Do Guppies Need A Bubbler? (When Are They Beneficial)

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Last Updated on 2023-08-05

Guppies are low-maintenance fish and beautiful to look at thanks to their vibrant colors and elaborate tails. If you have never owned guppies before, you’re probably wondering whether they need a bubbler. Or maybe you’ve heard a lot about bubblers and aren’t sure whether they’re necessary for guppies. In this post, you’re going to find the answers. Read on to whether guppies need a bubbler, and to learn more about its functions.   

Do Guppies Need a Bubbler? 

Guppies are freshwater fish, meaning they are used to swimming in currents. Like other freshwater fish, guppies also love clean and aerated water. Stagnant water in a fish tank is not a suitable environment for your guppies. That’s why the answer to the “do guppies need a bubbler” question is – yes. Without filtration and oxygenation, your guppies wouldn’t be able to survive that long.  

Guppies need oxygenated water, like most fish. Bubblers improve the movement of water and aid the process of oxygenation, which is why they could be beneficial for your guppies. Bear in mind that besides bubbler, you also need to ensure water is filtered and the tank is clean. Guppies also need to be fed properly. While the bubbler doesn’t directly provide the oxygen, it can stir the water surface and allow oxygen exchange to happen.  

What Do Bubblers Do? 

An aquarium bubbler is any device that attaches to the air pump via an airline tube to produce bubbles in a fish tank. The bubbles oxygenate the water as they pop on the surface and thereby improve the living conditions for fish and plants in the aquarium.

The air pump uses the electromagnet to make a rubber diaphragm to vibrate quickly, and the pressure moves the air. They may often produce a little bit of noise due to vibration. The benefits of bubblers are numerous, and we’re going to discuss the most important ones below. 

They Aerate The Water 

The main function of the bubblers is to oxygenate the water, as mentioned above. Although we know that the main purpose of a bubbler is to aerate the water, this subject is still misunderstood. They don’t simply pump oxygen into the fish tank. Fish need air to breathe and remain alive, just like humans. They draw dissolved oxygen out of water. In fact, most breeds would suffocate without it.  

Although it’s easy to assume oxygen would enter the water from the bubble, only a small amount accounts for that. Most of the oxygen in a fish tank enters from the surface. Then it dissolves into the water through the gas exchange process.

This is where the bubblers step in. When the surface is moving, more air enters the water than when it’s still.  Bubblers produce bubbles that keep the surface moving, thus allowing more air to enter the water. 

Increased Water Movement  

Bubblers increase water movement. Actually, they prevent water in a fish tank from going stagnant. Added current is particularly beneficial if you hold fish that are used to swim in current in their natural habitats. This way, you recreate their natural water environment and make their time in your aquarium more comfortable. 

Aesthetic Benefits 

While bubblers are practical and beneficial for fish, they are also aesthetically pleasing. It’s not uncommon for people to install a bubbler even when it’s not really necessary just because it looks pretty. Nowadays, bubblers come in different shapes, sizes, designs; you name it. 

(Find out whether guppies need a filter.)

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Some Decorations Need Bubbler’s 

Bubblers can improve the aesthetic appeal, but it’s also useful to mention that some decorations need them. For example, if you get action ornaments and other decorations that need water movement to work, then you also need a bubbler.  

Some Filters Require Bubbler’s

Not all fish tanks are equal, and some of them come with certain types of filters that are driven by air. These include sponge filters, gravel filters, and corner filters. If your fish tank has these filters, then you definitely need a bubbler to ensure the aquarium remains clean.

On the flip side, other types of filters, such as canister filters, provide a sufficient level of surface agitation to keep the tank aerated and filtered properly. 

What Can You Use Instead of Bubblers? 

Even though bubblers are useful for oxygenation of water in the fish tank, they are not the only ways to aerate your aquarium. Below, you can take a look at other methods and solutions to introduce more oxygen into the fish tank. 

Manual Oxygenation 

Yes, it’s possible to oxygenate the fish tank manually, and you can do it by pouring water into it. While pouring water, it picks up the air on its way and drives oxygen into the aquarium

(Here is everything you need to know about airstones in your aquarium.).

The process is simple; take any type of a pitcher or clean cup and scoop out a little bit of water from the fish tank. Hold the filled pitcher at some height above the aquarium and slowly pour the water into the tank, and repeat a few more times. 

HOB Filter 

Hang-on-back filter is a great way to increase the level of oxygen in the fish tank. The best thing about HOB filters is their compact size and ease of use. Filtered water from the HOB filter falls from a height, which means it will aerate the aquarium.

Yet another benefit of this filter is that water goes deep down into the tank, thereby distributing the oxygen throughout the aquarium, including the bottom. This is particularly useful if you also have live plants. 

(Find out whether guppies need a heater.)

Spray Bar 

Some types of filters come with a spray bar, but others don’t. If the latter is the case with your filter, then you may want to get a spray bar and, don’t worry; it’s accessible and affordable. Why get one?

Well, the main function of a spray bar is to distribute the filtered water evenly throughout the tank surface. Doing so, they provide more exposure to the water to oxygenate and thereby provide the same effect as a bubbler. 

Use Plants 

If you aren’t a fan of air pumps and other gadgets, then you may want to use plants only instead. This way, you would be able to create a self-sustaining eco-system that doesn’t require a bubbler or anything related to that. Living plants would work perfectly because guppies would consume the oxygen from the water and then release CO2.

At the same time, guppies will produce waste, which will then convert into nitrates. This is where living plants come handy. They need light, CO2, and some nutrients such as nitrates for the process of photosynthesis. Then, they will release oxygen into the water, and the cycle will continue.  


Bubblers have a lot of benefits ranging from the aesthetic effect to oxygenation that fish need to remain healthy and functioning. The main purpose of this post is to answer the question do guppies need a bubbler.

As seen above, the answer is yes. Like other freshwater fish that swim in currents in their natural habitat, guppies aren’t fans of stagnant water. They also love clean and aerated water, and that’s exactly where bubblers step in. Besides bubblers, there are other ways to oxygenate water in a fish tank. Make sure to choose the option of the needs of your guppies the most.  

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