For your aquarium, the substrate is much more important than you may contemplate on. To let the aquatic creatures swim comfortably inside, it is utmost significant to add substrate. Essentially, the substrate is that layer at the base of the tank that presents a convenient environment for the creatures inside. For substrate, you can consider adding sand, rocks, soil or gravel. Putting substrate inside your aquarium is not tricky but it is vital to know its amount.
When considering adding gravel at the base of your aquarium, the first question that arises is how much gravel to use? Well, the answer to this question relies on several factors that are crucial to consider. If such factors are overlooked it may be quite difficult for the aquatic creatures to breed inside. Also, adding the appropriate amount of gravel in aquarium will let it look decorative and enticing. The below section will familiarize you on how much gravel to use for aquarium:
Why use substrate in a fish tank?
Using a sufficient amount of substrate in a fish tank is extremely important. The gravel that sits at the base of the tank plays a vital role in maintaining the overall health of the aquarium. Therefore, it’s not only about how deep it is, but that is obviously a factor, based on the precise needs you are attempting to establish.
Factors to consider before determining the amount of gravel
- The size of your aquarium tank is sensible to consider. The amount of gravel will depend on how small or big your aquarium is. Next, you need to inspect if the gravel size of your choice will best suit the tank.
- It is important to make sure the amount of gravel used should not congest the aquarium and spare some space for your fish and plants to enjoy inside.
- The types of plants and decoration inside your tank ultimately decide the amount of gravel. If there are huge sized plants and lots of decorations inside then you need to limit the amount of gravel to be added. On the other hand, if the plants are of small size and if decoration is minimum then you can consider adding more amount of gravel.
How much gravel do you need to put in your aquarium tank?
The traditional answer on the amount of gravel to be placed inside is approximately 1lbs of gravel per gallon. By adopting the traditional approach, you will get somewhere in the range of one inch or two of gravel. The reason behind this is it gives a decent baseline for establishing biological filtration while using an under gravel filter.
Determine the type of fish inside
The type of fish that you own in your tank will directly determine the type and amount of gravel to use inside. There are some fish that prefer finer gravel, whereas others thrive better with coarse gravel. Furthermore, there are some fish that prefer to forage on the base of the tank or burrow into it. The same will obviously be more difficult with a heavier type of gravel. For fulfilling the plants need for the substrate or to decorate the aquarium, whatever the needs are, adding substrate in a fish tank is inevitable.
Determine the plants and decoration inside
Once you have decided the type of fish that your aquarium will own, the next major consideration is the plants and decorations inside. It is essential to contemplate what will be in the tank with fish. The essential factors like aquarium plants, driftwood, rocks, and other decorations will assist to arouse a visually appealing look. Furthermore, they provoke stimulating environment and also ensure great security for the fish,
In case you plan to keep plants in trays, or they are devoid of the root systems, then the amount of gravel used is irrelevant. The reason is they will acquire most of their nutrients from the water; hence, they don’t require a strong base. However, those plants that possess root systems will require a finer type of gravel to flourish and remain stable within the aquarium.
The depth and compaction of gravel will rely on the size of the root systems. If there are small plants inside, you can consider adding the gravel layer less than 2 inches. However, for larger plants, you need to use 3 inches of gravel or soil topped with gravel.
The kind of decorations you presented in the tank will ultimately decide the amount of gravel you need. Moreover, you can even get gravel in an extensive range of styles that vary from naturalistic to neon. For such purposes, approximately an inch of gravel is recommended to add inside.
Consider to read:
- A Complete Review Of The Best Aquarium Substrates & Buyers Guide
- Which is the Best Aquarium Plant Fertilizer to Use? (Top 7 Reviews)
Calculation on the amount of gravel to add inside
As an alternative to traditional approach of calculating the amount of gravel to add inside, some people insist to try out the precise calculations. These calculations rely on the dimensions of the tank. Therefore, in order to get the precise answer on the amount of gravel to add, you need to first measure your tank’s dimensions accurately. Consequently, it will give you a good estimate of the amount of gravel to buy and add inside the tank. Follow the below steps for calculating the amount of gravel to use:
Step-1: First of all, multiply the length of the tank by the width of the tank. For example 25 inches (L) x 10 inches (W) = 250 inches
Step-2: Divide this answer by 10. For example 250 inches / 10 = 25
Step-3: Now convert your answer into kg (kilograms). For this conversion, you have to divide the answer by 2.2. For example 25 / 2.2 = 11.36 kg
So, the answer is 11.36 kg i.e. the amount of gravel you will require for your fish tank. It is essential to keep in mind that these are approximate calculations and you might need to use a tad thinner a deeper layer of gravel inside your fish aquarium.
After considering the above described factors, it becomes a straightforward process to precisely determine the amount of gravel you need to add. Whatever type and amount you choose, make sure you be creative with your gravel setup. The process of adding gravel to the aquarium tank can be fun-filled if the decorative aspects as simultaneously considered.