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Old 08-17-2014, 02:03 AM   #11
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Freshwater, low tech, planted. Haven't decided on stock.

Except for rare exceptions, our house stays at 74 degrees year round, 24x7. The exceptions are things like parties where one side of the great room is opened, but that usually only happens if the temp is within about 5 degrees of 74 anyway. Plus it doesn't stay open long.

I hate heat (don't ask why we are in SW Florida), and it's just so sunny here even when it's milder in winter that we use AC all the time.

The biggest heat risk is if the power is out for extended periods of time, but if ambient even went to 90 or so, it would take a while for the tank to heat. And I just did an Ich treatment at 88 degrees and everyone was healthy and happy (in fact I swear they were happier -- more active certainly). So I'm less worried about heat.
I have to laugh, sorry. If you think Cape Coral is hot, you should come to my neck of the woods. My tanks are outside so they do get hot enough that my Angelfish stop spawning and my Betta's eggs were hatching so fast that the fry were deformed and under developed. Heat, is not always a good thing.

I understand the difficulties in understanding the mechanics of the system but try not to over think it. These thermostatically controlled heaters will shut off if the temp is above the set temp. ( All my heaters are still plugged in and turned on and set to last winter's temps. I don't see them on because the air temp is hotter so their water is hotter.) If you are using a non submersible type heater ( such as the old Supreme heaters like I am using) you can periodically take them apart and clean the contact points to prevent them from sticking. If you are using a sealed type, such as a submersible, you are just going to have to trust that they work as planned by the manufacturer. Most often, these type heaters fail by not turning on, NOT from staying on and cooking the fish. Yes, if they do get stuck in the on position, you "should" have time to catch it in a larger aquarium but that is not usually the case. Using the "Murphy's Law" principle ( my favorite when it comes to fish keeping ), it will happen, if it happens, when you are not available or not there to see it or stop it from happening. That's just "fish keeping" through my 50 years of keeping them. While the odds are in your favor by picking the right machines and inhabitants, in reality, it is still a crap shoot. Things happen. Not everything is preventable.

One thing to consider is that at 74 degrees, your tank is not really best suited for many tropical type fish. It's a bit too cold. It's a good goldfish temp or maybe for some of the cooler water loaches, rainbowfishes or catfish as well but most tropical fish are best kept at 78-80+ degrees. This could swing the whole heater debate back to a necessity rather than a luxury ( depending on what you are going to stock) and as such, if going with more tropical fish, I think you would be better off with multiple heaters placed in different areas of the tank or all within the sump (if you are using one) to make sure the water going back into the tank is at the proper tamp. Temperature consistency is a key element to keeping fish from getting sick. If a tank keeps jumping more than 2 degrees in either direction, fish are more prone to ICH infestations.

Hope this helps
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Old 08-17-2014, 02:54 AM   #12
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Although you may not need it, redundancy is a good thing. I would suggest 2 fluval e300's. Living in fla with a near constant temperature of 74 indoors, your heaters just wont be working that hard. The fluval e series have built in thermometers so you will be able to see how hard they are working to maintain trmperature.

You say you will be doing a planted tank, unless you are using LED's, you will be adding more heat to the tank from the lighting.

You probably only need one, but I like to be redundant. The tank will never get cooler than 74, and that is with an extended period without light and heat. Plus the tank will cool slowly, so the fish wouldn't notice a wide temperature swing. Not ideal, but not really harmful for a short amount of time.


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Old 08-17-2014, 09:56 AM   #13
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You say you will be doing a planted tank, unless you are using LED's, you will be adding more heat to the tank from the lighting.
I am still working out which, but I am definitely using LED's. Home or whatever, I'm glad to see the end of the incandescent or florescent bulbs.

So I'm probably going to see a net loss at the top of the tank from evaporation not heat gain.
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Old 08-17-2014, 10:02 AM   #14
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I have to laugh, sorry. If you think Cape Coral is hot, you should come to my neck of the woods. My tanks are outside so they do get hot enough that my Angelfish stop spawning and my Betta's eggs were hatching so fast that the fry were deformed and under developed. Heat, is not always a good thing.
Ah come on, Lake Wells is way up north! I bet you even turn your house heat on in the winter, put on long pants and real shoes, and probably have a coat somewhere a closet!

But more seriously-- you keep them outside? Like on a Lanai?

How do you deal with too much light? (Or are they more in shade)?

I make RODI water in the shade on our Lanai. This summer the water has averaged about 91-93 degrees, a combination of high tap water temperature and time sitting (in the shade!) at mid-90's in a bucket while it makes. So I have to make water a day ahead and let it cool to use it.

I just assumed living in that heat would be very bad for fish, and the light for 16 hours (maybe 6 direct) would cause a lot of algae?
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Old 08-18-2014, 04:51 AM   #15
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3x 200w Cobalt neo-therms, not glass, visual thermometer, digital setting so no fiddling with 3 dials, 3 year warranty and if one does "break" in the on position 200w isn't enough to boil ur tank.

If thats to rich for you, 3 of any 200w heater would work weather it be Jagers or Aqueons from petsmart, or 2x 300w's but then 1 going bad could over heat your tank.
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Old 08-18-2014, 04:55 AM   #16
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Although you may not need it, redundancy is a good thing. I would suggest 2 fluval e300's. Living in fla with a near constant temperature of 74 indoors, your heaters just wont be working that hard. The fluval e series have built in thermometers so you will be able to see how hard they are working to maintain trmperature.

You say you will be doing a planted tank, unless you are using LED's, you will be adding more heat to the tank from the lighting.

You probably only need one, but I like to be redundant. The tank will never get cooler than 74, and that is with an extended period without light and heat. Plus the tank will cool slowly, so the fish wouldn't notice a wide temperature swing. Not ideal, but not really harmful for a short amount of time.


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I like the E series too but they do wacky things when not in flow or in to much or when not heating a lot. Mine was perfect, now I put on a canister filter and a 300gph pump on for hillstreams and it says low flow... like wat?

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I am still working out which, but I am definitely using LED's. Home or whatever, I'm glad to see the end of the incandescent or florescent bulbs.

So I'm probably going to see a net loss at the top of the tank from evaporation not heat gain.
Lol why do you hate on Florescent so much? T5's are bomb.
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Old 08-18-2014, 09:50 AM   #17
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3x 200w Cobalt neo-therms....
If I use in-tank I absolutely would use them. This question was more about how much than which.

I bought a 200W Neo-therm, it had a small problem (one dead LED). Cobalt was so incredibly nice about replacing it that I am now a huge fan of the company, plus it's inconspicuous profile and solid-slab design are nice.

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Lol why do you hate on Florescent so much? T5's are bomb.
Nothing to do with aquariums. LED's are SO much more energy efficient, I felt like there was a decade or so we lost out, and the whole CFL tangent (with its mercury-laden waste) was such a wasteful dead end (but that we are still going down). Not really relevant to the conversation I guess, just a lament.
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Old 08-18-2014, 01:28 PM   #18
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If I use in-tank I absolutely would use them. This question was more about how much than which.

I bought a 200W Neo-therm, it had a small problem (one dead LED). Cobalt was so incredibly nice about replacing it that I am now a huge fan of the company, plus it's inconspicuous profile and solid-slab design are nice.
Oh haha I didn't even know that was you, yeah I would say 2 300w or 3 200w heaters. You could even go 3 250w heaters, if you go with eheim or other glass heaters the difference in price between size's is almost nothing, also get something with a ON indicator LED, most have this, at night you can also see if the heating element is glowing or not. A 300w is suppose to be good up to 90g but 1 heats my 150g just fine, but I will be replacing it with 2 200w neo-therms.



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Nothing to do with aquariums. LED's are SO much more energy efficient, I felt like there was a decade or so we lost out, and the whole CFL tangent (with its mercury-laden waste) was such a wasteful dead end (but that we are still going down). Not really relevant to the conversation I guess, just a lament.
Oh haha I was just wondering, they are more efficient but the house bulbs I have scene I wasn't to exited out (directional light with a huge heatsink), they for sure rock in flashlights.
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Old 08-18-2014, 11:58 PM   #19
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Ah come on, Lake Wells is way up north! I bet you even turn your house heat on in the winter, put on long pants and real shoes, and probably have a coat somewhere a closet!

But more seriously-- you keep them outside? Like on a Lanai?

How do you deal with too much light? (Or are they more in shade)?

I make RODI water in the shade on our Lanai. This summer the water has averaged about 91-93 degrees, a combination of high tap water temperature and time sitting (in the shade!) at mid-90's in a bucket while it makes. So I have to make water a day ahead and let it cool to use it.

I just assumed living in that heat would be very bad for fish, and the light for 16 hours (maybe 6 direct) would cause a lot of algae?
Okay, for starters,
Yes, I have used the house's heat in the winter along with long pants but no shoes. I work barefoot. ( okay, I use socks in the winter too. )
Actually, I am only about a 2 hour drive Northeast of you so I am not that far away. Being in the center of the state however, it is very hot and humid during the summer. The avg temp this past week was 94 degrees on my porch where some of the fish are. I have tanks on an open porch and my 2 screened in porches. I keep the fish well oxygenated in the summers with a lot of bubblers going. Thankfully, I've not lost any tanks due to overheating. I've even had to encapsulate the tanks in styro the past 3 winters just to keep the air temps from overtaxing the heaters. But again, I didn;t lose any fish from temp issues. Proper fish selection helps. My neighbor is a Koi farmer and he uses no heaters at all. His fish are in pools or ponds so they can adjust to whatever temp is most comfortable for them.

Yes, algae is a problem. Thankfully that problem is almost over. I'm having a climate controlled building being put up on my property to house the fish so I shouldn;t have a temp or algae problem anymore. About 1 more month before it's all done.

So as for keeping fish in the heat, it all depends on what you keep. Most tropical fish prefer a temp of 78-82 degrees with some fish, like Discus, liking it even hotter. It's why FL is one of the fish breeding capitols of the world. The temps and water are so right for it. The colder water fish are bred indoors.

Hopefully you'll get your heater issue taken cared of. As I said before, don;t over think it. Fish keeping, while a science, does not always follow the basic rules of science. It's sometimes is still trial and error.

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Old 08-19-2014, 09:39 AM   #20
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It's sometimes is still trial and error.
Indeed, that's why the internet is helpful. If you can sort through the crap, you can then benefit from other people's errors.

What's the saying, we learn from experience, but usually only the painful ones.
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