Setting up a tank in a basement - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 7 Old 12-22-2009, 10:08 PM Thread Starter
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Setting up a tank in a basement

I recently cleaned up my basement, and my empty 40 gallon tall tank fits nicely in one spot. The basement is not heated or cooled, but never tends to get cooler than 50 degrees and no hotter than 70 degrees. I think that a heater or two could keep it at correct temperature, but I'm not sure. I mainly plan on keeping gouramis, angels, and maybe a knife. Would this work out?
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post #2 of 7 Old 12-22-2009, 11:09 PM
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Is the 40 a breeder tank? What are the dimensions? Have you tested your tap water?

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post #3 of 7 Old 12-22-2009, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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the tank is 25" tall, 36" wide, and 12" deep. Tap water is good, from what I remember. Its from a well, so no chlorine. It goes through a neutralizer, and then a softener. The last time I had a tank set up, the tap water had a pH of about 7.2.
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post #4 of 7 Old 12-23-2009, 08:11 AM
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A pair of dwarf Gouramis can be kept starting at 15g min. Need pH range from 6-7.5 and hardness 5-12
Angels should be kept in nothing less then a 50g and need need pH 5-6.5 and hardness 0-5
With the knife I assume you mean livebearer that can also be kept starting at 15g and ph 6-8 hardness 5-20

That said, I'd def not recommend the Angels in such a small tank, apart from their requirments they grow to be 10-12" incl the fin's and would have a hard time to manuver around in your tank period.

For the basement vs tank: I don't think you'd have to worry about cooling since it doubt it'll exceed 80's in the summer period. Heat however will be a concern considering you wanna house tropical fish hat got to be kept in the 80's. Therefore I suggest a heater far larger then your tank size standard recommendation, something around the range of 250-300w min, here's the heater's I started using and love them as they allow you do dial to a certain temp and are fair enough in price really Cascade Heaters, Heaters | Pet Solutions

I'd strongly suggest getting a Liquid test kit set (for example by API), it will not only help you to determine your water parameters now to help stocking the tank, but will allow you to monitor them while your tank is cycling (which usually results in different readings) and also its the easiest way to follow the cycle really to tst ammonia, NO2 & NO3

Do you plan on planting the tank as well?

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post #5 of 7 Old 12-23-2009, 08:20 AM
LisaC144's Avatar
This is a funny post to me actually. I did another post called "heater and temperature". My 55g tank is in the basement as well. There is heat, but I keep it around 64. My one heater was not heating the tank quite as warm as I like it to be (it holds it steady at 75. I like my tank at 79). Therefore, I purchased a second heater. Like Angel said, either get a heater higher than your tank size, or purchase 2 heaters and keep one at each end of the tank. As I've learned, many people like having two heaters, just in case one ever stops working. Considering your tank will be in the basement where the temperature can drop rather rapidly if one malfunctions, I'd recommend getting two heaters.
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post #6 of 7 Old 12-23-2009, 08:42 AM
MoneyMitch's Avatar
my tank is in the heater aswell, i use three heaters all 250 watt and i can set the temp all the way to 87 is as high as ive gotten it and then of course back down to room temp, cant say my basement is really heated and is probably a good 10-25 deg's below the rest of the house year round. as for the fish selection im backin angel great advice there.
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post #7 of 7 Old 12-23-2009, 10:11 AM
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I happen to think that the basement is one of the best spots to keep a tank: you don't have to worry about the weight of the tank on the floor, and light coming from the outside is usually somewhat limited. My 32g is in the basement with only one heater but my basement is not actually that cold. I would definitely listen to other folks on here and add a heater or get a bigger one.
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