Here’s one of the best bits of aquarium advice of all time: Think everything through before purchasing. All too often, new hobbyists decide to purchase an aquarium — they run off to the local fish store, buy an aquarium kit and think they’re in business. They are all set and ready to go! Only later do they realize things like: the aquarium size isn’t appropriate for the type and amount of fish being kept, the fish tank is under-filtered or over-filtered, the tank is placed too close to the wall, the tank is placed in direct sunlight, or the high output lighting choice is too intense and the aquarium water turns green.
What happened? They didn’t think things through before purchasing. And with this hobby, things can get pretty expensive pretty quickly.
Things to Think About
Before purchasing, research facts thoroughly and think about the following questions:
How much money do I want to spend?
What are the continuing upkeep costs?
What fish species do I want to keep?
Are the fish compatible?
Is the aquarium size appropriate for the fish?
What type of filtering system is best?
Should I buy gravel or substrate?
What lighting system should be chosen?
Is the aquarium size appropriate for the room?
Where should the aquarium be placed in the room?
What will the aquarium be placed on?
What accessories are needed?
Also make sure to think about “brand and type” as well. Take the aquarium heater for example. Once you decide that you need a heater, think about questions such as:
What size aquarium heater do I need?
How many inches should it be?
Do I want submersible or non-submersible?
How “strong” should it be in terms of watts?
Do I want the type that lights up red only when it is heating?
Or the type that is lights up red when it is heating, and green when it is not?
Continue this methodical thought process across the board and make the best decisions the first time around. Research, double-check facts, measure, and think twice all before the water goes in.