Is a GFCI needed when having an aquarium? - The Planted Tank Forum
 3Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 97
Is a GFCI needed when having an aquarium?

I will most likely get a surge protector to protect my equipment if the power goes out, as it does a couple times a year.


I am just wondering if it is absolutely necessary?
Is it used in case when I am doing a water change and water splashes on the outlet, it makes it safe?

If water does go to the outlet, what are the worst cases that could cause? Is it that I just can't touch the outlet? Can someone explain it all to me? Thanks.
Aqua3 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 05:19 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Freemananana's Avatar
 
PTrader: (12/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Tavares, FL
Posts: 2,971
A GCFI or GFI as many call them, is not necessary for a fish tank. Honestly, you shouldn't be getting the outlet wet. But it doesn't hurt. A GFCI is a wall receptacle though. It is not the same as a surge protector. If water splashes into the outlet, nothing will happen. The current won't have a path to travel from a couple drops.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Freemananana is offline  
post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 05:24 PM
Children Boogie
 
mistergreen's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,743
It's absolutely necessary if the outlet is outside (pond) but not inside. Just keep the surge protector off the ground incase there is spillage.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
mistergreen is offline  
 
post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by mistergreen View Post
It's absolutely necessary if the outlet is outside (pond) but not inside. Just keep the surge protector off the ground incase there is spillage.
Thanks, how would I keep it off the ground by the way? The tank is in my bedroom on a 29 gallon aquatic fundamentals upright stand. Would I put it on the dresser next the to the tank that is taller than the tank itself?
Aqua3 is offline  
post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 06:16 PM
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
Dr. Acula's Avatar
 
PTrader: (10/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Maryland
Posts: 380
It doesn't have to be above the tank, it's just better if it's off the ground. People often mount them to the inside wall of their stand, or similar.

Feeling adventurous? Maybe check out my current
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Dr. Acula is offline  
post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Acula View Post
It doesn't have to be above the tank, it's just better if it's off the ground. People often mount them to the inside wall of their stand, or similar.
Thanks, how would I mount them exactly, and I thought it wasn't safe to put in the stand.
Aqua3 is offline  
post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 06:30 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
GraphicGr8s's Avatar
 
PTrader: (10/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: West coast of the east coast of the USA.
Posts: 4,328
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aqua3 View Post
Thanks, how would I mount them exactly, and I thought it wasn't safe to put in the stand.
If the wood is thick enough you can use screws to attach it to the cabinet. If not glue a piece of 2 x 3 to the inside and then attach the strip to the 2x.\

I'd use GFCI on any aquarium just for the piece of mind.

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.
If you agreed with me we'd both be right.
GraphicGr8s is offline  
post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 09:03 PM
Children Boogie
 
mistergreen's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,743
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aqua3 View Post
Thanks, how would I mount them exactly, and I thought it wasn't safe to put in the stand.
On the back of your surge protector, there are 2 holes. That's for mounting on screw heads. Screw the screws into your stand then mound the surge protector onto the screw.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
mistergreen is offline  
post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-02-2016, 10:31 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (84/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 21,012
A surge protector protects your equipment. A GFCI protects you. My first priority isn't my equipment, it is me, so I try to always use a surge protector for my aquarium set-up.
PlantedRich and PlantedRich like this.

Hoppy
Hoppy is offline  
post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 09:49 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Outside Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 1,845
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aqua3 View Post
Thanks, how would I mount them exactly, and I thought it wasn't safe to put in the stand.
Heavy Duty Velcro is easy to use and is fast. No messing around with screws or wood. Just make sure the surfaces are clean and reasonably flat. If it's rough wood you may need to sand it first.
DaveK is offline  
post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 12:56 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
AbbeysDad's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Central New York, USA
Posts: 1,360
Probably one of the most overlooked things in the hobby. As everyone knows, water and electricity is a lethal combination. Consider the heater(s), light(s), powerhead(s) and/or submersible pumps used in the aquarium. A good safety feature is to have these things plugged into a GFI circuit to ensure if there is ever a short, YOU are protected. You can replace an outlet with a GFI outlet OR even easier is a plug-in to convert a regular outlet into a GFI outlet - WELL worth the $20~ bill.

Tank On, Mike-
60g Marineland Community, Finnex Planted+ 24/7, Silica (pool filter) sand.
10g, 29g, & 37g fry grow out tanks, 110g stock tank.


What came first, the chicken or the egg. It was the egg, but not the egg from a chicken.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
AbbeysDad is offline  
post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbbeysDad View Post
Probably one of the most overlooked things in the hobby. As everyone knows, water and electricity is a lethal combination. Consider the heater(s), light(s), powerhead(s) and/or submersible pumps used in the aquarium. A good safety feature is to have these things plugged into a GFI circuit to ensure if there is ever a short, YOU are protected. You can replace an outlet with a GFI outlet OR even easier is a plug-in to convert a regular outlet into a GFI outlet - WELL worth the $20~ bill.
Where do i buy one for $20 and what brand/model to get?

Also if use that, would i then plug in a surge protector and then plug the electronics into that? quick response is appreciated
Aqua3 is offline  
post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 01:44 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
longgonedaddy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Lehigh Valley, PA
Posts: 1,259
You can plug the surge into the GFCI. They do two different things. The GFCI shuts off the circuit if it senses electricity "leaking" which will protect you from a shock. The surge protector helps to keep equipment from being fried if say lightning strikes the utility pole near your house.


And before you perfectionists jump on me, I know my explanation was oversimplified.
longgonedaddy is offline  
post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 01:48 PM
Children Boogie
 
mistergreen's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,743
Sure a GFI is ~$20 but don't attempt to instal an outlet if you have no experience and installing a GFI is a little tricky.

They do make a GFI adaptor you just plug into your normal outlet

Defiant Plug-In GFCI Adapter (3-Wire Grounding)-30339036 - The Home Depot

Yes, you plug all of your electronics into the surge, and the surge into the GFI.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
mistergreen is offline  
post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-03-2016, 02:03 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Outside Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 1,845
One additional comment about GFCI.

GFCI can sometimes trip for no obvious reason, and even if all your equipment is good. Some items, electronic MH ballasts come to mind, can trip a GFCI even if they are good.

Since you loose power if the GFCI trips, and you must reset it, it can be a disaster if your away for a few days and it trips then. A couple of times I had my GFCI trip when I was away, and lost almost everything in the tank. It was a SW reef tank too, and those are almost as expensive as a FW planted tank (grin).

I would say that if your going to be away for an extended period, plug the critical equipment, such as the filtration system, into a Non-GFI outlet.
DaveK is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome