How to Move House With a Fish Tank

Transporting your fish during a home move can be extremely daunting.

However, by following this guide, there is no reason your fish cannot be moved safely and thrive in their new environment.

Gather The Supplies

Before you attempt to move the fish, you must ensure you have all the necessary tools.

You will need a net to catch the fish, a plastic bag to transport them, and rubber bands to keep the bags closed. You will also need containers to transport the other items from the fish tank, including plants and ornaments.

For saltwater tanks, you will need to transfer the same water to your new property. Therefore, you will need to invest in some watertight containers to ensure the fish are as comfortable as possible in their new home.

Prepare the Fish to be Moved

You should never, ever, move your fish while in their tank.

At first, it seems that keeping the fish in their tank for transportation would be the most straightforward option. However, it is impossible to move that amount of water and equipment safely for any distance.

Instead, you will need to transfer your fish into bags or plastic buckets. Be sure not to scrimp on the quality here. The most important thing is that your fish arrive at their destination safely.

To minimise the stress on the fish, use the water from the tank to fill up their transportation vessel. Using fresh water will cause the fish an immense amount of shock and can inflict long term damage.

If you opt for a plastic bag, ensure you leave a small gap at the top for air. This is the safest way to replicate the fish’s familiar environment.

Empty and Clean the Tank

Once you have removed the fish and the majority of the water, you should clean out the tank.

Give it a good scrub removing any scum that is difficult to deal with when the fish are in situ. Be sure to use non-toxic chemicals, and ensure the tank is thoroughly dry before it is placed in the removal van.

Use this opportunity to consider a fish tank upgrade. If you are contemplating investing in a new tank in the near future, moving home offers the ideal option. Your fish are out of their usual surroundings, and therefore, a new tank now will save them further stress later down the line.

Protect the Tank

As big and heavy as fish tanks are, they are also extremely delicate.

Therefore, moving them from one home to another presents a significant risk.

Wherever possible, dismantle the tank into the smallest pieces, which will reduce the chances of it being damaged during transit. Then simply wrap in bubble wrap as you would any other item of furniture.

Get on the Road

Most removal companies have a policy preventing them from moving any live animals, which includes fish. This means you will likely have to transport them in your vehicle, meeting the removal service at the other side.

Set Up and Reintroduce

Now for the fun part – it’s time to return your fish to their previous home, in your new home!

While it can be tempting to place the fish back in their tank as soon as possible, it’s best to get it fully set up and tested before doing so.

First, make sure there is no damage or cracks, which can be a disaster if discovered later in the process.

Once you are confident that the tank is in optimum condition, add the pebbles or sand and any other plants and ornaments. Then, fill it using the transferred water from your previous home. Ensure any extras such as a water pump or heater are correctly set up and leave to run for at least two hours.

This gives the tank plenty of time to settle and for you to identify any issues that have arisen.

Finally, it is time to reintroduce the fish. Use a net to carefully move them from their transportation vessel back into their tank.

Monitor Closely

Fish can be extremely fragile and are very sensitive to changes in their water. Therefore, you must keep a close eye on them over the coming days.

Revert to your regular feeding schedule as soon as possible, which will help them to acclimatise.

If you notice any dramatic changes in your fish or have serious concerns for their health, it is always best you contact an aquatics expert.

We hope this guide prepares you to move your fish safely. Now let us help you move!

Call us on 07377229896 or email to find out how we can help.