I love to keep fish in my home and office. But I have always preferred a small fish tank as it is easier to maintain it. That way, I can keep my favorite tropical fish and also ensure they have a clean tank to swim around. I make it a point not to overcrowd the tank and that is something everyone needs to take care of if they are choosing a small tank.
For my small apartment and cramped office, a 3 gallon fish tank is perfect. It is big enough for the fish to swim and small enough to not take up too much space. Also, I find it easy to maintain the tank as it does not take up the whole day to clean it.
A 3-gallon tank is the smallest one you will find on the market. But there are so many claiming to be the best that it can be overwhelming to choose one. That is the reason I have selected the five best. That way, you can read unbiased reviews and select one that is right for you.
|Table: Top 5 Small Fish Tanks|
|#1 3 Gallon Aquarium with LED Light by Tetra||Check Price »|
|#2 Cylindrical 3-Gallon Fish Tank by Koller Products||Check Price »|
|#3 Glass Small Fish Tank by MarineLand||Check Price »|
|#4 3-Gallon Aquarium with Silent Filter by Glofish||Check Price »|
|#5 Self-Cleaning Small Fish Tank by Back to the Roots||Check Price »|
Top 5 Best 3-Gallon Fish Tanks Reviewed
1. 3 Gallon Aquarium with LED Light by Tetra
This fish tank is a combination of glass and acrylic and comes with a filter to keep the water and tank clean. It even has a feeding hole that makes it convenient to feed the fish.
- Size: 10” x 10” x 10.512” (DxWxH)
- Made from glass and acrylic
- Has an LED light
- Feeding hole
- Pedestal base
- Setup guide
This fish tank is great for keeping small tropical fish as well as betta and goldfish. The acrylic frame is clear and offers an unfettered view into the tank. It comes with a filter that makes it easy to keep algae and dirt away.
- More spacious than it looks
- Neat design
- Does not take up too much space
- Easy to clean
- Powerful filter
- The filter is too powerful, making it dangerous for small fish
Tip: Adjust the flow of the filter to ensure that it does not suck and injure the fish
Info alert: The tank comes with a low voltage power adapter that you can use to maintain the optimal voltage of the water pump.
2. Cylindrical 3-Gallon Fish Tank by Koller Products
This one of the best fish tanks for beginners and kids. It is easy to maintain and looks quite stylish. The LED light is available in different colors so you can choose a color that goes with the décor of your home.
- Size: 10.25” x 10.25” x 14.5” (LxWxH)
- Made from clear plastic that is resistant to impact
- LED light
- Filter cartridge and filter
This small fish tank is cylindrical, offering a 360-degree view of the fish. The LED light is available in 7 different colors and buyers can choose the color based on their preference. The colors are white, green, red, blue, aqua, amber, and purple. It is easy to take care of this aquarium and the filter cartridge is quite easy to use. It works to keep the aquarium clean.
- Stylish to look at
- Easy to maintain
- Comes with a filter cartridge
- LED lighting
- Can switch off the light in the night
- Timer for the LED light
- Some customers complained that the filter can be noisy for night use
Tip: Clean the fish tank every one to two weeks to ensure there is no buildup of dirt and slime.
Info alert: Be sure to vacuum the sludge that will build up at the bottom and change one gallon of water at a time.
3. Glass Small Fish Tank by MarineLand
This sleek-looking 3 gallon aquarium is made out of glass. It has rail lighting that is dual-colored. The filtration pump is hidden and it uses a filter cartridge.
- Size: 9.5” x 10” x 10” (LxWxH)
- Rail LED lighting
- Raised pedestal
- Filtration pump with filter cartridge
- Glass hood
This small fish tank looks stylish and sleek. The filtration pump is quite silent and the dual-colored lighting is great. You can use blue in the night to simulate moonlight and the full-spectrum light during the day. The light can be run on a timer. The curved edges of the tank ensure you do not accidentally injure yourself. The tank is easy to maintain.
- Stylish and well-constructed
- Easy to maintain
- Dual-colored LED lighting
- Filtration system uses filter cartridge
- The motor is quiet
- The filtration system is too strong for betta even if the pump is set to the lowest
Tip: If you find the flow of water too strong, take out the water diverter and the water will trickle out of the pump instead of shooting out.
Info alert: Even though it has LED lighting, it is best suited to grow marine plants, such as anubias and ferns, that grow well in low light.
4. 3-Gallon Aquarium with Silent Filter by Glofish
This aquarium makes it to the list of the best 3 gallon fish tank as it is designed for glofish. Hence, it cannot house tropical fish that require full-spectrum light. It has just blue LED light that is specifically meant for fluorescent glofish.
- Size: 14.6” x 8.8” x 11.2” (L x W x H)
- Made from acrylic
- Blue LED light
- Filtration system with filter cartridge
The blue light is fixed to the hood and gives the water and the fish a fluorescent appearance. The filtration system works well and the pump is surprisingly silent. The filter flow can be adjusted so that the water does not shoot out in jets.
- Offers value for money
- Powerful filtration system
- The hood helps to minimize evaporation
- Neat and compact fish tank
- The filter flow can be adjusted
- The hood is quite flimsy
Tip: Make sure that you use an algae scrubbing tool that is designed for acrylic or you risk scratching the tank while cleaning.
Info alert: The tank comes with a single filter and it is advisable to buy spare ones and keep them handy should the need arise.
5. Self-Cleaning Small Fish Tank by Back to the Roots
This is a unique 3 gallon fish tank that functions as a hydroponic garden and fish tank. It can be used to grow microgreens and also keep a fish. This a self-cleaning fish tank so requires minimum care and maintenance.
- Size: 13.4” x 13.4” x 9.5” (L x W x H)
- Water pump
- Microgreen growing trays
- Microgreen seeds
- Fish food
- Water dechlorinator
- Coupons to buy betta
This is quite a novel fish tank. You can grow microgreens at the top and the plants thrive on the fish waste that functions as fertilizer. The roots help to keep the water clean. It requires minimal care and makes a great tank to keep betta fish.
- Unique fish tank
- Great for kids
- The microgreens do grow
- Water pump functions properly
- Coupons are bonus
- Made in the USA
- Quite expensive
- Does require cleaning at least once a month
Tip: Do not expose the fish tank to direct sunlight as it will begin to grow algae.
Info alert: While the fish tank can be used without the water pump, you will need the pump to grow the microgreens.
Buying Guide for the Best 3 Gallon Fish Tank
With so many fish tanks on the market, it can be tedious to choose one. Before you invest in a tank, think about how long you would like to keep fish as pets, whether you have kids, and what is your budget. Once you answer these questions, it will be easier to buy the right-fit fish tank for your home or office.
See also: What is the best sand for your aquarium?
Here are the factors that you need to consider when you want to buy a small fish tank:
Material of the Fish Tank:
Usually, a 3 gallon fish tank is made from either glass or acrylic. Glass fish tanks offer a clearer and better view of the fish but do remember that they can easily break. Acrylic fish tanks are more durable and can withstand force without cracking and breaking. If you have kids and pets at home, it is better to go with an acrylic fish tank as it will keep your fish safe. However, if you think you want to keep the tank out of reach of kids and pets then you can easily go in for a 3-gallon glass fish tank.
Quality of the Fish Tank:
Make sure that the fish tank you invest in is built to last. That way, you get value for money and ensure your fish is not traumatized by the constant change of the tank. It is best to read online reviews to see what other customers are saying about the quality before you decide to proceed with the purchase.
Price of the Fish Tank:
Most of the 3-gallon aquariums are not expensive. Nonetheless, it is important to have a realistic budget to enable you to buy a quality tank. In the long run, this will save you money. Remember, these small fish tanks come without gravel, live plants, decorations. So, it is important you consider the price of these and add it to the cost of the fish tank. That is why it is important to create a budget so that you know how much you can afford to spend on the entire setup and not just the fish tank.
Design of the Fish Tank:
Fish tanks are available in a wide range of shapes. Some are cuboids while others are rectangular in shape. There are still more that are cylindrical in shape. Decide the shape you want and then buy the decorations and live plants. Also, focus on the lighting, filtration system, lighting color, pedestal, and hood.
Size of the Fish Tank:
The good thing about a 3 gallon aquarium is that it is compact and does not require a lot of space. Nonetheless, ensure that the dimensions of the fish tank are correct for the space where you want to keep the tank. Check the size (length, width, and height) and then measure the space to ensure it is the right fit for the tank. Do this before you buy the tank or you will end up with a tank that may not be right for the spot you earmarked for it.
The Kind of Fish the Tank is Designed for:
While most small fish tanks are made for tropical fish and betta fish, make sure that you find out the kind of fish you can house. Most of these small tanks come without a heater and if you want to keep tropical fish, you will have to invest in a heater to maintain the perfect water temperature. Also, learn about getting the water fit for the fish before you introduce them to their new home.
Related article: Best fish for 3 gallon aquarium
Lighting in the Fish Tank:
These small fish tanks come with LED lighting. Some of them have white light while others have dual-colored lighting. Lighting can simulate sunlight or moonlight, depending on the type the tank has. So, ensure that the tank has the right lighting you are seeking. It will enhance your fish-keeping experience.
Now you know about the top 3 gallon fish tanks. Out of these, you can select one that suits your needs and fits your budget. The best 3 gallon fish tank will keep your fish safe, happy, and content.