10 tips on how you can make your aquarium look cleaner

There is one thing which is the same with pretty much every fish keeper, and i.e. that sometimes we can be our own worst enemy. We tend to never be satisfied with our aquarium, we look at them and say; "there is something that I can do to make it better."

So, here are 10 tips on how you can make your aquarium look cleaner. 

Better Lighting:

This one might look like common sense, but you would be surprised to know how my people think, "My lights are fine, they are bright, what else does it need." But you should know that lights make a huge difference, and just how different they'll make your aquarium.

Almost every tank looks different if you have different lights in them. Some of the bluer, with some of them having more Yellow. Some of them you can make whatever color you want. Light doesn't always need to be brighter. Some times you can improve the look at your tank with lights that have red, blue, and green lights.


Backgrounds make a huge difference in the overall appearance of your tank. You will be surprised to see how much difference just changing the color of your background can make.

  • Logo can make plants pop
  • A stone background can make things look more natural.
  • Black background, they just make everything look better.

Pimp your filter

So, you set up your first aquarium a little while ago. you got one of those starter kits that come with the tank: lid, light, heater, and filter. Everything has been fine, but you added a few more fish and lately, you have noticed that the water hasn't been as crisp as it was. 

Well, it could be that you are not keeping up with maintenance or it could be that your filter might need a little boost. Most aquarium filters are going to be fine to what comes in the box, but sometimes you just need a little more to make the water nice and crisp and that came with the filter won't just cut it.

Fortunately, there are tons of little tricks that can improve the performance of your filter. Things like adding some filter floss, or adding sponges can help. These simple tricks only cost a couple of bucks but, they can make a remarkable difference.

Also don't neglect to maintain your filter. Rinsing out your sponges in the aquarium water and emptying the filter of debris on a regular basis could be all you need.

UV Sterilizer

UV sterilizers use ultraviolet light to kill microorganisms in the water, which helps to prevent infection in your fish, while also killing free-floating algae; making the tank crystal-clear.

There are large UV sterilizers that can go in some systems, but there are also smaller ones that can go in your tank. They are not much bigger than heaters. If you have done everything and still can't get the water to be perfect than UV sterilizer might do the trick.

Trim Plants/ Algae

Almost everyone who put live plants in their aquarium wants them to get as big and full as possible. The problem is that they can sometimes get a bit out of control and it can start looking pretty messy and slobby.

Think about your shrubs outside of your house. If you get them out of control l they will start covering-up your walkways and block windows. Trimming them down will dramatically impact the appearance of your home. Well, live plants in the aquarium are the same way.

Some people like that look, they want the entire tank to be clean. That's cool if that's what you are into. But if it is too much then do consider getting in there and trimming things back a little bit. Not only it will make your tank look cleaner, but it will also let more light in and allow light to get down to the base of the plant which means that they will grow even better.

Skip Feeding

There is a constant loop that goes on in the aquarium. You feed the fish, the fish poops, the poop breaks down, and build up at the bottom of the tank, along with the uneaten food. This happens over and over again; after a while, it starts to build and almost looks like you are mudding your aquarium.

Some people say that it is natural and is a great fertilizer for plants, but let's are honest. Who wants a bunch of mud in the bottom of their tank. A good way to reduce them is to occasionally skip feeding You might think it's cruel, but your fish will be fine. 

If you skip feeding them for one day, what will they do? Well, they will start scavenging around the tank and decoration. That is, they are cleaning up the tank.

Clean-up Crew

What is the best clean-up crew for your tank? First of all, let's talk about what a clean-up crew is? It is a bunch of fishes that keep the tank clean.  A clean-up crew would be fish, invertebrates, and snails that are constantly scavenging around the tank, looking around something to eat. They help things keep tidy, so, your tank looks less sloppy between maintenance. 

The best clean-up crew is totally dependent on what you have in your aquarium. For smaller, community tank; Cory cats, shrimps, and snails are good but obviously you can not put them in your huge tanks. For your huge tank use Common-plecos.

Bristol-nose Plecos are also great, they are cute, funky looking and they are constantly putting in work. But along with these fishes, you need to keep doing your job too. they are not going to do it for you.


Activated Carbon is one of the most common chemicals, put in the aquarium to keep it crisp and clear. Whether you are someone who uses carbon or hates it, let's talk about what it does. Carbon absorbs organic material in your aquarium, helping to keep the water crystal clear and it helps to remove the odor.

Let's face it, after a while your fish tank starts to smell like a fish tank. Some people like that while others not. Carbon will help to remove the tannin from the water, which is usually from things like driftwood or some plants. Carbin will also remove medication from the water, which is nice if you got done treating the tank for something. there is no doubt that carbon is a great way to help your water clean and not smelly.

But, definitely be cautious while using it. Read the labels carefully before putting it in your tank. It helps a lot of common problems in your fish tank but it can create other problems. So, be careful. 

Better Substrate

This is something that a not of people think about, But the substrate has a huge impact on the overall look of the tank.

First of all colors. Lighter substrate make your fishes color look dim and greyed out. It is basically because of the way that light reflects that light color. The lighter substrate is also going to show things laying around like uneaten food and fish waste. 

While darker substrate can make your entire tank appear darker; which can in tren make it look dirtier. It's better to find a happy medium; it does not really impact the color of the water or the fish. 

But if you are someone who takes meticulous care of your aquarium, it really shouldn't matter.

Clean your lids

As fishkeepers, we are militant in the way we keep our glass clean. Green and brown algae build up and we can not stand it. Luckily there is a ton of equipment that helps in cleaning our aquarium glasses. But what about the lids?

Glass lids are something that often gets overlooked because our lights are covering them up and we cannot see them every time we look in the tank. Here's a thing your glass lid developed a build-up that can block some of the light going into your tank. This is something that happens in every single aquarium. 

So, take a second to clean your glass lids every time you are doing your maintenance. If you keep both sides clean, you will never get that build-up and you will get the full amount of light shining through it.


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