preparing the tanks for the storm? - Page 2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #16 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 02:17 AM
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post #17 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 02:23 AM
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Has anyone used an PC APU as a backup for their tank?

Last year Irene left us without power for a week and temps dropped to the 50s. I lost a betta pair but oddly one of their babies surfvived.

Those aren't meant to last for hours, let alone for days....if needed.


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post #18 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 02:59 AM
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In an odd way, tanks may be better during cool weather. If you have a gas water heater, you will be able to do both warm it slightly and add fresh water. During summer power outages, it is harder to cool than to warm during winter. Cool water is far less dangerous as well. Ammonia becomes more toxic as the temperature goes up. Any filter that sits without power for more than a couple days should be washed and cleaned before it puts that sewer stuff in the tank. If it smells, dump it!
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post #19 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 03:23 AM
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You could try getting an air tank from a place like harbor freight and using that or using an inner tube to power an airstone in short bursts. If it's cold and power goes out wrap the tank in blankets.

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post #20 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 03:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AirstoND View Post
Has anyone used an PC APU as a backup for their tank?

Last year Irene left us without power for a week and temps dropped to the 50s. I lost a betta pair but oddly one of their babies surfvived.
If you're planning on running a heater on it, it'll be drained within hours. It woudl be good for air pumps using a few watts but even then it won't last you a week or may be a day. Check APC site if you want to see how long it'll last you.

I had a APC that ran a powerhead on my reef and it lasted for a few hours. I changed it to lower wattage pumps but I don't want to test it out this time. I have back up pump but I tossed it away since it was broken. It had 2 settings, one would pulse and run every few seconds to conserve battery or all the time.

Last storm left me w/o power for a few days and I had to run my car with an inverter every 15 minutes within a hour.

if you want something to run a long time, get a car battery instead and an inverter.
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post #21 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 03:59 AM
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to run an air pump and even your filter for short periods of time you might want to invest in a cheap solar panel kit from harbor freight along with a cheap 200 - 400 watt inverter.
it should provide enough power to run your filter and an air stone for a few hours easily and depending on how large your battery it should be able to run it non stop till the power comes back on.

Granted this solution isn't for everyone but if you have the space and a little knowledge or willing to learn you can even use this setup year round and cut your electrical bill.

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post #22 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 04:10 AM
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I have a Biolite camp stove with usb adapter. http://shop.biolitestove.com/BioLite...tove_p_15.html Would this work if you would convert an airpump to 5V?

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post #23 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 05:11 AM
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Originally Posted by nalu86 View Post
I have a Biolite camp stove with usb adapter. http://shop.biolitestove.com/BioLite...tove_p_15.html Would this work if you would convert an airpump to 5V?
Don't see why not but I have yet to see a 5v air pump but I'm sure there is a way to do it .

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post #24 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 01:32 PM
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Think fishing air pumps. I've got one that actually uses two D cells but can run on one.

Dilution is the solution for the pollution.
Quote me as saying I was misquoted.
Once you get rid of integrity the rest is a piece of cake.
Here's to our wives and sweethearts - may they never meet.
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post #25 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by mach_six View Post

if you want something to run a long time, get a car battery instead and an inverter.
Better yet a deep cycle battery like used for a trolling motor. It's made to take the deep discharge and still last.

Dilution is the solution for the pollution.
Quote me as saying I was misquoted.
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post #26 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 02:49 PM
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While all the alternates suggested might work for different situations, I prefer to have irems that will do multiple things if I can get it at near the same price. There are several things I want to run during extended power outages. I want to keep food cold, have minimal lighting, fans while sleeping, and certainly fish tanks. I may have to rotate the various items but that can be done.

A small generator can be had for almost the same price as a good battery and inverter and will do far more.
http://www.harborfreight.com/engines...tor-66619.html

The truth is that most people will wait too long and not be able to find a generator after the power is out. So if you want one, now is the time to buy it. Just figure out how much power you will need for a minimum and get one large enough to survive.
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post #27 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 03:05 PM
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I'm in the Mid Atlantic area and we are forecast to get slammed too. Here is my plan:

When the power goes out I will make sure all the filters and lights are unplugged then I'll wrap all my tanks in blankets to keep the warmth in.

Once a day I'll do a small water change to help add oxygen to the tanks - I have a gas stove so I can heat the water up a little to warm it if needed.

No feeding till the power comes back on.

Once the power comes back on I'll rinse out the filters before turning them back on.

My biggest fear is the cold - it's supposed to be in the 50's/40's so keeping the tanks warm is my #1 priority.

Oh and if my sister who lives a mile away has power I'll take my betta tanks with me over to her house - this is what I did during the duracho this past summer.

I'm also concerned as to where my 2 little doggies are gonna go to the bathroom cause they will NOT go out in a bad storm, lol.
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post #28 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 03:20 PM
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Back in the late 80's we lost power for 3 days at my house during Christmas time. Temps outside were in the 20's. Yeah it gets that cold here in FLA. (Fortunately not that often) I wrapped all of the tanks (8 of them) in blankets. And left them alone. No loses. I will admit though I didn't keep really sensitive fish back then.

Dilution is the solution for the pollution.
Quote me as saying I was misquoted.
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post #29 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 06:43 PM
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For the filters, I would suggest doing it a bit different once the power is out. Rather than wait for the power to come back, I would suggest cleaning the media as you normally would and then putting it in water to stay wet and get some O2. My thinking is that if it is left for more than a half day, the bacteria will die without water flow to bring in O2. Conserving as much of the bacteria as possible will help avoid a spike when you get back to normal.

I've run into a number of folks who have lost fish shortly after going through storms. They assume that the fish were cold or too hot. But since the fish have not died DURING the storm, I suspect it was the resulting ammonia spike which many don't think about. Any tank that has a major event like a long term power outage should be watched and tested to avoid things like ammonia which can sneak up on us.
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post #30 of 73 (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 07:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PlantedRich View Post
While all the alternates suggested might work for different situations, I prefer to have irems that will do multiple things if I can get it at near the same price. There are several things I want to run during extended power outages. I want to keep food cold, have minimal lighting, fans while sleeping, and certainly fish tanks. I may have to rotate the various items but that can be done.

A small generator can be had for almost the same price as a good battery and inverter and will do far more.
http://www.harborfreight.com/engines...tor-66619.html

The truth is that most people will wait too long and not be able to find a generator after the power is out. So if you want one, now is the time to buy it. Just figure out how much power you will need for a minimum and get one large enough to survive.

Yes a generator is a must have but what happens if your stuck without fuel then what? While solar panels may or may not survive the storm they do make a viable alternative for those situations where fuel is scarce and you need power. I was thinking more along the lines of not for this storm but for future storms or events that may knock out power for a few days. Even now I'm working out a plan to run my tank directly thru solar so unless we get a silly amount of snow or something falls and breaks a panel my tank will be totally off the grid so to speak, I'd love to do the entire house but cost is still prohibitive even with the incentives they give you.

Flushing the filters at the beginning is probably the best idea I've heard in a long time i think most people are so preoccupied with the more immediate concerns of the fish that they forget all about the filter till it's too late.

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