How to Move Aquarium Fish to a New House

How to Move Aquarium Fish to a New House

How to Move Aquarium Fish to a New House

Whether you’re moving across town or across the country, if you have an aquarium, you need to know how to safely move your fish.

This guide can help.

How to Move Aquarium Fish to a New House

When you move:

  • Try to keep at least 80 percent of the water from the tank
  • Use 5-gallon buckets to move the fish
  • Preserve plants in bags with water
  • Take decorations out of the tank
  • Seal your filter media in a container (if it’s a short move)
  • Transport an empty tank

Water and Fish

Spread your fish between 5-gallon buckets that contain the tank’s original water, which is already just right for your fish.


Keep the good bacteria on your plants alive by placing them in bags with water from the fish tank.

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Take all the decorations out of the tank before you move – they can crack the tank and cause you to have to start fresh when you arrive at your location.

Filter Media

If you’re making a short move, take out your filter and place it in a sealed plastic container. Don’t clean it! If the move is long-distance, clean it or throw it out and start over when you arrive.


Never transport your tank with anything in it. If you leave décor, rocks or even water in it, you’re increasing the risk of cracks and future leaks.

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