Can a Glass Table Hold a Fish Tank?

Any flat surface that can support the size and weight of a fish tank is suitable for keeping one. Each fish keeper should consider the advantages and downsides for themselves because there are both.

Before setting a fish tank on a glass table, a lot of aspects need to be taken into consideration since if due caution is not kept, it could lead to complications.

Continue reading to find out if it will assist you in meeting your objectives.

Can a Glass Table Hold a Fish Tank

Standard vs Tempered Glass Tables

The first thing to make sure of is the type of glass that is used on the tabletop.

The methods used to process standard glass and tempered glass are different. That makes a big difference in the structure and sturdiness of these glasses.  

Standard glass is forced to cool very quickly during the annealing process which results in the downside of the glass being fragile. Standard glass shatters into large, erratic-shaped pieces.

Tempered glass is noted for its safety and is roughly four times stronger than normal glass. Additionally, the tempered glass breaks into very small, harmless fragments, unlike ordinary glass.

Tempered glass is made with the same method but with a thermal tempering process and the glass is cooled down slowly which makes it much stronger.

Tempered glass is therefore utilized in situations where human safety is a concern.

Choosing the Best Glass for Table Top

The rectangular fish tank is the most popular design. The majority of fish can move about in comfort in that shape.

If the glass table top is at least ½“ thick it doesn’t have to be tempered. The thickness of the standard glass alone makes it more durable but also adds more weight to it.

Options for thick tabletops made of annealed glass include:

  • ½“ thick: Standard thickness for tops of unsupported tables such as large dining tables or TV tables with solid surfaces.
  • ¾“ thick: The most secure and dependable choice for tiny coffee and dining tables

Options for thin, tempered tabletop glass include:

  • 1/8” thick: The ideal kind of glass for thin, lightweight table tops.
  • 3/16” thick: Standard as a glass insert for side and patio tables.
  • ¼“ thick: Perfect for use as a protective table cover for kitchen and dining tables.

For instance, a filled 12-gallon fish tank would have just a tad over 100 lbs of water in it. Factoring in the weight of the aquarium itself and the additional weight of pebbles it should not go over 200 lbs.

An 18” X 54”, ½“ thick annealed glass will be able to hold around 100 lbs without cracking if placed 4 feet apart. A tempered glass with similar thickness will be able to hold up to 400 lbs.

The safest choice is a tempered glass top because it is less prone to crack and results in mishaps. Ideal for a variety of tables and settings, this transparent covering of glass is thin but strong. Protect the glass by using placemats and coasters.

How Much Weight Can a Glass Table Hold?

Despite being more durable than conventional glass, tempered glass still has its limitations. Establishing and then following the weight restrictions of the glass table or shelf will help it last as long as possible.

A pressure of 10,000 PSI is commonly applied to the surface of regular fully tempered glass and can withstand up to 24,000 PSI.

With vertical support columns in the middle and edge/corner support bars, the size of the tempered glass slab can determine its safe weight capability, which can range from 400 lbs down to 30 lbs.

The amount of weight that any piece of tempered glass can support relies on several variables, including its width, height, thickness, and the separation between its supporting brackets

Glass Weight Load Calculatoris a fantastic website to figure out how much weight a glass tabletop can hold.

Importance of a Large Coaster or Placemat under the Tank

Once it is fully assembled, the tanks become hefty. regardless of whether it holds 5 or 20 gallons. Since tempered glass is smooth and inherently leveled as a surface. The tanks will be properly placed.

But to keep the surface, which is glass from catching cracks, it is essential to use coasters or placemats in between the tank and the glass.

Tempered glass shatters into small chunks and scratches or pressure on a tiny surface area can be detrimental. Using a mat under the tank prevents the glass from such harm.

Is a Glass Table The Best Alternative to Put Fish Tanks on?

It isn’t the best choice and there are some risks associated; glass shattering or not being able to withstand the weight of the filled tank.

Wood and metal are the most widely used materials for fish tank stand since they can handle a lot of weight and are not as prone to breaking as glass tops.

The best decision would be to order a wooden or metal stand or build one. Not only it will be safer for the people and environment the tank is placed in, but also for the fish inside.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I put a fish tank on any table?

As a general rule, tanks under 20 gallons can be set up on a solid shelf or a strong desk with good protection. A specialized aquarium stand should be taken into consideration when setting up aquariums that are larger than that.

How much force is required to break a glass?

The normal tensile strength of glass is 7 megapascals (1,000 psi). Its potential maximum strength, however, is orders of magnitude higher: 17 gigapascals (2,500,000 psi). Due to silicon dioxide’s strong Si-O chemical bonds, this high value is possible.

Where should a fish tank not be placed?

Generally, the best area to place the fish tank is the southeast sector of your home. A fish tank should never be placed in a bedroom, the kitchen, or the center of the house.

What should you not put on a glass table?

Never set anything on a glass table that could scratch it, such as toys, books, or anything else with pointed edges or a rough, textured foundation. Plates, bowls, and cutlery should all be placed on placemats since they might cause scratches.

Should a fish tank be placed on the floor?

55-gallon aquariums may be put in practically any place without much concern. If the floor framework is free from serious flaws and users position these tanks in a good structural location, many tanks bigger than 55 gallons but no more than 125 gallons will be safe.


If all of the aforementioned requirements such as proper length, width, and thickness of glass are met and it is supported evenly on all four corners, a glass table will be able to support a fish tank.

But to assure durability and eliminate frequent concerns about the stand breaking, it is always advisable to get wooden or metal stands.

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Arif H Fahim

Welcome to PetFishTank! My name is Arif. I make an effort to publish educational articles using my many years of expertise as a fish owner.

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