If you’re thinking of started a saltwater fish tank setup, there are some considerations you need to keep in mind before doing so. If you have the misconception that you’re not ready for a saltwater setup, that’s simply not true. Saltwater tanks can be just as easy (or challenging) to keep as a freshwater tank, it all depends on the amount of experience and resources you have. Luckily, you’re here doing research so that counts for something.
Saltwater does not require a larger tank than freshwater, so keep that myth out of your mind as well. But, do keep in mind that larger tanks are easier to maintain. Just think of it this way: your tank is like a smaller version of the fishes’ natural ecosystem. The smaller your version, the more accurate you have to be and the more it takes to keep the system balanced. As you begin scaling up, that balance becomes easier to maintain.
Finally, saltwater tanks do not have to be expensive to keep either, and you can even convert your current freshwater setup to a saltwater setup.
Saltwater Fish Tanks
You can use any fish tank for your saltwater setup, it doesn’t have to be special in any way or designated for saltwater use. You can also use a freshwater filter for your saltwater aquarium, no changes needed there. Additionally, your pumps, tubing, and heating could be re-used from a freshwater tank, nothing special is needed for saltwater in that regard.
Here’s one change that is needed though, when it comes to decor, plastic should not be used in a saltwater tank. While it works fine in a freshwater setting, it will not mix well with the saltwater. Instead, your saltwater tank should use sand, aragonite, or crushed corals. The last two things mentioned will help keep the pH levels stable in your tank.
Lighting will be the same between freshwater and saltwater tanks, but you will need a special type of test kit that is meant for saltwater use.
In addition to changing your decor, you will need a saltwater mix and a hydrometer for your saltwater tank. The latter is to measure how much salt is in the water and keep the levels in check. If you’re converting your freshwater tank to a saltwater tank, usually the only things that need to be done ahead of time is changing out the gravel and changing the decor. Then you just have to follow the steps to acclimate your fish and you’ll be on your way!