ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

My Aquarium is Starting To Crash What Should I Do

Updated on August 30, 2011
Salt water tank
Salt water tank

Starting The Aquarium Keeping Hobby

Many new aquarium hobbyists experiences what we call new tank syndrome which is where they get their new tank full of water and get bored with seeing no fish so they go buy a bunch of fish and toss them in. Yes, even us advanced hobbyists want to do this but we refrain for a good reason which is that it has a huge impact on their little environment. You must first let your aquarium run for at least one month with only the substrate, filters, and decorations although I recommend keeping it up for at least two months before adding more than one fish. One fish will not cause any impact on an aquarium and it is actually very beneficial to have him eating and pooping in the tank. Make sure you add the rock slowly into the tank over the month or two. This whole process gives your aquarium enough time to establish itself maintain its proper PH and also allow any unwanted pests to die off.

What Is An Aquarium Crash

An aquarium crash is where your fish, invertebrates, and corals start dying in unfortunate series of events. There are many different causes for a crash including poison, disease, water quality, unwanted pests, and even electric issues. I cannot diagnose your problem but I can tell you what you should do in case stuff starts getting salty. Anyone who has ever kept an aquarium knows that time is essential. If you are too late most likely you are going to lose anything and everything you have. Only the ones prepared for a crash are the ones that do not lose a few hundred or thousand dollars in priced marine life. I have suffered only one salt water aquarium crash and it was awful I lost everything but by most expensive fish. Most people lose everything so I am glad I made it out with my rarest fish. I did in fact still lose over $1000 in marine life, I still saved my $300 Lion fish.

What To Do Before An Aquarium Crash

There is no way to really prevent an aquarium from crashing but what you can do is be prepared for the worst. It does not take more than $50 to make sure you are prepared. First you should pick up a 20 gallon aquarium from any thrift store or goodwill. This fish tank does not have to be awesome and decorative but you should try to get it with a lid and filter. I find fish tanks like this all the time for around $20. When the fish tank does not come with a lid and filter just go rig yourself a lid with holes for oxygen and buy a filter from the pet store for $15. If you main aquarium is less than 30 gallons to begin with than you can get a 5 gallon aquarium instead of a 20 gallon. Second do not use any substrate (sand, pebbles, or stone) in your spare aquarium which we will call a quarantine tank (QT). Purchase all 4 of the items located on the amazon link to the right. These include Stresszymes to add bacteria which aid in filtration because your fish are going to be stressed after netted out and moved, Maracyn-plus this is an antibacteria it fights any bacteria in the aquarium and on the fish, Tetra Aquasafe Water Conditioner which neutralizes things like chlorine and heavy metals, and lastly CopperSafe which is used to fight any bacteria on the fish or in the aquarium. All of which are much more inexpensive than the fish themselves. Make sure you know what fish can and cannot be treated with each though. CopperSafe uses copper which will kill many invertebrates and any type of shark or eel.

Fresh & Salt Water Parameters

Salt Water
Fresh Water
>30 ppm
>30 ppm
>20 ppm

What To Do During An Aquarium Crash

Parasite aquarium crash

1. Take all of your fish out and toss them into the QT. Then add the recommended dosage of Coppersafe. make sure you do not treat sharks, eels, rays, or snails this way.

2. Let your aquarium run for 45 days before putting the fish back into it. This allows enough time that the parasite will die with no host. Most parasites have multiple stages and if you add a fish in early the parasite is not really gone.

3. If any fish have died make sure you flush them or dispose of them properly. Do not leave them in the tank this will cause increase in nitrites and nitrates and is very bad for your water quality.

Bacteria aquarium crash

1. Take all of your fish out and toss them into the QT. Then add the recommended dosage of Maracyn-Plus.

2. Let your aquarium run 15 days before putting the fish back into it. This allows enough time that the bacteria is completely off of the fish.

3. Check your water parameters and see if a water change is needed. You can find the test kits to check all the basics on the right side on the amazon link.

3. If any fish have died make sure you flush them or dispose of them properly. Do not leave them in the tank this will cause increase in nitrites and nitrates and is very bad for your water quality.

New tank crash

Most likely if this is the case all your fish will die before you can do anything and likely within the first 3-7 days after buying them.

1. DO NOT add any more fish or rock into the aquarium just let it remain how it is.

2. Check your water parameters and get the water to the proper levels with water changes.

3. After everything is where it should be let it set for 2 months before adding another fish or any more rock.

4. Once its been two months add a fish see how he does.If he dies within 3 hours you have a very serious issue and should consider restarting completely and buying water from your local pet store. If it dies within 30 hours get an air pump and toss some oxygen into the tank and buy another cheap fish and try again. If he dies this time then it is most likely something to do with an impurity in the water or electric current getting into the water. So take out all the water and purchase some water from the pet store and let it sit for at least another month. Make sure to never let the pest control squirt in a room with an aquarium, also never use freebreeze or anything like that around an aquarium either.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Nspeel profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Myrtle Beach

      Shea - Thank you it is a very fun hobby.

    • shea duane profile image

      shea duane 

      8 years ago from new jersey

      good information


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)