Aquaponic Gardening

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I am new to the aquaponics system and would like to set up one in my garage. What to use as a fish tank? Have anyone ever tried to use an inflatable backyard swimming pool as the fish tank? Any ideas whether it will work or not and why? Your input is highly appreciated.

Amy Lu

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i am using an 8' dia. intex type kiddie pool - the type with a blow up ring on top.. i've had fish in it for over 2 years now, no issues.. just be careful as some liners are treated with algaecides

For the fish tank, I highly recommend finding something that holds water :) As long as you're in those boundaries, you can make it happen. Avoid anything that would be toxic like copper. Commonly used options are stock tanks, ibc totes, 55 gallon drums, (inflatable swimming pools)....and so on and so forth. Ibc totes and 55 gallon drums are pretty common, and are nice if you're into recycling as well.

Mine are wired together wire shelves, with a 7 mm black plastic sheet as lining. No reason why it won't work indoors too.
I guess my last reply didn't send out correctly. Anyone used inflatable swimming pool as fish tank could tell me a little more about how you did plumbing? I assume I do not need to use the included filter pump, right? Many thanks!
Thank you so much for your reply. I probably will try the same one you mentioned, which can hold 600 gallons. How did you design your system? Did you have to use another pool as sum tank?


Keith Rowan said:

i am using an 8' dia. intex type kiddie pool - the type with a blow up ring on top.. i've had fish in it for over 2 years now, no issues.. just be careful as some liners are treated with algaecides

i use a half ibc tote for my sump tank.. i used one of the the existing holes for the pump (the higher one) but enlarged it slightly for a 1-1/2" drain.. i should have used 2" at least for the drain, because i had to add another 1-1/2" water bridge from the pool to the sump..when i build my filtration system (for higher stocking rates) i'll either be switching to a 3" drain, or building a new ft with a 3" drain

i pump from the sump tank into three 1/2 ibc growbeds, which drain back into the pool

re: the pump/filter that came with the pool - i don't use it, but saved it in case of emergency, and would not use the filter if i used that pump..

i've got some pics on here somewhere.. ahh, here they are;

http://community.theaquaponicsource.com/forum/topics/howdy-from-ohi...

Thank you so much Keith! The detailed plumbing info. and the pictures are really helpful. I admire you have such a successful system with so many different fishes and shrimps. Thanks again for your reply!


Keith Rowan said:

i use a half ibc tote for my sump tank.. i used one of the the existing holes for the pump (the higher one) but enlarged it slightly for a 1-1/2" drain.. i should have used 2" at least for the drain, because i had to add another 1-1/2" water bridge from the pool to the sump..when i build my filtration system (for higher stocking rates) i'll either be switching to a 3" drain, or building a new ft with a 3" drain

i pump from the sump tank into three 1/2 ibc growbeds, which drain back into the pool

re: the pump/filter that came with the pool - i don't use it, but saved it in case of emergency, and would not use the filter if i used that pump..

i've got some pics on here somewhere.. ahh, here they are;

http://community.theaquaponicsource.com/forum/topics/howdy-from-ohi...

Hi Keith, another questions about the pool. Have you ever tried to heat the water in the pool? If I put a heater in the pool directly, will it melt the pool? Thanks!


Keith Rowan said:

i use a half ibc tote for my sump tank.. i used one of the the existing holes for the pump (the higher one) but enlarged it slightly for a 1-1/2" drain.. i should have used 2" at least for the drain, because i had to add another 1-1/2" water bridge from the pool to the sump..when i build my filtration system (for higher stocking rates) i'll either be switching to a 3" drain, or building a new ft with a 3" drain

i pump from the sump tank into three 1/2 ibc growbeds, which drain back into the pool

re: the pump/filter that came with the pool - i don't use it, but saved it in case of emergency, and would not use the filter if i used that pump..

i've got some pics on here somewhere.. ahh, here they are;

http://community.theaquaponicsource.com/forum/topics/howdy-from-ohi...

when it was really cold, i suspended two fish tank heaters in the water, not touching the sides,  i wouldn't want them to touch the plastic.. i got concerned about them and instead use a small space heater that blows along the wall towards the back corner of the room where the tank is..

The heaters I use have a spacer that keeps it from touching the side. I just lay them aross the bottom of my sump tank (indoors). Good model. Relatively inexpensive and works great. My system is about 600 gallons, so I use two of the 300w ones.

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=23726

Thanks Alex, great info and I will definitely get it when I am ready. By the way, thanks for the invitation. I am so grateful for your friendship and all the help!




Alex Veidel said:

The heaters I use have a spacer that keeps it from touching the side. I just lay them aross the bottom of my sump tank (indoors). Good model. Relatively inexpensive and works great. My system is about 600 gallons, so I use two of the 300w ones.

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=23726

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