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mikeinlondon
14th September 2009, 21:27
Ok, got a real dilemma here ... was hoping someone could clarify things up for me :-)

I'm looking to purchase a 165 litre aquarium. If 1 litre of water is approximately equal to 1 kg (I think), the entire volume of water in the tank would weigh 165 kg. I guess, then, that the total weight of the aquarium could be 180 kg.

Ok, but, here's the thing ....

I live in the 1st floor of a flat.

Now ... I've been told by the developers of the property that the imposed load design is 1.5 KN/M2 evenly distributed ... I think that equates to 150 kg/m2 ... I believe is the normal floor load of flats/homes in the UK.

This tells me that the aquarium is too heavy for the floor :-(

Does this make sense? It doesn't to me ... if the imposed load design is 150 kg/m2, three people sitting on a sofa would exceed this weight, a filled bath tub would exceed this weight ... I'm confused.

So, what I'm asking in a round about way ... has one got an aquarium of similar size or greater in a first/second floor of a building? If so, have you had any structural issues?

Many thanks,
Mike

shjo558
14th September 2009, 21:57
Hi,

I can't answer your question but if you have a look at the top of this part of the forum there is an excellent 'sticky' thread that should help.

:)

jaywickrob
14th September 2009, 22:09
Hi Mike,

Providing the floor of your flat is structurally sound there should be no problems.
I'm an average build 6 footer & I weigh about 90 kgs, so by your reckoning 2 guys stood on that part of the floor would cause issues.
To put it in perspective, an average bath holds 700Ltrs of water & most bathroom floors are not reinforced in any way.

Jay

east916
14th September 2009, 22:22
Yep, i agree with jay, a tank that size won't cause any problems IMO or the floor wouldn't be safe enough to walk on.

Kind Regards
Anthony

matsp
14th September 2009, 22:45
I believe what the 1.5KN/m2 indicates is that if you have a room that is 3 x 4 meter, it should hold (evenly distributed) 12 * 150 kg = 1800 kg. The "evenly distributed" means that you can't put a 1800kg weight on one particular square meter and expect the floor to hold, but as long as it's spread over a large portion of the floor, it should be fine.

And I'd seriously doubt that if you and two of your friends [which unless you are all "size zero" would be 200 kg, give or take a bit] stood close together and next to the wall, that the floor would bow much.

I do not see how a 160-200 liter tank would be a problem unless there is something seriously wrong with the floor-joists.

Remember, the floor-boards will spread the load over a larger area, and the strongest part of the floor is next to any wall.

--
Mats

blackghost
14th September 2009, 23:30
an average bath holds 700Ltrs of water
Jay

Surely not? A 6x2x2 only holds about 600litres full to the brim.
But I used to have a 6'x2'x18"wide across the joists of a spare upstairs bedroom in a terraced house (against the wall, of course). This was about 400kg of water, plus atank that takes 4 people to carry.

stevecockram
15th September 2009, 08:00
I would assume that the base area of the tank is greater than 1m2 so if floor is rated at 150kg/m2 than should comfortably take the weight of your tank spread over 2m2.

matsp
15th September 2009, 08:09
Well, the base of a 165 liter tank is not greater than 1m2. However, because the load is further distributed by floorboards, the load is by the wall (I presume) and you are "lighter than expected" in other areas, it should be fine. You may think that a 165 liter tank is big, but I have a 400 liter tank, on a a floor that has joists that are around 90 years old. I'm not recommending that, but it's still holding. In my opinion, those joists should be replaced - I will do that next time we rip the floor up, but hopefully that is a fair while yet.

The key here is that, yes, the floor is designed to take 150 kg/m2, but it will tolerate more than that in spots. If, as you say, you put a sofa with 3 people in it, you probably have 200 kg, perhaps more. That load is both spread out and concentrated, depending on how you look at it: The load is concentrated on something like 4 feet that the sofa stands on. But the load is also spread over some about 1.5 x 0.8 meter = 1.2m2.

Your tank is probably about a meter long and less than half a meter wide, so it's 180 kg or so over 0.5 m2.

All this said, I'm sure it will be no problem whatsoever, unless your floor is weakened by rot, wood-worm or some such - something you can't really tell until you try it out.

Also bear in mind that all engineering where peoples life is at risk will have some safety-factor - the floor in your house will tolerate more than 150 kg/m2 for sure - that is the "load that you design for", but if you want to hang a painting that weighs 10kg, do you choose a wire that breaks at 11kg or 20kg? The breaking strength of your floor is guaranteed to be much more than 150 kg/m2 - ESPECIALLY along the walls.

--
Mats

--
Mats

jaywickrob
15th September 2009, 11:29
Originally Posted by jaywickrob
an average bath holds 700Ltrs of water

Lol, oops, it's meant to say 500Ltrs, my keyboard has a mind of it's own sometimes, although, I guess a large bath may well hold 700Ltrs.

Jay

miaskate67
15th September 2009, 11:42
I have a 160 litre tank in a bedroom of my house, against a wall, and it's absolutely fine.

geologeek
15th September 2009, 15:28
Ok, got a real dilemma here ... was hoping someone could clarify things up for me :-)

I'm looking to purchase a 165 litre aquarium. If 1 litre of water is approximately equal to 1 kg (I think), the entire volume of water in the tank would weigh 165 kg. I guess, then, that the total weight of the aquarium could be 180 kg.

Ok, but, here's the thing ....

I live in the 1st floor of a flat.

Now ... I've been told by the developers of the property that the imposed load design is 1.5 KN/M2 evenly distributed ... I think that equates to 150 kg/m2 ... I believe is the normal floor load of flats/homes in the UK.

This tells me that the aquarium is too heavy for the floor :-(

Does this make sense? It doesn't to me ... if the imposed load design is 150 kg/m2, three people sitting on a sofa would exceed this weight, a filled bath tub would exceed this weight ... I'm confused.

So, what I'm asking in a round about way ... has one got an aquarium of similar size or greater in a first/second floor of a building? If so, have you had any structural issues?

Many thanks,
Mike

I have just confirmed this with our structural engineers and they have confirmed my initial thoughts that the 1.5kN/m2 imposed loads would be refering to live loading (i.e. people walking/running/jumping etc..) or if you filled you entire floor space up with fishtanks!

In your case you are dealing with a dead load and are not really goverened by the imposed loading to an extent and if all the factors of safety were removed you would be looking more like an allowance of 5kN/m2 for an imposed load!

Trust me your floors, especially if the tank will be located adjacent to a wall and loaded over at least 2 joists would hold that tank and then some :)

best wishes,

Levi.