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For more information regarding any questions that you have feel free to contact us and ask directly. At AQUAtechniques we understand that every aquarium is different, and we want to ensure your aquarium is always looking it’s best whether it is freshwater or saltwater. Our knowledgeable expert team will be happy to help. If you can dream it, we can create it!

Why do we need to maintain an aquarium on a regular basis? 

Over time algae and detritus will build up in every aquarium and filter, this needs to be manually removed by gravel siphoning and cleaning the filter media. Algae also needs to be regularly removed from the glass and decorations. Regular water changes help remove harmful chemicals such as nitrate which can build up to toxic levels over time if not kept in check. Regular maintenance also allows us to monitor the health of your fish and makes sure they are well and being fed the right amount. Every aquarium is different, and this is something we are well aware of at AQUAtechniques. Regular maintenance of aquariums keeps them always looking their best and helps to keep algae at bay, prevention is the best option and regular maintenance ensures this.

Aquariums which are maintained on a regular basis look great, have healthy fish, less algae and are likely to thrive in the long term. Contact us today to enquire about a maintenance membership.

Why do we need to do water changes?

The fish in your aquarium are regularly fed and therefore produce waste. This causes ammonia to build up in an aquarium, beneficial bacteria in a cycled aquarium consume this ammonia and convert it into nitrite, more beneficial bacteria then convert nitrite into the much less harmful nitrate. Ammonia and nitrite are very harmful to fish, so it is important an aquarium has been cycled to ensure there is bacteria present to convert these harmful substances into the much less harmful nitrate. However, high levels of nitrate over a long period of time can cause harm to your fish, it is important to keep levels of nitrate as low as possible, this is done by performing regular water changes and removing debris from the aquarium and filter. Regular water changes help dilute the nitrate to a safe level and removing debris from the aquarium and filter ensure there is less waste in the aquarium and the filter is working efficiently.

Aquariums which have regular water changes look great, have healthy fish, less algae and are likely to thrive in the long term. Contact us today to enquire about our maintenance membership.

When does my aquarium need a deep clean?

Sometimes your aquarium maintenance can get away from you and life gets in the way. If water changes and maintenance have not been carried out regularly it is likely that the aquarium will not be looking its best, maybe the water is not crystal clear, maybe algae has taken hold or maybe you are having issues with your fish. These are all signs that you need to act and arrange a deep clean. We perform regular maintenance on our clients’ aquariums to ensure they remain in great condition and look their best although we still recommend annual deep cleans to ensure the long-term health and appearance of an aquarium through the years.

Aquariums can reach a point where they require more than a usual maintenance and water change. In this instance a deep clean may be required, this involves temporarily removing the fish and decorations and giving it a thorough clean and rinse through to remove as much debris as possible. We also perform a larger than average water change and check the health of the fish. We always ensure the biological media in your filter remains intact during this process.

We recommend an annual deep clean for all aquariums. Even with regular maintenance all aquariums will require a deep clean every year to ensure the aquarium is looking it’s best, debris can form in places impossible to reach during regular maintenance visits such as under large rocks which need to be kept in place or maybe a very stubborn form of algae has taken hold and the rock work needs to be replaced altogether. Our expert team will suggest what they think is needed for you to get the most enjoyment out of your aquarium for years to come.

Annual deep cleans keep aquariums looking their best and ensures great water quality and healthy fish long term. Deep cleans also give us a chance to suggest replacements or additions such as new fish, lighting upgrades or replacement rockwork or change of décor altogether. Contact us today to enquire into a deep clean for your aquarium.

How do we install an ‘off the shelf’ aquarium?

Aquariums can be purchased as a kit; this can include a stand. We always recommend using an aquarium stand built for your aquarium as this will ensure it can support the weight of the aquarium when filled. Some aquariums also come with filtration and occasionally a heater. It is important to bear in mind what species of fish you are planning to keep ensuring that the aquarium you have will be suitable, for example if you are planning a tropical freshwater community aquarium then it is very important to make sure you have a suitable sized heater to keep the temperature of the water correct. Some small aquariums may be able to be placed on a stable surface such as a desk provided it can hold the weight of the aquarium when filled and is levelled.

When choosing a spot in your home or business space we suggest choosing an area where people spend a lot of time or have a lot of people walking past, this ensures you get the most enjoyment out of your aquarium as possible. It is important to keep in mind you will need a power supply. It is also worth noting that you will want to pay close attention to how bright the area is and how much direct sunlight it receives as this can cause excess algae growth.

Once the aquarium is on a suitable level weight bearing stand and in a suitable position it is time to set up the equipment. Ensure the filter is in place with media inside, we suggest angling the filter outlet towards the surface to make sure the water is agitated at the surface, this will allow plenty of oxygen into the water for your fish. If keeping fish which require heated tropical water, then you will have to install the heater and set it to the correct temperature. There are other pieces of equipment you may need depending on the fish species you are planning to stock such as protein skimmers and air pumps. Contact us for more information regarding your specific aquarium needs.

Once the equipment is in place it is time to decorate the aquarium, this usually starts by adding sand, gravel or aquarium soil. After this there are plenty of options to choose from, some aquariums have lots of rockwork for African cichlids as they like to form territories, whereas if you are planning community tropical aquarium with small cardinal tetras then you might choose to have it aquascaped with wood, rocks and lots of live plants. Once everything is in place it is time to fill the aquarium, keep in mind we carefully pour in water so to not disturb the plants or layout, once filled we turn on the equipment.

We then suggest cycling the aquarium for several weeks, this ensures a bacteria colony has formed in the filter media which will process the fish waste and keep the aquarium inhabitants healthy. There are bacteria additives available which can help to speed up this process.

Finally, once cycled we can start to add your fish, we do this gradually so as not to overload the filtration. Once fully stocked the aquarium will require regular maintenance, please contact us regarding our maintenance membership plans. We provide ‘off the shelf’ aquarium kits and set them up for you, contact us today to enquire about this. If you have any further questions, then our expert team will be more than happy to help!

Do we offer an aqua scaping service?

Yes, we do! We offer a premium aqua scaping service; we remove all the stress for you. We supply all necessary materials, equipment, plants and fish! We usually start off by having a talk with you about what your goals are and what you want the overall look to be. Once you are happy with our plan, we will book in a date to carry out this work. Once the aquarium has been aquascaped we always suggest regular maintenance visits to ensure it stays looking its best. We are located in Surrey; we maintain lots of aquariums in the Southeast area and in London.

Do we offer an aquarium maintenance service?

Yes, we do! We offer a premium maintenance service for any aquarium! We offer a range of aquarium maintenance membership plans. Our plans range from weekly, fortnightly and monthly visits. We can tailor the maintenance packages to suit your aquarium ensure it is always looking its best. We are located in Surrey; we maintain lots of aquariums in the Southeast area and in London.

Do we carry out aquarium upgrades?

Yes, we do! We offer a premium aquarium upgrade service. We perform one off jobs and can provide equipment and stocking suggestions if that is something you are interested in. Contact us today with your enquiry and one of our friendly team will be happy to help. We are located in Surrey; we maintain lots of aquariums in the Southeast area and in London.

Do we install aquariums?

Yes, we do! We offer a premium aquarium installation service. We install bespoke custom aquariums on site. We also offer an ‘off the shelf’ aquarium installation service. We are located in Surrey; we install many aquariums in the Southeast area and in London.

How do we install a custom-made bespoke aquarium?

To start we want to emphasize that we view bespoke aquariums as individual projects, no two bespoke aquariums are the same and we always strive to meet our client’s requirements. We install freestanding aquariums with built in drains and taps, wall aquariums, freshwater, saltwater, and everything in between. We have a passion for bespoke aquariums as they are an amazing display of personal taste and can be catered to any of your aquarium dreams. Bespoke aquariums can be designed to fit in seamlessly with the interior of your home of workspace or they can be designed to stand out and be a focal point for the room.

The first step when installing a bespoke aquarium usually starts by having a meeting face to face at the location the aquarium will be installed. We want to make sure we know exactly what you would like before we put a plan together. Most of our custom-made aquariums are larger than ‘off the shelf’ aquariums and have built in sump filtration, this mean there is less visible equipment within the aquarium and because of their size allow for extra filtration and water volume.

Once a plan has been accepted the aquarium design is put forward for construction. It is at this point we prepare the location for the aquarium, arranging for floor support to be added if required. Most large bespoke aquariums (even those within a wall) are placed onto a custom-made steel framed stand. Then the sump and equipment are prepared. It is at this point the aquarium is positioned, for very large bespoke aquariums we arrange for them to be built on site due to access issues, some aquariums are too large to fit through doors. If it is a smaller size, we deliver the ready built aquarium and carefully position it on the stand.

Once the aquarium is in place, we begin to install the equipment and make sure it is running correctly. It is at this point we begin to aquascape the aquarium, this is dependant on your desires whilst keeping in mind the needs of the fish you plan to keep. This could mean a sand substrate with lots of rockwork for African cichlids or a heavily planted aquascape with lots of rocks and wood for small fish such as cardinal tetras. If you are stuck for ideas do not hesitate to contact us. Our team has a passion for aquariums. Once you are happy with the aquascape, layout and look of the aquarium we begin to fill it up with water, this gives us a chance to make sure everything is running as it should be and fine tune any equipment if needed such as skimmers and heaters.

Finally, once everything is up and running, we ensure the aquarium is properly cycled to make sure there is enough bacteria in the filter media present to process fish waste. This can take weeks but is a very important part of fishkeeping. Once the aquarium is cycled it is time for the most exciting part, it is time to add the fish! We add the fish gradually to ensure we do not overload the filtration, whilst regularly monitoring the health of the fish in the process. We quarantine all the fish we provide to make certain they are in great health before they come to you. If you have any further questions, then our expert team will be more than happy to help!

What is a sump, do I need one? 

A sump is simply a tank of water located below an aquarium, water comes out of the aquarium, down into the sump and is then pumped back into the aquarium above. The water drains from an aquarium into a sump via a weir, this is a discrete built-in column with a weir comb inlet at the top. A sump is commonly used for large saltwater and freshwater aquariums. A sump is normally set up in a bespoke manner as it is very dependent on the type of aquarium and what your goals are. On aquariums with sumps the main aquarium is normally referred to as the ‘display’ as this is the part which is always on display whereas a sump is hidden behind cabinet doors.

The two main benefits of a sump are that you can place filtration, reactors, protein skimmers and heaters down in the sump which leaves the aquarium above uncluttered with no visible equipment, sumps also increase the total volume of the system. Tired of seeing your filter, heater or wavemaker? If so, then a sump may well be a good option for you. By adding a sump, the total water volume in the system is increased, for example if you had a 200-litre aquarium with a 100-litre sump, although the fish are swimming in the 200-litre aquarium the total water volume of the system would be 300 litres. This helps to dilute any water quality issues you could potentially run into in the future.

Whether you need a sump or not is dependent on your aquarium and your needs, technically almost every aquarium will benefit from having a sump in terms of water quality. Normally these are installed onto larger aquariums and as mentioned previously, if you want to hide your equipment then this might be a good choice for you. If you have any further questions, then our expert team will be more than happy to help!

What is the difference between cold-water and tropical?

There are a lot of myths about the difference between cold-water and tropical aquariums. It is often thought by new fish keepers that tropical fish are harder to look after or that cold-water fish are not as interesting, this is not the case! There are hundreds of species of fish, all with different care requirements, some require ‘cold-water’ conditions, this means they most likely thrive at lower temperatures (usually room temperature if you live in the UK). Some fish require ‘tropical’ conditions, this means they thrive at slightly warmer temperatures (usually around 25-26°C although this can differ depending on species), the water is heated by a heater which sits in the aquarium and can be set to your desired temperature (a thermometer is strongly recommended). There are lots of different tropical fish species, some are hardier than others, we always recommend you research your specific fish species care requirements before they are added to your aquarium.

Coldwater fish require lower temperatures to thrive, if you live in the UK then room temperature will normally be okay. Examples of cold-water fish are fancy goldfish, zebra danios, white cloud mountain minnows and weather loaches. Although these fish usually do not require a heater if in the UK, they do still however, require an appropriately sized aquarium and cycled filter.

Tropical fish means the fish thrive in warmer waters; this usually means around 25-26°C which is achieved by adding an appropriately sized heater to the aquarium. Some popular examples of tropical fish are cardinal tetras, platys, guppy’s, corydoras and barbs. These fish also require an appropriately sized aquarium and cycled filter as well as a heater.

For more information, please contact our friendly expert team!

What is the difference between freshwater and saltwater aquariums? 

Freshwater aquariums are for fish which originate from rivers and lakes, saltwater aquariums are for fish which originate from the ocean. The main difference between the two is the water, freshwater aquariums are typically filled using tap water which has had a conditioner added to remove chlorine and other unwanted elements, salt water is made by mixing RODI (Reverse Osmosis Deionised) with a good quality reef aquarium salt until the desired salinity is reached. RODI water is used in saltwater aquarium to ensure that no other unwanted elements make their way into the aquarium as these can cause water quality and algae issues.

Another difference is the fish themselves, typically saltwater aquarium fish have intense colours, however they are usually more expensive, need large aquariums and require more specialist equipment. When thinking of saltwater fish, think of the ocean, some popular examples of saltwater fish are clownfish, regal tangs and emperor angelfish. Freshwater fish can also be very colourful, such as cardinal tetras and Siamese fighting fish for example.

In terms of equipment there are a few differences as well. The main being filtration, freshwater aquariums are run by filters which contain sponges and other media which harbour beneficial bacteria to break down fish waste, in a saltwater aquarium all the biological filtration is done by the live rock. Most saltwater aquariums have an extra piece of equipment called a protein skimmer, this device produces fine micro bubble which catch unwanted waste materials, this helps to further filter the water. In a saltwater aquarium the filtration methods are dependant on what you are keeping, a medium sized FOWLR (Fish Only with Live Rock) would most likely need less equipment when compared to a reef aquarium with live coral. Most reef aquariums need various dosing pumps and reactors to ensure that elements which are used by the corals to grow are then replaced.

Lighting is different for freshwater and saltwater. Saltwater aquariums usually have cooler blue lights to replicate the ocean and bring on the natural fluorescent colours of the coral, freshwater aquarium usually have warmer lighting to aid plant growth. Obviously if you have no coral or plants then lighting is purely for your own viewing benefit.

What fish can go together?

This is a broad question, and it is important not to give a blanket answer as some fish such as cardinal tetras must be kept in a good sized school whereas a male Siamese fighting fish should not be kept with any other male Siamese fighting fish as they fight. It is important to research the fish species you are planning to keep before you get them.

In general species in these families, tetras, rasboras, barbs, corydoras and rainbows must be kept in groups of their own species. Most people like to have community aquariums this means mixing more than one species of fish together, care must be taken to ensure that they will get along together and have the same setup requirements. Another thing to consider is size difference, in general experienced fish keepers live by the mantra that if a fish is small enough to fit into another fish’s mouth, then it will most likely be eaten and they should not be housed together. It is worth bearing this in mind, for example keeping small angelfish with cardinal tetras may work out in the short term but down the road angelfish grow large and could pose a risk to smaller fish. Sometimes you can do everything right, on paper the fish species work together, maybe you have seen them together but when they get into your aquarium they do not work together and fight. Every aquarium has different territories, in general we always recommend some form of cover in all aquariums so the fish can escape each other if they want to. Finally, it must be said that each fish has their own personality, some more or less aggressive than others, if you do see aggression then it is wise to act on it as soon as possible and remove the fish causing the issue.

Please contact our friendly knowledgeable team for more assistance with stocking your aquarium.

What are the most popular fish? 

This is a very personal question as everyone will have a different view on this matter. However, there are a few fish amongst new fish keepers which are very popular. For example, fancy goldfish are a very popular Coldwater fish, although these fish produce a lot of waste and grow large, there are lots of other tropical varieties of fish which may be better suited to beginners. Cardinal tetras are one of the most popular tropical fish amongst new fish keepers, this is probably due to their intense colours. Clownfish are one of the most popular saltwater fish, this is probably because they are well known and do well in medium to small sized saltwater aquariums.

However, once a fish keeper becomes more experienced, they go down different avenues of the hobby and may try their hand at some more obscure species, maybe they want to try their hand at keeping seahorses in a specialist saltwater aquarium, or they may decide to breed discus which are considered a top level tropical fish with beautiful colours. Experienced fish keepers usually like to try new things and give themselves a bit of a challenge.

Here at AQUAtechniques our expert team have years of professional and personal experience setting up beautiful long term aquariums. If you can dream it, we can build it! Whether you want a classic style community aquarium or something more specialist, contact us today!

Where should you put an aquarium?

In general, the first thing is to ensure that the surface you place the aquarium on can withstand the weight, this also applies to floors with large aquariums. Once you are sure the weight can be supported and the surface is level, we like to also apply a foam mat underneath most aquariums as this helps to spread the weight of the aquarium. Our bespoke aquariums usually sit on a bespoke aquarium stand. Remember wherever you place the aquarium you will need plug sockets nearby for the equipment.

Another big factor to take into consideration is how bright the spot, does it get direct sunlight? Having the aquarium in a bright spot or in direct sunlight can cause the aquarium to develop more algae than it otherwise would. Saying this, some aquariums, especially planted ones, still thrive with some direct sunlight if it is only for a short period of time each day. A less well-known fact that is worth remembering is that if your fish are swimming at an angle before or after the aquarium lights turn on this is normal, fish sense where light is coming from and assume this is the top of the water, because of this they may swim at an angle when there is light entering the aquarium from the side.

Finally, an important aspect to consider is how often will you see the aquarium, is it in a busy spot? Ideally you want to place your aquarium in a spot which will ensure you get as much enjoyment out of it as possible, preferably somewhere you spend a good amount of time. This also allows you to notice any changes earlier, remember, if your aquarium is in a very busy spot, some species of fish may get spooked, so this is something to bear in mind when choosing fish species.

For more information about aquarium placement please contact our friendly and knowledgeable team!

What are the benefits to having an aquarium?

Aquariums are a beautiful addition to any space; some consider them a living picture and some people consider them to be pets and name their fish. An aquarium can be the centre piece of a room, an area which people are drawn to, probably due to the beauty and natural look of the fish and their environment. Aquariums can be added for interior design or architectural purposes, maybe an inwall aquarium will help to brighten a room and make it feel more spacious or perhaps the aquarium will be a feature piece and the colour of the fish will be heavily featured in the room. At AQUAtechniques we welcome enquiries from architects and interior designers.

Aquariums are very calming; they provide a sense of tranquillity and relaxation. Watching fish swimming can reduce stress and lower blood pressure. A planted aquarium can also offer a visible escape from a computer screen in an office, allowing a piece of nature into the workplace. Aquariums can be especially important when there is limited access to windows and the natural world. Aquariums can teach young people about animal care and responsibility.

At AQUAtechniques we think there are vast benefits to having an aquarium. We believe this so much that we have developed a passion for fishkeeping and want to see them in as many places as possible and spread the benefits! Contact us today for aquarium installation or maintenance advice.

How often do we need to maintain your aquarium?

Maintenance visits are all about prevention rather than fixing issues that have already happened, water changes and maintenance should not mean cleaning a dirty aquarium. Regular maintenance can help to avoid water quality issues, algae and other potential issues down the road. In general, the more regular you maintain the aquarium and perform water changes the better. Water changes will help to keep your nitrates low.

This question is dependant on the type of aquarium you have but generally a minimum of at least every 4 weeks is recommended to ensure fish health is monitored, water changes are done, and algae is removed. This ensures your water quality stays in the best shape for your fish.

For most aquariums a fortnightly maintenance visit is best. This allows our expert team to keep a close eye on any changes happening within the aquarium. If you have a planted, saltwater or specialist aquarium then weekly water changes will be the best choice.

For more information about how often to perform a water change or if you need help choosing one of our aquarium maintenance plans please contact our friendly expert team!

What are the common aquarium myths?

There are lots of myths in the fishkeeping world, most of the time they are just that…myths! Myths normally come from inexperienced fish keepers, people who maybe had an aquarium as a child or learned from someone from an older generation. Fishkeeping has changed a lot over the years, the hobby has grown and so has our knowledge. We now fully understand the biological cycles happening within an aquarium and our fish knowledge has also grown over the last few decades, this shift has most likely happened due to an increase in the access to information which has helped to make keeping an aquarium that much more reachable and that has led to aquariums growing in popularity.

‘It will only grow to the size of the tank’ – This myth often refers to keeping goldfish in small bowls (fish should not be kept in bowls). Common goldfish grow to be at least a foot long, no question about it but when kept in small tanks or bowls their growth can become stunted, this is very bad for the goldfish as over the years their internal organs will continue to grow which leads to an early death. Keep in mind goldfish grow very large and are very messy fish.

‘My fish is unwell, there is nothing I can do about it’ – You can most certainly do something, finding a fish health expert is key as this will help you to identify what illness the fish is suffering from. From there you can work out a correct course of action to fix the illness. There is a variety of fish treatments available on the market, water change is normally a good first thought as good water quality will help almost any illness.

‘Small aquariums are great for beginners’ – This is incorrect, small aquariums are harder to maintain as the lower water volume means that water quality issues can quickly get out of hand. Larger aquariums have more water volume which helps to dilute any possible water quality issues you may experience. Stocking a small aquarium with fish can be problematic for beginners as only certain species can thrive in smaller aquariums. Small aquariums can be done but generally these should be left to more experienced fish keepers who will know what to look out for.

‘Algae is bad for fish’ – This is incorrect, algae itself should not cause any harm to your fish, in fact algae can help absorb excess nutrients in the water such as nitrate. Algae is completely normal, and a small amount will exist in every aquarium. Although it is worth noting that a sudden algae bloom can indicate a problem such as too much light, too much phosphate or nitrate and a host of other reasons, it is important to get to the bottom of the route cause of the algae outbreak. All aquariums will go through various stages as they mature, diatoms which look like a brown dust algae is common in new aquariums, this is caused by silicates being released from the new rock and gravel in the aquarium. Keep in mind some fish even eat algae!

Can I keep live plants in my aquarium?

Live plants cannot be added to saltwater aquariums, although there is a large variety of stunning corals and even macro algae which can be added. Reef aquariums with a variety of corals can look very colourful!

Almost every freshwater aquarium will benefit from having live plants, live plants look great, but they also help keep great water quality by absorbing nitrates. Our expert team have vast experience keeping live plants in aquariums. There are a few exceptions to this rule, some fish will eat or uproot live plants, for more information regarding this please contact our knowledgeable expert team.

How often should I feed my fish?

This is a big question as it is dependant on what your goals are for your aquarium. For example, if you have one fancy goldfish your feeding amount and frequency will be different if you are raising 100 guppy fry. Smaller, younger fish will need to be fed multiple times day to make sure they grow at a good rate. Most fish flake or pellet brands state you can feed up to four or even six times a day. For most aquariums generally once a day is enough, it is key to ensure that fish at all levels of the aquarium get some food.

For more information regarding how often to feed contact our friendly expert team.

How much should I feed my fish?

In terms of how much to feed, this is completely dependent on the species and number of fish you are keeping. You should feed as much as the fish can consume within 1-2 minutes; you do not want to leave uneaten food in the aquarium as this can cause water quality issues. A pro tip is to crush and release flake food underwater, this ensures the food gets evenly distributed around the aquarium. Most of our clients choose to have automatic feeders installed above their aquarium, this will automatically release food on a regular schedule. These can be very useful when you go away.

For more information regarding how much to feed contact our friendly expert team.

Can you have an aquarium with no experience?

Fish care and setting up a functioning aquatic ecosystem is not a quick process, and a good amount of knowledge is required. There is some vital research you must first do before starting up your first aquarium; biological processes, different fish species requirements and aquarium setup are the main key points to investigate.

An aquarium must be the correct size and setup, some fish grow large, some need to be kept in large schools to feel safe and some may need a special setup in terms of hides or substrate. Before fish are added to an aquarium it must first be cycled, this process can take weeks and is often overlooked by new fish keepers. Cycling an aquarium refers to growing a colony of bacteria in the filter sponges and media which is large enough to process fish waste to keep the water quality okay for the fish, this is done by adding a source of waste(ammonia) to the aquarium which will mimic fish waste. Fish constantly produce ammonia, which is toxic to them, bacteria in the filter convert this into nitrite, nitrite (nitrite is also toxic) is then converted into nitrate by another form of beneficial bacteria. Nitrate is much less toxic than nitrite and ammonia, although you still want to keep your nitrate levels as low as possible as this will continue to raise until you perform a water change. Once the aquarium is cycled you must add the new fish gradually as this will give the bacteria in your filter time to adjust to the added waste.

The final point is to research, research and do more research! There is a vast amount of information out there, there are thousands of fish species all with slightly different requirements. Videos, website searches and books are a great source of information.

The easiest option is to call in the experts! AQUAtechniques offer an aquarium installation service. We can cycle your aquarium for you, make sure the setup is correct and suggest and supply your first fish! We are happy to help at every stage of the installation process, we also offer an aquarium maintenance service for all new and existing aquariums.

For help with setting up your first aquarium contact our friendly expert team today.

Do I need to quarantine my fish?

When we are talking about placing fish into quarantine, we mean keeping them separate from the main aquarium and then treating if needs be for potential illnesses, this is normally done in a separate smaller aquarium. Quarantining your new fish means you are far less likely to bring in illness into your established aquarium.

We always recommend quarantining your new fish as this means you are far less likely to develop fish health issues in your established aquarium. When providing new fish for our clients we always make sure that they have been quarantined for a few weeks before they are added to the clients’ aquarium.

For more information regarding quarantining new fish contact our expert team today!

How many fish should I put in my aquarium?

The first thing to consider when working out how many fish you can put into your aquarium is the aquarium size and filtration. You must consider the fully grown adult size of the fish species, some are just babies when they are sold. Certain fish such as tetras need a good-sized group to thrive whereas a male fighter, for example, should not be kept with any of its own kind.

Assuming your aquarium size and filtration are adequate you must make sure there are not too many fish otherwise the aquarium could seem crowded, this can stress the fish out. Stressed fish mean you are more likely to develop illnesses. It is a good idea to gradually stock an aquarium, keep an eye on nitrate levels, the more fish you have the higher your nitrate level will be, you will therefore need to perform more regular water changes. If you want an easy aquarium which does not need lots of upkeep it maybe worth considering the idea of understocking your aquarium.

What aquarium should I get?

This is completely down to your own personal taste, at AQUAtechniques if you can dream it, we can create it for you! Do some research as there is a large variety of fish species available. The four main categories are cold water, tropical, Malawi and saltwater. Maybe one of these is your favourite if so, base your new setup around these fish, there is plenty of inspiration online.

We are happy to discuss what type of aquarium you would like installed, we can even offer stocking ideas, remember AQUAtechniques offer a range of aquarium services such as aquarium installation, aquarium maintenance and more! Contact our friendly expert team to arrange your new dream aquarium!

Common aquarium terms

Aquascape – This term means to essentially landscape your aquarium to give it a natural look using rocks, wood and in most cases live aquatic plants. Aquascaped aquariums can look great! There are many factors to consider when creating an aquascape; scale, plant species and hardscape arrangement are just a few things to consider. Our friendly expert team have vast experience creating and maintaining beautiful planted aquascaped aquariums.

FOWLR – Fish Only with Live Rock. This is a style of saltwater aquarium, referring to the use of live rock but no corals. This style of aquarium is suitable for predator or coral eating fish species.

Reef tank – This refers to a style of saltwater aquarium which has been setup with live coral in mind, reef hobbyists enjoy creating a naturalistic reef look, using small, coral safe, fish and lots of live corals.

Weir – A weir is simply a grate which allows water to pass but stops debris such as leaves entering, weirs are commonly placed on aquarium which have a sump below, the weir stops debris blocking the pipework flowing to the sump.

Sump – A sump is a tank of water located below an aquarium, the water is pumped down into the sump and then back up into the aquarium. You can place almost all your equipment in a sump which is ideal as this means it is not on display in the aquarium. Sumps also increase the total water volume of a system meaning better water quality!

Heater – An aquarium heater is normally located inside the aquarium under the water, they have built in thermostats allowing you to adjust the temperature on a dial, the built in thermostat will turn the heater on and off automatically.

Air pump – This is referring to a piece of equipment which pumps air through an airline tube into an aquarium. The bubbles it forms in the aquarium look great but also provide surface agitation which increases the dissolved oxygen content in the aquarium water.

Gravel vacuum – This refers to a tube like piece of equipment which is connected to a hose, once a siphon is started the gravel vacuum can be dug into the gravel, it will remove fish waste and debris from the gravel whilst leaving the gravel in place.

Water change – This refers to a regular part of aquarium maintenance. This means to remove a portion of old aquarium water and replace it with new, treated water. This ensures good water quality for your fish.

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“I have been using Simon and his company for over 15 years now and I could not ask for better service. A great relationship has formed from starting with a small 75L freshwater aquarium and gradually succumbing to the hobby and moving up to a 700L saltwater reef. Thank you for all the support, knowledge and time Simon.”
“Luke maintains my aquarium on a weekly basis and he is always friendly, on time and very professional in his manner. His fish and coral knowledge is amazing and I look forward to his visits and I am sure the fish do too!”
“The team looks after my aquarium and they is always happy to chat with me, whether it is about new ideas or concerns I have with the fish. My mind is always put at ease and I feel as though they take care of my aquarium as if it were there own, you could not ask for more.”
“It is great to find a business that is large enough to handle problems should they spring up, but also small enough that you have the personal touch and feel that they truly care about the fish. Couldn’t be happier.”
“We moved to Glassbox Trading from another company about a year ago and wished we had done it years ago! Always professional and everyone we have spoken to is polite and knowledgeable. They have done an excellent job of turning our dreary tank into a sight to behold and we have fallen in love with it again, thank you!”
“Simon and his team do a great job looking after both of my aquariums at my home and in my office. Top notch, professional service.”
“I have used Simon for many years and his team are always on time and leave the tank sparkling. No fuss involved, they just get on with the job and you could not ask for more.”
“Aquatechniques did a one off clean on my aquarium, but after the amazing job they did, I have had the back on a monthly basis ever since – the tanks have never looked so good.”
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