Secure Your Aquarium and Your Fish

Sometimes, when people are eager to get started with their new chosen fish tank hobby, they focus on the fish first, the aquarium second, and the aquarium stand… Oh well, it sometimes gets completely forgotten! Or you may hear the following: What aquarium stand? Aquarium stands are not necessary! I have many surfaces in the house to put my new aquarium on!

That may be fine for a small aquarium, but once you get above 20 gallons, you really do need an aquarium stand. Since it can get rather expensive, comparison shopping is highly recommended. That is why I have structured my website to give you just that – current prices of aquarium stands from several of the largest pet product retailers on line (and off) at your fingertips.

Just select the aquarium stand size you are interested in by clicking on Aquarium Stands on the top menu, selecting the size from the drop–down sub-menu and compare away! For example, if you are looking for a 55 gallon aquarium stand, here are your choices:55 gallon aquarium stands

If you buy the aquarium stand at the same time as the aquarium, you may be able to get a much better deal than when purchasing a stand separately. Some aquariums (such as Solana Aquarium Systems) actually come with a stand already, so if you like this solution, know it’s available to you.

An aquarium stand is an intergral part of your aquarium set up, serving not only to hold up the fish tank – in itself a very important function – but also to organize everything you will need around your aquarium. Let’s get specific:

Aquarium Weight

An aquarium weighs about 10 lbs for every gallon of water it’s filled with. That means that even small aquariums can get rather heavy. Aquarium stands have to be built to support that weight. Regular furniture, such as a bookcase, a night stand, a table, will most likely not be able to withstand the weight long term. Those objects do not make good aquarium stands.

In addition to water, there is also gravel, fish tank decorations and the aquarium itself, especially if made out of glass. Acrylic aquariums are lighter than glass, but still even a small, 10 gallon aquarium will weigh about 100 pounds when completely set up. And a 30 gallon fish tank will weigh three times as much, or close to 300 pounds.

Now you can see why we don’t recommend placing your aquarium on a piece of furniture not especially designed for it. Even if initially it seems to hold the aquarium without a problem and serve as an aquarium stand, it will eventually weaken and most likely collapse. That would be a disaster not only for your flooring or carpeting, but most importantly for your fish.

Aquarium Stands – Support for Glass vs Acrylic tanks

Depending on whether your tank is acrylic or glass, you may need different kind of an aquarium stand. Aquarium stands for acrylic aquariums must provide support along the full length and width of the bottom. Aquarium stands for glass fish tanks need to provide support only by the outside edges.

Open Aquarium Stands

The simplest aquarium stands are open. They are also much lighter than wooden aquarium stands. They are made of cast iron in a rectangular shape and with cross–support on the sides and in the back. They have no top so that the aquarium has to fit in precisely on the rectangular lip. They wouldn’t be appropriate for acrylic aquariums, which, as we mentioned above, need to be fully supported across the bottom.

Open aquarium stands can easily support fish tanks up to 40 gallons.

Closed Aquarium Stands

Closed aquarium stands are made of pressure–treated wood, which enables them to withstand not only a lot of weight, but moisture as well. Otherwise, the wood would rot in no time from all the moisture around the aquarium.

Closed aquarium stands usually have one or two doors that swing outward and perhaps a drawer. The back of the aquarium stand is open except for a center support beam, so that electrical cords and filter tubing can be conveniently accessed from the outside in the back.

Aquarium stands for Storage

As I briefly mentioned above, aquarium stands not only hold your tank, but also give you storage space for your supplies and fish food. That will become very important as you realize just how many little things you will need close by as you take care of the tank and the fish. You will be spared the unavoidable mess of accessories and products laying around all over the place. You can keep fish food, water conditioners and cleaning supplies there.

And, with the larger units, various filtration systems can also be housed in the aquarium stands, under the fish tanks.

Appearance of Aquarium Stands

Think also of the aesthetic impact the aquarium stand will make on your living room. Just as aquariums themselves are becoming more and more attractive, so can aquarium stands be very stylish and enhance the look of your home. Very often aquarium stands are manufactured specifically for each particular aquarium model and they will be made of material matching the trim of the aquarium. Don’t overlook that fact when buying an aquarium stand. Even though it may be a minor detail, it will add to the overall visual impact of the aquarium and the aquarium stand set. Of course, that can always be corrected later, but it would require that you refinish or paint your aquarium stand.

Custom Aquarium Stands

For those of you who are purchasing a custom size aquarium, you will have to consider the aquarium stand more carefully and give yourself enough time to get them both and make all the decisions involved with having them designed. That would include the price, of course. Think carefully about all options that the aquarium designer presents you with as they will all translate into dollars. It would be best to ask the aquarium builder to buid the aquarium stand as well. Aquarium designers typically offer designer aquarium stands, too.

Metal Aquarium Stands

If metal aquarium stands appeal to you more, be sure to use a rust resistant kind. Otherwise your aquarium stand will inevitably get rusty with all the moisture around the aquarium.

As you see, getting an aquarium isn’t the end of the story – aquarium stands are often an afterthought when people decide on a fish tank. But it would behoove you to get the aquarium and the aquarium stand well in advance of actually getting your fish, not only to condition the tank, but to find the right place for your aquarium in your home and to set up the whole unit, including your new aquarium stand.