Top 7 Best Automatic Fish Feeder To Buy In 2019 Reviews And Buying Guide

Top 7 Best Automatic Fish Feeder To Buy In 2019 Reviews And Buying Guide
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Fish are generally low maintenance pets. They’re not fussy about what and when you feed them, nor do they mind who does the feeding. But, if you’re going away and don’t have anyone to feed them, what can you do?

Automatic fish feeders are a really simple solution.

These devices mount onto your tank and drop food down to your fish at set times of the day. You can feed your fish while at work or away on vacation for a week.

We’re giving you the inside scoop on some of the best automatic fish feeders. Below you’ll find reviews of some top-rated models as well as a brief guide to help you make the right choice. Read on…

AUTOMATIC FISH FEEDER

Top 7 Best Automatic Fish Feeder To Buy in 2019 Reviews

1 Eheim Automatic Feeding Unit 

This unit can be bought as a single feeder or in a pack with 2, 5, or 10 feeders. It’s a small, rectangular feeder with a dark gray and black tinted plastic outer case.

The Eheim automatic feeding unit mounts sideways on the top of the tank. When correctly placed, the display screen points upwards. Food dispenses from an opening on the rotating side of the device.

Food up to 100ml fits into the holding drum. It’s well ventilated, so food stays dry. The device portions out food for each feeding. You input the desired food quantities manually.

This Eheim runs on 2 AA batteries. When the battery gets low, the feeder will indicate it to you. Program it to feed up to 8 times per day, or manually release the food whenever you want.

Benefits

If you have a normal fish load, the food lasts up to 6 weeks. Even if you have a larger load, you’ll get a few weeks before it fully empties. It’s a good choice for long holidays or busy working people.

What else do you need to know? Here’s a little more…

Eheim Automatic Feeding Unit
Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros
  • Can mount on a flat surface (lid) or vertical surface (tank wall)
  • Easy to program and adjust to your specific needs
  • Simple setup with manual included
  • Little to no moisture buildup over time
  • Works for flakes and pellets, or a mixture of both
Cons
  • Doesn’t dispense large flakes well in small amounts
  • Not effective for large size fish
  • Portion size is adjusted via hatch opening, which is a bit finicky and not precise

2 PROCHE Digital Automatic Fish Feeder/Turtle Feeder 

This model of fish feeder comes in different styles. The Pro-E and Pro-X. The Pro-E is a round version with more programming options while the Pro-X is a slightly larger rectangular version. Both have a black and dark gray color scheme.

The whole unit is plastic. The Pro-E mounts on the side of the tank while the Pro-X mounts on the top or side. Both styles are battery-operated, with the Pro- E using 2 AAA batteries and the Pro-X using 2 AA batteries.

Both units are easily programmable. They release food up to 4 times daily on your set schedule, dropping as much food as you want. The Pro-E can perform 1 or 2 rotations per feed, while the Pro-X only does 1. Capacity in the Pro-X is larger than the Pro-E.

Benefits

Both styles of the PROCHE digital automatic fish feeder can accommodate regular feeding schedules. However, the Pro-E is a great option if you need a feeder with more customization options. If you have finicky fish, the Pro-E may be a good choice.

That’s not all…

PROCHE Digital Automatic Fish Feeder/Turtle Feeder
Our rating:3.8 out of 5 stars (3.8 / 5)

Pros
  • Works well for feeding while away from home
  • Easy setup with included manual
  • Dispenses flakes efficiently
  • Pro-E is highly adjustable for individual fish needs
  • Feeds up to 4 times dail
Cons
  • No way to turn it off without removing the batteries, unless all feedings times deleted
  • Pro-E feed canister can be tricky to remove
  • Feeding cycles can be inconsistent – not effective for very particular fish

3 Fish Mate F14 Aquarium Fish Feeder 

For a smaller option, this Fish Mate F14 feeder could be the right choice. It comes in original and limited editions, both of which are small black and red plastic devices. There is little or no difference between the original and limited edition options.

This is a chamber feeder. It can drop up to 14 individual meals before it needs to be refilled. Each chamber holds whatever amount and type of food you want.

Set the meal times for your aquarium, with up to 4 feeding times per day. Rather than using a digital interface, Fish Mate uses a quartz mechanism similar to a watch. It runs on 1 AA battery, which you should provide separately.

If you’re worried about humidity, you can attach a pressurized air tube to the feeder to keep food dry. Open the top of the device to access the feeding chambers and empty or refill them as needed. Fish Mate’s F14 attaches to the lid of your tank.

Benefits

When you want to give your fish a variety of foods without mixing them, this feeder makes a good choice. It’s best for small tanks, because of the compact size. This is an energy-efficient, small feeder that you can count on when you’re away from home.

What’s the catch?

Fish Mate F14 Aquarium Fish Feeder
Our rating:3.7 out of 5 stars (3.7 / 5)

Pros
  • Reliable and long-lasting build
  • Allows for separate food to be dispensed at various times
  • Great for betta tanks and other small aquariums
  • Discreet design is low-profile and doesn’t look out of place
  • Useful for non-fish aquariums as well (vivariums, turtle tanks, lizard tanks, etc.)
Cons
  • Limited programmable options
  • Food chambers dispense slowly, not immediately
  • Time programming method is a little tricky to get used to at first

4 AQQEF AF012 Automatic Fish Feeder 

When you need a large feeding unit, the AQQEF AF012 automatic fish feeder fits the bill. It’s a larger side-mounting unit in black plastic.

A large feeding drum sits on the back of the device and holds up to 150ml of food. Any type of food fits into the drums easily and dispenses. You can adjust the amount of food dispensed each time to control feedings.

Set feeding times on the front LCD display. Program up to 5 feeding sessions per day or press a button to dispense the food manually. Up to 3 cycles are allowed per feeding session, in case you need to drop more food for a large fish load.

This AQQEF feeder runs on 2 AA batteries. Batteries don’t come with the device. You can count on the device lasting 7 – 14 days when full, depending on how much you’re feeding each day.

Benefits

For larger tanks or fish loads, this is a solid option. It’s got the drum size to work well for lots of fish, and it can drop 3 rounds of food per feeding. You could also likely use this feeder for larger pets like turtles.

Read on to see what you might be missing here…

AQQEF AF012 Automatic Fish Feeder
Our rating:3.9 out of 5 stars (3.9 / 5)

Pros
  • Side mounting clamp provides a strong, sturdy hold
  • Very simple to setup
  • Works reliably once you set it up and program it
  • Good for most types of food for aquarium, vivariums, and turtle tanks
  • Timer works well to dispense food on time
  • Great for large tanks
Cons
  • Large and bulky design
  • Not effective for live foods or foods larger than around half an inch wide
  • Plastic is not as sturdy as other popular models available
  • Amount of food dispensed through the opening may not be consistent

5 Flexzion Programmable Automatic Pond Fish Food Feeder 

If you’re running a very large tank or an outdoor fish pond, you can use this feed. The Flexzion programmable automatic pond fish food feeder comes in a dark green plastic shell.

Unlike normal tank feeders, this large drum is built to last outdoors, though it’s not fully weatherproof. You can set it to feed adjustable amounts of food up to 4 times per day. With the large 4.25L (1.6kg) capacity, it can last up to 99 days.

This feeder runs on 4 C batteries. When the battery level is low, an indicator light illuminates. All settings are easy to program on the LCD panel in the front.

To avoid moisture getting to the food, the food drum is resistant against water. Even the LCD display has a closeable cover to protect it. Food is dispensed down a shoot into the water. To keep food levels consistent, the drum feeds into smaller chambers for dispensing.

Benefits

If you’re feeding outdoor fish, turtles, or a very large indoor tank, this is a great option. Its huge capacity paired with sturdy design makes it ideal for outdoor use.

Anything else you should know? Check it out…

Flexzion Programmable Automatic Pond Fish Food Feeder
Our rating:3.7 out of 5 stars (3.7 / 5)

Pros
  • Ideal for ponds and outdoor fish habitats
  • Large drum capacity can feed for a long time between refills
  • Works best with pellets, flakes, and other solid food types
  • Dispensing size is perfect for smaller fish ponds or larger tanks
  • Can be programmed to only feed certain days, or to feed continuously
Cons
  • Far too large to use for a regular indoor tank
  • Does not mount onto a normal aquarium
  • Not 100% weatherproof
  • Operation and programming is not intuitive

6 Intellifeed Fish Feeder

This feeder from Intellifeed suits most fish tanks, large or small. It’s a black plastic feeder with a transparent plastic food drum.

The design of the food drum prevents moisture from entering and building up inside the food. It works well with small foods like flakes or pellets. Both drop easily through the adjustable drum opening.

Program the feeder to dispense food up to 12 times daily for as long as the drum lasts. For smaller tanks, this provides food for 7 – 14 days at a time.

Intellifeed’s automatic fish feeder works with either an AC adaptor or batteries. Neither are included with the feeder, so you should purchase them separately.

Benefits

For an option that doesn’t have to depend on batteries alone, this is a good option. It works well for small to medium tanks for long periods of time, or large tanks for shorter times away.

Intellifeed Fish Feeder
Our rating:3.3 out of 5 stars (3.3 / 5)

Pros
  • No air tube needed to keep food dry
  • Well-designed to resist moisture
  • Choose between battery power or AC adaptor cord
  • Easy to mount on different tank sizes and shapes
  • Works well and remains durable
Cons
  • Capacity is too small for long vacations or large fish loads
  • Feeding programs are all forgotten if power is lost or disconnected
  • Some inconsistency with feed amounts, depending on the level in the feeding drum

7 Current USA 3860 Aquachef Automatic Fish Feeder 

The Current USA 3860 Aquachef fish feeder is an option when you need a larger device. It’s a black plastic feeder with a transparent food drum.

Fill up to 35 grams of your choice of food into the large drum. Food is released as the drum rotates at set times each day. Depending on how wide of an opening you allow, different amounts of food is dispensed.

Program up to 4 separate feeding times per day. Each feeding involves a single or double rotation, which you can set yourself.

This is a side-mounting unit with a built-in clamp to attach to your tank wall. The design is rounded and slightly bulky; but, it fits well on most normal tanks. The tank runs on batteries.

Benefits

This is a shorter feeder, which works well for some sizes and shapes of tanks. It’s well-suited for corner tanks, open rim tanks, and tanks with an open space in the back.

What else do you need to know?

Current USA 3860 Aquachef Automatic Fish Feeder
Our rating:3.3 out of 5 stars (3.3 / 5)

Pros
  • Batteries come with the feeder
  • Quick and easy setup
  • Mounting clamp is compatible with many different tank styles
  • Lasts for weeks with a normal fish load
  • Works reliably when you’re away
Cons
  • Refilling the drum is somewhat difficult
  • Feeding times are lost when powered down or handled to refill
  • Smaller foods may not dispense evenly or consistently
  • Some moisture buildup is possible, especially around the opening in the drum

Automatic Fish Feeder Buying Guide

There are a few things you need to know before you buy an automatic fish feeder. If you’re not prepared, you might buy the wrong thing. The best automatic fish feeder for your tank won’t always be the best for someone else’s.

Get the facts for yourself and make an informed decision. Learn more below…

Do You Need An Automatic Fish Feeder?

While they’re convenient, automatic fish feeders aren’t necessary for everyone. They are handy if you’re going away or if you work and need to feed fish while you’re out of the house. When your fish need food while you’re out of the house, they’re a lifesaver.

Top 7 Best Automatic Fish Feeder To Buy In 2019 Reviews

Some people replace their normal daily feeding routine with an automatic feeder. Experts don’t recommend this, because feeding time is a great time for you to observe your fish. You can spot problems or make adjustments to anything as you notice it. Without that manual feeding time, you may not notice issues within your tank.

What To Look At

Pay attention to a few differentiating factors to know if you’re getting a good deal. We’ve listed these below…

  • Food Capacity

Most automatic fish feeders have a chamber mechanism that helps them drop the right amount of food into the tank. Each individual chamber is filled with the same amount you would drop during any normal feeding. This adds up together to make up the total capacity.

When the chamber method isn’t used, there may be a drum that feeds into a separator. The separator will push certain size portions of food into the tank at the right time. This has the same effect as the chamber feeders, though not as precise.

Best Automatic Fish Feeder To Buy In 2019 Reviews

Some drums use a rotation method to feed instead. A door opens on one side of the drum to release food while the drum is rotating. Once it finishes the rotation, the feeding is over and no more food will drop.

The size of your tank and your fish load determines how much capacity you need. Larger tanks with a higher fish load need more capacity. Large capacity automatic feeders also let you stay longer without refilling the food.

  • Power Source

Automatic feeders will either be powered by a battery or by an electrical cord hooked up to a regular outlet. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.

Battery powered feeders can only last as long as the battery itself. While they are convenient if the power goes out, they won’t work if the battery fails. You may not know if the battery dies while you’re away, causing your fish to suffer until you return.

Power cords are more reliable, but they also have a downside. When the power goes out, the feeder won’t be able to operate at all. Additionally, there’s more risk of electrical shock with a power cord than with a battery.

Some feeders give both battery and power cord options. What this means is you’ll have a battery backup in case the power cuts, or a power cord backup if the battery fails. This is your best bet if you’re worried about electrical failure while you’re away.

  • Build Quality

It may be difficult to tell the build quality outright, but it’s worth a try. The quality of materials makes a difference. Look for high-quality materials and good watertight mechanics.

Plastic is the most common material you’ll see for automatic fish feeders. There are also metal versions and feeders that mix both metal and plastic. Hard plastics that retain their shape and resist damage are better than soft plastics that warp and bend over time.

Best Automatic Fish Feeder To Buy

Water resistance is the most difficult feature for most automatic feeders to achieve. The food inside the drum needs to avoid moisture, which requires good water resistant seal. Moisture buildup can cause food to stick together and may promote mold growth.

Most feeders will not be watertight, but they should be water resistant at least. Alternatively, some feeders have an air intake that allows you to attach an air tube to the feeding drum. This provides constant ventilation to keep food dry.

  • Mounting Style

Feeders are mounted onto the side of the fish tank by any means possible. There is no one way to mount a feeder, though some may be more common than others. Your tank setup will determine what kind of mounting system works best.

Most automatic fish feeders mount on the back or side of the tank. They must be hanging over an open section of the tank to work properly. The feeder also needs to sit far enough away from the water so it stays completely dry.

Mounting is important to the overall setup of your tank. You will have an easier time if you choose a mounting style that will not require tank modification. Work with the tank you have already rather than making unnecessary changes.

  • Programming Options

Each feeder gives you a different variety of options. You can program how many feeding sessions happen per day and when they happen. You’ll also be able to set how much food will be dispensed each time.

Some feeders offer more options while others are limited. Limitations include the maximum numbers of feedings you can set up and the amount you can set to feed.

Conclusion

If you’re going out of town and you need to keep your fish tank working while you’re away, automatic feeders are a great option. Something like the Eheim Automatic Feeding Unit is a good choice for beginners with small to medium tanks. Give it a try when you leave next.

For larger tanks, turtle tanks, or other unique setups, the best automatic fish feeder is likely to be a bigger model. This could mean the Flexzion Programmable Automatic Pond Fish Food Feeder or the AQQEF AF012 Automatic Fish Feeder.

Make sure you pay attention to all the features and specifics, so you can make the right choice. Your tank is counting on you!

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