Are you planning to build a fish tank? Awesome! Did you know that a fish tank has surprising benefits? In addition to enhancing your interior, it ensures low-stress levels, improved sleep quality, reduced blood pressure, improved focus, and decreased anxiety. But to build one, you must know the things needed for a fish tank.
Today, we’ll walk you through a complete checklist for building a fish tank. Let’s look at everything needed to set up an aquarium in your house.
An Aquarium: Things Needed for a Fish Tank
Well, it’s apparent that you need an aquarium to build a fish tank in your house. Before choosing the right aquarium, you need to find the right location for your fish tank. You can’t just place your fish tank anywhere. It needs to be on a flat and waterproof surface. If you put it on an elevated surface, make sure it can handle the weight of the tank. A fully filled fish tank with all the accessories can weigh as much as 10 pounds (4.5 kg). So, finding an identical place is essential.
Next, you need to find the right tank. There’s no limit to the size of tank you can buy. The smallest tanks are of ten gallons, while the larger ones can be of hundreds of gallons. Avoid purchasing a ten-gallon tank even if you are an absolute beginner. Larger tanks facilitate the dilution of toxic waste excreted by fish.
In general, aquariums cost $1 per gallon. You can also opt for rimless aquariums, though they are more expensive. When it comes to material, you can choose between a glass or acrylic aquarium. Both materials have their pros and cons, and you can learn about them here.
An Aquarium Lid
Some beginners may think of saving money by not buying a good aquarium lid or top. However, it can have the opposite impact. When your aquarium doesn’t have a cover, the loss of water and heat is more rapid. Moreover, the fish in your aquarium can jump out if there’s no lid, and that’s the last thing you want.
Lids also come in two materials: glass and acrylic. Glass lids are usually cheap, and they are clear, making them ideal for viewing purposes. They contain plastic strips that you can customize for feeding and filtration purposes. Acrylic lids are expensive and require more care. Hence, they’re not ideal for beginners.
Water Conditioner and Fish Filter
A water conditioner and fish filter are essential for creating a good environment in the fish tank for fish. The water conditioner helps you introduce the right bacteria in the tank that digest the waste material excreted by the fish. Since ammonia is toxic, not digesting it can cause ammonia build-up, creating a toxic environment for the inhabitants of the fish tank. Therefore, having a good water conditioner, like a Fluval cycle biological enhancer, is essential.
Another thing you need, along with a water conditioner, is a fish filter. A fish filter, as the name suggests, provides filtration to the water in the fish tank. Most modern-day filters offer three types of filtration: biological, chemical, and mechanical.
Each type of filtration is different and offers different benefits. You can delve into the filtration types if you want, but that’s not necessary. Just keep in mind that you need a filter that has all three types.
A Heater: Things Needed for a Fish Tank
The next thing you need for a fish tank is a heater. Every fish is unique and has different temperature requirements. Though some fish species like mountain minnows and goldfish can survive cooler temperatures, most domestic fish species need a tropical temperature of 70-80°F. Thus, buy an adjustable aquarium heater that lets you change the temperature of the water tank.
The ability of a heater to heat the water inside it depends on its power output. A heater with a power output of 5W can warm one gallon of water 10°F above room temperature. The power needed to heat up the water will increase based on your quantity and temperature requirements.
Lighting: Things Needed for a Fish Tank
The lighting is another important aspect of installing a fish tank. It has two purposes. First, live aquatic plants need light for survival. So if you plan to have live plants in your fish tank, lighting will be essential. Second, lights add an aesthetic look and feel to your aquarium. They make your fish tank look more attractive and visually appealing.
Decorations and Substrate
Let’s talk about substrates first. The substrate is a collective term used for everything used to make the surface of the fish tank. It mainly includes sand, plant substrate, and gravel. Adding substrate elements to your fish tank can create a sea-like experience for the fish.
Aquarium decorations are also important. Though they don’t impact the life of the inhabitants in your tank, they can give a great look and feel to your aquarium. The best decoration item for a fish tank is a background. Without a background, you’ll see tangled wires, which won’t look great. Moreover, these wires, along with other objects in the background, will create shadows that may scare the inhabitants. A background wall prevents the formation of such shadows.
Aquarium Test Strips
Let’s end this list with aquarium test strips. Before adding freshwater fish to the fish tank, you must ensure that the water doesn’t have inadequate levels of nitrite, nitrate, and ammonia. You can use any test strip to check the water for its alkalinity, pH, and hardness.
Test strips are quick and will give the result in only 60 seconds. Have a look at the readings. And if you see them going outside the safe levels, filter and condition the water before adding the fish to it.
Wrap Up: Things Needed for a Fish Tank
A fish tank is a great addition to any home. Not only does it enhance the look and feel of the house, but it also has proven mental health benefits. However, there are a lot of things to consider before implementing a fish aquarium. Have a look at the things mentioned above and buy them to set up a perfect fish tank in your house.