Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit Review

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Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit Rated
  • Build Quality
  • Accessories
  • Design
  • Ease of Use
  • Value for Money
4.6

FCG Verdict

The Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit is the perfect tank for hobbyists looking for an affordable aquarium that’s easy to both use and maintain.

Backed by an easy to digest price-tag and a warranty, this quiet, compact aquarium comes with everything you need to give your fish a happy home.

>>> Check current price on Amazon.

Are you in the market for a new aquarium? It’s worth checking out the Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit.

It’s easy to set up (making it ideal for either beginners or those who’ve owned an aquarium before), comes with great lighting, and clocks in at an affordable price.

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Unfortunately, not everyone speaks of a good experience with this aquarium kit. Some users had their fish struggle with the filter’s power, had the aquarium leak or had it arrive with pieces missing.

Nonetheless, before you make your final decision, let’s take a closer look at the Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit.

Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit: The Details

Specs

  • Weight: 25 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 15 x 10.7 x 15.4 inches.
  • Capacity: 5 gallons.
  • Lighting: LED energy efficient light hood.
  • Glass or Acrylic: Acrylic.
  • Accessories: Aqueon Quiet Flow filtration, food and water care samples and a setup guide.
  • Warranty: 90 days for the aquarium and one year for the filter.

Features

Acrylic Tank

The Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit comes with an acrylic tank. Since this material is far stronger than glass, it’s less likely to break or crack should it fall or encounter a rowdy pet.

When something is filled with water, you want to ensure it’s durable, so as to prevent leaks or a floor covered in shattered glass after an accidental bump.

An acrylic tank can give you the reassurance you need.

QuietFlow Filtration

The QuietFlow filter is included with this starter kit. It is designed to clean both fresh- and saltwater aquariums and comes with preloaded biological, mechanical, and chemical media.

There’s no need to dismantle the entire filter to clean out this media, however, as you can easily replace the carbon cartridge alone. All in all, it’s simple to maintain and even easier to set up.

You need only install the media, hook up the tubing, prime the pump, and then hook the filter onto the side of the tank. That’s it! A manual is included, should you need extra help.

best small aquarium

LED Lighting

The Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit also comes with a LED light hood, so you’ll be able to view your fish in the best lighting.

While the hood does contain the light, there is also a flap which can be lifted for feeding times, ensuring the hood need only be removed infrequently.

The light is equipped with a timer that turns off after 8 to 10 hours, mimicking a fish’s natural environment.

Cartridges

This starter kit also includes one carbon cartridge for the QuietFlow filter. It’s designed to provide activated carbon to help keep the water clean, while also evenly distributing it throughout the tank.

Because of this distribution process, the cartridges last longer than most others on the market. You should change them every four to six weeks.

When changing the filter, you need only slide the old one out of the BioHolster and slide a new one in. After that, slide the holster back into the filter.

How do you know if you need to change the cartridge? Check the water levels. If the water is above the cartridge in the filter, it needs to be changed.

Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit Review

The Positives

Easy Set-Up

With everything you need already included with the kit, you need only follow the instructions on how to set up the tank and filter. Then you’re ready to go!

First, you’ll determine a stable surface for placing the tank. Second, pour in the gravel of your choice at the bottom of the aquarium. Next, you can add any kind of plants or decor you’d like and then add the water.

Aqueon MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit review

Make sure to add the water conditioner. Then you can assemble the filter, slide in the cartridge, and place it on the tank.

Add a heater if your fish need one (usually for tropical fish), attach the light hood, and then plug it in along with the filter. After this, turn everything on and add your fish. It’s that simple!

This aquarium’s easy setup process makes it a great addition for all levels of aquarists including beginners. You won’t be left fumbling with parts trying to get this tank together.

Customers also noted that the instruction manual included with the aquarium was straightforward and easy to follow.

Good Lighting

The lighting on this tank is quite bright and allows you a perfect view of all your aquarium’s inhabitants.

This also provides your fish with a well-lit environment to swim and live in, while giving them enough dark hours to mimic their natural environment.

So, if you have the aquarium in your bedroom, there’s no worry of the light keeping you awake either.

It will add a nice bit of ambience for dark corners, and since it’s already included, this is another accessory piece you won’t have to worry about rushing out to buy in the future.

Affordable

While some kits and tanks can be hundreds of dollars, the Aqueon MiniBow kit is priced under $100 on Amazon, making it a great deal.

Remember that’s not just for the tank! You get the filter, a cartridge, media, and everything else you need included in that price as well.

This is great for those on a budget since you won’t have to go out and buy all the necessities which will cost you both extra money and time.

Beginners won’t have to spend a ton of money right off the hop if this is their first aquarium, which helps in keeping a hobby growing.

The price includes a 90-day warranty on the tank and a one-year warranty on the filter. Should you encounter any damages (not caused by you or wear and tear) the company promises to replace or fix these.

This is always great to have included so you know you won’t have to foot the bill when faced with issues.

Quiet and Powerful Filter

This filter won’t be keeping you awake at night. Most users praised how quiet it is, some even mentioning that, had it not been for the water moving, they could’ve imagined the filter wasn’t working at all.

You’ll have no worries placing this aquarium in your living room or bedroom since it won’t be a disturbance if you’re watching tv or trying to get some shut-eye.

Aqueon MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit review

However, don’t let that fool you into thinking the filter is weak; on the contrary, it’s exceptionally powerful.

This contributes to its strong cleaning abilities, ensuring you can maintain your aquarium with far less effort (and far less noise).

Convenient

Not only do you get everything you need in this kit (except for a heater if you are keeping tropical fish), this aquarium also makes for easy maintenance and convenient everyday use.

Since the lid of the aquarium has a feed hole built in, you never have to remove the hood. Additionally, since the filter uses cartridges, you rarely need to dismantle and clean it. You just exchange one cartridge for another and are ready to go.

If you’re a busy aquarist or are just learning how to care for an aquarium, the Aqueon Minibow makes it easy to adjust.

Stylish and Compact

Customers loved how great the Aqueon MiniBow looked wherever they placed it.

This aquarium is designed to be far from clunky, and users liked the sleek and modern touch it added to their home. It won’t be hard to find a place for your tank thanks to its small size. It’s compact so it won’t hog up all the room on a desk, counter, or table.

Its simplistic design makes it easy to blend in with a variety of decor and colors, and you won’t have to worry about it weighing down any surfaces since it weighs in at just over five pounds.

The Negative

Too Strong

It seems that for certain fish (mainly bettas), the filter is far too strong. These weaker fish can be sucked up into the tubing and be killed.

All other parts of this aquarium kit would be perfect, but this sends up massive warning signs for some fish owners.

No one wants an aquarium kit that harms their fish, so please beware when choosing the species you keep in this tank.

Leaks and Breaks

While not common, a handful of users mentioned that their kit either leaked over time or arrived broken. In one case, a tester had the tank leak after only months of owning it.

While the price is certainly affordable for all you get, you shouldn’t have to worry about buying a replacement after only two months.

This may be an unfortunate manufacturing defect that the warranty will resolve, or it could be a case of “you get what you pay for.”

Missing Pieces

A few testers also mentioned that the kit arrived with pieces missing. While this was infrequent, it’s still worth mentioning.

Before you tackle the set-up process, be sure to take stock of your equipment. You may need to contact the vendor for a replacement if something is missing.

Aqueon MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit review

Overall Verdict

After going through all the positives and negatives, we recommend the Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit.

The longevity of the tank itself is worth questioning. The power of the filter is also dangerous to some fish, requiring you to either replace it with a softer model or buy larger, hardier fish that enjoy strong currents.

That being said, those looking for an affordable, easy-to-use aquarium (that’s also easy on the ears) will find it in the Aqueon LED MiniBow.

Where to Buy the Aqueon LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit

Aqueon has an array of aquariums, kits and tank accessories under their belt, and the Aqueon MiniBow aquarium line is just one example from their array of affordable and accessible products.

This company has a variety of items to suit varying aquarists, making them a popular choice. And thanks to their popularity, retailers have no problem showing off the Aqueon name. This makes products like the LED MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit easier to find both in-store and online.

While it’s usually best to check fish, pet, or specialty aquatic stores, you can kick-start your search with the following online retailers.

And of course, you can also find this aquarium starter kit on Amazon.

best aquarium starter kit


That’s all for our Aqueon MiniBow Aquarium Starter Kit review. Tempted to give it a try?

Staff Writer
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