Best Aquarium Wave Maker – Buying Guide

Practically all of the fish that are in your aquarium were derived from some type of natural body of water. And if not, their relatives were. Because of that, they’re used to the natural environment in these natural bodies of water. For instance, overtime they’ve grown accustomed to the certain types of other fish and organisms that they were surrounded with as well as the plants, rocks, and even the overall condition of the water itself.

When you take those fish from their natural habitat and place them in a fish tank or large aquarium, then you’re removing them from all of the factors that they were used to in their environment. Consequently, you can make this move less stressful for them by altering your fish tank into their new environment that resembles their natural habitat outdoors.

This may involve installing certain equipment like plants, rocks, water heaters, water filters, and even gravel at the bottom of the tank that helps the tank look more natural. But even after doing all of this, your tank still doesn’t quite resemble their natural body of water exactly.

This is why you should consider purchasing a wave maker. But you may be questioning what they are and whether you even need one. Here is a helpful guide that I’ve put together for you that you can use when you’re searching for wave makers on the market. Not only that, but here are also the five best aquarium wave maker devices on the market.

What is a Wave Maker?


A wave maker is classified as a device that is specifically designed in order to create waves in your aquarium for your fish. Water movement is extremely beneficial for your aquarium in order for the fish to feel at home, and it creates a healthier environment in general. They work in a variety of ways, but most of them generally involve a motor causing a turbine to move within the equipment, which then causes the water in the tank to come through the machine and then burst out of it.

The bursting water ultimately creates rapid movements of water throughout the whole tank, since the water shooting out of the device causes the surrounding water to move. They ultimately work by the device combining low pressure with high water volumes in order to create an effect that’s similar to that of waves. Most devices come with an impeller that’s able to pump out the higher volume of water while it’s under low pressure, and the effects will be similar to that of natural bodies of water, such as lakes, streams, and rivers (1).

Benefits of Having a Wave Maker

Improves water circulation

Wave makers are designed in order to create continuous water movement throughout your fish tank. This prevents the possibility of there being any dead spots, which are places in which the water of your tank doesn’t move, so bacteria and other harmful chemicals can cling and attach to objects in these dead spots.

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A wave maker prevents these dead spots by creating a continuous, circulating motion of water throughout the tank. This allows the entirety of your tank to access freshly oxygenated water.

Promotes the health of coral and other plants

Wave makers are able to encourage water movement that promotes healthy plant-life and coral because these types of subjects rely on water movement in order to stay heathy. These machines move water and essential nutrients that plants need in order to survive and thrive (2).

Brings fish back to their natural environment

Given that fish are used to the natural movement of lakes, rivers, and streams, they will feel more at home if their tank water was constantly moving like the natural bodies of water.

Prevent harmful particles from accumulating

Wave movers help to prevent harmful substances like bacteria and fish waste from accumulating in the tank and causing your fish to get sick. Not only that, but they help to spread particles around in the water, so there is less of a chance if harmful bacteria negatively affecting one dead spot area too much (3).

Helps your tank look more realistic

Many people simply choose to place elaborate decorations in their fish tanks in order to make them look more realistic for the fish. But they don’t take into account the actual experience of the fish in the tank and how realistic that experience is. Because of that, wave makers are able to create actual waves, which are similar to those that occur in natural bodies of water. This helps the aquarium not only look more natural and realistic, but it also creates a more natural environment for the fish to swim in.

Keep fish healthier

Wave makers are able to promote health in your fish because they get rid of negative and harmful particles that may accumulate in the water if there isn’t enough water movement. More specifically, wave makers help to circulate water that moves around bacteria, detritus, and other harmful elements. As these elements are transported through the tank water, they have more of a chance for your UV sterilizer or your water filtration system to eliminate them from the tank altogether (4).

In addition to that, wave maker devices also create currents in the water that the fish can swim with and against. This will not only help them feel more at home in their tank, but it also keeps their bodies healthy and always on the move.

Factors to Consider Before Purchasing


It’s important for you to consider which components your wave maker comes with, since they either come with a pump or a controller. Ultimately, you’ll need both in order to operate the device properly, so you should consider finding a device that has both the pump and the controller in one package.


It’s also important for you to consider how the wave maker device will be mounted in order for you to use it. More specifically, some wave makers require that you mount the device with a suction cup, magnets, or even clips. Regardless of the method that your product uses in order to install and mount the device, you should make sure that the product is mounted securely.


Most wave maker pumps are able to offer various different settings that can control the different speeds of the motor. Because of that, you should consider how each of the products is able to be controlled. You should ultimately have the ability to control the direction that the water flows in, but it would also be helpful if you were able to control the flow rate.


Considering the fact that there are so many different sized aquariums on the market, you should consider the turnover rate on the wave maker devices. This will help you find out how much water the device is able to pump per hour. And if you have a bigger aquarium, then you’ll want a wave maker that’s able to pump a larger amount of water per hour and one that has a higher turnover rate. Ultimately, you should be finding a wave maker that’s able to pump at least 20 times the volume of your tank per hour (3).

Best Aquarium Wave Maker Reviews

1. Hydor Koralia Nano Aquarium Circulation Pump


This circulation pump is highly recommended for you because it has the ability to circulation a total of 565 gallons of water per hour, which is an effective turnover rate for various different types of tanks.

In addition to that, this circulation pump can be set on a timer so that you can schedule certain times throughout the day that the water should be moving around a large amount or only a small amount. It can be setup using magnetic suction cups for added and secure mounting.


  • Easy setup and assembly
  • Able to pump 565 gallons per hour
  • Can be put on a timer


  • Previous customers complain that this product doesn’t last for long periods of time

2. KEDSUM Aquarium Circulation Powerhead Pump Wave Maker


The KEDSUM wave maker is one of the most highly recommended devices for your aquarium because it has a high flow rate of 2,642 gallons per hour, which is more than most other wave makers on the market. It can conveniently be rotated 360 degrees, so it can flow water in any direction of the tank. This is beneficial because it helps the water flow look more natural.

Furthermore, this product comes with a suction cup that is easy to install. And it has the ability to operate at low sounds.


  • Ensures higher dissolved oxygen content
  • Strong suction cup mounting
  • 360-degree rotation


  • Device is larger than others

3. Jebao PP Series Wave Maker


You should check out this wave maker device because unlike the others, this device comes with a controller that gives you the ability to easily control the device’s settings from even a few feet away. You can turn the device on and off and you can even change the device’s different wave types and functions with the remote. Moreover, this device is recommended because it’s energy-saving, since it has a low-voltage DC electronic pump.


  • Comes with a control system
  • Energy-efficient
  • Has the ability to be switched between multiple different wave types and functions


  • Difficult installation

4. SunSun Wave Maker Pump


This wave maker pump is suggested for you to check out because it has the ability to rotate 360 degrees. Not only that, but it can easily be installed anywhere, since it comes with a strong suction cup that makes for easy installation. The motor is submersible and oil-free as well, so it ensures maximized safety for your fish.


  • Affordable
  • Rotate 360 degrees
  • High quality waterproof performance


  • Customers claim that the device doesn’t last for long periods of time

5. IceCap Gyre Generation Aquarium Flow Pump


You’re advised to check out this IceCap flow pump because it comes with five different modes that you can interchange between for your fish’s convenience. It also has a 24-hour program cycle that allows the device reset after 24 hours. It has between 100-240-volt power. Given its power and size, this wave maker device is able to effectively create waves for tanks that measure between 25 gallons to 100 gallons.


  • Has 5 flow modes
  • 24-hour program cycle
  • Can fit aquariums up to 100 gallons in size


  • More expensive than other devices on the list


Overall, each of the wave maker devices included in this list are able to offer you a wide range of beneficial features, including the ability to dramatically increase the amount of water movement in your aquarium. Not only that, but each of these devices are easy to setup with instructions, they’re easy to operate and control, and they’re equipped with the technology needed in order to offer you the beat overall features.

Because of these benefits, you should consider purchasing a wave maker from this list. But it can be difficult to choose the best one for your needs and preferences, so you are most recommended to check out the best aquarium wave maker device, which is product #2: KEDSUM Aquarium Circulation Powerhead Pump. This wave maker is able to offer an extremely high flow rate, at 2,642 gallons per hour. Not only that, but it has the ability to rotate 360 degrees from the side of the tank that it’s suction-cupped to. Given these benefits, you should purchase the KEDSUM Aquarium Circulation Powerhead Pump on the market.

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