Enjoying More Storage Space

Setting Up An Old Aquarium: 4 Tips For Taking A Tank From Storage To Your Living Room

by Madison Holland

If you have a fish aquarium that you're not using, you can keep it in storage for an extended period of time — for years if you have to. It will be there for you when you're ready to set it up again. However, setting up an old tank is a bit different than setting up a new one. You have to clean the tank, make sure it's watertight, and cycle it before you can add decorations or fish. Following are four tips for taking a fish tank from storage to your living room. 


It's not uncommon for the glass of an old tank to get discolored with old mineral deposits and such while in storage. The result is a white or green haze on the glass that scratches off with some effort. Fortunately, the buildup is easy to clean. The first thing you want to remember is to never use chemical cleaners on an aquarium. Instead, use ammonia or heavily diluted chlorine bleach. Clean the glass with cleaner and a soft cloth before rinsing it thoroughly. 


While in storage, the seals on your tank might have dried out or pulled apart from the glass. So you have to make sure that your tank is watertight before taking it into your home. The last thing you want is gallons of water on your living room floor. To check the seal on your tank, fill it up with water while it's still outside or in your garage. Check it for leaks over a 24 hour period. 


If you find any leaks, remove the water and dry the tank completely. Remove the old seals with a straight razor and clean the corners with the same thing you cleaned the tank out with. Once the tank is bone dry, add new aquarium sealant to the inside of the seams. Let it dry for the recommended time and perform another leak test. 


Before putting in fish, you must cycle the tank. You can do so by adding fluid ammonia or fish food and monitoring your water's chemistry until the cycle is complete. Once complete, your water will have a 0 ammonia reading and a 0 nitrite reading. This process can take up to 2 months. If you want to speed the process up, you can add filter media from an existing, running aquarium.

Setting up an old aquarium that's been stored for a while isn't that difficult, but it takes some time, patience, and attention to detail. For more information on storing things, contact local professionals like Pearl Street Self Storage.