How to Set up a Coldwater Aquarium

Been interested in keeping goldfish and other fascinating coldwater fish? This article will show you how to set it up perfectly.


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    Pick out which fish you want and do some research on it. A good starter fish would be a common goldfish. Find answers to questions like, How big does it get? How long does it live? What does it require? What does it eat? Can I afford to give this fish every thing it needs? Can I give this fish a happy, healthy, home for as long as it lives? Will it need a tank companion? Are they compatible?
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    Order every supply your fish will need at a pet shop that sells good fish supplies.
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    Decide on where you want the tank. Make sure it's away from heat, as this may heat the water, causing it to become too hot, and away from sunlight, as this causes algae, which turns the tank green. If the tank you have chosen is big, you may want a cabinet to put it on, or something that will hold such weight.
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    Wash out your fish tank with clean water.
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    Add the filter and air pump. Insert the filter the way it says on the instructions, and connect the airstones to the airpump. Airstones are important as goldfish and other coldwater fish require well oxygenated water.
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    Add the gravel. Pea gravel is most suitable for goldfish, as the rounded grains won't damage the fishes mouth. Before adding the gravel, fill the tank up with tap water, to the depth of how high you want the gravel, then add the substrate.
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    Add some ornaments, rocks or equipment. You can buy all these from pet shops or aquatic stores. You could add plants, as these add oxygen to the tank. Bogwood are great for aquariums, they create a natural habitat for fish and look great. You can buy or find rocks to add in fish tanks, but they may need a lot of cleaning.
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    Fill the tank to the top and add tap safe solution to make tap water safe for fish.
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    Leave the water running through the system at least for one week before getting your fish.


  • Do a lot of research. This will help you get familiar with fish, and learn about the hobby.
  • If you have a filter, clean it once a month as it says on the instructions.
  • Never put fancy goldfish with common or comet goldfish because fancy goldfish are much faster and will eat all the food, therefore causing the common fish to starve.
  • Feed fish as the instructions say to, be careful that you don't forget!
  • Remove 1/4 of the tanks water once a week and replace it with clean, treated tap water. You can treat water by adding a tap water purifier for fish from your pet shop, or leaving water out overnight.


  • Common goldfish can't be kept together with fancy goldfish.
  • Don't house male Beta fish with other fish, especially other males.
  • Be careful with electricity. Water and electricity don't match.

Things You'll Need

  • An Air Pump
  • Bucket
  • 5–10 gallon (18.9–37.9 L) Aquariums
  • Aquarium With Hood & Lights
  • 5-10 Lbs. Gravel
  • Power Filter
  • 5-10 Watt Heater
  • Net
  • Thermometer
  • Food
  • Water Dechlorinator
  • Ammonia Remover
  • Biological Filter Starter
  • Plants & decorative items

Article Info

Categories: Aquariums