Moving your Fish Tank to Your New Home

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    Moving your Fish Tank to Your New Home

    Moving with cats and dogs might be very complicated – but there is one pet, and one item that people rarely discuss when talking about moving. It’s pretty little fishes and the aquarium they live in. In this guide, we will talk about moving your fish tank to your new home, safely and with little stress.

    Thinking about Moving your Fish Tank

    Fishes are fragile

    The first thing to think about is whether you should even move your fish tank. Fishes are fragile, transporting them far away can get them very stressed. Keep in mind – some of them might not even survive the move. This is a risk you need to consider. They can usually survive for forty-eight hours. After that, the risk of them dying is just getting higher and higher. Plan ahead – how long will your move take?

    One of the steps to take to reduce their stress when moving your fish tank is lowering the travel time. Pack the tank first, after you have packed everything else. The aquarium is also the first thing you need to unpack. Because of that – plan ahead. Think about where you want to place your fish tank in the new home. It needs to be on a firm piece of furniture, and somewhere flat, not in the direct sunlight. Deciding where it’s going to go in advance helps reduce the time your fishes need to spend outside of their home.

    Fish are going through stress too.
    Fish are going through stress too.

    You also need to contact your Miami local movers to see if moving your fish tank is something they do. They might also have some great tips on how to pack the fish tank, or even have boxes and material that will help you with packing. If end up moving the fish, make sure to tell the movers so they will be careful when loading and unloading the tank (and the fishes) onto the truck.

    Fish tanks are fragile

    As well as your fish – their homes are fragile too. Aquariums are usually made of glass – so they can easily break during travel. They need to be properly packed and transported. If you think you may not be capable of doing this, or that the fishes will be at too high a risk, consider giving your aquarium away to a friend – you can always buy a new one at your new home.

    Before Moving your Fish Tank

    Getting the Proper Supplies

    The first thing you need to do before you start moving your fish tank is get the proper supplies. Figure out how much gallons of water there is in your aquarium. The fish are easiest to move in 5-gallon buckets. Make sure the buckets you find are clean, leak-proof and opaque. You do not want them to have some chemical residue that can poison and kill your fishes. They also need lids so they don’t spill out during the travel.

    You also need a fish net and a siphon hose to transport the water. To pack the fish tank, you’ll need thick and safe cardboard boxes, packing paper, bubble wrap and other secure materials. Don’t forget to check if your Miami movers have supplies for this.

    Prepare supplies for moving your fish tank.
    Prepare supplies for moving your fish tank.

    Prepare the Fish Tank

    You should also clean the water. Every day for five days before moving, change 20% (one-fifth) of the water in the aquarium. This way, your fish will get a cleaner water to be transported in. You should also skip feeding them a day or two before the move. The fish can live for a week without food, so they won’t mind too much, and this helps keep their water clean and without waste. Also, your fish won’t be too happy to travel with full stomachs.

    Finally Moving your Fish Tank

    When it finally comes down to moving your fish tank, these are the steps you need to take. First, you will need to drain it with your siphon hose and fill the containers with the water. Don’t fill the whole container – just two-thirds of it. This is so there won’t be spills during the travel, and you also cannot move the full aquarium – it’s too heavy and very impractical.

    Next step is to use your net to move your fishes to the buckets you have prepared. Count your fish while you transport them, but still be sure to check if there’s any left after you have moved them all. The containers you transport your fishes in need to have oxygen. You can accomplish this in two ways. Either poke holes in the bucket lids or get some air pumps for them.

    Move your fish tank with great care.
    Move your fish tank with great care.


    Once you have removed your fishes from their tank, it’s time to pack all the decoration too. If it’s not a plant, you need to dry it and store it carefully. Wrap it in bubble wrap or packing paper. Water plants can survive for some time with only their roots wet, so you don’t need to dry the plants. Just find a separate plastic bag to pack them in. 

    Now drain the fish tank completely and take away all the sand and gravel you might have in it.

    Packing your Fish Tank

    Once you have placed all the fished and decoration away, you need to dry the glass well and separate it if you can (some fish tanks are glued together). Next comes packing. Pack each glass piece separately. Wrap it in safe material, and then place them upright in the box that you line with some more wrapping paper.

    Next, pack your fish securely. If you’re not carrying the buckets by hand, make sure you secure them so they do not bounce during travels. It’s also a good idea to cover them with a blanket or a dark material. Fish sleep during the night, so this will give them an illusion of it being night, and help them with stress.

    Arriving at your New Home

    Once you arrive at your new home, unpack the fish tank first. Forget about your boxes! The fishes are the priority. Set the aquarium up, place the sand or gravel back, then decoration, then the pump and heaters. Don’t turn anything on until you’ve poured the water with fishes in! After your fish are back in their home, wait a couple of hours for the water temperature to match the room temperature. After the few hours have passed, turn the heater and the pump back on.

    Now your fishes are in their new home, you can rest and enjoy your new place with them!

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