Are you considering investing in a fish tank for your aquatic pets or plants? Aquarium fish tanks have become increasingly popular over the years due to their strength, clarity, and versatility. They are lightweight and shatter-resistant making them the best option for both freshwater and saltwater environments.
Acrylic fish tanks last much longer than glass aquariums . While a glass aquarium may last around 10 to 15 years, an acrylic tank can last for 20 years or more with proper care. This is because acrylic tanks are less prone to cracking and shattering than glass tanks, making them a safer and more durable choice for keeping fish.
In this post, I’ll explore the factors that affect the lifespan of aquarium tanks. So, whether you’re a seasoned aquarium enthusiast or just starting out, this article will provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision.
How Long Do Fish Tanks Last?
When it comes to fish tanks, a lot of people prefer either glass or acrylic . Truth is, glass aquariums can last up to 10 to 15 years, acrylic tanks can last 20 years or more with proper care. Acrylic tanks are a safer choice for keeping fish simply because acrylic is much more impact-resistant than glass, making it less likely to break or crack. Let me explain why acrylic tanks are more durable than glass fish tanks.
Why Do Acrylic Fish Tanks Last Longer than Glass Fish Tanks?
Acrylic fish tanks have several advantages over glass tanks that make them a more durable and long-lasting option. Here are some of the key reasons why acrylic tanks tend to last longer than glass tanks:
- Impact Resistance: Acrylic is much more impact-resistant than glass, which means it can withstand minor bumps and knocks without cracking or breaking. This is because acrylic is a more flexible material than glass, which allows it to bend and flex without breaking. Glass, on the other hand, is a rigid material that can crack or shatter easily when subjected to even minor impacts. This makes acrylic tanks a safer choice for keeping fish, as there is less risk of them breaking and harming your aquatic pets. ( I honestly recommend the SeaClear 20 gal Acrylic Aquarium Combo Set, this acrylic fish tank is 17x stronger than glass)
- Flexibility: Acrylic is a more flexible material than glass, which means it can bend and flex without breaking. This flexibility makes acrylic tanks much less likely to crack or break when exposed to extreme temperature changes, vibrations, or other environmental factors that can cause glass tanks to fail. Additionally, acrylic tanks are less likely to develop stress cracks than glass tanks, which can occur when the glass is subjected to uneven pressure or stress.
- Scratch Resistance: Acrylic is much more scratch-resistant than glass, which means it can maintain its clarity and transparency over a longer period of time. whereas glass tanks are more prone to scratches, which can make the glass look dull and cloudy over time.
- Insulation: Besides being scratch resistant, acrylic has better insulation properties than glass. This helps to maintain a stable water temperature inside the tank. Importantly, this can reduce the energy needed to heat or cool the water, which can save you money on your energy bills over time. Because acrylic is a natural insulator, the water inside your fish tank will be at constant temperature, even if the room temperature fluctuates.
- Maintenance: What’s more, acrylic tanks are easier to maintain compared to glass tanks. They are less likely to develop leaks, and they are easier to clean and maintain. This is because acrylic is a non-porous material, which means it is less likely to develop cracks or leaks over time.
- Customization: Lastly, acrylic tanks offer greater flexibility in terms of design and customization options up against glass tanks. They can be shaped and molded into a variety of shapes and sizes, which can make them more aesthetically pleasing and functional than glass tanks. Acrylic tanks are also available in a range of colors and finishes, which can add to their visual appeal. This customization potential makes acrylic tanks a popular choice for hobbyists and professionals alike.
Is It Common for Fish Tanks to Experience Leakage?
Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for fish tanks to experience leakage. Even the best-made fish tanks can develop leaks over time. Leakage can occur due to a number of reasons such as;
- Cracks in the tank: Cracks in the glass or acrylic can occur due to a variety of reasons such as accidental impacts, wear and tear, or temperature changes. These cracks can cause water to seep out of the tank.
- Improperly sealed seams: The seams that hold the glass or acrylic panels of the tank together can become weak over time, or may not have been sealed properly during the manufacturing process. Sadly, this can cause a water leak.
- Faulty equipment: Also, faulty equipment such as a malfunctioning filter or pump can cause water to overflow or seep out of the tank. In-fact, this can happen due to clogs, damaged or worn-out parts, or power outages.
- Wear and tear: Over time, the seals, gaskets, and other components of the tank can wear out, causing leaks to occur. Evidently, this is more likely to happen if the tank is not properly maintained or if it is exposed to harsh conditions.
- External damage: Lastly scratches, dents, and other external damage to the tank can weaken its structure and cause leaks to occur.
What Steps Should Be Taken in Case of an Aquarium Leakage?
In case of an aquarium leakage, it is important to act quickly to prevent any damage to your home or harm to your aquatic pets. Here are the steps that should be taken in case of an aquarium leakage:
- Turn off the power: Turn off the power supply to the aquarium to prevent any electrical hazards. This includes unplugging any electrical equipment such as filters, heaters, and lights.
- Remove the fish: Carefully remove the fish and other aquatic pets from the tank and place them in a suitable temporary holding container with clean and aerated water.
- Drain the water: If the leak is severe, you may need to completely drain the aquarium to prevent any further damage to your home. Use a siphon hose or a bucket to remove as much water as possible.
- Locate the source of the leak: Identify the source of the leak. If it is a small crack, you may be able to temporarily patch it with aquarium sealant until you can replace the tank. If the leak is due to a faulty piece of equipment, you will need to replace or repair it.
- Clean up the mess: Thoroughly clean up any water damage to your home. Use towels or a wet/dry vacuum to soak up the water, and use a disinfectant to clean any affected surfaces.
- Replace the tank: If the leak cannot be repaired or if the tank is beyond repair, you will need to replace it with a new one.
Preventing aquarium leakage is always preferable, and regular maintenance and inspection can help detect any potential issues before they become a problem.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Acrylic Tanks Fail?
While acrylic tanks are generally considered more durable than glass tanks, they can still fail if not properly maintained or if exposed to extreme conditions. Common causes of acrylic tank failure include improper cleaning, exposure to harsh chemicals, and excessive pressure on the tank walls.
Do Acrylic Tanks Last Longer Than Glass?
Acrylic tanks can last longer than glass tanks if properly cared for. Acrylic tanks are less prone to cracking and shattering than glass tanks, making them a safer and more durable choice for keeping fish. While a glass aquarium may last around 10 to 15 years, an acrylic tank can last for 20 years or more with proper care.
Do Acrylic Tanks Crack?
Acrylic tanks can crack if exposed to excessive pressure or impact, but they are generally more resistant to cracking than glass tanks. Acrylic tanks can also scratch more easily than glass tanks, so it is important to use caution when cleaning and maintaining them.
Are Acrylic Tanks Worth It
Acrylic tanks can be more expensive than glass tanks, but they are generally considered a worthwhile investment for serious aquarium enthusiasts. However, it is important to carefully consider your specific needs and budget before deciding whether an acrylic tank is the right choice for you.
So guys, there you have it. As I’ve previously mentioned above, the lifespan of a fish tank can vary depending on several factors such as the material, maintenance, and usage. Generally, acrylic tanks are considered to last longer than glass tanks. However, proper care and maintenance are essential to ensure the longevity of any tank. If you’re considering investing in a fish tank, be sure to choose the right material and maintain it regularly for optimal results.
Ready buy your dream fish tank? Check out our reviews category to help you on choosing the right tank for your needs and how to properly care for it. Start your aquatic journey today!