Choose a compressor for the aquarium is not such a difficult task if you know some of the nuances that should be considered when choosing.
One of the devices that should be in the arsenal of any aquarist, is considered a compressor. This is a device that provides a forced air supply to the aquarium.
What the compressor is for
In natural reservoirs, sufficient oxygen content in water is provided by “green spaces” and the photosynthesis process taking place in them. Also a part of oxygen is provided by a large area of water contact with atmospheric air. In conditions of artificial reservoirs it is rather difficult to reproduce these processes in full measure. Therefore, they resort to forced saturation with the help of compressors.
However, there are exceptions to every rule. This axiom did not pass and the statement that the compressor for the aquarium is mandatory.
Some fish species breathe atmospheric air, not dissolved in water. And if you plan to populate your home artificial aquarium with, for example, pearl gourami, macropods, speckled catfish or Coridoras catfish, this accessory is not necessary for them. Although a veil of small bubbles in the background will give the aquarium additional attractiveness.
Also, a compressor is not necessary for aquariums with a small population or the presence of fish is not planned in principle.
Another function of the aquarium compressor is to circulate the water. This helps to achieve temperature uniformity throughout the entire water column.
How to choose a compressor The basic rule of thumb is.
When choosing a compressor for an aquarium, you should, first of all, be guided by its performance. The required value of this indicator directly depends on the volume of water that needs to be saturated with oxygen. Calculate sufficient performance is simple. It is enough to multiply the liter of the aquarium by 0,8. It is this productivity per hour per liter of volume will be quite sufficient to ensure the desired degree of aeration. Although, as noted by experts, in some cases, this figure can be reduced to 0.5 liters / hour, and in some cases it is better to increase to 1 liter / hour. It all depends on what inhabitants will inhabit the aquarium. After all, each species of fish feels more comfortable in conditions that are as close to natural as possible.
According to the principle of operation, the aquarium compressor can be diaphragm or piston. The first type has a lower capacity. But at the same time, such compressors are cheaper. However, for amateur aquariums with a capacity of up to 200 liters of membrane compressor power will be quite enough. At the same time, the price of such compressors is significantly lower. Therefore, do not arrange an unnecessary “arms race”, spending extra money on it. True diaphragm compressors, often called vibration compressors, can be sources of significant noise. In piston models, this disadvantage is somewhat less pronounced. In addition, there are centrifugal pumps-pumps, capable of saturating water with air oxygen with the help of a special nozzle.
When selecting a compressor, attention should be paid to the availability of air regulation. This can be realized by installing a flow shut-off valve on the duct. But it is better to opt for a model with a flow regulated by smoothly varying the capacity.
Another argument in favor of a particular compressor model may be the noise level during its operation. But this can only be evaluated by experience, including the unit before purchase.
Summarizing, we can say that the compressor for the aquarium is optional, but in most cases desirable technical means. And its choice depends, first of all, on the capacity of the home reservoir.
For more information, see the articles “Compressor for aquarium” and “Compressor: selection and installation”.