#225: Petco’s Aqueon vs Tetra Glass Aquariums – Tank Tip

Letter to Petco Regarding Aquarium Brands — 2/11/2014

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Bring Back Aqueon All-Glass Aquariums!

Dear Petco,
I’m writing to express my discontent with your recent decision to switch from selling Aqueon “All-Glass” brand glass aquariums to the lower quality Tetra brand glass aquariums.

You may not know this, but the aquarium community is extremely tight knit, highly capable of after-market DIY modifications to tanks, and completely reliant on local stores running aquarium sales to keep the cost of buying aquariums low enough to own multiple tanks. And as you know, the more tanks we own, the more dry goods you sell, which is where you make your money.

I recently learned that you have completely discontinued selling Aqueon brand glass aquariums in my area. Aqueon “All-Glass” in my opinion is the most respected and highest quality glass tank available. It’s the only brand of glass aquarium that I will trust in my fish room, and the only time I will buy new tanks is during your famous $1 per gallon sale on Aqueon brand aquariums.

Tetra glass aquariums may be lighter and cheaper to offer in store, but I absolutely refuse to accept it as a replacement for Aqueon tanks. I will never buy a Tetra brand glass aquarium from your store due to the severe lack of quality control in the entire product line. Tetra’s glass panels don’t line up flush, the silicone seals are messy, and the introduction of tempered glass means I can’t drill the tank. If I can’t drill a tank, I won’t buy it, ever.

Tetra glass aquariums may save you a few dollars on shipping, and it may save your average consumer a dollar or two when buying their first aquarium, but for a long time, experienced aquarist like myself, Tetra glass aquariums are completely incompatible with my needs.

Please bring Aqueon brand glass aquariums back into your stores, please make them available for custom/bulk order, and please respect the most experienced and most highly invested segment of your aquatics consumer-base. Please also bring Aqueon tanks back into your $1 per gallon sale, otherwise I will be forced to shop elsewhere.

I have shared this letter with the rest of the aquarium community and have encouraged them to spread the word. I sincerely hope you listen.

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mangisda says:

I have a row of 5 perfectly aligned 10 gallon aqueon tanks. I didnt care about the brand then coz I got it from 1 source, Petco. Then I decided to add 2 more when I got home I was horrified to see that they had thinner trim, shorter by .5 cm. Now my OCD is killing me.

Earl Harman says:

I agree. I have had nothing but Aqueon, had one Tetra, very disappointing.

Hornet Oliver says:

$ for $ … Aqueon is by far the best.

Bryan Pena says:

Thank God Petco in my area has the dollar per gallon sale and aqueon tanks finally

TattooCraze InkStudio says:

Every petco I’ve ever been in has fish with ick. Why would anyone shop there. Go to a real fish store and your issues will go away.

Jason Plunkett says:

PaulMartin my experience with Aquariums is Marineland is a step up in build quality over Aqueon. Both are good tanks, but I will always go Marineland over Aqueon any day if they are on sale. What I truly miss is the old Oceanic made large tanks. They were made and built better than any brand ever made IMO:P

Dert McGert says:

they still sell them at petsmart

Noah C says:

totally agree with you, I recently purchased a 40 gallon for a sump at the $1 per gallon sale. Once a got it home I was inspecting the quality of the silicone and of the tank and I came to realize that one whole pain of glass was not even have a bead of silicon on the inside of the tank! Absolutely horrible quality control !

clydezboy says:

Aqueon tanks are the best!!!  Thanks for posting.

hogballs32 says:

Just bought (2) 55 and (6) 20 gallon for my fish room.
My other wall is gonna get 40 gallon breeders.
I love Aqueon

Laura Lawver says:

Thanks for the info! 🙂

Mike Dijital says:

Petsmart carries Aqueon.. thats where I got mine

Bryan Pena says:

I prefer aqueon over tetra mainly in customer service so today I decided to drill my 20 gallon long from Petco tetra branded and I called tetra asking them which glass panel was tempered and was told only the bottom was (along with the void of warranty) so I went and drilled my aquarium only for it to shatter (it was tempered) seems that the sides are only regular glass ( helpful tip for anyone) because when I cracked the glass I saw no point in fixing it when I only paid $20 and was gonna get charged $14 for a new glass panel as well to remove the frame it broke and a new frame goes for $15 so I broke the aquarium down and dropped a hammer on the side in the process on the tank and it broke to larger pieces rather than shattering like tempered glass – my opinion stay away from all tetra products after the mess I called them (tetra) to inform them that they had given me false info and they didn’t apologize or anything ( rather they just told me ” we can’t do anything, it’s your fault, goodbye”) I know it was my fault but Damn if I would have been better informed I would drilled the non-tempered panels and my 10 gallon would have been upgraded I’m never touching a tetra product ever -(when I mean side I don’t mean front and back I mean the smaller side glass) now I’m scared of drilling my 40 breeder (Tertra brand as well with bad customer service)the 40 is for reef the 20 long was supposed to be a planted freshwater to upgrade

Paul Martin says:

What about a Marineland aquariums?

YoungAtlas says:

tetra works for me

foxconn042 says:

oceanic are beast tanks but i want to ask i have a 225gallon fish tank and the bottom glass is busted if i put a half inch thick peace of plexi glass over it and do the same for under the tank silicone it up really good would it hold or would it just blow out again

Laura Gron says:

At the Chicago Aquarium Expo last November, I was told by the Aqueon rep the reason that Petco no longer sells Aqueon tanks is because of the $1 a gallon sale.  The $1 a gal sale makes it impossible for Aqueon’s smaller, independent clients to compete with the Petco price.  Independent LFS cannot offer Aqueon has a strong loyalty to it’s small business clients and won’t put them at a disadvantage.  Sounds good to me. I have 2 of the $1 a gal Tetra tanks (purchased before I knew the reason that Aqueon was no more) and was a Petco customer only for the tank sale. The difference in quality between Aqueon & Tetra tanks is dramatic. My local Petco told me they were having “nothing but trouble” with the quality of Aqueon tanks.  Anyone who owns one knows that’s not true. For me, it’s Aqueon only from now on.

yuk747 says:

 You can still get Aqueon tanks elsewhere but just not for a dollar a gallon anymore at Petco. That was just a sale gimmick to pull in customers and to continue their one dollar sale with a lesser quality so now you are basically getting what you pay for at a buck a gallon. You have to remember they are a retail chain pet store and are in the business to make money  & they have to pay for merchandise to resale so you best believe they are going to try and make some kind of profit one way or the other with a sale like that. All-Glass and Marineland are very good quality tanks as well and i had my 125 gallon All-Glass for 16 years now (non stop usage) with no leakage issues & i moved 3 times resetting that thing and it’s still going strong.

dvp458 says:

my locall are petco is selling aqueon and marineland and tetra tanks and by the way the tetra and marineland tanks are both made by perfecto

Martin Alberto Gamino says:

I just purchased last January 2 tanks, 1. 40G long, and 2.  55G, luckily both of them were Aqueon, I guess I got lucky because I did not know this change was going to happen, and yes only on their a dollar per gallon sale is the only time to buy tanks from that store chain.
thanks for the info though.

Burt McAster says:

This is ridiculous. Do you know the lawsuits that Tetra would have if hey were selling tanks that did not have the correct glass thickness, or if the panels did not line up? Glass thickness is easy to figure out. And if they were not level when constructed… Whatever. Get over it. You are brand loyal. Obviously. I have no problem with that. I will only buy Eheim filters. But to say that Tetra tanks will leak is crazy. And just to be clear, I do not own any Tetra tanks. I just think people should think about what they are saying before they say it.

Dallin Smith says:

They are back now

Weenie Hut Jr's says:

pretty much everything Tetra makes is garbage however their pond pumps and whisper air pumps are decent

audioman628 says:

I’ve been in the hobby for over 30 years and when I compare tetra tanks to aqueon tanks the aqueon is much much better built. The aqueon’s fit and finish is much better also. The glass on the tetra tanks looks thinner and flimsy in comparison. I’ve had All Glass/Aqueon tanks since the late 70’s and never had any problems with them. Personally l wouldn’t buy a Tetra tank, even if tetra gave me a tank for free I wouldn’t accept it. Sorry tetra you suck in comparison. Petco made a big mistake on this decision.

cooltecniqs says:

I was just in Petco yesterday and they had Aqueon & Tetra aquariums…

Thomas Hynes says:

Box stores get to decide….its a shame quite honestly. Aqeuon aquariums good aquariums. My local petco’s have also ceased to sell Fluval Products, they have in turn have their own brand imaginarium…which for some things is okay…..although I am impressed so far with the air pumps….quieter then the wisper pumps I use to sell in the 80’s…

I avoid Petco and Petsmart because they don’t carry what I need or desire or want….I have to frequent the Mom and Pop stores, of which I have 2 and they have great stuff…

squigga says:

are all aqueon aquariums all glass?

Annie Maul says:

Petco is selling aqueon aquariums now

Smillyface BlueDiamondRhombeus says:

I see you use foam under your tanks. Does it matter what kind of foam one uses under there tank? I have some 1/2 inch blue board foam I’m wondering if thats ok to use on a 75 gallon tank?

bman2013 says:

I bought an Aqueon glass 55g tank at Petco about 2-3 months ago, so some of their stores still carry them.

Zamora Blake says:

I know this is like over a year old but I wanted to say I also love Aqueon as a brand and totally agree with everything you said. 🙂

johnny G says:

i cannot get any equipment that will hang on an aqueon because the top frame is too wide. ANY SUGGESTIONS OR DIRECTION WOULD BE APPRECIATED.

squigga says:

just bought my 29 gallon aqueon at petco… they had a whole bunch of them out. they’re not the kit ones but the ones that are just the aquarium. they had 15-55g . maybe that was only some Petcos??

Gigi says:

does aqueon’s glass reflect? I currently have top fin and my Betta can see his reflection in the glass 🙁 Trying to get a new one for him asap.

Charles Robinson says:

Havent had any problems with my tetra tank same company that makes marineland tanks

Zombie Reaper says:

I just purchased a Aqueon 29 gallon kit, from Pet Sense today. If you have any of these stores in your area, you need to check them out. They sell mainly dog and cat food, and other pet supplies, but they also had several different size kits from Aqeon. I think they are owned by Tractor Supply.

Nate Kenny says:

Is it pronounced “ae-queon”? At petco the recorded sales promotion voice on the speakers says “ah-queon”

mobiussquadron says:

Almost 2 years after this was posted (December 2015) I got a 40 breeder aqueon on a dollar per gallon sale at petco.

Jess Bo says:

Literally just bought a 75-gallon Aqueon Tank from PetCo today Friday November 17,2017 and brought it home and found the edge corner of the glass is chipped with slivers of glass coming off. I’m like wtf!!! Is this cheap crap! So I disagree on petco not selling Aqueon 75 g tanks and that Aqueon is good quality. The tank does have thick glass however I do have to agree on that. Quality comparison to the tetra tanks that’s debatable. Don’t think you put a 75g Aqueon beside a 75g tetra tank. It’s the same thickness. Bigger tanks need thicker tanks, smaller Walmart tetra tanks need thinner glass.

GetInMyBelly says:

does anyone know where to get a glass canopy for a 40b? I heard the ones they sell don’t fit, leaving a couple inches

kayangthaoo says:

Idk, but My petco, and the petcos around here still have Aqueon. A lot of the Aqueon tanks glass is not lined up properly too. I think you just got to carefully inspect the tanks before buying it.

Jeff says:

I just bought one at Petco today

Timbo Slice says:

I agree. Never owned a TETRA aquarium and NEVER would. I’ve owned always All Glass (Aqueon) and Marineland and Fluval.

I plan on doing the dollar a gallon on the final Aqueons if they have any (I think they do on the 40b’s still where I live).

I actually just purchased a 45 gallon aqueon ensemble set which included a back stand and hood, on sale for $149.99 so I couldn’t resist. I’ve got it up and running as a reef now, and i’m going to put a 29 gallon sump under it in the coming months.

I actually purchased the aqueon at Petsmart and it looks like Petsmart is the one now to start offering the better deals on the ALL GLASS aquarium company (I’m 27 years old, so my 75 gallon, 10 gallons, 20 gallons, and 29 gallon were always from the ALL GLASS AQUARIUM COMPANY). In fact I didn’t recognize the Aqueon name and only bought it because it said all glass aquarium company and also had perfect reviews online.

Silas Aqui says:

I purchased a aqueon 20L from petco 2 months ago and you mentioned how well they build their tanks, well my tank on both sides in the front corners are way off from being flush. Must have been a rush order. Lol!

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