Where you place your aquarium will make a big difference to how much pleasure you get from it for a number of reasons. The amount of maintenance required is affected by sunlight. The fishes habits are altered by noise and vibration and a tank placed on an inappropriate stand is likely to leak or even crack. A little time considering the following points will ensure you get the maximum pleasure from your new aquarium.
The lighting, heating and filtration will all need a power supply so be sure to position your tank within easy reach of a power socket. It can be useful to use an extension lead as this can be moved out of the way when carrying out maintenance to avoid splashing water onto electrical equipment.
Your fish like a constant temperature and sudden variances in water temperature can cause them unnecessary stress. The tank heater will have a built in thermostat which you can use to create the ideal conditions for your fish. It is therefore, wise to avoid placing your tank too close to radiators or heaters which when turned on will cause sudden increases in temperature. Avoiding direct drafts will also aid maintaining a constant temperature.
Modern aquarium lighting systems reproduce the light conditions of your fishes natural habitat, providing sufficient light for good plant growth whilst enhancing the overall visual effect. I generally try to position my aquarium in a position without direct sunlight to avoid excessive algae growth and therefore reduce the need for cleaning. You may also find it preferable to have a timer for your lighting to recreate an automatic day/night routine for your tank.
Noise and vibration.
Avoid positioning your tank close to speakers, televisions or regularly used doors, all sounds will produce vibrations within the tank which your fish will be aware of. Excessive noise will cause your fish unnecessary stress and they will seek shelter behind rocks where you can’t appreciate their beauty.
Ease of access.
During routine maintenance, you will need working space, room to use a bucket into which you can remove water from your tank. Your tank should be on a stand that is high enough to allow the use of a syphon (base of tank at least 300mm from the floor) this will make cleaning debris from the gravel quick and easy.
Probably most important of all is to ensure whatever you place your tank on is strong enough for the job. It’s best to buy a purpose built fish tank stand/cabinet, not only will this provide the necessary stability but usually provides storage space beneath for food, equipment etc. If you do choose to use something other than a purpose built unit, consider that a 20gallon/90ltr aquarium weighs around 225lb/100kg when full, including gravel, rocks and any other decorative items. It is also essential that the surface is perfectly level to prevent the tank’s joints from leaking or even worse, the glass cracking.
Be sure to place your tank in a location where you can really appreciate it, putting it in a rarely used room is kind of defeating the object. A well maintained aquarium makes an attractive centre piece to compliment any living space.