Moving a fish tank from one house to another is one of the biggest challenges when relocating. It places stress on the fish because these sensitive creatures don’t like when their environment changes. That’s why it’s important to follow proper procedures.
The following five tips can help you get the job done correctly.
1. Drain the Tank
On moving day, drain some of the aquarium water into buckets until they are about two-thirds full. Don’t fill them up all the way to avoid spills and to make it easier to carry the container. For the best results, use a siphon hose.
Use a fish net and place every fish into one of the buckets. Don’t overcrowd them, and count to make sure all fish have been caught. Place lids on the buckets but allow for fresh airflow. You might have to use an air pump to circulate oxygen. Take out the rest of the water because the tank can break if you try to lift it with water in it.
2. Remove Accessories
Remove all the accessories from the tank, dry them, and pack them in bubble wrap or soft packing paper. Keep all these accessories together in one box. Remove even the gravel or sand because it will make the tank heavier to carry.
It can also contribute to breakage of the aquarium while traveling. You can keep this material in a separate carrying container and return it to the tank when setting up at the new location.
Wrap the empty tank completely with bubble wrap. Once you’re ready to load it, wrap it again with moving blankets. When putting it into the moving vehicle, keep it as level as possible for the whole part of the journey.
3. Transport the Aquarium
When carrying the aquarium from the moving vehicle to its new resting spot, make sure that the surface of the new stand is stable and flat. Also, ensure that it can support the tank’s weight. Remove the wraps carefully, and return the sand or gravel to the aquarium.
Replace the heaters, filters, pumps and light fixtures. Try to put everything in the same place, but don’t turn anything on yet.
4. Set up the Tank
After you’ve returned the decorations, fill the tank gradually with some of the original water from the buckets. Then you use the net to transfer the fish from the buckets to the water in the aquarium. Once the fish are back in it, pour the remaining water back into the habitat.
If you need to add more liquid after this process, use de-chlorinated tap water.
5. Wait for Acclimation
Let the tank sit for a while before turning the heaters on, so the water and room temperature can balance out. After a few hours, turn on the pumps and heaters. Keep checking on your fish to make sure they are okay.
If you want to increase the survival chance of your fish, it’s important to keep the time they spend outside their normal tank to a minimum. This means that taking down the fish tank should be one of the last tasks of the move.
You should also set the aquarium up at the new place as soon as possible, even before unpacking any boxes.