Getting a new aquarium is exciting. You can’t wait to see it filled and start adding life. I strongly suggest you to visit HOW TO PREPARE A NEW TANK to learn more about this. You may be tempted to just throw it on its stand and start filling your new aquarium the minute you get it home. But before you get too far ahead of yourself there are still a few more tasks to be performed to avoid frustration later and ensure long lasting success.
First of all, even with a brand new aquarium it’s best if you give it a good rinse. Don’t use any soaps or detergents, however, as they can leave behind deposits that will be bad for future inhabitants. In fact this rule is true of all equipment, tools, and anything else meant for the inside of the tank including your hands. Should anything need further cleaning than what water alone can offer white vinegar can be utilized. Just make sure it is fully washed away when you are done. Bleach is another option that is utilized sometimes, but is generally not recommended as it is often quite difficult to rinse away.
This is also a great time to check the aquarium for leaks. Brand new tanks very rarely leak, nevertheless it’s always better to be safe than sorry! To begin locate an acceptable place to temporarily fill the tank. As with the final location of the tank this must be a flat, level, even, and sturdy surface. Ensure that the entire bottom edge of the aquarium is in contact with the floor. Ideally it is in a place which, should an issue be found, won’t result in an indoor flood such as a garage or patio. Very carefully fill the tank while trying to avoid spills to prevent confusion. Even a small leak can be problematic, but may not be immediately noticeable, so let the aquarium sit for a day or two. No puddles and it passes the test. Drain it back out in preparation for final setup.
Time to put that tank on its stand and get it into place! A ruler or tape measure and a level will be beneficial during setup. Having all of the equipment that’s going to run the aquarium close by as well will be very helpful. Make sure the floor where the stand will be positioned is clean prior to beginning then drag it into its approximate final location. When it’s fairly close to the final position you can set the aquarium on it. However, for those who have a sump that doesn’t fit through the door on the stand make sure to drop it into the stand first while you still have the chance. Finally, line up the aquarium’s edges with the perimeter of the stand as best as you possibly can. If it’s the type of stand where its edge is flush with the edge of the aquarium it is very important to get it aligned exactly.
Now to consider the stand and tank’s position in relation to the wall. You’ll need the aquarium and stand to be at least far enough from the wall to allow you to easily reach behind it- roughly 6-8 inches. More importantly, you will need ample space for any equipment that will hang over the rear of the tank, like the filtration system. Hang any filters or other large equipment on the rear of the aquarium to make certain that it will fit. Measure from the wall on either end of the stand nudging it closer or further away until the measurements match for the final alignment. Once it looks to be where you want it double check that anything hanging off the back of the tank can still be removed and replaced easily. Even though the ground should be perfectly level, it’s still smart to double check the top of the aquarium once it’s set up.
With your aquarium on its stand and in place you can begin filling it up. However, you may still want to wait just a bit longer. While the position may look perfect now, after a day or two your mind may change. Look at it from all angles. Think about other activities you perform in the same area as the tank and make sure it won’t interfere. Take your time with this- once the tank is full there’s no moving it without considerably more work.