Fish tanks, aquariums, they’re great aren’t they . . . they’re often more entertaining than the television, and much more relaxing to watch – I remember sitting my toddler in front of our aquarium for ages, he was just mesmerized by the pretty colors of the fish floating by with their serene beauty. No wonder an increasing number of people are finding that a fish tank is not just a great hobby and topic of interest, they’re also great fun. Trouble is, for any fish tank or aquarium “newbies”, that there are just so many different things to consider when you become the proud owner of your very first fish tank.
Stuff To Think About Before Buying Your First Fish Tank or Aquarium
- The type of fish you’re gonna’ keep in your fish tank. There’s coldwater fish, tropical fish, saltwater fish . . . you can’t mix ‘em and you have to know the needs and requirements of each type of fish before you buy ‘em. They’ve gotta’ get along and be friendly, and you also need to know how big they’re likely to grow so that you can be sure that they won’t outgrow your fish tank.
- The space you have for your fish tank – where are you going to keep it. It’ll have to be out of direct sunlight otherwise you’ll have a continual fight to stop it being taken over by algae, plus it’s got to be in a place where you can really stand back and admire your fish tank . . . . they look much better from a little distance.
- The filtration system is another important thing to think about. If your fish tank set up is going to include an external filter system then you’ve gotta’ be sure to have enough room for the filter next to your aquarium, or within a cabinet which will fit nicely into your allotted space.
- You also need room to move around your fish tank. If you size your fish tank to fit exactly into the space you have for it, then you might struggle to get around cleaning the fish tank, changing the water etc. Tank maintenance doesn’t necessarily take long, but it is much easier if you leave yourself a little room to maneuver.
- The volume of your fish tank is another important consideration. Okay, so a 500 liter fish tank might look mighty impressive, but just remember that you’ve gotta’ change 20% of the water every couple of weeks, that’s 100 liters of water every two weeks . . . quite a lot of water huh?
- The weight of the fish tank is another thing you need to think about. Fish tanks and aquariums are pretty heavy, especially once you’ve filled them up with water, so make sure that whatever you choose as a fish tank stand - whether you buy something new or you use something you already have at home – make sure that it is structurally strong enough to support your fish tank filled with water, gravel, filtration system etc.
Types of Fish Tanks
There are many different types and styles of fish tank which you can choose from, for example there are bow front tanks, flat front tanks, nano tanks and bowls and tall tanks. Generally you’ll buy the one which you like best – it’s all about personal preference. If you’re concerned about water quality then opt for a rectangular tank, they have a larger surface area where water meets air, so there’s more room for the fish to swim around, as well as more room for the exchange of gases.
Buying Fish Tanks & Aquariums
Now that we’ve had a run through of much of the “nitty gritty” stuff to think about when buying a fish tank, let’s look at something which unfortunately rules many of the decisions in our lives . . . budget! Your choice of tank will depend largely on your budget, second hand tanks can be a great option and prove to be a real bargain but do be sure to check the tank thoroughly for any signs of cracks of sealant wear. Although it’ll cost you more to buy a large fish tank set up, once you’re aquarium is up and running the general day to day running cost of a larger fish tank won’t be that much more than that for a much smaller tank.
You can find more information on fish tanks here.