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Old 04-06-2008, 08:31 PM   #1
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Heater Size Question

Hello - I have a question regarding heater size. I have decided to purchase a Hydor in-line external heater for my 36gal corner tank. My problem is I REALLY like the cold. In the winter time it is safe to say the room where the tank is (and I sleep) rarely goes past 50 degrees. Except for the weekends my kid is down - then I tolerate 70ish. In the summer my air is running and I try to keep it down to 68 --- The question is do I buy a 200 watt rated for 26-53 gals or do I buy the 300 watt rated for 53-80 gals? I'm worried that the 200 watt may get too much of a workout - Thanks and I very much appreciate your time helping me and my son set up this tank :p
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Old 04-07-2008, 04:44 AM   #2
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You want 3 watts per gallon heating. I suggest doing it with more then one heater so you will have a back up incase one fails. I have 3 150w heaters on my system. Never depend on one to do the job. If you keep your house cool like that it is a good idea to spread it out over 2 heaters.
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Old 04-07-2008, 12:57 PM   #3
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Generally a heater will raise the tank temperature about 10 degrees above the ambient room temperature. Manufacturers' specs vary, so you may want to give Hydor a call (there should be an 800 number on their website) and see what they recommend. I agree with Ziggy - I would use two heaters. I would think that one inline 300 watt heater and then one submersible heater from 200-300 watts would be good since your ambient room temperature is chilly.

The "standard" heater size for a 10 gallon tank is 50 watts. I have a 75 watt heater in my 10 gallon because my ambient room temperature is about 68 and I want the tank to be 80 degrees and the temperature difference is more than 10 degrees, so I use a heater with more wattage than the standard recommendation. I probably could have gotten away with the 50 watt heater in this case but the point is to use a heater with a higher wattage and/or use two heaters to get the water temperature that you want, depending on such factors as tank size and room temperature.
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Old 04-07-2008, 12:58 PM   #4
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You are looking for a 25+ degree differential betwen ambient air and water. I would go with 300w of heating, but I agree on using 2 heaters. I'm not a big fan of inline heaters. What do you if/when it breaks?
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Old 04-07-2008, 01:33 PM   #5
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If it breaks you replace it like any other heater, that's why you install a shutoff valve on the tank side of the heater. Worst case you drop a regular heater in the tank until you can get to it.
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Old 04-07-2008, 04:29 PM   #6
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To parrot, I'd go with two 150w or a 300w.

The benefits of going with two 150's is that you have diversified your heatfolio, so you don't have your entire tank relying on one heater.

I've heard horror stories of people coming home to nothing but death because (1) heater got stuck in the "on" position and made it too hot, or (2) heater busted and they got too cold.

Having two heaters fixes both of these problems: if it gets too hot and one shuts off, too cold and the other kicks in to help out.
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Old 04-07-2008, 10:37 PM   #7
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Thank you very, very much -- Two heaters it is -- one inline and one in the tank -- of course this means I will be pawning my stuff and selling my blood at the local hospital to offset the expenses that are racking up with this hobby -- I have to be crazy -- I've had plenty of psychology training to know that this tank is causing me compulsive obsessive disorders ---- AND I DON'T CARE I GOT TO HAVE THIS TANK --- thanks again - you are all really good people at heart to take the time to help out me and my son do this tank right - Peace
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Old 04-10-2008, 09:28 AM   #8
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Quote:
AND I DON'T CARE I GOT TO HAVE THIS TANK
Words from a true aquarist who will soon be diagnosed with MTS (Multiple Tank Syndrom). Welcome to Fishkeeping.
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Old 04-10-2008, 09:43 AM   #9
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Thanks Fishyfanatic - like my wallet really needed to here that - but you are probably most correct - presently I am suffering from CEB (Cronic Equipment Buying) because I only want the best for the tank and F.I.S.H. Syndrome (Fast - Instant - Simultaneous - Hurry Syndrome) because I want this tank running yesterday --
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Old 04-10-2008, 09:46 AM   #10
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haha, it's an illness really. One is never enough. Soon you will be moving furniture out of the house to accomidate a new tank. We are selling a chair, end table, and ottoman to make room for our 150 gal tank. You do what you have to do to feed the addiction.
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