What Is The Best Aquarium Air Pump On The UK Market?

Not all home aquariums need an air pump. If you have a powerhead in your aquarium, it likely generates enough surface agitation to keep the water oxygenated.

But if your aquarium doesn’t have enough agitation at the surface, maybe because you don’t have a powerhead, adding an air pump ensures there’s enough oxygen in the water.

Supplemental oxygenation is also important for tanks with closed hoods and aquariums that need to maintain a higher temperature (warm water holds less oxygen).

An air pump takes air from the room and passes it through the water using a tube. As air bubbles rise and break on the surface of the water, they cause agitation. This movement dissolves oxygen into the water.

You can add an air stone to the air pump assembly. An air stone releases many tiny bubbles, instead of a few large ones. The tiny bubbles deliver more oxygen to the water.

In addition to oxygenation, an air pump is a must-have for certain types of filters such as sponge filters. These filters rely on the upward movement of bubbles to force water through the filter.

An air pump is also great for aesthetics, especially when combined with an air stone.

In this buying guide, we recommend the bet aquarium air pumps you can order online in the UK.

If you don’t have time to read all the detailed reviews, here is a quick summary:

Best Aquarium Air Pumps (UK Market)

Our Top Pick

All Pond Solutions Aquarium Tropical Air Pump

All Pond Solutions Aquarium Tropical Air Pump

  • High flow rate – great for larger aquariums
  • Dual outlets
  • Free airline, non-return valve and air stone


Check Price On Amazon
Very Quiet

Tetra APS50 Silent Aquarium Air Pump

Tetra APS50 Silent Aquarium Air Pump

  • Low energy consumption – just 2W
  • Very quiet
  • Adjustable airflow


Check Price On Amazon
For Small Tanks

VicTsing Aquarium Air Pump, Fish Tank Air Pump Oxygen Pump

VicTsing Aquarium Air Pump, Fish Tank Air Pump Oxygen Pump

  • Complete kit
  • Energy-efficient – consumes just 2W
  • Adjustable airflow


Check Price On Amazon
Energy Efficient

hygger Aquarium Air Pump

hygger Aquarium Air Pump

  • Ultra-low power consumption
  • Very quiet
  • Comes with air stone


Check Price On Amazon
Midsize Tanks

Eheim Adjustable 100 Air Pump

Eheim Adjustable 100 Air Pump

  • Complete kit – includes diffuser and non-return valve
  • Fairly quiet
  • Adjustable airflow


Check Price On Amazon

Key Considerations When Choosing An Aquarium Air Pump

Here are a few tips on how to choose the right air pump for your aquarium.

A. Aquarium Size

Different aquarium pumps are designed or different aquarium sizes. Check the manufacturer’s recommended max capacity.

The capacity depends on the amount of air the air pump can add to the water. Air pumps with a higher output are ideal for large aquariums.

An air pump’s output is typically given in litres per hour. At the lower end, you’ll find air pumps with an output of about 50 l/h. These are ideal for smaller aquariums with a capacity up to 60 litres.

Powerful air pumps can have an output as high as 400 l/h. These are ideal for extra-large aquariums up to 600 litres.

Get an air pump that matches the size of your fish tank. An air pump that’s too powerful will be noisy and is a waste of electricity.

Don’t get a too-small air pump either. It’ll struggle to keep your aquarium oxygenated.

B. Number of Outlets

Most aquarium air pumps have at least two outlets. You can connect additional accessories to these outlets including an air stone and a filter.

Pricier and more powerful air pumps may have more outlets, allowing you to connect additional accessories.

C. Variable Airflow

Look for an air pump with a valve that adjusts airflow. This allows you to reduce or increase the amount of air going into the fish tank.

You can reduce airflow to lower the amount of noise from the pump or bubbles. You can also increase airflow to add more oxygen to the water.

D. Noise Level

The source of noise is usually not the air bubbles in the water, but the air pump itself. It may vibrate or hum as it pumps air.

Some aquarium air pumps use techniques like rubber feet or insulating shells to reduce the amount of noise from the pump.

Top 5 Reviews

1. All Pond Solutions Aquarium Tropical Air Pump

Our Top Pick
9.2/10 Our Score

With a flow rate of 3 litres per minute or 180 l/h, the Ap-3 aquarium air pump is ideal for aquariums with a capacity between 80 and 180 litres.

The pump comes as a complete kit that includes the pump itself, two non-return valves to protect the pump from backflow, two air stones and a 4m airline.

The pump is fairly noisy when set at the highest speed. You’ll hear a constant hum from the motor. Turn down airflow using the dial on the pump to reduce the amount of noise when you go to sleep or whenever you want some quiet.

The air pump has dual outlets. Use one of them to attach the air stone, and the other for another accessory such as a filter or a protein skimmer.

2. Tetra APS50 Silent Aquarium Air Pump

Very Quiet
9.1/10 Our Score

The Tetra APS50 is the best choice if you are looking for a whisper quiet aquarium air pump. The pump uses two techniques to reduce the amount of noise and vibration.

One, it has thicker housing that absorbs and supresses noise from the motor. Two, it has rubber feet that eliminate vibration.

Even at the highest speed, you’ll barely hear the pump working. The low noise level makes the Tetra APS50 ideal for the bedroom, nursery or home office.

The Tetra APS50 air pump has a flow rate of 50 l/h. It’s ideal for smaller fish tanks with a capacity between 10 and 60 litres.

Similar to other air pumps, you can adjust airflow to control the amount of bubbles in the water or make the pump even quieter.

3. VicTsing Aquarium Air Pump, Fish Tank Air Pump Oxygen Pump

For Smaller Tanks
9.1/10 Our Score

The VicTsing aquarium air pump is the best choice for small fish tanks with capacity between 10 and 30 litres.

Everything you need to set up the pump is provided in the package. This includes the pump, two 1m airlines, a check valve, two adjustable air valves, two air stones and a T connector.

The T connector is handy if you want to turn the two outlets on the pump into a single outlet. Leave out the connector if you want to connect more than one accessory.

Noise level is not too bad. You cannot hear the motor and bubbles when watching TV, but the noise can be a problem when sleeping.

Interestingly, several customers say attaching a sponge filter to one of the outlets drastically reduces the amount of noise.

Something else you can try is reducing airflow.

4. hygger Aquarium Air Pump

Energy Efficient
8.9/10 Our Score

If you are worried about electricity consumption, the hygger aquarium air pump has the highest efficiency among our picks. It consumes just 1.5W of electricity.

The lower wattage means a lower flow rate, so the hygger air pump works best only in small aquariums with a capacity up to 55 litres.

The pump is much smaller than other air pumps. It’s small enough that you can attach it against the side of the tank (on the outside) using the included suction cup.

The hygger air pump is also quieter than most other air pumps. There’s no hum or vibrations to disturb your sleep.

The package includes the air pump, a 1.1m silicone tube, an air stone, clips and a suction cup.

There are two things missing: an adjustable air valve (meaning that you cannot reduce or increase airflow) and a non-return valve.

The adjustable air valve is not necessary for most aquariums, but the non-return valve is. Without it, water from the fish tank will flow back up the tube when you turn off the pump.

You can use the non-return valve from the old air pump you are replacing or buy a new one.

5. Eheim Adjustable 100 Air Pump

For Midsize Tanks
8.9/10 Our Score

The Eheim 100 has a flow rate of 100 litres per hour, making it ideal for small and midsize aquariums. It has a single outlet, to which you can connect the included diffuser.

The diffuser produces a beautiful bubbling effect that also increases the amount of oxygen in the water.

You can adjust airflow at both the pump and the diffuser. This allows you to adjust the amount of noise from the pump and control the bubbling effect from the diffuser.

If you want more airflow, get the Eheim 200 or 400. These models come with additional outputs for attaching multiple accessories.

Noise level is lower than average. The pump has rubber feet to reduce vibration. The only noise you’ll hear is a low hum from the motor.