DIY External Heater Housing? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-26-2005, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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DIY External Heater Housing?

I didn't see anything on this subject so here's the deal. I've had some really bad luck with the Hydor ETH201 making so REALLY LOUD NOISE everytime that it cycles on or off. I tried two separate units and while the second one wasn't as loud it was still loud enough to wake me up upstairs. Anyhow now I'm looking at building an inline housing to put in my submersible heater so I can still have it out of the tank. It will be similar to the CO2 Reactors but no bioballs and slightly modified waterflow. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Brian

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post #2 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-26-2005, 09:11 PM
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You know I've thought about doing this before. There are PVC fittings that are designed sort of like a compression fitting, that have a rubber gasket to seal around a pipe. If you could find one that seals on your heater, it would be easy to make an inline heater. It think one for 3/4" pipe would probably fit on an Ebo. If you can't find anything that works, you could buy one of the Rainbow Lifeguard units.
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post #3 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-26-2005, 09:23 PM
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I think you may find that some of the fittings on this page go up to 3/4", but I'm not sure. You may have to call.

I've got their "fast-n-tite" fitting for my make my ph probe in-line. But I think the "fast-n-tite"s only go up to 1/2".

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post #4 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 01:03 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the link. I didn't see anything that would fit. Heater is 1" diameter and the biggest size I saw was 7/8. I'm thinking I can drill a hole in a cap and silicone it in. Any other ideas are appreciated.

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post #5 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 03:23 AM
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Perhaps this is a silly question, but did you have the hydor installed properly? It's says specifically to have it mounted vertically and on the return tube of the filter.
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post #6 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 10:58 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah, I know. I actually saw (I think on their website) that it can be mounted vertically or horizontally but since it said vertical in the instructions thats what I did. First by eye then when the noises started by a level. Neither position with either heater helped in the least. It seems to me that the thermostat has a problem and can't decide whether to turn on or off. So the loud click that others have described on their heater just keeps clicking and it becomes a buzz. A click I could live with but not a buzz. I'm going to do this project one way or the other so I'll post everything when I'm done. I know this current heater doesn't make any noise so hopefully it will work. On a side note the company I ordered these from has been great so far. AquariumGuys.com they quickly sent me out the same unit no charge and then sent a prepaid shipping label to send the first unit back. I was very happy with the customer service I just have to assume they got a bad batch of heaters or somethin. Any more suggestions are welcome.

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post #7 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 02:08 PM
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Please do let us know if you work out a way to DIY inline. I'm thinking it would be easy enough to do using silicone, but then the heater is in there for good. What would be really sweet is if the housing allowed the heater to be removed and allowed for different sizes to be used.
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post #8 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 03:36 PM
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what you need is a fitting that is threaded to threaded, so that you could screw one half into the pipe cap, and then still have threaded side exposed. this fitting need to be large enough for the heater body to fit through, but not the top of the heater where it gets thicker like a cap. Then you need a screw on cap that fits the threaded fitting and over your heater, drill a hole for the wire, and a hole for your temp control and add some o rings and you have a removeable, exchangeable heater unit.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v2...ish/heater.bmp

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post #9 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 03:42 PM
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This probably out of line for the DIY section, but Rainbow Lifegard makes a unit and its pretty cheap, http://www.marineandreef.com/shoppro/modul-filter.html


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post #10 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 06:26 PM Thread Starter
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Yup, that's better than what I'm going to do but mine will only cost 1/4 as much. The heater will be permanently attached but if I ever need a new one I can simply replace the threaded cap that it will be siliconed into and silicone in a new heater. The price is really the issue here because now I can get the pressurized CO2 (I finally talked the boss - read "wife", into it) and my tank will be done (until I decide to change it)

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post #11 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-27-2005, 08:37 PM
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briandmiles - if you do this, and it works, please take a pic or two if you can. This is definatly worth documenting, as IMO there are many people out there that would like to follow you if this works!

Steve - 33g reef and a 180g planted in need of a re-scape.
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post #12 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-28-2005, 01:10 AM Thread Starter
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Scolly- Will do, I'm pretty much done now and just need to let the silicone set for a day. I'm going to take some pictures right now and if it all works I'll post them and do a little write up.

Brian

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post #13 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-28-2005, 05:20 AM
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Brian that sounds like an excellent and easy idea. Much less complicated than my proposed approach.

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post #14 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-28-2005, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
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What's your approach? I'd be interested to hear what it is so I can incorporate anything that might make my plans work out better.

Brian

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post #15 of 70 (permalink) Old 03-28-2005, 01:02 PM
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Talking

Funny this comes up now. I've been thinking about the same DIY project. What gets me is I tossed a Rainbow lifegaurd heater module and 25W UV module less ballast and bulb about 3 months ago. I just didn't think I would ever be using them and figured the price of replacing seals, boots, ballast and UV bulb wasn't worth the expense and would just buy a new UV if I ever wanted. The heater on the other hand was just plain old stupid...

Here's my plan: I have a dozen fittings that were sold to me as "gland fitttings" they aren't large enough for a submersible heater like a Ebo Jager to fit but will seal pressure tight down to a very small opening. They are made for wires so my plan is to have my heater set and tested to the temp I want then (unplug it )put the wires through the fitting and seal it tight. I will then screw it into a unit much like some of the DIY Co2 reactors that are at an angle. If I ever need to change the temp I will have to unscrew the lid but that's not a big deal. What wouldn't work with my plan? Yes you would have cut the cord but you can use heat shrink to fix it almost as good as new.

Found a link to what I have: http://www.sensorex.com/products/ph_.../fittings.html

This is another option I have been considering. I know of a Ca reactor design that uses these and are used under preasure...this maybe the easiest way to go? This site is also has a heck of a lot of stuff a DIY'er can use.

http://www.aquaticeco.com/index.cfm/.../8600/cid/2009


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