons
              • If something gets caught inside the impeller, it can make a bit of noise
              • The magnets could destroy a glass tank if you don’t use a sliding motion to attach it

              Created to offer 1056 GPH of flow rate, the FREESEA Aquarium Circulation Pump Wave Maker is our favorite pick for medium-sized tanks, up to 60 gallons.

              We love it because aside from creating waves, it is able to adjust their direction up to 360 degrees thanks to the novel design. If you want to try this function, just switch it on your outlet then everything will be automatically set.

              An interesting thing about this unit is that it’s mounted by magnets so you can modify its position by using the external one, instead of dipping your hands into the aquarium or removing it.

              Buy it with confidence because FREESEA provides this product with a full-refund guarantee and lifetime warranty.

              FREESEA Aquarium Circulation Pump Wave Maker Specifications

              Flow Rate

              1056 GPH

              Wattage

              6W

              Recommended Aquarium Size

              60 gallons

              Highlight Features

              Offer 1056 GPH of flow rate

              Novel design

              Forceful magnet

              Verdict

              The FREESEA Aquarium Circulation Pump WaveMaker is an ideal choice for medium-sized aquariums.

              Best For Marine Reef Aquarium: Jebao SOW Wave Maker Flow Pump

              Jebao SOW Wave Maker Flow Pump
              Pros
              • Perfect for marine reef aquariums - 500L/h to 4000L/h of flow rate
              • Not disturb your work – run quietly
              • Bang for bucks – optional one-touch feed mode and night sensor

              Cons
              • Not ideal to line up the three connection points - The connection between the controller and the pump is a soft plastic
              • Require unplugging and re-plugging if you want to use the child/parent mode

              At the price of around $50 for a functional, small wavemaker for a marine reef aquarium, you hardly beat this option.

              It offers flow rate ranges of 500L/H to 4000L/H, which can be super-gentle or super-powerful as you want. Whichever the setting you choose, it always works quietly, and the surface wave big enough for good gas exchange.

              The optional one-touch feed mode and night sensor exceed our expectations for a cheap pump. They allow you to experience it better.

              Jebao SOW Wave Maker Flow Pump Specifications

              Flow Rate

              500L/h to 4000L/h

              Voltage

              100V

              Recommended Aquarium Size

              20-40 gallons

              Highlight Features

              500L/h to 4000L/h of flow rate

              Run quietly

              Optional one-touch feed mode and night sensor

              Verdict

              If you are finding the best marine reef aquarium wave maker to keep your corals in motion, look no further.

              Best For Big-Sized Tanks: Uniclife 2100/3400 GPH

              Uniclife 2100/3400 GPH
              Pros
              • Ideal for a 150-gallon tank - a max flow rate of up to 3400 GPH
              • Run quietly and safely – low voltage & low-energy consumption
              • Full of control – able to adjust the pump’s frequency, flow speed, and wave direction
              • Easy to use – control panel

              Cons
              • A bit overpriced
              • Modes 3 and 4 do not use speed control.

              Out of many contenders for big-sized tanks, we find this one to be the most outstanding no matter that is a tropical, freshwater, or marine aquarium.

              As offering a max flow rate of up to 3400 GPH while the energy consumption is just 40W, it would work best on a 150-gallon tank with safety. Plus, you can adjust its frequency, flow speed, and wave orientation up to 360 degrees.

              Don’t worry! It’s easy to customize using the straightforward control panel. It also gives you a one-touch feed mode which slows the pump for a period of 10 minutes.

              Uniclife 2100/3400 GPH Specifications

              Flow Rate

              3400 GPH

              Voltage

              24 V

              Wattage

              15W to 40 W,

              Recommended Aquarium Size

              150 gallons

              Highlight Features

              A max flow rate of up to 3400 GPH

              Low voltage & low-energy consumption

              Control panel

              Able to adjust the pump’s frequency, flow speed, and wave direction

              Verdict

              The Uniclife 2100/3400 GPH is built with everything we want to apply for a big-sized aquarium.

              Best For Small-Sized Tank: hygger 1600GPH

              hygger 1600GPH
              Pros
              • Small yet mighty – provide 1600GPH of flow rate
              • Controllable – offer a 360-degree wave direction rotation function, 8 wave-making speeds, 4 wave working watts, and 4 wave modes
              • Easy to control – feature an external LED display control panel
              • Scrape prevention on glass tanks – magnet bracket with a rubber sleeve

              Cons
              • Expensive

              Contrasting to the Uniclife, this one is for small-sized tanks, around 3 to 25 gallons.

              That also means it is quieter and more energy-saving than others. Besides, the assembly will be a lot simpler. Small yet mighty, the hygger delivers up to 1600GPH of flow rate and is provided with a 360-degree wave direction rotation function, 8 wave-making speeds, 4 wave working watts, and 4 wave modes.

              It also features an external LED display control panel with a touchscreen where you can easily track and manage many elements.

              A big bonus for this product is while using a magnet to keep it fixed in the tank, this magnet bracket is attached with a rubber sleeve for scrape prevention on glass tanks.

              hygger 1600GPH Specifications

              Flow Rate

              1600GPH

              Voltage

              12V

              Wattage

              3W to14W

              Recommended Aquarium Size

              3-25 Gallons

              Highlight Features

              Provide 1600GPH of flow rate

              Offer a 360-degree wave direction rotation function, 8 wave-making speeds, 4 wave working watts, and 4 wave modes

              Feature an external LED display control panel

              Magnet bracket with a rubber sleeve

              Verdict

              hygger 1600GPH is the best option for a small-sized tank to keep your fish and corals live healthily.

              How To Choose The Best Small Wavemaker For Aquarium?

              Where You Intend to Place The Wave Maker in Your Aquarium?

              This is important because it decides whether your aquarium receives throughout the water movement with no dead spots or not.

              From that point, it is better to go for two or smaller wavemakers rather than just one big one. This also depends on what probably gets in the way of your wave maker’s movements. The more decoration items, plants, and corals in the tank, the more wavemakers you need.

              What You Stock/the Aquatic Life in the Aquarium?

              This is important as different aquatic life requires different waves and currents to live healthily.

              For example, SPS corals require a total tank turnover of 20-40 times per hour while LPS and soft corals need around 10-20 times per hour. That also means if you own a 30-gallon SPS reef tank, the internal flow rate required for it is around 600-1200 GPH while LPS needs 300-600 GPH.

              Tank Size

              The measuring unit is gallons.

              Each wavemaker has its own capacity of the gallon number that it’s able to move or called flow rate (measured in gallons per hour – GPH).

              This feature is crucial to consider because an oversized wavemaker might cause too much and too harsh water movements, ending up that your fish and corals can’t thrive healthily. Meanwhile, a too-small one will waste your money.

              While you’re shopping, carefully look at the recommended tank size and GPH of each wavemaker offers.

              Which Brands Make The Best Small Wavemaker For Aquarium?

              Hydor

              With the aim to simplify the aquarist hobbyists’ life, Hydor has had over 35 years’ expertise in designing and developing innovative as well as unique technological products for ponds and tanks.

              Hygger

              Established in 2008 with the registered capital of one million RMB, Hygger at the current has had some certain achievements. Their own unique advantages in the aquarium equipment take a huge role to help them remain a good market reputation in Europe and the US.

              FAQs

              What is a wavemaker?

              It is basically a water surge tool used in aquariums to mimic the natural waves in oceans and seas as well as provide oxygen to your fish and invertebrates.

              Do I need a wavemaker in my tank?

              We highly recommend equipping your aquarium with a wavemaker because it will help fish to get some exercise, be more active, and live more healthily.

              Meanwhile, a wavemaker prevents dead pockets around reefs and live rock to eliminate the accumulation of unwanted detritus, therefore, your corals thrive better.

              What wavemaker size do I need for my aquarium?

              It depends on the size of your aquarium and your preference.

              For example, if your tank is about 40 gallons then the flow rate needed is around 800 to 1200 GPH. Here, you’ve two choices – either a wavemaker than can produce such a required flow rate or two smaller ones (produce 400-600 GPH) placed at each end of the tank.

              Do I need a Smartwave controller?

              We highly recommend that you should.

              Smartwave helps promote a healthy tank by recreating the natural currents using one or more pumps.

              How to install a wavemaker?

              Watch this tutorial video:

              Conclusion

              The best small wave maker for your aquarium is out there and is probably one that we’ve featured right here in this review. While there are a bunch of options, make sure you pick the right one that will cater to your needs. That’s all for this article. Thanks for reading!

              Leave a Comment

              shares