Do Goldfish Need a Filter To Live?

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Your little friend swimming inside the tank needs to live healthy and in a better way. And this must be a big concern for goldfish owners out there. One of the most common confusions that surround a new goldfish owner is about owning a filter.

Should I get It or Would It Be Okay to Carry on Without One? That question lingering onto your thoughts have finally made you look out for this query, do goldfish need a filter?

Today we will be solving that problem for you. Hopefully, you’ll make a confirmed decision about this dilemma by the end.

You’ll get to know if it’s possible to not get a filter, the main reason behind why you need one, the filter’s mechanism plus purpose, and more. Keep on Reading!

Do Goldfish Need a Filter-The Quick Break Down?

Seeing those YouTube videos where a goldfish swimming inside a filterless tank set up without any trouble, your judgments could be easily made to something totally opposite of reality. Without a filter, a goldfish can survive for sure. But can’t live happily!

The fish has a bad reputation for producing an excessive amount of ammonia. This substance can be enough reason for poisoning your pretty little pet. And the creatures capable to live more than 40 years die because of that sole effect. A filter can avoid those tragic lifespan cuttings.

Since the fish produces three times more waste compared to others, it needs help for dealing with that large mess. And a filter helps right here. By ensuring your goldfish with a filter included tank, you take care of those ammonia related harms in the best possible way.

That’s one of the major reasons why any expert would recommend you to buy a tank for your goldfish. So, from this perspective, you can already tell a filter is one of the most important things to get for a goldfish’s healthy nurturing.


Understanding Goldfish Filter Mechanism & Purpose

Someone who can’t cope up with regular water changing and cleaning routines will seriously need to think about getting a small pump along with the filter. A filter basically works together with this pump for filtering out dirty messy water.

Here a system made from mesh, aquarium floss, and activated charcoal comes in use. However, these elements can vary depending on what type you are utilizing.

Through a filter, there will be no trouble with pollutants such as heavy metals, nitrates, food detritus, chlorine, and so on.

Also, there is a chance of encouraging good bacteria. These are active in consuming organic waste. And so, your goldfish live within an environment free from bacterial and fungal infections.

Typically, a filter comes in two variants. The first one is the in-tank version that suits bowls and small tanks without much room for hanging filter. And the other one is known as an exterior filter. This type can be installed outside of a tank or within a cabinet.

Three Methods of Filtration:

Generally, the whole filtration saga works in three ways. We’ll talk about those three methods below separately. Enjoy!

Mechanical Filtration Method for Preventing Solid Waste Apart from Cleaning Water.

The mechanical filtration method is great for clearing water and also preventing solid waste. Usually, the use of a sponge and woven cloth is noticeable to trap solid elements. This helps to make a good environment for beneficial bacteria.

However, the only trouble with this method is that it requires frequent cleaning. The built-up can easily make the surrounding gross.

Not only this, but there’s also a high chance of nitrates increment. And eventually, it can become a good reason for your goldfish to get sick. In most cases, once or twice a week of cleaning is enough to maintain a gunk free mechanical filtration environment.

Biological Filtration Method for Better Bacterial Growth.

One of the serious reasons why goldfish owners go ahead and buy a filter is good bacteria growth. Because these are superior at controlling those harmful toxins produced from the fish.

Between water changes, these good bacteria are the sole reason for your goldfish to survive and live. And without them, a hazardous environment with ammonia and nitrite spikes get closer to causing bigger troubles for your goldfish.

Usually, aerobic filtration, one popular kind of biological filtration method works best for turning ammonia into nitrite and those into nitrate. These are fantastic in strong currents. In fact, with a stronger current, the results of aerobic filtration are better.

The other kind that removes nitrates known as anaerobic filtration works best for slower and gentle currents. Depending on your case you can choose any type.

However, in the general situation, if you have heavy load within a less water volume inside the tank, aerobic filtration will work best for your case. And if the tank is stocked pretty lightly and you go for minimal feeding, then nitrate reduction should be your main concern. So, go for anaerobic filtration.

Chemical Filtration Method for Tannin Removal.

This filtration uses an exchange process for purifying water through natural elements. And then the toxic elements start getting detoxifying while passing through it.

One of the most common types is using charcoal or carbon. Those tannins that are responsible for making water yellow or brownish are easily removed through this process. Also, it helps in maintaining a low level of ammonia in new tanks. However, it can get a bit less active with passing time.

For small tanks, this is a very vital method for keeping those harmful toxin levels under control. Also, it sometimes does have an added benefit of deactivating hormones of fish with the carbon.

However, this process works poorly with nitrates removal. Also, the functionality is best for a week or two.


Two Critical Reasons to Get A Filter.

Apart from keeping the water harmless, there are other reasons as well that may encourage you to think about getting a filter. What are those reasons?

A Drastic Change in Oxygen Level

New goldfish parents always have some common sort of question regarding tanks, filters, and so on. One such common query is, do goldfish need oxygen.

Some even wonder about the effect of light on keeping goldfish healthy. So, they start wondering and researching on do goldfish need a light or similar source for let’s say any development. All these types of queries are essential for you to know about, undoubtedly.

A gold fish’s gills aim for basically what your lungs need. Taking oxygen in and carbon dioxide out. The dissolved gas within the water is where the gills get oxygen from.

If proper water circulation is not available, a shortage of oxygen can take place within the tank or bowl. And that can make your small fish suffer. This results in potential suffocation as well.

The right way to avoid such a situation is allowing enough amount of water coming into touch with the surface to do a gas exchange. And that happens only when you let it have enough water circulation.

A filter would provide exactly that need! The pump is basically meant for arranging these water circulations. And this is up to ten times over every hour.

The Quality of Water Gets Better!

A goldfish residing in an unfiltered small tank or bowl will live a relatively short life. Why? Because of the water quality. Yes, that’s how unfit water conditions affect their survival.

On the other hand, you can get that healthy lifespan of your goldfish by maintaining the condition and environment inside the tank. And a filter is what makes that process work in the most effective way.

Without a proper filter, no matter how daring and caring you are, the life span of a goldfish won’t extend for more than two or three years. While with a filter included in the goldfish’s tank, you can expect it to live way longer and better.

Also, you are not limited to hold a goldfish inside a tank to use a filter. There are different filter varieties available for decorative containers and bowls as well.


Wrapping Up

Now that we are done with a long chat about the whole filter thing, how do you feel about this matter? Do goldfish need a filter, I’m sure you know the answer pretty well at this point. A proper caregiver would never slip this important stuff to maintain a nice environment for their goldfish’s goodwill.

When making a choice for an appropriate filter, you want to consider one rule of thumb. Get something capable to turn over around 10 times the volume of your tank. And that is counting for every hour. Don’t keep the tank excessively filled up. Also, it’s best to avoid too much feeding.

By maintaining these simple factors and getting the right filter, those toxins inside the water will hardly harm your loving water friends!

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