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Where To Place Your Fish Tank

Updated on November 4, 2007
You don't want a tank that your floor can't hold up.
You don't want a tank that your floor can't hold up.

You're getting a fish tank! That's great! You are entering a hobby full of relaxation, wonder and neat gizmos. But first, you have to figure out where in your home to place your new pride and joy. You just can't stick a fish tank anywhere, because they just aren't mobile. Moving a fully laden tank is not only dangerous, it's darn near impossible. You need to find out where to place the tank before you fill it up.

How Big Is Your Tank?

No, that's not a personal question, I mean how many gallons is your aquarium is going to be? When I took on my Dad's old 20 gallon, I wasn't just taking on the tank and the stand -- was also taking on the weight of the water and gravel. Filled, the tank probably weighs more than 600 pounds. (and I'm not exaggerating). You have to be sure your floor is going to be able to withstand all of that weight. If you would like fish and live on an upper floor (and the landlord allwos it), you might have to condier getting a ten gallon or less.

If you do decide to get several aquariums and own the home you live in, make sure you have some sort of insurance against water damage, just in case the tank breaks. It's not likely this will happen, but it can happen and the trememndous sudden gush of water can damage your floors/ceilings.

Because Dad's old 20 gallon would be so heavy when filled, I placed it in the basement (where my bedroom is.) This basement is dry, with electrical outlets and close proximity to a sink. And, I don't have to wrry about putting a hole in the ceiling.

My aquarium is on an aquarium stand. Consider getting a stand rather than sticking a tank on a bureau top or a bookshelf on material that will not warp when wet. If the tank gets thrown off balance, this can cause the tank to crack.


You need to place the tank near electrical sockets or be prepared to go through a lot of extension cords. You might consider getting an outlet strip to help keep track of all of the plugs. You need to be sure the wires won't trip anyone up, human or animal.

Also, you need to be close to a source of water, like a sink. Carrying bucket after bucket of water is amazingly painful after a few steps. Do what works best for you.

Out Of Traffic

Sound carries better through water than through air, so fish can be very sensitive to lots of noise, slamming doors and clomping feet. Try not to keep the fish right next to a stereo speaker or doorway. Far away from the door on the other side of the room is good.

Also, you need to be sure you can get around the tank so you can clean it and work the filters, heater or other gizmos. Placing the tank in the exact center of a room is a bad idea, since people are bound to walk right into it. Placing it about eightinches from a wall is a better idea.

A greenhouse is actually a bad place to stick a fish tank like a goldfish tank, as it will get too much sun. Greenhouses have big temperature swings as well, often very cold at night and very hot in the day. Even with a heater in the tank, fish need a more stable temperature.

A kitchen is also not a good place to put a fish tank, as the smells of cooking can badly affect the fish. Ditto for the bathroom, because it is usually so small, poorly lit, not well ventilated and, well, smelly.

A dark quiet corner in a room opposite a window is an ideal place. When you get the fish tank and stand, try them in several places, if necessary, to see where it would best fit in with the d├ęcor and your lifestyle.

Although it's ideal to have the place where you can put the aquarium before you bring it home, life sometimes doesn't work like that. If you genuinely want to keep wet pets, you will be able to adjust your life and your interior design to accommodate these undemanding and beautiful creatures.

If the tank is this big, you don't have to worry about anyone walking into it. Film of tank in the MGM Grand by yeschet.


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  • profile image

    Prasanna 7 years ago

    good but more posters needed




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    Bubbles 7 years ago

    I like this article a lot, but it needs pictures!!!!

  • profile image

    vaibhav 7 years ago

    can v place aquarium in bedroom

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    FishCrazy 7 years ago

    A 20 U.S. gallon tank does NOT weigh 600 pounds. Each gallon of water weighs between 8 - 8.5 pounds depending on temperature and salinity. I have a 54 gallon on my 3rd floor apartment - there hasn't been a single issue.

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    dontmatter 7 years ago

    600 pounds did you smoke your breakfast

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    yeahookay 7 years ago

    i think by the 600 pounds they mean , with rocks , and décor ...

    its not impossible .

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    Alyssa 7 years ago

    this article was helpful

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    Mile vani 6 years ago

    Ya right I have a 50 gallon with tons of decorations filled with everything in it ways about 75 pounds

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    Bromsgrove UK 6 years ago

    1 Liter of freshwater weighs 1Kg. Then you have the weight of your tank (empty) to add to that. Then you must add on the weight of the stand. So a 50 U.S. Gallon tank is 189.27 Liters which alone weighs 189Kg plus the weight of the tank/stand etc certainly DOES NOT only weigh 75 pounds Mile vani.

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    jodi 6 years ago

    Very helpful, I will be setting up a 73 gallon in the spring

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    5 years ago

    Thanks for this info. It helped a lot.

  • mscalcote profile image

    Ms. Calcote 5 years ago from Jacksonville, FL

    with rocks, water and décor I think 600 lbs us still a bit high for a 20 gal tank....but then how could u accurately weigh it?

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    druckus 5 years ago

    This was a very good write up.

    You all are forgeting the weight of the tank itself. Glass weighs far more than Acrylic. Everyone has their drothers of which is better than the other. Yes a 20 gallon tank with water+tank+tanktop+real decreations

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    Mia 5 years ago

    Good article! Very useful! Lol, the whole "tank breaking" thing freaked me out...not only will you have a ruined floor, you'll have dead fish and broken decorations! D-:

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    Davis 5 years ago

    Gallon of water weighs 8 plus gravel says how much it weighs right on the bag and the weight of your tank do the math

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    Macy 5 years ago

    I have a 20 gallon. With water it weights 225lbs. I have about 25lbs of gravel so we're up to 250lbs. Decorations only weight ABOUT 5-10lbs, if that. So to slightly over-exaggerate, (considering maybe you have more gravel or decorations than me) a 20 gallon would only weight about 300lbs max. I don't know how the poster would coome up with an extremely high number like 600lbs..

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    April 5 years ago

    I'm still trying to find out if I could get away with having a 20lb tank on a stand in my master bedroom. any help?

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    Dj c 5 years ago

    i have a 65 gallon which on its own weighs rough 140 plus lots of rock add 50 pounds plus water at 8 pounds per gallon plus 40 pounds for wood stand comes to at least 610 pounds im on a top floor of a duplex an have no issue

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