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Buying Aquarium Equipment Online
So youíve decided to keep fish, now comes the tricky part. Aquariums take a lot of upkeep. First, the tank itself, glass, Plexiglas, or plastic? Then thereís filtration, aeration, lighting, heating, plumbing, sealants, cleaning, tank ornaments, coral, invertebrates, fish-food, the toxicity question, never mind the fish. Awesome choices! And cost!
Research online will pay dividends. Use a standard search engine, or better still, WebFerret, which is cross-platform, and independent. Do your homework yourself, and visit the dedicated fish-hobbyist forums, chat-rooms, and bulletin boards. That way you wonít have to learn the hard way, let others be the fall-guys. And visit the websites which give you advice, e-books, or show videos.
Recommendations, product reviews, books, dedicated DVDs, and customer feedback, all give you valuable clues. Youíre going to need all the help you can get if you want healthy, long-lived fish.
Price comparison is the first consideration. There will be hype, but feedback from customers, or fear of being blacklisted tends to keep them straight. Go for discounts, but make sure the products are not old stock. Guarantees are a must. You donít want to pay a fortune for the top of the range tank, or equipment only to find it damaged on delivery with no recourse to a refund. Ideally, the suppliers should also thoroughly test the equipment prior to sale. Also specials, coupons, mailing lists, all help to keep the costs down.
Buying your aquarium equipment online often makes much more sense than buying locally. Variety, quality, reliability, youíll find it all on the net. A bigger client-base and high turn-over often means the savings usually get passed on to you. One drawback, however, is after-sales service. Locally, you can visit the store where you purchased the equipment for service, but itís a different matter with the onliners. That having been said, however, some onliners have a dedicated professional team to offer advice, tips, and recommendations. Indeed, if thatís the case, itíll probably mean their products, and guarantees are better too.
Shipment costs are a major consideration. Bulk buying can sometimes make sense, but who wants 20 aquariums? Some suppliers offer a one-off shipping charge, irrespective of quantity. It may be worthwhile collaborating with other local fish hobbyists, or joining a fish-keeping club to keep costs down. The better onliners offer a variety of shippers, too, like Airborne Express, Federal Express, United Parcel Service, and the United States Postal Service.
So do the groundwork, be patient, and check everything you can first, that way youíll get the most benefit from your aquarium, and its inhabitants. Remember, fish are supposed to relieve stress, not cause it, but that will only happen if you spend time, and effort on your research first.
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