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Old 02-05-2013, 03:59 PM   #1
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Heater question

During a water change (~50%) the other day I started to hear a sizzle coming from my heater. I immediately unplugged my heater (I have 2 in the tank) Since that point i have not seen the heater turn on, I'm not sure if it broken because it could just be that my one heater has been enough. However generally during a water change I notice both heaters on because of the addition of cold water.

Is it possible to damage a heater during a water change. Do you unplug your heaters and let them readjust the glass to the tank temp during a water change? I am not sure what happened but when replace this heater I do not want to make the same mistake again.
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Old 02-05-2013, 04:37 PM   #2
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Yes, you can damage the heater if the water does not remain above the minimum fill line. Some newer, more expensive heaters have a safety feature to shut off when there is no water contact.

When I first started I broke my heater this way.

What type of heater is it, do you keep it vertically or horizontally, and how far down on the heater did the water get when you heard the sizzling noise? Also, did it smoke?

I would check to see if the heater has cracked, and make sure there isn't any glass in the tank if it did. Watch it very closely to make sure it really has stopped working. Think of it like your hot water tank heater for the house, if the element is on without any water in it, it will burn out.

I saw you had a 55gal in another post. What I do in my 75 is keep the heaters horizontal to avoid having to unplug them when I do larger water changes.
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Old 02-05-2013, 05:35 PM   #3
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Mine did this once too. I believe its just water and whatever else that may have been touching the heater that caused the sizzling. As long as there are no cracks, it should be ok.
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Old 02-06-2013, 11:42 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drummer254 View Post
During a water change (~50%) the other day I started to hear a sizzle coming from my heater. I immediately unplugged my heater (I have 2 in the tank) Since that point i have not seen the heater turn on, I'm not sure if it broken because it could just be that my one heater has been enough. However generally during a water change I notice both heaters on because of the addition of cold water.

Is it possible to damage a heater during a water change. Do you unplug your heaters and let them readjust the glass to the tank temp during a water change? I am not sure what happened but when replace this heater I do not want to make the same mistake again.
I alway turn of my heater and filter off during my 50% water change..I have all my aquarium equipment, lights, heaters, filters, air-stones on remote control so it's only a matter of pressing a button. No more reaching around the back of the cabinent!!!....
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Old 02-06-2013, 11:51 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Ian086 View Post
I alway turn of my heater and filter off during my 50% water change..I have all my aquarium equipment, lights, heaters, filters, air-stones on remote control so it's only a matter of pressing a button. No more reaching around the back of the cabinent!!!....
Remote control huh? Thanks for the GREAT idea! Going to Home Depot today to get one and then I'll plug the surge protector into the unit. Can't believe I didn't think of this. I've been using a remote for the Xmas tree lights so I didn't have to go under the tree every night to turn them on.

Awesome!
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Old 02-06-2013, 12:04 PM   #6
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Test the heater by unplugging the other one. Speculating without doing some testing is a waste of time.
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