Red Arowana

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Frequently Asked Questions

Glass vs. Acrylic

Which products do you use to build your aquariums?
We build aquariums both out of glass or acrylic. We also use the most current and new glass and acrylic product, so that we can offer our customers the newest products on the market at all times. However, many people don't know what the difference is - except that the acrylic tank is usually much more expensive. Often times this may result in the impression that the acrylic tank is better, though frequently unaffordable. This is not necessarily true. Both glass and acrylic tanks have their benefits and their drawbacks.

Which product Scratches easier, Glass or Acrylic?
Glass is very difficult to scratch. Scratching glass usually requires a relatively hard material and a considerably amount of pressure. You can scratch glass if you take a piece of uncoated aquarium gravel or a rock and rub it against the glass, or if you should drop a large hard object such display rocks. We strongly recommend that you take your time when cleaning and setup your new or used aquarium. These are the times when aquariums or scratched or damaged the most.

Acrylic is highly scratchable. Often, despite the best efforts of manufacturers and shippers, the packing materials used to pack acrylic tanks will scratch the tank! The tank can be scratched by a person brushing it with their clothing, jewelry, purse, back pack, or bag when casually walking past it in the store, and the tank can very easily be scratched when people are moving, loading, or unloading it. The inhabitants of an acrylic aquarium can even scratch the tank themselves, should they have any sharp claws, teeth, or shells. We also recommend that you use acrylic safe algae scrubbers when cleaning your acrylic tank, because acrylic is so easily scratched. We recommend that you pay much attention to detail when cleaning or service these types of aquariums. Make sure you do not accidentally pick up any pieces of aquarium gravel in the scrub pad when you are using it, which can cause you to make deep scratches in interior of the aquarium. This can become eye sore and also can be very costly to fix. Acrylic can also be easier to repair when it is scratched but cost a lot to buff out. A typical acrylic polishing kit can be found online and at most aquarium store which can used to remove scratches on the outside of the tank, but recommend that you have professional aquarium company address this issue. Please note that these polishes should not be used on the inside of the aquarium, as they may leave a toxic residue that could harm your fish or livestock.

Which product weights more, Glass or Acrylic?
Glass is denser and therefore heavier than acrylic. A glass tank will often weigh 4-10 times as much as an acrylic tank of the same volume. When moving glass aquariums we recommend that you have all the correct tools and amount and help for any glass aquarium over 55 gallons. Glass aquariums can cause major physical damage to you are the person who is helping you.

Acrylic tanks are lighter than glass tanks. This means that if you have to move an acrylic tank for some reason, it will be much easier to do so once the water is all out of it than it will be for its glass counterpart. This also means that an acrylic tank will be less strain on the structure that is supporting it than a glass tank will. However, remember that the majority of the weight of a complete tank is the water and decorations, not the tank itself, so you will not save a lot of weight by using an acrylic tank rather than a glass one.

Which product weights more, Glass or Acrylic?
Glass is denser and therefore heavier than acrylic. A glass tank will often weigh 4-10 times as much as an acrylic tank of the same volume. When moving glass aquariums we recommend that you have all the correct tools and amount and help for any glass aquarium over 55 gallons. Glass aquariums can cause major physical damage to you are the person who is helping you.

Acrylic tanks are lighter than glass tanks. This means that if you have to move an acrylic tank for some reason, it will be much easier to do so once the water is all out of it than it will be for its glass counterpart. This also means that an acrylic tank will be less strain on the structure that is supporting it than a glass tank will. However, remember that the majority of the weight of a complete tank is the water and decorations, not the tank itself, so you will not save a lot of weight by using an acrylic tank rather than a glass one.

Which product is Clearer, Glass or Acrylic?
Glass maintains its clarity over time. The glass in a new tank will match that in an old tank, and if you have to replace a pane of glass in a used aquarium, the correction you will notice is that there are fewer scratches in the new glass. Also you can use products such as CLR to remove any calcium build on the surface of your aquarium. There also starphire glass which is a much clearer class than your standard clear/green glass that is used to build most aquariums.

Acrylic of the past would yellow with age, particularly if they are kept under a full spectrum light or are exposed to direct sunlight. This is a normal chemical reaction in the materials that the acrylic is made from. Though this is getting much better, this is still a possibility. Also, because the acrylic is so fragile, it is very likely that you will be viewing your fish through a haze of scratches that will only get worse over time, but acrylic on a whole is much clear than glass.

Which product cost more, Glass or Acrylic?
Glass is much cheaper than glass in most applications of aquarium building. There was a time that acrylic cost much more than glass and yes this is still is true, but you can get small acrylic aquariums for just a little more than glass. Acrylic starts to get very expensive when we get into the larger aquariums, for example, aquariums 90 gallons or more.