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Old 02-07-2013, 06:28 PM   #1
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New tank soon, need some advice

I'm looking into getting a new tank and I've been going around to my lfs browsing different tanks and accessories. There are some things I for sure want and others I'm not sure about, so I'm hoping this fantastic community can help me out. Thanks

For sure wants:
- 28-32 Gallon tank (Ideal I would like to have a short but longer/wider tank but I haven't seen many at the lfs so I may have to look online.)
Live plants - I think having live plants would be pretty cool in my new tank and I read they help clean the water too.

Substrate - I would prefer sand as a substrate but I was reading that live plants and sand don't always work together so if there is something out there that is similar I would go for that. (If all else fails I'll have to do gravel I suppose)

Fish - I'm not very picky when it comes to the kind of fish. I tend to like them all so whatever will work well in my tank will be fantastic.

Accessories - I've been looking around at heaters, filters, and all kinds of other stuff and was wondering what everyone's preferred brand for those types of things are?
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:41 PM   #2
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As for your substrate, you could do a plant substrate, I like eco-complete, and then top it with sand so your plants have the good substrate they like underneath and you get your sand you want, which also some fish prefer sand so it may all work out with what you choose to have for livestock. As for my preferred brand of heaters and filters I have enjoyed Aqueon and marineland products but everyone has there prefrence.
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:49 PM   #3
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I've recently been browsing tank pictures and I see tanks with really cool looking grass. That could be cool too if it will work with what I want to get. Any info on that would be great too.
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Old 02-07-2013, 09:38 PM   #4
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There's a few grass type aquatic plants, some of the easier ones to grow in my opinion is dwarf hair grass or micro sword.
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Old 02-07-2013, 10:03 PM   #5
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Thanks for the help.
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Old 02-07-2013, 10:21 PM   #6
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I've recently been browsing tank pictures and I see tanks with really cool looking grass. That could be cool too if it will work with what I want to get. Any info on that would be great too.
I have recently been looking at grasses as well and one HUGE con is the grasses need fertilizer to grow and if you are not careful with the liquid it can wipe out your entire tank. An easy way around it is to use tabs drop one tab in per the directions and there is no need to worry. The other bit of advice told to me by a petsmart employee is to add a co2 infuser (less than $10) to help aid In the care of the grasses .
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Old 02-07-2013, 10:32 PM   #7
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Hm, maybe ill avoid grass. I wouldn't want to risk killing everything just for the look. Live plants should suffice.
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Old 02-07-2013, 10:38 PM   #8
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Hm, maybe ill avoid grass. I wouldn't want to risk killing everything just for the look. Live plants should suffice.
I doubt you will kill everything if you fertilize everything properly like your already going to have to do with your live plants, just follow the directions on the fertilizer tabs you buy and I think you will be just fine.
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Old 02-08-2013, 04:30 PM   #9
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For tank size, i would go with a 29 gallon, they are just more common. You should need at least a 200watt heater, and at least 150 gph on your filter, but more is better. idk about live plants though. keep us updated!
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Old 02-08-2013, 05:18 PM   #10
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What will you be able to do in terms of live plants will be mainly dependent on what sort of lighting you have (and also the substrate that you choose). Were you interested in a low-tech low-maintenance (and low-expense) set up or something a little more high-tech so you grow carpeting-type plants? A good beginner substrate for planted tanks is the already mentioned Eco-Complete (it's pretty reasonable on Amazon). Another option you have is to pick plants like anubias, java fern, and mosses that can be affixed to driftwood/rocks/decor and do not need to be rooted in the substrate. That way you could use cheap pool filter sand and not worry about how it affects your plants.

In terms of accessories I'd recommend a good AquaClear HOB filter. For something around a 30 gal I'd do at least a AC50 and preferably an additional AC20 with it. I'd also look into prefilter sponges for the intake tube so it does not suck up any sand. Good luck!
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Old 02-08-2013, 05:46 PM   #11
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Well I think I would like to do something mid-tech mid-maintenance. I really like the way plants look and I think I'll probably go with the Eco-Complete. I haven't thought much about light sources yet, right now I have a 10g tank that uses natural light. For this tank though I won't be trying the natural light, any recommendations of lighting would be great too. Is having 2 filters going to mess with the currents in the tank? I imagine since your recommending it, it's probably a silly question. :P Thanks for all the help guys.

Also is there a guide on this site for moving a fish tank. In about 6 months or so I'm going to be looking at moving out of my apartment, not sure where I'll be moving to or how far away it will be from where I currently am. I'm still debating if I should just wait to get my bigger tank when I move or in the next month. But regardless I'm learning everything I can before hand.
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Old 02-08-2013, 06:02 PM   #12
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I personally use the marineland aquatic plant led light system on my tank currently, plants growing great and my fish don't mind either, plus the led's give off this shimmering effect which I like personally. And the light has a built in timer so you don't have to go buy one and the LEDs are rated to last 50000 hours.
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Old 02-08-2013, 06:18 PM   #13
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I will definitely be getting a power strip with timers. I work strange hours (2am to around 10am) and I usually sleep during the day which makes it hard to keep my tank on a schedule without them. I also want to buy a much better heater than my 10g has, its very hard to keep the temp the way I want it because the nob on the heater isn't very smooth so getting it exactly where I want it is very difficult. It also has no real way of telling what temperature its set at, and due to an outbreak of ich I had a few weeks ago I realized it can't get the temp of my tank very high above 82 degrees.
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