well, thanks to our local power company being bought out by a huge conglomerate, the quality of service has decreased and the length and frequency of outages has increased
therefore, I went to walmart and purchased a 75Ah marine deep cycle battery.
last night our power went out at 9:30 pm... by 9:45 pm I assumed the power would not be coming back on for some time, so I implemented emergency power.
connecting my marine deep cycle to a 10 year old Radio Shack AC
inverter, I was able to run the filters on my 29 and 30 gallon tanks from 9:45 pm untill 10:30 am the next morning (approx 13 hours). I also occasionlly ran a radio and a small television to check on the news.
the inverter is only rated at 100 watts, so running heaters was out of the question - luckily tank temps only dropped into the mid 70's
seeing how well this system worked, I'll be on the lookout for a more powerfull inverter as well as additional batteries.
A generator would be more efficient and possibly cheaper, but when it's very cold and windy outside, having a door or window open for an extension cord is really out of the question....
the batteries produce no noise and no exhaust, and can be tucked away in my utility room nice and neat