Wave Prop 5800 circulation pump review


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Chris Green puts the new Prop 5800 circulation pump from Wave through its paces.

The Prop 5800 is, as the name suggests, a propeller-driven circulation pump and has a large two-bladed prop attached to the impeller. This is surrounded by the attached strainer.

The entire module sits on the included swivel mount which is claimed to give 160° of directional control to the pump.

This in turn attaches to a large heavy magnet which enables you to clamp it in place on the side of the aquarium with the opposing magnet on the outside.

These are fairly strong and can cope with a glass thickness of 15mm/0.6” with no problems. You do have to take care when attaching these as they are powerful and can easily snap together if care isn’t taken to ensure they are kept a safe distance from each other — as my hand found out when placing them near each other on the hood of the tank.

All in all, the build quality is sturdy and durable. Access is fairly easy and the magnetic power is impressively strong.

I was impressed by the stated output of 5,800lph for just 12w power consumption and looked forward to seeing it in action.

I tested it in my 567 l/125gal River tank and immediately noticed the effect it had in the tank and fish. The effects could still be noticed at the other end of the 1.8m/6’ long tank — although they were somewhat diminished. The fish immediately took to the flow and they could be seen in various ways to surf the direct flow and on the edges of the currents it had produced.

Over time I did notice that the propeller effect, while pushing out a fair amount of water, also pulled in a lot of the substrate. This was mostly sand, but also smaller gravel particles as well.

I could often see grains of sand and debris swirling in vortexes underneath the pump and, as time went on, it pulled a lot of sediment underneath it.

This isn’t such a bad thing as it means you can easily target the wastes for removal, but it was annoying to keep having to rebuild my substrate.

I got round this by moving the pump higher up in the tank, but unfortunately this took it out of my preferred placement.

Servicing this pump was easy and there was hardly any build-up of foreign material around the propeller or shaft.

The verdict

This is a great device and worthwhile in any tank requiring flow or high turnover, freshwater or saltwater. It provides a huge amount of output for small expense and is easily attached and set up.

I would have liked some optional add-ons for different requirements and uses. Due to the size of the pump and the way it attaches in the aquarium it can stick out a good few inches, so can look unsightly and bulky.

There are other sizes in the range, with lower or higher flow rates to suit different requirements and set-ups as well.

Product: Prop 5800 pump from Wave

Prices: From £34.99 - £79.99

Reviewer: Chris Green

Rating: 4/5

More info: 01732 452800


  • Excellent low power consumption.
  • Powerful and broad flow.
  • Well-made construction.
  • Simple to use.
  • Easy to service.


  • Bulky compared to other circulation pumps.
  • Slightly noise can be heard.
  • Positioning can disrupt. lighter substrates.
  • Venturi is noisy.  

This item was first published in the December 2009 issue of Practical Fishkeeping. It may not be reproduced without written permission.