Air Stone Alternatives You Can Use in Your Aquarium

Last Updated on January 1, 2022 by cmoarz

There are several air stone alternatives you can use to get the oxygen and surface agitation you need in your aquarium. There is no shortage of reasons why someone wouldn’t want to use an airstone either, They can be loud, unsightly, and eventually break down needing to be replaced.

But oxygenation and agitation are still important, so here are some air stone alternatives you can try.

Air Stone Alternatives With An Airpump

If your only gripe is with airstones but you don’t have a reason to avoid an air pump, there are some alternatives available.

Buble Wall (DIY)

A bubble wall is basically a DIY bubble curtain. They are easy and relatively cheap to make, And chances are you already have most of the stuff you’re going to need at home.

Here are some of the things you will need:

  • Air Tubing (Choose your size wisely. If you get too large you may need an additional adapter to connect to the air pump).
  • Needle
  • Air Pump

Here is a video I made on how to make your own bubble wall air stone alternative.

Buble Curtain

NGe 1pcs 48"(120cm) Bendable Bubble Wall Air Diffuser Flexible Air Curtain Wand,Suitable for Aquarium Fish Tank(120cm)
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Last update on 2024-05-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Much like the bubble wall, the bubble curtain is a premade option if you don’t want to make your own. In fact, I would say it’s a better option.

You don’t have to worry about finding plastic tubing to make your bubble wall. This premade solution makes it easy by including the tube, suction cups, and everything else you need in one bag for a cheap price. To use, simply attach the tube to your air pump and secure the other end with the suction cups to the wall of your aquarium.

In addition to being easier to set up, bubble walls are also much more aesthetically pleasing than airstones.

They are also much easier to hide away. Their flexible nature allows them to be tucked away in a corner without being too noticeable.

Buble Volcano (Air)

MingDak Aquarium Volcano Ornament Kit, Air Stone Bubbler with Red LED Light, Aquarium Air Bubbler Decorations for Fish Tank (Red)
  • BUBBLER VOLCANO ORNAMENT: The LED airstone bubbler light goes inside the volcano, Red LED...
  • IMPROVE THE OXYGENATION: It promotes oxygen for the fish to breathe via the bubbles and...
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Last update on 2024-05-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

While it still uses an airstone technically speaking, It’s a really good way to hide that airstone if your main concern is the look of the aquarium.

I mean, It looks really cool and seems very convenient. A cool thing you have around. The only issue I have with this one is how many aquascapes have space for an entire volcano?

It’s kind of out of place in a green tank, However, If you’ve got a good desert-like design or just like to put cool things in your tank, this is a must-have.

It’s a good way to hide your stone. But it does still use a stone technically speaking so it may not be for everyone browsing this. I wanted to get it on this list anyway because, bro, magma.

Air Stone Alternatives Without An Airpump

If you don’t want an air pump or an air stone, There are some air stone alternatives you can use that don’t require them at all, but still bring oxygenation and aeration to the table.

Water Pumps

VIVOSUN 800GPH Submersible Pump(3000L/H, 24W), Ultra Quiet Water Fountain Pump with 10ft. High Lift with 6.5ft. Power Cord, 3 Nozzles for Fish Tank, Pond, Aquarium, Statuary, Hydroponics Green
  • Specs & Dimensions: 4.33*2.87*3.68 inches; Max flow rate: 800 GPH (3000L/H); Max lift...
  • Adjustable Flow Rate: The fountain pump is designed with an adjusting knob, allowing you...
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Last update on 2024-05-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Much like the Buble Volcano that uses an air stone, you can get various decorations that actually use water pumps instead. These water pumps are very good for water column agitation, and if they pump above water, Aeration.

Aside from all the cool things you can do with these, You can also use just the regular pump at the bottom of the tank as is.

It provides a large amount of agitation and current (if your fish likes the current!) and can be used in various DIY projects such as waterfalls, water spouts, etc.

Water Fountains / Water Spouts / Water Falls

Rain bar pipe kits that attach to various types of pumps and filters are a fantastic way to get both aeration and agitation. They are also really good at getting certain species to breed, such as corydoras who only breed during the rainy season.

They are easy to hook up and not very expensive. Just be sure to get one that’s compatible with your pump or filter outflow tube, Or consider getting one that comes with a new filter.

Water spouts are also an option. By hooking up a pipe to a pump you can successfully oxygenate and agitate your fish tank.


AQQA Wave Maker Pump, 530GPH Aquarium Circulation Pump 360 Degree Rotatable Submersible Powerhead Pump with Magnet Suction Base for Marine and Freshwater Aquariums(3W)
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Last update on 2024-05-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

These powerheads work very well and they don’t require a separate air pump, although the option to connect an air pump exists.

If you need a lot of current or agitation in the water, the powerhead is a very powerful and easy-to-use water agitator.

Adjustable, can attach anywhere on the tank, and offer a variety of output speeds, these are the best. They’re also very easy to hide away if you need to tuck it away or just don’t want to see it.

They can also provide much better aeration of the water than a stone can by chopping the bubbles even smaller, which is a huge advantage over an airstone.

Your Filter

Your filter can also do a really good job of agitating the water. You can get various filter models that pump up higher or get them with longer hoses to send the bubbles further.

As the water comes down it pushes oxygen into the tank while also creating enough surface agitation to mix it around and not just let it sit at the top.

This is a very good method if you don’t want to run an extra air pump for whatever reason, such as noise or energy use. This can be done with most filters, and while it’s not as effective as some of these other options, such as an actual airstone or wall, It certainly can do a good job.


Owner of and also owner of actual Aquarium Gravel believe it or not! ;). Setting up beautiful aquarium sceneries and habitats since I was very young. Enjoy!