Need a non-electrical pond heater - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-11-2010, 04:20 AM Thread Starter
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Need a non-electrical pond heater

I have a very small pond that freezes solid in winter and is located too far away from any electrical outlets to accommodate a plug-in unit. I need either a solar-powered or battery-powered pond heater that can withstand sub-freezing winter temperatures, and is easy to install.

Any ideas? Thanks -- Aquamom
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-11-2010, 04:29 AM
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I don't know if they make any. It wouldn't be very effective at night if they did.
It won't be cheap either.

You'll have to bring the fish into your garage.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-11-2010, 10:31 AM
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Heater is a misnomer in this case. There are solar and wind powered agitators that might work, but if the pond usually freezes solid, nothing - short of a fortune in fuel costs - is going to help it.

If you're trying to over winter fish or plants, bring them in for the season. If you are trying to keep water available for birds, a plug in bird bath heater will be the simplest solution.
post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-18-2010, 01:45 AM
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Put an arch over the pond, and enclose it in clear plastic, like a greenhouse. Then, if you find any method of adding some heat it will be lost more slowly. Solar gain during the day, even cloudy days can help, but a small volume of water may still freeze.
If it is a masonry pond, then paint it black. The sun, passing through the greenhouse, then hitting the black bottom and sides will warm the water.

Better to shut it down for the winter, and bring the plants and fish into the garage.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-18-2010, 02:05 AM Thread Starter
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I have made arrangements to bring the goldies and snails indoors for the winter. It's really the only way I can save them.

Thanks, folks ..

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-24-2011, 06:28 PM
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Not sure how brave you are, or how good you might be with electricity, but... the home depot 1-2-3 manual would more than likely have enough information in it to help you run some direct-bury romex (electrical wire that can be buried straight in the ground) from a power source in your home, to someplace near the pond. Then you could put in a post, with an exterior outlet, and plug in a heater. It might sound like a bit much, and rather scary (as a lot of people are afraid of electrical work) but it really is quite simple. And as long as you keep circuit breakers off, follow the steps in the book, and ask your local home depot for their "electrical guy" for a little advice, you can wire it in safely.
I re-wired an entire house with very minimal previous electrical experience. Followed the book, asked for advice, and when all was said and done, I had it checked out by an electrician, and the city inspector to make sure everything was good to go. They both said that it was some of the best work they'd seen.
I know this isn't the answer you were looking for, but don't discredit it right away. It might make for a good spring or summer weekend project.
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