Winter preparations or changes

Discussion in 'Other Reef Talk' started by Vhuang168, Dec 15, 2016.

  1. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    Do any of you do anything different on the tank for the winter?

    I've been slowly lowering the temp in the tank from a high of 78 to 76. Its currently at 77.5. Doesn't sound like much but the heaters don't have to stay on as long and since my tank is in the garage, it does make a difference in energy used.
  2. Calde0920

    Calde0920 Guest

    What about power outages what do you guys use to keep at least a powerhead going?
  3. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    I have a 2kw generator. I'm going to look into trying to hook up a battery backup for the Apex and the WAVs.
    Coral reefer likes this.
  4. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    My electrical bill has definitely gone up. Need to watch that. But my tank is indoor. And my wife insists on the home being warmer now with the baby. Had a heater on in the detached garage for my TTM that probably didn't help.
  5. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    I got the ecotech battery backup on Black Friday which can keep a powerhead running for awhile. I don't remember the last time there was a prolonged outtage where I live. Maybe next big earthquake. *knock on wood*
  6. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Ditto... except for the tank being in the main living space... I wish I could pull that, but I live in San Francisco, and as much as I'd love for the tank to be a major focal point of living room (seriously, why do I need a fireplace? 9 days out of 10 it's some stupid "spare the air" bullshit!), my wife probably wouldn't let me have it upstairs... at least a big tank!
    Coral reefer likes this.
  7. Geneva

    Geneva Supporting Member

    I cover my 120 with 2 big beach towels around 8:30pm to try to keep the heat in at night and keep it at 76 degrees.
  8. tankguy

    tankguy BOD

    I like that idea. I didn't think of doing that
  9. yellojello

    yellojello Supporting Member

    Just put back in my 2nd heater. I think I ran 3 at one point, but 2 seems to be fine for now. My Apex keeps tank at 76.5 to 77.5 rollercoaster all night until halides turn on.
  10. tygunn

    tygunn Webmaster

    I've had my 90g running for a few days now. My Kill-a-watt meter is definitely showing some pretty significant power use keeping the tank warm, and I suspect that is from the daytime and night when the Nest turns down the temperature.
    Evaporation is also quite a lot more than I thought. Probably 2-3 L per day. I think I'm going to have to partly cover the tank.

    Good idea on wrapping the tank though! I think I'll look into getting some rigid insulation panels to wrap the tank at night.
  11. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Colorado member

    Being able to see the wattage throughout the day on the apex is really insightful. My heaters use up the most power by far right now. They come on for about an hour and a half every 4-5 hours and they are 200 watts each. We keep our house set at 66 degrees 24 hours a day and right now the tank is only set to 72-73 degrees since I'm only cycling it right now.
  12. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    Found this one a Minnesota newspaper article:

    The following list, supplied by the Minnesota Department of Public Service, is based on a double-glazed window and an indoor temperature of 70 degrees. You will notice that the lower the outdoor temperature, the lower the indoor humidity should be.

    • If outside temperature is 20 to 40 degrees, humidity indoors should not be more than 40 percent.

    • If outside temperature is 10 to 20 degrees, humidity indoors should not be more than 35 percent.

    • If outside temperature is 0 to 10 degrees, humidity indoors should not be more than 30 percent.

    • If outside temperature is 10-below to 0, humidity indoors should not be more than 25 percent.

    • If outside temperature is 20-below to 10-below, humidity indoors should not be more than 20 percent.

    • If outdoor temperature is lower than 20-below, inside humidity should not be more than 15 percent.

    If you are building a home or remodeling, demand high-quality windows. They should have U-values of 0.35 or less. Such windows are less prone to cold-weather condensation and icing, which means that indoor humidity can be higher.
    Newjack likes this.
  13. Tenny

    Tenny Supporting Member

    During the winter I put a clear plexiglass cover over the tank instead of just a net. My house heater is at about ~64 and the one heater I have ( 150 or 200) doesn't have enough juice to keep it from dipping. I keep my tank pretty cold to begin with though, 75-76.8 year round.

    When I had garage tanks I put pipe insulation around the hoses (actually do this for the house tank too) and reflectix insulation around the back and sides of the aquarium.

    such as this:

    I used Insulation tape to hold it against the tanks.
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2016
  14. yellojello

    yellojello Supporting Member

    @Flagg37 Thanks for the tip. I set and forget my Apex a long time ago. Nice to check out this info. Never thought about it, but tank heaters use up as much power as my halides!
  15. tygunn

    tygunn Webmaster

    I've been thinking of doing this as well.

    I also wonder if putting a thin panel of acrylic about an inch away from the glass would help insulate by creating an air gap.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
  16. Tenny

    Tenny Supporting Member

    Whoops didn't say what I did to the outside of the tank... A thin panel would help, air is a great insulator but doing that would be pretty difficult I'd have to imagine.

    On the outside of the garage tanks I put a layer of insulation like this:

    I think it helped a fair amount. I don't have any empirical data to prove it though.
  17. BSAJim

    BSAJim Guest

    If you are running an APEX system, track power consumption one day/ night compared to another without the insulation. It should give you a general picture of the effectiveness. I'd be interested in the results...

    Coral reefer likes this.
  18. tygunn

    tygunn Webmaster

    I figure I could just make panels that hang over the rim of the tank.

    I picked up a sheet of thin acrylic from home depot as a top -- I'll see how covering it helps and go from there. Just reducing evaporation should cut energy load a lot.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
  19. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    I'd go w glass lids. Acrylic will bend and be annoying
  20. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Colorado member

    I'm finding this to be true with my acrylic lids on my sump. I forgot that acrylic actually absorbs water. I'll likely be adding vertical pieces to the tops of the lids to give it more strength to try and prevent it.

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