Supply list for a 55 gallon tank!

Cheyenne Marie Palmateer
  • #1
I will be purchasing a 55 gallon tank that comes with the top /lights, and filter(s) tomorrow. I will be purchasing a heater, thermometer, rocks, plants (alive and fake), gravel, etcetera in the next few days.
But when it comes to water care, I think I'm stuck. My anxiety is getting the best of me and I'm really scared of screwing this up.
Who wants to be awesome and send me a list of what I will need. Anything tank or water wise. I'm really nervous.
  • #2
API Freshwater Master Test Kit
you may also want the API GH/KH test kit
Seachem Prime
5 gallon bucket (used ONLY for the aquarium - never cleaned with soap or other cleaners)
some sort of siphon gravel cleaner for water changes

If you're doing a fish less nitrogen cycle: pure ammonia
If you're doing a fish in cycle: Tetra Safe Start+ or Seachem Stability

For what it's worth, larger tanks like a 55 gallon are much easier when it comes to maintaining water chemistry than the 10-20 gallon starter kits most beginners buy.

EDIT: you can still use tetra safe start+ or seachem stability with a fishless cycle as well to speed the process. I was a little unclear there. It's optional for fishless, but mandatory for fish in. You can also use some others (many recommend Dr. Tim's One and Only), but those are the two that I have used.
  • #3
No need to be! Just take it slow! Here's a list. I may have missed a few things. It's not as hard as people make it out to be if you do it right!
Sand or Gravel (Sand is easier to clean)
Thermometer (Imo digital is best)
Plants, rocks, and other decor
Water Conditioner
Bacteria Starter
Fish food
Treats (Bloodworms, Brine shrimp, etc.)
Liquid Test Kit (API Master Test Kit is considered to be the best)
Fish Nets
Gravel Vacuum (Look into Aqueon or Python water changers)
Bucket (5g or so)
Spare thermometer to help with acclimation (Optional)
Air Stone (s)
Air pump (s) (having a spare air pump can help!)

This is assuming you aren't doing live plants. If I forgot anything I'll add it. I was worried when I started too but now I have an almost fully stocked 75 gallon with healthy and happy fish! The biggest lesson I learned it to research everything and go slow. This hobby requires a ton of patience!
  • #4
Something that you may not use every day but will be glad you have on hand when the power goes out - a battery powered air pump!!
Cheyenne Marie Palmateer
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
Great ideas! Thank you so much guys. ❤️
  • #6
No problem! Let us know if you need anything else!
  • #7
congrats on your new tank !!! the main thing you need on your list is patience , patience and more patience take it from another newbie like myself who is very impatient lol research about the nitrogen cycle and learn as much about it as you can and know your in good hands here this forum is a great wealth of info and several knowledgeable members ready to help , If you are like me there will seem to be a overload of information to learn all at once and can seem daunting at times but in reality allot of it is very simple just take you time and don't rush all will be fine and your anxiety will be reduced congrats on your new adventure and goodluck ...
Cheyenne Marie Palmateer
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
I do have a question! I was looking up the fishless cycle, but I read different things once again. I researched that If I'm getting this tank from someone that has already used it and done the cycles and what-not, it won't take as long to get the water to the appropriate pH and such. Is this true?
  • #9
Previous ownship of the tank would have no impact on pH. The pH is what ever the pH of your water is. But really, pH is of little importance in most cases, but seems to be what most new fish keepers fret the most over.

Note that water doesn't cycle, it is really the filter that cycles by developing a colony of two different bacteria's. One bacteria consumes the ammonia in the water column and excretes nitrites. The second bacteria then consumes those excreted nitrites in the water column and excretes nitrates. Ammonia and nitrites are actually the food source for those respective bacteria

If you get a tank that was previously cycled, and prevent the filter media from drying out (which will kill th bacteria) and also get it set back up and stocked quickly enough that the bacteria doesn't starve off from a lack of ammonia, you could have an instant cycle.
Cheyenne Marie Palmateer
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
I realized that afterwards. Was really early when I said that and on no sleep.

But question! More of an opinion, I suppose. How do you feel about the Tetra SafeSmart Plus?
  • #11
I love it! I used to to cycle my tank and it worked great. However, I did lose a fish since I did fish-in cycling but TSS+ can work with fish less cycling and imo fish less is the best way to go. I regret doing fish-in.
  • #12
I realized that afterwards. Was really early when I said that and on no sleep.

But question! More of an opinion, I suppose. How do you feel about the Tetra SafeSmart Plus?

I love SafeStart+. I have used it several times and never lost a fish.

Now do I have to give you a lecture on the importance of getting enough sleep?
Cheyenne Marie Palmateer
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Thank you! And. No, Mom. Hahaha.

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