Having a cover or lid for your aquarium is an essential part of your tank setup. Not only does it help keep out other animals and curious objects, but it also helps to reduce evaporation. This reduces the amount of water you need to top off the tank. Likewise, it keeps out contaminants like dust and cat hair from falling into the water.
You can make a cover for your aquarium with very little cost and effort. All you need is some clear netting and a do-it-yourself screen frame kit from your local home improvement store.
1. Clear Netting – For reef tanks, this is the best option for keeping fish in while still allowing a lot of light in. It is also more inexpensive than glass or acrylic, and it is easier to move around when servicing your tank.
2. Polycarbonate Sheet – This is a very strong and sturdy material that you can use to make an aquarium lid. This is an easy project that most people can do, but you may need some extra tools to make the cuts necessary for your specific aquarium.
3. Acrylic – This is a water-resistant paint that can be used on aquariums. Many aquarists use it to make backgrounds on their tank.
4. Silicone Sealant – This is a very water-resistant, clear adhesive that can be used for assembling ornaments and pieces in your aquarium. This is a much stronger and more flexible option than cyanoacrylate glue, but it can be difficult to work with, so it’s important to read the directions.
5. Wood – You can use wood to create an aquarium cover, but be sure to choose something that is natural and organic. You want to avoid using anything that might have come into contact with harmful chemicals.
6. Plastic Lid – A plastic lid is often made of plexiglass, but it’s not as transparent as glass. It’s also not as long-lasting, so it will need to be replaced more often than a glass lid.
7. Screen – A screen can be easily made at home, and it is much safer to move around when servicing your aquarium. It allows more gas exchange and lets in a lot of light than a glass or plexiglass cover, and it’s easier to clean than a plastic lid.
8. Glass – A glass lid is more expensive than a plastic or plexiglass lid, but it provides a better barrier between the fish and the water. It is also more durable than a plastic or plexiglass cover, and it can be more easily cleaned.
9. Integrated Hoods – If your aquarium includes a lighting fixture, it will most likely be included in the hood with the tank. These hoods usually consist of two glass panes that are joined in the middle by a hinge. They are often cheaper than a separate hood and light unit.
A hood can also be designed with a rimless glass cover for a rimless aquarium, which is easier to install. This is a great option for hobbyists who don’t want to spend a lot of money on a custom-built cover.