Tips On How To Buy The Goldfish Tank You Need

You don't realize it yet, but it's better to invest in a large aquarium at the beginning. It is easier to maintain, will allow you to expand in the future and will save you a lot of money in the long run. Don't make the mistake of thinking you will upgrade later or buying multiple goldfish tanks. If you are not ready to invest in a minimum entry-level 10-15 gallons(54 liters) tank(or bigger if possible), then you need to consider how serious you are about keeping happy, healthy goldfish.

Being adequately prepared will save you time and avoid unnecessary problems later on. If you wait and keep your eyes open, you can often find great deals on used equipment from people who are moving or upgrading. However, there are also extra precautions you need to take so be aware that if you go the pre-owned route, you will need to do a little extra homework.

Listen closely: Yes, it does make a difference what kind of goldfish you want to keep. You need to decide what type of goldfish you will take care of in the next years: single or twin tails. For example if you like Comets or Common and also want a Black Moor or Fantail in the same tank, they simply won't mach.

Comets are too fast while Black Moors are slow and also have poor vision. Don't choose the wrong mix! If you are new to fish keeping, stick with goldfish like Comets, Commons and Shubunkins.

What To Look For...

All aquariums need something to rest on. A 20 gallon(75 liter) tank is extremely heavy and needs a robust surface to rest on. You will need something strong enough that for instance, if you sat on it, would be perfectly able to withstand your weight.

Unless you can make one yourself or have something like a fixed kitchen work top, you need to purchase a stand for your goldfish tank. Goldfish tanks have prices that vary depending on size and so do stands. Aim for the one that is strong and cheap as possible.

Alternatively, you can get an all-in-one stand and aquarium. Do your math in advance. It will make it easier to know exactly what you are getting into. With all the equipment, tank, stand and fish, you should reach a grand total of $400-450.

The golden rule is to get the biggest tank that your budget will allow. You cannot have an aquarium that is too big. Many people make the mistake of getting a smaller on hoping to upgrade later.

Many experts differ on the exact size. Some say you need 15 gallons for the 1st goldfish and add 10 gallons for every other goldfish. Example: for 3 goldfish you need a 35 gallon tank minimum. They can live more than 10 years and grow up to 12 inches in length. Remember, everything you do is because you love goldfish so much.

Here is an example:

Number of goldfish Tank size needed (gallons)
1 10-15
2 30-45
3 40-55
4 50-70

A tank with a large surface area means that gas exchange happens easily and quickly, so your fish get more oxygen and also get rid of carbon dioxide faster. That means you should look for goldfish tanks that are longer and wider, rather than a taller and deeper varieties.

Tanks come in different shapes, some of which have less surface area.

For instance a tank that is 48 inch(120cm) long 24 inch(60cm) wide would be better than a tank that is 24 inch(60cm) long and 24 inch(60cm) wide. The first tank provides a 720cm2 for gas exchange, the second has only 260cm2. This means in practice that a tank with 90cm2 of surface area can hold half as many similar-sized fish as a tank of 180cm2.

Glass vs Acrylic

Most tanks are made of either glass or acrylic. These are the best materials to use for goldfish tanks. Usually people believe that what is expensive is also better. This is not entirely true when it comes to fish tanks. Both glass and acrylic have their benefits and drawbacks.

    Glass Tanks
  • very difficult to scratch
  • glass is denser so it's heavier than acrylic
  • cracks or shatters by a sharp impact. No home for your goldfish, and a mess in the area where the tanks was occupying
  • maintains clarity over time
  • easier to ship and handle => less expensive than acrylic

    Acrylic Tanks
  • highly scratchable, but easy to repair using acrylic polishing kits
  • lighter than a glass tank, this means it's easy to move
  • a LOT less vulnerable. Acrylic is 17 times stronger than glass
  • most acrylic will yellow with age if they are exposed to direct sunlight
  • highly flammable
  • more expensive than glass, but not better over-time

If you are not going to buy large tanks(400-500 gallons or more), it's best to buy a glass tank. Do not buy plastic tanks!

What else you'll need:

  • lid/cover
  • air pump
  • air stone
  • heater
  • thermometer
  • plastic plants/ decorations
  • fluorescent light
  • rocks
  • gravel
  • chemicals
  • filter
  • gravel cleaner
  • a net
  • 5-Gallon bucket

Useful Articles

Fish Tank Set Up | A Freshwater Step-By-Step Guide
Buy Goldfish | Tips and Guidelines
Goldfish Types | Everything You Want To Know
Essential Goldfish Care Guidelines
Goldfish Water | Quality and Maintenance

Love to you,

Image credits to: hippo_b @ and to