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    Hiding aquarium technology

    How to make heaters & filters invisible

    Aquascaping has taken the principle of making an aquarium layout into a living work of art. Necessary, but optically unpleasing technology such as heaters, filters and its inflows and outflows are often replaced by (inline CO2 diffusers, external heaters) and items made of transparent material (CO2 periphery and filter inflows, outflows made of glass). We have already covered this in detail in our article "Technology in the aquarium". But even with a few simple tricks you can skillfully hide your already existing aquarium tech. We’ll show you how.

    Aquatic plants

    Especially high-growing background plants are well-suited to mask longish items like e.g. heaters. Filter technology can be hidden behind a wall of plants. However, care should be taken with the filter inlet: If the plant material is too close, the leaves can be sucked in and clog the inlet slots. This greatly reduces the function of the filter. If it is not possible to keep a certain distance, it is advisable to use other furnishings in the aquarium as a hiding place for the filter inlet (see next section).

    stem plants


    While aquarium plants are a rather dynamic furnishing element, which changes with time, stones and roots are rigid decoration elements. The technical jargon for these elements is ”hardscape”. Here, too, higher structures can be used to obscure parts of the aquarium technology. Of course, sufficient space behind the hardscape should be planned beforehand.

    hiding a heaterit’s gone!


    Already when designing the aquarium layout, so even before setting up, you should think about the position of the technology in the aquarium. From this it is possible to draw conclusions about how to best arrange aquatic plants and hardscape accordingly. For this you should get aqcuainted with the three basic layouts.


    If technology is to be installed on both sides of the aquarium, the U-shape is suitable for this purpose. One-sided aquarium technology also allows the design in a triangular shape. The central shape is not very suitable for hiding technical objects, since you rarely place heaters and filter tubes in the middle of the tank. Here you’d constantly have the cables and hoses in view while looking at the aquarium.

    Submersible heaters

    Small, compact heaters that can be completely submerged, are particularly flexible in the positioning in the aquarium. A vertical positioning of a heating rod is not always a visual advantage. Especially in nano-aquariums with little height you can install such heaters obliquely or even horizontally lying in the pool - if they are suitable for that. Please also refer to the device’s instructions.

    Dennerle - Nano ThermoCompact

    The Dennerle Nano ThermoCompact is a regulating heater which can be completely submerged up to a depth of 80cms.

    A good alternative, especially for larger aquariums, is the use of a thermo filter. External filters by Oase can be retrofitted with a HeatUp heating rod.


    With the right choice of colour for the back screen, heaters, filters and Co. can be concealed even if you do not have the possibility to cover the technology with natural decoration materials. A black filter and heater combined with a black screen in the back of the tank form an optical unit due to having the same colour.

    black screen