4 Types of Aquarium Water To Keep Your Fish Healthy

4 Types of Aquarium Water To Keep Your Fish Healthy

healthy fish tank water

Adding the right type of water to your fish tank is crucial for the well-being of your fish. The water can come from many places, but only some are suitable for your fish.

Knowing the right water conditions for your tank and choosing good water sources will make you a successful aquarist.

In nature, fish have a lot of water available to them and so they don’t get sick often. That’s why, you need to find the right water sources to keep your fish healthy and happy.

The water available can change a lot depending on where you live. Some water sources have more metals and dirt in them than others.

Don’t think that your main water source is always good for your fish, since it can have harmful things like rust in it.

If you’re unsure, get it checked. You can ask your city’s water department for information about metals in your tap water.

Comparison of Different Water Types for Your Fish Tank

There are 4 different sources of water. Let’s talk in detail about the pros and cons of these sources.

1. Tap Water

Tap water is the water we get directly from our taps. It’s treated with chemicals like chlorine to eliminate harmful organisms, keeping us safe from waterborne diseases.

However, this chlorine can be harmful to fish and other water-living pets. So, if you have an aquarium, you must remove the chlorine from the tap water before using it. Otherwise, the chlorine can harm your fish and other water creatures.

How to Dechlorinate Tap Water?

If you’re new to owning an aquarium, it’s important to know that you need to remove chlorine from tap water before using it. You can buy a “de-chlorinator” product from a pet or fish store.

It instantly gets rid of chlorine. You should add this to your aquarium after it’s set-up and filled with water.

Also, remember to treat any new water you add to the tank, even if it’s just topping up evaporated water. This ensures that your fish stay healthy.

Traditional Way to Dechlorinate the Water

If you’re a fish enthusiast and your tank is running low on water, dechlorinating it the traditional way is a practical solution. Here are the steps:

  1. First, grab a few plastic jugs. A rinsed-out milk container will do just fine. Avoid using glass since it can break. Rinse these containers with tap water, making sure to let the tap run for a few seconds to clear any stagnant water from the pipes.
  2. This step is important since stagnant water can contain trace amounts of metal. Avoid using soap or chemicals to clean the containers as they can harm your fish.
  3. After rinsing, fill the containers with tap water and let them sit uncovered for 48 hours. After this period, the water should be chlorine-free!

To speed up the process, you can use an airstone. This device, which splits an air supply from an aquarium pump into smaller bubbles, can cut your waiting time in half.

Simply attach the airstone to a spare aquarium pump and place it in the container for 24 hours. You can cover the hole in the container to keep out any contaminants.

By keeping a few jugs like this around, you’ll always have a supply of safe water. If you have larger tanks, use a gang valve to power several airstones at once.

However, be careful of airborne debris, such as dust particles or paint sprays, which can contaminate the water. To prevent this, store the jugs in a clean area and cover them with a lid or cloth.

Food-safe containers or small buckets can be used as well.

Protecting Your Fish Against Metals

To keep your fish safe, you need to watch out for both chlorine and metal in your tap water. Your water might have too much copper or iron. This can harm your fish.

Buy special water treatments from your pet store to remove these metals.

When you use city water, let it run down the sink for a minute before collecting it for your fish tank. This helps get rid of any water that’s been in contact with metal pipes and might have picked up some metal. This is a simple way to keep your fish healthy.

Seeding Your New Tank

Seeding your new fish tank means you fill it with water from an already set up and healthy aquarium. This water is free from harmful substances like chlorine and contains good bacteria that help set up the tank’s nitrogen cycle.

You can get this water from a reliable friend or dealer, as long as they have kept their fish separate. Make sure that the tank you’re getting water from is clean and free from disease, algae, and other unwanted substances.

Don’t use water from an unestablished tank – it doesn’t offer any benefits aside from being chlorine-free. It’s better to start fresh instead.

2. Rainwater

Rainwater can be used in aquariums, but it’s not always the best choice. It’s a time-consuming process that needs a lot of rainfall, making it impractical for large tanks.

If you live in a dry place, like the desert, it’s unlikely you’ll collect enough rainwater for your tank.

Collecting rainwater also attracts mosquitoes, which can be a nuisance to you, your family, neighbors, and pets.

If you still want to use rainwater for your aquarium, use non-metallic, food-grade containers to collect it. Avoid using metal containers since they can contaminate the water.

Remember, rainwater is usually soft and low in minerals, which might not be good for certain fish that need more minerals to stay healthy and breed properly, like Ted-tailed Sharks, blind Cavefish, and Oscars.

Always check the specific water requirements for your fish before using rainwater.

Avoid collecting rainwater from metal gutters. They can rust over time and collect debris like leaves, dirt, paper, and pieces of roofing shingle, which can contaminate the water.

You can measure iron and copper levels in the water using test kits available in most fish stores and online.

3. Bottled Water

Bottled water, the one which is inexpensive and easily available at a grocery store, has certain benefits. First, it’s convenient. You can grab a bottle on the go, whether you’re running errands or going for a jog.

Second, it’s safe. Bottled water goes through a purification process that removes impurities, making it a good option if you’re wary of tap water quality.

Third, it’s sealed. This means it’s free from contamination until you open it.

However, keep in mind that if you’re filling a big tank, bottled water can be costly. Also, distilled water, a type of bottled water, lacks necessary minerals. You’ll need to add those minerals back to maintain healthy levels.

Lastly, not all bottled waters are the same. Expensive ones aren’t necessarily better. Go for the affordable options as they serve the purpose just fine.

4. Well Water

Well water is the water you get from a well. Sometimes, it changes colors during a shower due to the substances in it.

You might also find that your skin changes color after using it. People who live near farms should know that fertilizers can get into the water and contaminate it.

If you have an aquarium, well water may not be the best choice. It may contain harmful substances like sulfur, lead, and mud. Also, it often lacks oxygen and has too much nitrogen and carbon dioxide.

But if you still want to use it, get it tested by a water company. They can tell you if it’s safe for humans. If it passes the test, you should still check it with an aquarium test kit.

This is to make sure it’s suitable for tropical fish. The kit will measure things like pH and nitrite levels. You might need to adjust these things with aquarium chemicals.

The hardness of well water can change depending on where you live. So, you might need to adjust the pH accordingly.

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