Introduction: How to Secure Aquarium Mesh Lids With Magnets
This DIY project is for those who need to secure their mesh aquarium lids, but without having to always undo or look at those ugly locking or non-locking clips!
This isn't a DIY that saves a ton of money because those non-locking clips are only a few dollars but dont work very well and arent very pleasing to look at.
This project costed me just about $10, then again, everything in Hawaii is expensive so itll most likely be cheaper for anyone outside of Hawaii!
Step 1: IMPORTANT NOTES
This DIY is intended for small pets such as mice, birds, etc.
Bigger pets such as rats, hamsters, gerbils, chinchillas, and guinnea pigs may require locking clips or very very strong magnets.
They may get freaked out and push as hard as they can and may get out.
I came up with the idea because ive heard of mice escaping even with mesh lids. I do not house any other bigger pets in aquariums with mesh lids.
Step 2: Steel Mesh Lids
For steel mesh lids, all you will need are:
4 magnetic discs (i prefer the super magnetic discs) (any size that fits. I used 12mmx3mm)
Small bottle of super glue (really recommend the Loctite 10sec Multi Surface liquid. Will make this project very easy and very quick)
Sharp object/course sand paper (to scuff up the plastic aquarium trim for the super glue)
Scuffing the aquarium trim.
-If you're using a sharp object, cut a small area in the corners of the trim in zig-zag or X's until you have some plastic shavings coming from the cuts. Dont use too much pressure as you can hurt yourself, break the sharp object AND hurt yourself, or crack the aquarium...
-If you're using course sand paper, just scuff up the corners a bit with decent pressure. Again, not too much pressure or you'll shake the aquarium around and/or crack it.
Placing the magnets
-First, seperate the magnetic discs far enough to where they wont attract to each other. Then wipe them off with a clean towel/rag to wipe off any oils from your fingers as it may keep the super glue from bonding to it.
-Wipe off any dust from your scuffed areas on the aquarium trim.
-Place a small dab of super glue onto the scuffed areas. You only need a very small dab, enough to cover the bottom of the magnet.
-Quickly place and center the magnetic disc onto the glue and let it sit for a few seconds.
-Repeat for all 4 corners and you are done!
Scuffing the surfaces
-Using your course sand paper, scuff up the areas you want to place your magnetic strips on your aquarium trim.
-Using a clean rag/towel, wipe off the scuffs.
Placing the magnetic strips
-Put a few dabs or a thin line of super glue along your scuffed areas. You only need enough to cover the bottom of your magnets.
-Center and place your magnetic strips and let them sit for a few seconds.
-Repeat for all areas and you are done!
Step 3: Aluminum Mesh Lids
This step is for those who have Aluminum mesh lids. Im not sure if theyre sold in stores but i know you can easily build one. Because aluminum isnt magnetic, you will need:
8 magnetic discs OR 2 rolls of magnetic strips
Super glue (i prefer the 10sec Multi Surface liquid LocTite)
Course Sand Paper
Scuffing the aquarium trim
-Using your course sand paper, scuff up the corners of your aquarium trim. You can also scuff the under-side corners of your aluminum mesh for better glue bonding.
-wipe off any dust/particles with a clean rag/towel
Placing the magnetic discs
-first seperate your magnets far enough to where they wont attract to each other.
-place a very small dab of super glue onto the center of your scuffs. You only need enough to cover the bottom of the magnet.
-Wipe off your magnet and center it onto the aquarium trim corners and let it sit for a few seconds.
-Repeat for all 4 corners on the aquarium trim AND all 4 under-side corners of your aluminum mesh lid and you are done!
Scuffing the surfaces
-Scuff ONLY where you want to place your magnetic strips using the course sand paper on BOTH the aquarium trim and the under-side of your mesh lid.
-Wipe off your scuffs with a clean rag/towel
Placing the magnetic strips
-Put a few dabs or a thin line of super glue along your scuffs on BOTH aquarium trim and under-side of the mesh lid. You only need enough to cover the bottom of the magnet.
-Center and place your magnetic strips on the glue and let it sit for a few seconds.
-Repeat for all scuffed areas for both your aquarium trim AND mesh lid and you're done!
Step 4: Sources of Supplies
I purchased my aquarium and mesh lid for about $50 at PetSmart. $33 for my 20gal Long tank, and $19 for my mesh lid (probably cheaper to build your own with wood, steel, or aluminum)
I got my magnets, sand paper, and super glue all at my local City Mill. Any hardware store should have these in stock and if not, Walmart should. Magnets were about $9 for 6 discs, super glue was about $3, and the sand paper i already had but its only about $0.30 per sheet.