When Does Weight Become An Issue?

Discussion in 'More Freshwater Aquarium Topics' started by Schmidthead, Apr 22, 2018.

  1. Schmidthead

    SchmidtheadValued MemberMember

    At what size tank does weight become a structural issue? Obviously you can put a 5 gallon anywhere but probably couldn't put a 500 gallon wherever you wanted. At what tank size do you have to start considering placement in a structural sense? 50 gallons? 100 gallons? 200 gallons?
  2. jaymethy

    jaymethyValued MemberMember

    Each gallon of water weights about 10 pounds. So for example, my 10 gallon tank weighs about 100 pounds (probably plus a little bit because of the gravel). I think it really depends on what you are putting it on. My tank is on a dresser that I used to sit on, so I knew it could handle the weight.

    For anything bigger than 30 or so gallons, I personally would buy a stand designed for aquariums. But once you are reaching anything that weighs hundreds of pounds, you probably also need to start considering the structural support of your floor.
  3. OP

    SchmidtheadValued MemberMember

    I should have clarified, from a structural sense, I did mean the floor. I just feel like if you put a 500 gallon tank in the middle of a third floor apartment, the floor might start to fail. So I was just kinda curious roughly when this started to happen.
  4. aussieJJDude

    aussieJJDudeWell Known MemberMember

    IMO, depends on the building and material used to construct the building. Anything over 75g, I would be wary and check things out. Anything below a 55g should be fine IMO.
  5. CanadianFishFan

    CanadianFishFanWell Known MemberMember

    any tank can cause issues. (well not like 5 gallons and below) If the table is not sturdy enough a 5 gallon could break it. If you can sit and move on your table your good to go. But dont have tanks over hanging anything!!
  6. Fanatic

    FanaticFishlore VIPMember

    Just a heads up, any tanks that hang over at the edges or side will eventually fail, causing huge problems that can be avoided by following proper procedures.
  7. Brannor

    BrannorValued MemberMember

    I'm interested in this too from a way-in-the-future aspect of building a fitted tank with all the plumbing built. Problem is, the size I'd consider is 800G... and that'd be, with equipment, glass, etc. anywhere from 3.5T (metric) to 4T over 3 square meters... and we've got what's called a "waffle slab"... so I'd have to go to engineers to confirm if the location we'd put it is ok, or if it'd need special load bearing struts added in some way...probably have to built the holding frame on top of a steel plate that spread the load...

    But yeah, at what point does the weight become too much for a residential house.

  8. david1978

    david1978Fishlore LegendMember

    So many factors would determine what you can have. A tank close tova load bearing wall perpendicular to the floor joice you could have a much bigger tank than in the middle of a long span. I feel once you go over 30 gallons you have to start taking these things into consideration.
  9. Ulu

    UluWell Known MemberMember

    Water is 64 pounds per cubic foot.

    A 1 foot deep tank is going to put about 64 pounds per square foot on a floor. That's not allowing for glass, gravel and sand. And that's assuming that you spread the load out uniformly.

    I have 4 tanks that are about 2 feet deep. Including gravel, sand & glass, I'm probably putting 150 lb per square foot on my floor.

    But I live in a one-story Bungalow with a concrete slab floor. I could get away with a lot more.

    Anyhow, total gallonage is not the only factor of importance by a long shot.

    What's important is how deep the tank is, because that determines how closely the weight is concentrated in one spot.

    You could probably cover your entire floor with a 1 foot deep tank without a structural failure.

    A really deep tank in the middle of the floor can cause a collapse.