Check your new tank for leaks. Fill it with water and let is stand for a day or two. Once you have confirmed that it is water tight you will need to thoroughly clean the tank and all equipment. Rinse thoroughly. Do not skip the cleaning and rinsing step just because you`ve purchased a new tank and it appears sparkling clean. Your fish will die if there are any contaminants left in the tank! Don`t forget to wash the gravel before adding it the tank. Add all your other equipment in accordance with the manufacturer`s directions. Your pet store will have provided advice on how to set up your saltwater fish tank.
A 30-gallon saltwater aquarium is probably the smallest tank you should consider. A fish tank of this size will provide sufficient surface area to allow adequate exchange of oxygen into the water and to provide a comfortable swimming environment for your fish. The oxygen supply in the water together with the water temperature will determine the success or otherwise of your fish keeping hobby. Tropical saltwater fish require a water temperature of about 75 degrees F. The warmer water in the saltwater aquarium will tend to deplete the oxygen in the water which means that the surface area becomes important. The addition of aeration equipment is usually desirable to increase the oxygen concentration. Aeration can usually be provided in conjunction with your filtration equipment.
Setting up the filter and heaters on the tank wall is something else you will want to do. This is assuming you have a back filter which fits on the tank. If not you should install the filter when it is proper, for example an under gravel filter needs to be installed before the gravel is placed in the tank. Then you will want to rinse the carbon filter you have for your tank and start the filter system up. You will also want to plug the heater in as well, but you will only do those two items when the water is at a high enough level to sustain the items.
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