SunSun JVP-120 Powerhead Review

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Size Dimensions Tank Size Noise Level Longevity Price
793 GPH 3.2″ x 2.6″ x 1.9″ 40-100 Gallons Low 8 Months-3 Years Medium

The SunSun JVP-120 brings a whole lot of power at a bare bottom price. Its body is small, the suction cup wears out too quickly, yet the powerhead itself is much longer lived than most budget powerheads. Overall the JVP-120 is well worth the money so long as your tank can handle the power it brings.


One of the most limiting factors comes into play during set-up. The SunSun-JVP comes with a cord shorter than most powerheads, a mere 3 feet! Be sure you can even get this powerhead in the water before reading any further.

Short cord in mind the powerhead will need to be near the top of your tank. This is perfectly fine as the flow will easily spread throughout the tank. You will need to direct your water flow based on what you are keeping. A huge tank with slow moving fish may still need the water diffused and the JVP-120 pointed at the wall. Small tanks housing demanding SPS corals may need the powerhead pointed just above the corals, sometimes even at them. Continue to adjust your powerhead until it suits your tank perfectly.

Because the SunSun JVP-120 is fairly small you can easily position it anywhere in the tank. Just remember it is really powerful and will have to have somewhere to push all the water flow. Next to sand beds or fish territories are not good places to stick this powerhead.

The intake of the powerhead is well covered by a small grate, protecting fish from the propeller. This however will no unstick slow swimmers who cannot compete with the powerhead. The front of the powerhead is only covered by three bars, making it easy for fish to enter. However the near 800GPH current will keep them away unless the powerhead is turned off. For those with resting fish such as mandarins, blennies and hawkfish you will need to make sure the powerhead is empty before turning it on. Fish are always investigating abnormalities, so these stopped powerheads are magnets for curious fish.

As the last note the suction cup is a big turn off on the JVP-120. After being removed several times you will notice a big decrease in suction strength, eventually leading to suction cup failure. This will likely cause a sandstorm at least once in the tank, after which you will need to find a new method of suspension. For my powerheads I always fix weak suction cups using the heat trick. This is where you boil the suction cup for a short time, heating the suction cup to relax and expand it. Next you immediately attach it to the wall, where it contracts and forms a super strong bond with the wall. Keep in mind the suction cup will be much harder to remove after doing this.


The SunSun JVP-120 comes apart at the second grates base, exposing the propeller and removing the grate. For this powerhead you may actually want to leave the body in the tank, deep cleaning the grate while only minorly cleaning out the propellers mount with a soft material. This keeps the suction cup strong at the loss of better cleaning.

If however you want to deep clean the entire powerhead you may need to use heat to reset the suction cup back to its original form before re attaching the powerhead.

Flow & Adjustments

The SunSun JVP-120 comes mounted with a ball joint, allowing it to be directed freely in 360 degrees. At this strength you will want to keep it pointed at the main body of water, as upwards can cause geysers, which are fun to look at for a bit but really messy, while downwards will cause sandstorms, which no one likes.

The propeller can start running in reverse after plenty of wear has occurred, more specifically when the propellers mount is damaged. This can easily be fixed by flicking the powerhead on and off until it runs in the right direction. Once on it will not reverse direction.

If you need something a bit smaller there are plenty other SunSun models listed on our powerheads page.

Warranty & Lifetime

Being a SunSun product means you have no warranty to rely on other than amazons 30 day warranty. This does give you enough time to find the major defects, such as damaged propellers or dead on arrival powerheads. Be sure to install the SunSun JVP-120 the day you receive it as well as give it a good inspection on the 28th day of ownership.

Once all the defects are taken care of the SunSun can last between 8 months and 3 years, depending on the care it is given as well as the debris it sees. Tanks with large macro algae that often reaches the propeller will cause much more wear on it, resulting in a short life. On the other hand, when in a tank with little debris and plenty of cleanings, once a month, three years easily achievable.

Overall this is a strong powerhead in a small body. The price is amazing and the lifetime makes its cost per year unbeatable. If you have a bit of patience and can deal with the suction cup issue this powerhead will more than prove its worth.

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