7 Best UV Sterilizer Pumps | April 2017

We spent 35 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. Ensure the safety and health of your floating friends with one of these UV sterilizer pumps, which will keep your fishes' water algae and bacteria free. We've included models capable of handling everything from smaller habitats up to 200-gallon aquariums and koi ponds. Skip to the best uv sterilizer pump on Amazon.
7 Best UV Sterilizer Pumps | April 2017
Overall Rank: 2
Best Mid-Range
Overall Rank: 1
Best High-End
Overall Rank: 5
Best Inexpensive
The AA Aquarium Green Killing Machine Sterilizer has a filtration system and a 9-watt UV light that can eliminate bacteria and cloudy water at the same time. It is only effective for smaller aquariums, but serves those well.
  • reduces need for water changes
  • fast and easy installation
  • rather overpriced option
Brand AA Aquarium
Model AAUV9W
Weight 2.3 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
The Vepotek UV Sterilizer Pump has an adjustable jet spray outlet that can be shifted as much as 90 degrees to ensure a water flow direction that's ideal for the design and the inhabitants of your aquarium.
  • active carbon & bio chem foam filter
  • adjustable air control valve
  • only suitable for 40 gallon tank
Brand Vepotek
Model pending
Weight 2 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
The All In One 9W UV sterilizer submersible filter pump from CK Aquatics processes a bit less water per hour than other filters, but it is compact and well-made, a great choice for years of use in moderate-size tanks.
  • built-in pump and uv ballast
  • ceramic ring for biological filtration
  • poor instructions included
Brand CK Aquatics
Model pending
Weight 2.2 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0
The UP-23 Submersible UV Sterilizer pump is suitable for tanks as large as 150 gallons, and works equally well with fresh water as it does in salt water. It comes with an optional adjustable water flow regulating nozzle. Install it horizontally or vertically.
  • easy mounting with suction cups
  • uv-c lamp ensures clean clear water
  • ejects water too forcefully
Brand Super Aquatic
Model pending
Weight 2.4 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0
The SunSun JUP-01 UV Sterilizer submersible filter pump is affordable, effective, and reliable for most home aquarium use. For tanks up to 75 gallons or so in capacity, it should be the only unit needed to keep your fish safe.
  • nine watt uv light
  • measures one foot in height
  • mechanical pre-filter sponge
Brand SUN
Model 07105
Weight 2.6 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0
The Grech CUP-139 Pond Pump comes with an extended fountain head arm that will stick up above the water level, ensuring ideal circulation and aeration of water. This preassembled UV sterilizer requires no additional pump or plumbing.
  • reduces algae buildup
  • great for small koi ponds
  • good reviews from users
Model CUP-139
Weight 5.1 pounds
Rating 4.5 / 5.0
The Aquatop UVE13 UV Sterilizing Pump can process more 21 gallons of water per hour, making it suitable for larger aquariums. It works for freshwater tanks as large as 500 gallons or for saltwater tanks holding 75 gallons. It can be placed directly in the tank or the sump.
  • kills disease causing pathogens
  • built in 8-watt water pump
  • removes free-floating micro-organism
Brand AquaTop
Model UVE9
Weight 2.6 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

Buyer's Guide

Benefits Of A UV Sterilizer Pump

In essence, ultraviolet radiation has the ability to eliminate microorganisms that may be pathogenic to other living creatures. In the human world, UV radiation finds use in environmental ways such as preventing contamination in office buildings by reducing airborne fungi that contribute to respiratory sicknesses.

Using a UV sterilizer pump in aquatic applications does much of the same thing. It is a great way to reduce the spread of microorganisms in the environment itself. The function of UV sterilization acts to mimic the effects of natural sunlight, allowing for a safe environment for fish and aquatic life by eliminating microorganisms trying to reproduce. They also help eliminate algae buildup on the surface of the water or the glass of a tank.

Aquatic enthusiasts prefer this method of sterilization because it has no residual effects. Only the water which passes through the sterilizer is affected by the UV radiation. This will not affect any microorganisms living on the fish, rocks, or coral in the tank, only the water which circulates around them. This helps the aquatic environment as a whole build its own defenses, and makes for a more stable setup in the long run. As it is a method of sterilization and not specifically designed to kill microbes outright, its main action is to make microorganisms incapable of reproduction. This eliminates the worry about bacterial die-off overloading the tank. From this perspective, UV sterilization has no negative effects on the environment.

Additionally, the benefits of UV sterilizer pumps can change depending on the needs of the environment itself. By adjusting the flow rate and strength of the UV light, different needs can be met. For general upkeep on an already clean environment, a slower rate can be used. If signs of disease or microbial spread show up in the tank, the rate can be increase and the light strengthened. This can be likened to a booster shot for preventing disease.

What UV Sterilizer Pump Is Best For Your Habitat?

When choosing a UV sterilizer pump, there are many important factors which are going to determine how effective it is at its job. Taking these factors into consideration can mean the difference between a satisfactory purchase and a returned item.

One important thing to consider is the power of the bulb. The amount of UV light created is in relation to the wattage of the bulb itself. Bulbs with a higher wattage will produce more UV light. Interestingly enough, the temperature of the bulb also changes the strength of effect. UV light is best produced at a temperature range of 104-111 degrees Fahrenheit. In most cases, the ability of a bulb to create useful UV rays decreases over time, and replacement bulbs will need to be a long term consideration.

The type of organism the pump will need to handle can also be an important factor as well. In theory, UV radiation kills bacteria, viruses, algae and protozoa in water. In application, the type of organism which needs to be handled will affect how well UV sterilizers do their jobs. For instance, protozoa require a higher, longer dose of UV radiation, and there are even some bacteria which are more resistant to UV radiation treatment methods.

Another consideration is the penetration of the UV light itself. If a UV light has trouble penetrating water, it will not be effective. As a rule of thumb, fresh water is easier to penetrate than salt water due to the lower particle count. UV sterilizer pumps should be considered the last step in water treatment, coming after a particle filter and biological filter if possible. This will ensure the water is as clean as possible before heading to UV treatment; increasing its effectiveness.

How UV Sterilization Works

When most people think of UV light, they think of tanning salons. While this is one use for ultraviolet light, it may not be a smart choice. Frequent exposure to UV light can accelerate skin aging and may even increase the risk of skin cancer.

While excessive UV light may be bad for humans, this same light can actually be used as a safeguard against microorganisms and pathogens in many different environments. The process of sterilization caused by ultraviolet radiation may provide some insight into why that is.

Ultraviolet radiation emits a specific wavelength, from 328 nanometers to 210 nanometers. At this wavelength, UV radiation acts to break open and destroy the nucleic acid or DNA of individual cells. As DNA is the basic building block of every cell, it is easy to see how UV light can be both harmful and helpful depending upon how it is directed.

Luckily for humans who are exposed to UV radiation on a regular basis, certain cellular repair methods are also built into our DNA. The cells respond based on how the DNA was damaged. Specialized repair proteins continuously scan the cells for damage. When they find it, these proteins trigger mechanisms within cells which repair damage before it becomes extensive.

In the microbial world, these mechanisms are not as developed. Therefore it is much easier for UV sterilization to destroy microbial and pathogenic cells beyond repair. This method of disinfecting and sanitizing environments still has relatively little use in the medical world, mainly due to the fact that UV radiation is not selective in the DNA it damages. It will damage skin cells just as easily as attacking pathogens. This increases the risk of UV-induced skin disorders.

The use of UV sterilization has many non-biological applications, however. The destruction of airborne pathogens in hospitals and waiting rooms, cleaning medical tools, disinfecting water, and even keeping aquatic environments free from microorganisms are just a few of the ways UV sterilization is used today with great success.

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Last updated on April 23 2017 by multiple members of the ezvid wiki editorial staff

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