30 Gallon Fish Tank Setup


Our 30 gallon fish tank setup.

Setting up my 30 gallon fish tank.

I haven't probably mentioned it, but we have a 10 gallon fish tank with some guppies that breed like rabbits... actually, worse. I decided to upgrade to a bigger size fish tank and someone luckily was giving one away on Freecycle. Now I have a 30 gallon tank and stand. They also gave me quite a bit of equipment.

Canister Filter, this thing is AWESOME. It does such a
beautiful job cleaning the tank.

I stained the stand to look nicer. If you're interested in seeing more of that project, you can check out my Aquarium Stand Update post.

I did order a heater for the tank because there wasn't one larger enough and some of the fish I would like require warmer water. I'm pretty happy with how this heater works at the moment. It's a lot more higher tech than the equipment I had when I kept fish as a kid.

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The tank didn't come with the hood and light combined so I decided to order one. I didn't want to spent a lot of money. I was a little nervous that I'd get a crappy item by not spending a lot of money, but this hood is AWESOME. The black part was actually really cheap and flimsy looking when I took it out of the box, but this made it actually less obvious once it was on the tank instead of standing out like some of the more solid hoods do. It does not seem like it will break easily, at least if you keep it on the tank. I love how it fits on using a hinge that snaps onto the tank... it can be raised and lowered easily so you're raising the whole hood instead of just a tiny opening. My prior tank's hood had only a small opening and I always was having to pull the whole hood off to clean the tank or to put fish in. What a pain.

By purchasing via the Amazon link below, you help support my blog. Thank you!

I'm using a canister filter so the size of the opening in the back wasn't a big deal to me; it's a smaller size opening (I think it'd fit most filters fine though) which reviewers complained about, but the hood also has an area that can be easily cut away if you need to expand for a bigger filter. Instructions to put this hood together were a little unnecessarily complicated... it's easier to put together than it sounds when they describe it. 

The absolute best part of this filter is that it has a switch for ON, OFF, and a NIGHT feature. This looks so AWESOME. I've never had an LED light for a fish tank, but it just looks so gorgeous. Combined with how clear my canister filter is making the water look, I'm really happy we upgraded to a bigger tank and new equipment. These pictures don't do it justice. 

Light On
Night Light On
Light Off
I also added some rocks from the yard to the tank. I tested them with vinegar to make sure they wouldn't be toxic (if it bubbles, don't use that rock) and then I washed them in water with salt, then washed them again. So far the fish haven't died. Hope it remains that way!

Right now I'm letting my tank "cycle"... I got my tank water tested free at the pet store yesterday and it's got good pH and ammonia, but the nitrates and nitrites are high. I can keep going to get the water tested free, but this could take a few weeks (up to a couple months) so I decided to buy a test kit: 

By purchasing via the Amazon link below, you help support my blog. Thank you!

I did check out some fish at the store and found these dwarf cichlids that will work well for my tank. Cichlids tend to get huge so you've got to have a bigger tank to keep most of them. 29 gallons (my size) is the bare minimum and even them I'm limited to these smaller types. I was eyeballing some gorgeous bigger fish though and sighing over them. But gosh I do not need a bigger aquarium, right? Right... lol. So here's the fish I think I may get... can only get a couple because of my "small" tank size:


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DIY Danielle: 30 Gallon Fish Tank Setup
30 Gallon Fish Tank Setup
Our 30 gallon fish tank setup.
DIY Danielle
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