Basic Fish Tank Set Up for Angelfish

The fish tank set up is an important task as it’s the basis for the health and vitality of the aquarium and therefore the fish. Proper location is also important as it makes maintenance easier. These angelfish aquarium setup guidelines are valid for all community fish tank setups, making it a good start for angelfish freshwater aquariums.

Tank Location

The location of an aquarium requires consideration. It should be near a power outlet to eliminate the need for extension cords. One power strip with a reset and breaker should provide enough outlets. Keep safety in mind and locate so that if there is a leak, the water won’t mix with the electricity and cause a fire. The aquarium shouldn’t be in front of a window, as the water may heat up too much, and sunlight encourages algae growth.

The best location for an aquarium is one that is quiet, and away from direct sunlight or uncontrolled heat source. The location determines how the tank is displayed. Tanks make noise. The pumps hum and water ripples, so bedrooms may not be the best choice.

The location should also be one that allows easy access for regular maintenance. Leaving room for regular water changes and routine maintenance is important Setup

The fish tank stand should be flat and level. Commercial fish tank stands made specifically made for aquariums are a good choice and can coordinate with the room’s decor, but anything that is flat and level will work.

Level the Aquarium

Put a Styrofoam or flexible plastic pad between the tank and the stand to absorb surface irregularities in the stand. This prevents stress that causes the glass to crack. Check to see the aquarium is level before filling.


If using an undergravel filter, it will be the first thing put in the tank. Instructions for fish tank set upassembling the filter should be included with the purchase. These filters require course grained gravel as fine gravel or sand will clog it up.

It should be noted however that undergravel filters don’t encourage plant growth. Plants require nutrition in the gravel, and using a gravel specifically for plants is recommended. Plant gravel may be more expensive than other gravel, but the savings will come in the results. A three inch or more depth of gravel is needed to grow plants.

Wash the gravel and place it in the bottom of the tank. Grading the gravel so that it is deeper at the back than the front gives an illusion of depth.  Put an air stone under the gravel for bubbles coming from the gravel if you want, although angelfish do not require this. Just remember to hook the tube to it before putting it under the gravel.

Adding Water

Put things like rocks, the heater, internal filter, ornaments, and aquarium décor in before adding water. Cover the bottom of the aquarium with a newspaper or a plastic sheet to keep the water from disturbing the landscape. Pour the water on the newspaper. When the tank is full, remove the paper.


Now is the time to hook up the accessories. This includes air pump to power the undergravel filter, décor and air stones. Assemble and attach the outside filter. Put in a thermometer on the side that is on the opposite side of the angelfish tank as the heater. Add water supplements to encourage bacteria growth. Use a plastic or glass divider to keep evaporating water from getting into the light system in the hood.

Adding Angelfish and Tank Mates

After you have the fish tank set up, let it run for a few days. This allows time to check the water for pH and to see that everything is working properly. After about a week, add few other fish you’ve chosen for a community tank. Don’t populate the tank all at once, but introduce a few fish at a time. After the tank has been seasoned for about a month, add the primary fish the tank was set up for, the angelfish.

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