Heater boiled everything in my 100g tank.

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by juanfdezdc, Jan 5, 2019.

  1. xcaret

    xcaret Guest

    An annual inspection/cleaning at least. This is an external pump a bit different than the big cousins.
    Impeller housing is sealed, Titanium and ceramic bearing and no seals would make one think thay are maintenance free for life.
    Another thing is these little toys have been discontinued for a long time so is good to have a spare or two.
  2. xcaret

    xcaret Guest

    That my friend is a key component of peace of mind BUT in reality, a hurdle might be the significant other. We are mainly a username, an avatar; not many of us or those living within the same walls, are open to have a stranger at home and more if that stranger has access to the sanctity of a home while the family is away.
    Getting to know reefers in the club is a huge, huge thing and the bright side of it, is friendship.

    One could be couple hours away, couple thousand miles away and what good could be a notification on your phone if you cannot get to your tank? Sure you can have a relative, neighbor, house-sitter go take a look at what happened and maybe try to set things right or maybe the opposite...

    This new year has brought a few emergencies among us, Jeff's tank overflowing, Gus' tank frying an ATO pump and a controller, Juan's pump and heater issue, an anemone chopped up and made into sup...
  3. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer Past President

    Make some lemonade with them there lemons!
  4. juanfdezdc

    juanfdezdc Supporting Member

    It was a 1 year old, 300W Hygger brand
  5. juanfdezdc

    juanfdezdc Supporting Member

    That is correct, but as Xcaret also points out, is not only know an avatar but the person. For example my wife freaks out to have somebody we don't know coming home just to check the tank...
    This Xmas holidays I paid my kids sitter (a teenager who we know) to come home every week and I gave him 2 tasks that he could handle: throw inside the tanks a bag (that I pre-made) of some frozen food and check the sump water level and if below certain mark, then add water (that I left near the tank) until certain level.
    That is something that was easy for him and prevent my fish and anemones dying (some doesn't like a lot the pellets from automatic feeder) or my pumps running dry.
    If a pump, heater, sump, or other major problem, then is another thing and not sure this kid would have been able to help.
    I think my next long holidays is in summer so I need to start thinking on what I would do for that holiday.
  6. Apon

    Apon Supporting Member

    sorry to hear about this. Good luck....makes me glad my place is warm enough so need for heater.
  7. Alexx

    Alexx Supporting Member

    OO no can't believe it happened. I will probably start researching about an Apex now. Also I do hope my renter insurance will cover things like this.

    Maybe everybody should do some research about some sort of house insurance for the fish tank :) Not sure if there is any.
  8. MolaMola

    MolaMola Supporting Member

    I am pretty sure my homeowners insurance does not cover aquarium losses and would charge me if I had aquariums in my home. I also think a lot of landlords do not allow renters to have aquariums. Curious to hear others' experience.
    Coral reefer likes this.
  9. jccaclimber

    jccaclimber Supporting Member

    If you find any post back. The only way I could find coverage in Texas was if the tank was destroyed as the result of another primary cause like a fire. Even in that case the livestock would not be covered.
  10. scuzy

    scuzy Supporting Member


    Just wired up three for my other tanks.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
  11. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Supporting Member

    More unsolicited advice ...

    Instead of a single 300W heater, which, as we just learned, can cook your whole tank, use two or three 100W heaters. If one goes nuts, the other two should (if their thermostats work properly), turn themselves off, then you only have a single 100W heater trying to cook your tank instead of a 300W heater doing it. It will give you time to react.

    I am currently relying on my heaters' thermostats, but I will be ordering a heater controller now that I've heard this story.

    An audible temperature alarm would be great too. Maybe you need to go full "high tech controller".

  12. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Supporting Member

    Also, webcams are now fairly cheap ... ones you can set up to see the tank on your smart phone. Plus again, those super pricey aqua controllers can alert you of disaster (if set up correctly) and maybe you can't rush home to save the fish, but maybe you can call your house sitter and, with the help of the webcam (or better ... facetime/skype) you can direct them to check/fix things.
    With facetime, you can say "You see that big plastic thing there? No, not that, the one next to it, etc, etc" much easier if you can see what they are pointing at, or you can describe what you are seeing in the camera/phone than just trying to remember where things are in the tank and painfully try and get a non-fish person to try things.

  13. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Let me know how your wife thinks about that idea after the first time it goes off :D
    Coral reefer likes this.
  14. bondolo

    bondolo Supporting Member

    Very sorry to hear this especially since I was having a bad heater event at exactly the same time. I lost only 4-5 snails and an urchin in a bucket but it always sucks when anything under your care dies. I agree with the suggestion of using Ranco ETC controllers. They are totally bulletproof.

    Sorry that you have to go through all the work to clean out the tank and wishing you encouragement and the best of luck in getting your tank back together.
  15. juanfdezdc

    juanfdezdc Supporting Member

    Yes, I'm going to put a couple of smaller heaters. That is going to be my approach for sure.
    I already installed a controller with audible alarms, so the way it works is that I set up the temp at 78F, so when the water temp reader is below 78F it will turn on the heater, once is above is will turn it off. Alarms are set up at 74F and 84F. I think this range should be enough not to kill anything before the alarms trigger and not to get false alarms due to high temperature in the house.
    I'm also going to research APEX controls and is not a bad idea what you mention of the webcam.
    Alexx likes this.
  16. juanfdezdc

    juanfdezdc Supporting Member

    Thanks a lot for your words Bondolo. It was quite tough to remove all the dead fish and corals. Indeed the Green Leather Toadstool that you have me some months ago was one of the most beautiful corals I ever had, feel so bad that it ended up boiled like that...

    Well I spent the whole weekend cleaning and at least now the tank water is clear and is not smelly.
  17. juanfdezdc

    juanfdezdc Supporting Member

    I'm happy to read that this post is going to be helpful for some people who didn't have a back up system for their heaters, happy that it could prevent this from happening in other tanks.

    After 2 days and a half of cleaning, water changes, removing stuff... now the water is clear and not smelly.

    I just check the water parameters and it seems that the tank is going through a cycle. For example the Ammonia is through the roof, above 8ppm. Nitrites also high, etc... So now I'm going to need to be patient and continue doing water changes and wait until all parameters came to normal again, I guess is going to take a few weeks.

    Thanks again to everybody for your help and words of encouragement & wisdom.
    ashburn2k likes this.
  18. bondolo

    bondolo Supporting Member

    You can accelerate the cycling by adding an air pump and airstone (or more than one)

    There will be another leather coral waiting for you when I take down my tanks at the end of May. ;-)
  19. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Supporting Member

    I think it's OK to not do water changes, now that the smell is gone. Nitrates will rise, but so what. That might add some algae to the cycling tank, but no big deal. I would wait until ammonia and nitrites have spiked up and down and THEN do a water change to dump the nitrates. If you do a water change during the cycle, wouldn't it actually stunt the cycle by removing ammonia and nitrite before the bacterial colonies recover? Maybe it doesn't matter post crash...if that's the case though, you might as well save some salt for the necessary post-cycling-nitrate-dumping water change at the end.

  20. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Supporting Member

    This thread certainly makes me re-think my non-controlled heaters, I rely on their thermostats, since I have one in the sump and two one either ends of the tank. I had figured that their thermostats would control them at either end of the tank since it's a long tank and one controller with one probe can only get the temp wherever the probe is and with multiple heat sources, it may not be accurate. Of course one controller PER heater works if the probes are not too far from the heater to get a good sampling of what the water is like (and of course good circulation should help make the temps uniform across the entire system).

    I looked into the RANCHO controllers and they are not just plug and play. You have to wire in relays or something. Anyone done this? I'm sure there are websites that did it, but I'm wondering how the club members might have done it.


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