Starting a 29 gallon fish tank?
I am using my 29 gallon tank to start salt water. I cleaned out my tank very good. I've talked to the associates at my local fish store, but I have a few questions. Sorry if the questions I ask are stupid, I just want to be patient and take my time and not rush things. I am trying to start a reef tank (mainly SOFT coral) with just 1 clown fish. Here are the questions:
1. I was told I should have 1 pound of rock per gallon. Right now I have 25 pounds of live rock and 45 pounds of live sand, is that too much?
2. I bought their pre-made salt water already and I put it into the tank. It's $6.00 for every 5 gallons. Is that too much or should I buy my own mix and other liquids required to make the salt water. If it's best to buy my own mix, what exactly do I need and what is the process?
3. I bought a movement and circulation pump (Koralia evolution, 550 gph flow rate). Where should I position it? I have a filter on the other side giving out 200 gph. Do I need another a weaker flow rate pump?
4. I have a 150 watt submersible heater (for 30-55 gallons). Will this be okay to use?
5. I have seen a lot of different types of test kits such as pH levels, ammonia, nitrite, etc. What kit do I need?
6. I have a net, hydrometer, thermometer, bucket and cleaning materials (only using them for my tank, nothing else). Is there anything else (excluding anything I listed on top)?
7. This question got me VERY confused. I have talked to 3 different shops and a lot of people. I have gotten many different answers for this question. My friend told me I needed to throw on my power filter so I did. I will break the question down:
a) Can I use an Aqua Clear power filter (20-50 gallon)? If not, what should I use?
b) I was told to put in the activated carbon, the filter insert foam, and biomax so I did. Then I was told NOT to use any of these and to replace it with these special crushed coral. What should I do?
8. I have no knowledge of lights and the brands. I only heard someone tell me about T5 or something like that, what is that? What brand is reliable? What kind of lighting should I get= Should I get one exactly the size of my tank or a smaller one?
9. I had my tank running for about a week, how long does it usually take to cycle. I am not in a rush or anything, just wanted to know.
I really appreciate anyone who can answer my questions. I am asking a lot of questions because I don't want to rush anything. I want to take my time and learn as I go. Once again, thank you!
- JMLv 510 years agoFavorite Answer
1, with regards to live sand and rock, you cant have too much as it acts as a mechanical filter save for when you have far too much and it cuts down on swimming space for the fish but what you have will do nicely.
2, all i can suggest is you work out if you can make it cheaper and if its worth the space, time and effort, but it seems a but pricey.
3, 550 gph is probably a little overkill, but as long as it doesn't kick up the substrate its fine. i cant say where you should put it as it varies between tanks, but try to position it so it eliminates any large areas of slow moving water, make sure that there are still sheltered spots so your fish can get out of the current if they need to.
4, yes that heater will be fine.
5, you need all of those test kits, there are some that you can buy, i think a company called jbl make them, but i cant remember what i use, and they are all in one strips so you dunk the test strip for a few seconds, leave it for a minute or so and then compare it to a table they give you.
6, you seem to have it covered, you will need a ballast for the lights, but i assume you already have one, and to further that a timer is always nice to have, id also buy basic wide spectrum medications just because its handy to have around if anything goes wrong, and if nothing does it doesn't matter, it was there if you had needed it. i would also buy a protein skimmer for the tank.
7, a) you could use it, but i recommend you don't, you want something more gutsy or even go for a sump. ( i dont know the power of the filter in gph, its an educated guess by looking at the model)
b) i would have said it was down to preference really, in any event you would get a biological filter forming in both.
8, there are t5 tubes and t8 tubes, the t5's are more powerful and smaller than t8's you also get t5HO which are t5 high output and give you more light compared to a standard t5 that is the same length. i think the brands are all fairly good and there is little difference, the bigger ones in my area are arcadia, juwel and interpet. you can also get LED lighting which you don't need to replace yearly and they are much more efficient in terms of power consumption but not very good for growing corals or for growing plants. id suggest you go on to a forum or poke about a site like the practical fishkeeping site or go to a fish shop thats good and ask one of them as i cant be much help with corals. but i would get the longest tubes you can fit in the hood so you get the most light possible.
9) it will take about 4/5 weeks to be cycled enough to support fish and corals, but it will be about a year until its properly matured. saying that it will be fine after 4/5 weeks but i would put the most fragile and expensive things in last so they are going into a more mature tank.