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Old 05-19-2006, 01:41 PM   #1
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Electrifying!

So my husband reached into our tank the other day and had a sensitive spot on his finger from a small scratch, when he did he felt a small shock. He got out his thingamijig that measures electrial current and found that there were about 20 millivoltz (if i remember what he said correctly) running through our aquarium water. By process of elimination, he found that it was the pump that is attached to our uv sterilizer. We have of course unplugged it and are just waiting for that old green cloud to reappear.

Has anyone else ever experienced anything like this before?
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Old 05-19-2006, 01:45 PM   #2
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Yes, you need a titanium grounding probe and a GFI wall plug. Saltwater is highly conductive.
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Old 05-19-2006, 02:14 PM   #3
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I pologize for butting in. Where is the best place to get the grounding equipment mentioned?
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Old 05-19-2006, 02:46 PM   #4
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You can buy one anywhere and install it anywhere, main tank, sump/fuge. It doesn't matter. The probes cost less than $10 and protect your animals and not necessarily YOU. If a pump, heater or some other submereged electrical device begins to leak current, the probe will safely bleed that current to an earth ground through the wiring in your home. It MUST be titanium. Also, GFI's recepticles are about $10 or $15 and should be considered a MUST HAVE for any saltwater aquarist.

PM me if you want detailed information on these subjects. I'll be more than happy to help save your life. 8)
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Old 05-19-2006, 02:49 PM   #5
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I got my 15Ampre plugs at Home Depot for around $12, each. They look like the plugs, probablt in your kitchen and/or bathroom, with the test button on it.

Tex, where do you get this probe? How do you ground it? To the plug? Please inform us.

Thanks
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Old 05-19-2006, 03:00 PM   #6
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LFS should have the Ground Probe. It should come with directions, but usually u just have to plug the end into a grounded outlet or put the metal peice against the screw in the middle of the outlet.
My uncle is an electrician for about 25 years now and i asked him about a GFI outlet for my tank and he told me that it probably wasnt a good idea because they tend to trip too easily and if this happened when you arent around for a period of time it could be the end of all ur fish.
I think having a ground probe is enough for stray voltage.
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Old 05-19-2006, 03:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
My uncle is an electrician for about 25 years now and i asked him about a GFI outlet for my tank and he told me that it probably wasnt a good idea because they tend to trip too easily and if this happened when you arent around for a period of time it could be the end of all ur fish.
I think having a ground probe is enough for stray voltage.
That is not good advice. The little grounding probe is NOT enough to save your life!! It's job is to remove stray voltage from heaters, pumps etc... to protect your fish from electrical related injuries. It may be enough to protect you from small leaks, but the GFCI is a MUST-HAVE.

For those thinking that they trip too easy, causing a possible loss of life to your fish...Think about your own life too. Is it worth the trade off?

As far as them tripping easy, I have never had mine trip yet accidentally, but I do have my inline (unsubmerged) return pump connected to a standard outlet and everything else to the GFCI.

If it does trip, then the pump will continue circulation and still produce enough heat to maintain my tank.

Not using a GFCI, is just plain silly!!
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Old 05-19-2006, 03:15 PM   #8
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Is a GFCI power strip the ones with the power and ground LEDs?
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Old 05-19-2006, 03:35 PM   #9
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They are the ones with a test and reset button on them. All bathrooms have them installed in there. It's building code for them to be installed.

There are three options for us aquarists. 1.) Installing a GFCI "circuit breaker" within the breaker box, this will protect any outlets on that specific circuit.

2.) Installing a GFCI "outlet" which just replaces the standard outlet.

3.) Getting an 'stand-alone" GFCI, which plugs into a standard outlet and has it's own receptacle/s.
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Old 05-19-2006, 03:41 PM   #10
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Oh ok, yea have those in the bathroom but no where else. I guess ill pick a few up.

Do you think home depot would have the grounding probe as well?
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