I have a UGF, but have only had this tank for a little over a month. From what I understand, maintenance is key. And maintenance includes gravel vacuuming..which is what you do anyway to clean the tank. So far so good. Also, this whole set up is used, and I think this particular UGF is ancient and it still runs just fine!
But, this is just anecdotal information. I have no experience with other kinds of filters, or more than one UGF filter. So, take this for what it is : )