Of all the gizmos and gadgets available to the betta fish enthusiast, the one little “toy” that still somehow fascinates me to this day is the little magnetic aquarium scrubber. I don’t know what it is about me and these little cleaning tools but, I just think they’re freaking awesome! And is actually really good thing to, because the more fascinated with these little scrubbers I am, the cleaner my betta fish tank is!
There are bunches and bunches of these types of magnetic aquarium cleaners on the market, all of them operating under the same idea. You have the scrubbing surface on the inside that’s sandwiched in between two plastic handles held together by magnets. Operation is simple enough as all you have to do is stick one of the magnetic scrubbers on one side of the aquarium, and the other is stuck on the opposite side of the aquarium wall. The glass aquarium wall is then sandwiched in between these two plastic handles. You can let go of one of the handles and, as long as you position the other handle directly opposite the first, they will stay put and not fall down to the bottom of the aquarium. As you drag one of the handles across the aquarium wall, the other follows magically because of the magnetic attraction built into the handles.
Aside from the just being plain entertaining to use this tool and watch as the scrub brush on the inside of the aquarium follows the path of the handle on the outside of the tank, it makes for some very efficient and easy access cleaning. Being that you really never take out the scrub brush part from the inside of the tank, anytime you walk by the betta fish tank, you feel compelled to grab a hold of the little scrub brush and do some quick cleaning, if for no other reason than you want to just play with this magnetic scrubby thing.
The one unique feature about this betta aquarium glass cleaner is that this particular make and model incorporates the wonderful feature of “flotation” in their design. As I said before, there are many of these kind of magnetic scrub brushes for fish tanks on the market, many of them don’t float if dropped. That can always pose a problem if not just a simple inconvenience. As the two devices are held together by magnets, if you were to separate the two pieces too far apart, the one on the inside of the aquarium would fall to the bottom. Not in these. If you separate these two scrubbers too far apart, the one on the inside of the aquarium will simply float to the surface so you can easily set it back in place without having to stick your hand all the way into the bottom of the tank to retrieve the fallen fish tank scrubber. Without having to gone to that hassle so many times, you may not really understand how convenient that is. I really have no idea why it took the aquarium industry so long to have the brilliant idea to incorporate flotation into these devices. All I know is that I am really glad that somebody finally did!
The Mighty Mag-Float Mini
The company “mag float” has a huge assortment of these floating aquarium cleaners available. Basically, they make sure that you can pick the right size tank cleaner for the aquarium you own. You wouldn’t want a foot long tank scrubber in a 3 gallon aquarium. They make available betta aquarium scrubbers from the tiny to the commercial size range. Mag float also makes separate magnetic aquarium brushes specifically made for the type of fish tank you have. Different scrub brush textures for acrylic and glass. Telling the difference between the aquarium scrubbers made specifically for glass or the ones made specifically for acrylic is pretty dang easy. If there is a letter “A” at the end of the model number, it’s intended for acrylic. Otherwise it’s intended for glass aquariums. The model number can be found on the front of the packaging and always starts with the word “float” on it. For example, “Float-25” is a mini magnetic aquarium scrubber and is intended for glass aquariums. Mag-Float’s “Float-25A” is the same model in size, but the scrub brush part of the device is intended for acrylic aquariums.
This review of the Mag-Float floating magnetic fish tank scrubbers will be focused primarily on their “Float-25A” model for acrylic aquariums. The Mag-Float Float-25A “mini” magnetic tank brush is about the right size and shape for an aquarium that is in the 2.5 gallon to 5 gallon range. If you have anything larger than a 5 gallon aquarium you may consider the Float-30 model instead. Also keep in mind what kind of material your aquarium is made out of when choosing. The glass is scrubbers may end up scratching and acrylic tank. The acrylic intended aquarium scrubbers won’t cause any harm to a glass tank however. They’re just not as “heavy-duty”. Acrylic is a softer material than glasses and is prone to scratching.
I had an acrylic betta fish aquarium that was 5 gallons in capacity that I thought could use some scrubbing. The Float-25A aquarium scrubber by Mag-Float seemed the perfect size and shape for the task at hand. After taking the betta tank floating scrubber out of the packaging, you take a scrubber piece in each hand and place one piece inside the tank and the other outside of it, sandwiching the glass in between the both. When you let go of the side that’s inside the tank, the scrubber piece that’s on the outside of the tank keeps a firm magnetic grip holding the other side in place. Taking the pieces outside of the betta tank in hand, you gently and slowly start moving the aquarium scrubber as you would a computer mouse. The floating scrubber on the inside the betta tank slowly follows the path and “scrubs” the algae and other residue that would be otherwise stuck inside of your aquarium. The movement can be a little jerky at sometimes. As long as you keep the movements slow and even, the scrubber on the inside of the aquarium does an amazingly efficient job at helping clean your tank.
Magnetic Aquarium Cleaning Magnificence
You can move the floating scrubbers around in pretty much any direction. You do not need to conform to straight lines. If your aquarium is dirty enough, you can try to write your initials. Try not to let your betta aquarium get that dirty though, okay? When you’re scrub brush meets the corner of an aquarium, all you have to do is very gently maneuver the handle in your hand around the corner and the scrubbing piece inside of the tank will “jump” around the inside corner to meet up with the handle you are holding. That part is actually kind of fun. I think I’m easily entertained though.
With these magnetic scrubbers ability to “leap” through corners of the aquarium, no algae is safe clinging desperately on to the side of the betta tank. After a brief cleaning session is over, you can make your way around to the back side of the betta tank to place the floating glass cleaner in an unobtrusive place. You can actually leave it wherever you want on the tank. If you feel so inspired, you can remove the tank cleaner from the aquarium entirely. I generally leave mine in the back corner still affixed to the wall of the aquarium. If you did feel like removing the cleaner entirely from the tank, all you have to do is separate the two magnetic handles from each other letting the piece inside the betta tank float to the surface. Easy as that.
One thing you want to pay attention to when using these betta aquarium scrubbers is that the handle piece that you actually hold onto has a felt pad that glides across the surface of the outside of the aquarium. Over time, the outside of your aquarium will probably get a bit dirty. That dirt will eventually accumulate onto the felt pad of the aquarium scrubber. You want to make sure to clean that felt pad frequently because if there is any really hard pieces of dirt stuck to the felt surface, those hard pieces of debris may end up causing little tiny hairline scratches on the outside surface of your aquarium.
As for the piece of the magnetic scrubber that actually does the work, instead of a felt pad, the scrubber lining is made out of a material that sort of resembles Velcro. That material can be different depending on what model scrubber you choose, the one intended for glass versus the one intended for acrylic. In either case, those scrubber brushes are algae’s worst nightmare. And that’s a really good thing for you and your betta fish.
Nothing Betta Than A Mag-Float Cleaner
Really the only issue I can think of with these magnetic scrubbers isn’t actually even a design flaw, but rather a condition you should be observant of anytime you clean your aquarium at all. That condition would be if you let the scrubber to close to the substrate at the bottom of your betta aquarium, the substrate may become sandwiched in between the two scrubber pieces and dragged along the glass of the tank. In that case you may end up with scratches on the inside of your aquarium. Basically all you want to do is just be mindful that you don’t let the scrubber get too close to the bottom of your aquarium. And if you do get too close to the substrate and think you may have picked up sand or gravel, all you have to do is release the magnetic bond between the two handles and let the scrubber on the inside of the aquarium float to the surface to be cleaned. This is not hard at all.
All things considered, this is a really amazing little device for cleaning your aquarium! It does the job that it’s intended to do. It stays put when you’re not using it. If you keep it attached to the inside of your aquarium it’s always in a convenient location. More than anything else though, it’s actually incredibly fun to just play with! Oh yeah, it’s insanely affordable as well. You should go check out the hundreds of reviews on this product. There are so many people out there with real-world examples and stories on how they use their Mag-Float aquarium cleaners and 95% of them do a better job than I will ever be able to explaining how awesome these are excavation point