Thermostat Failsafe for Inline Heater with Probe Inline? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-31-2019, 04:08 AM Thread Starter
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Thermostat Failsafe for Inline Heater with Probe Inline?

I am interested in getting an inline heater probably this one https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B0002JEMM6/...ing=UTF8&psc=1. The less ugly equipment in the tank the better for me.
While I feel the risk is low, it would still be better to have a failsafe to prevent overheating.

The problem I have with the failsafe solutions like this thermostat https://www.amazon.ca/Hydor-Hydroset...dor+thermostat is that they require immersing the probe in the tank.

I don't see the point of buying a more expensive inline heater to remove in tank equipment only to have to place an ugly wire and probe in the tank instead.

Is it feasible to add probe inline to place the temperature probe or any other solution?

I was planning on buying a used 2213 Eheim Filter with 17g tank.

Alternatively I guess I could buy a different Filter with integrated heater, like the Oase Thermo 100 but paying $200 USD (including shipping to Canada) for a 132GPH filter and integrated 100w heater seems excessive (although it would work for my tank). Even with this solution the integrated heater could still fail and stick to 'on'.

Thoughts?

Last edited by cl3537; 01-31-2019 at 04:19 AM. Reason: links
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 12:10 AM
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If you would like a nice temperature controller check out:
https://www.amazon.com/RANCO-ETC-111.../dp/B00EN9WYOO
I believe that it can handle over twice the wattage.
Nice lcd screen (that is unfortunately not back lit)
It is running two of the bigger inline hydors, and a 150 watt heating cable for the last 12 years and it is still going strong.
But you will need to wire it. Videos are on utube on how to.

Last edited by Jbubba001; 02-01-2019 at 12:13 AM. Reason: more info
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 01:12 AM
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The inkbird controllers like THESE ONES do not require any wiring. Just plug and play.

I may come across as a know-it-all. In reality, I have no idea.

Last edited by AguaScape; 02-01-2019 at 05:30 AM. Reason: edit
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 03:29 AM
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Just an idea, but if you're going to be running an Eheim filter you're going to need to have an output/intake in the tank. I would pick up whatever temperature controller you want and wedge the probe between the tank and either the intake or output somewhere near the top. I've done something similar and it's difficult to notice unless you're paying attention for it. A little dollop of silicone will help it stay in place more than whatever crappy suction cup comes with it.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 03:59 AM
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Most likely you have an intake tube. Attached the probe to the back of the tube with fishing line and it's hidden.

I use an Inkbird ITC-308 controller and really like it, especially the low and high alarm function, it let's you know when the temp is outside your programmed settings.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 04:26 AM
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Drill a hole into your tubing + silicone
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 12:59 PM
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I've become a 'fan' of the Finnex controller. I have two now and they are very reliable. Yes there is a probe but this can go in a back corner or (as mentioned) behind a filter tube.

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 02:40 PM
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I use the controllers I buy from the auction site but any controller will need some form of probe in the water to sense the temp. One way to hide it is to place it in something like a wooden item, another is to place it in something like a soda straw which can be the best color to hide and it also makes it easy to silicone or super glue flat to a place like a corner or near the bottom where it is hidden behind things like plants. One advantage to the soda straw is the ease of sealing it from the water. Technically they are water resistant, often mislabeled as water PROOF, but there is a difference! I find they last longer when placed in a straw and the end sealed. Easy to set the straw on fire and then clamp it out which leaves the plastic mashed/sealed.
If the wire over the edge is a problem adding a bit of plastic fitting in the tubing and sealing the probe in that will let it sense and not show.
Inkbirds are great but the cheapo hit the wallet much more gently. The difference is in how you feel about the DIY portion.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 06:31 PM
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I've got this one.



https://www.amazon.com/bayite-Temper...ure+controller

I'm running two Finnex 500 watt heaters so that's the reason for the higher cost. I needed the current handling capacity. Theres a 10A version that is price competitive with the Inbird. Both can be calibrated and the deadband is adjustable down to 0.1. While running (not recovering after a water change or similar) I've never seen the display waver from 79.0. I run a sump so the probe and heaters are in the same compartment there.

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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-02-2019, 02:23 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Keating1 View Post
Most likely you have an intake tube. Attached the probe to the back of the tube with fishing line and it's hidden.

I use an Inkbird ITC-308 controller and really like it, especially the low and high alarm function, it let's you know when the temp is outside your programmed settings.
Thank-you Inkbird controller sounds great. I have glass lily tubes and clear tubing so the black wire would still show a little but underneath the tubing and only a few inches down the tank really isn't that bad.

Thank-you for the input this seems like a good solution.

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Originally Posted by PlantedRich View Post
I use the controllers I buy from the auction site but any controller will need some form of probe in the water to sense the temp. One way to hide it is to place it in something like a wooden item, another is to place it in something like a soda straw which can be the best color to hide and it also makes it easy to silicone or super glue flat to a place like a corner or near the bottom where it is hidden behind things like plants. One advantage to the soda straw is the ease of sealing it from the water. Technically they are water resistant, often mislabeled as water PROOF, but there is a difference! I find they last longer when placed in a straw and the end sealed. Easy to set the straw on fire and then clamp it out which leaves the plastic mashed/sealed.
If the wire over the edge is a problem adding a bit of plastic fitting in the tubing and sealing the probe in that will let it sense and not show.
Inkbirds are great but the cheapo hit the wallet much more gently. The difference is in how you feel about the DIY portion.
I plan on clear tubing and glass, so no color I can think of that will camouflage the black wire and silver probe, but I guess a white straw melted at one end would help with probe longevity. Thanks for the response you guys are very resourceful!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cichlid-140 View Post
I've got this one.



https://www.amazon.com/bayite-Temper...ure+controller

I'm running two Finnex 500 watt heaters so that's the reason for the higher cost. I needed the current handling capacity. Theres a 10A version that is price competitive with the Inbird. Both can be calibrated and the deadband is adjustable down to 0.1. While running (not recovering after a water change or similar) I've never seen the display waver from 79.0. I run a sump so the probe and heaters are in the same compartment there.
The cleanest solution seems to be just running a sump with a decent sized reservoir. This is my first tank with inline heat and co2 so I'm not quite ready to add a sump yet, but that seems like the cleanest way for the future. Any reason you prefer the Bayite to Inkbird? Both go to 0.1 degrees. I do see the B TC201 comparably priced. https://www.amazon.com/bayite-Temper...ntroller&psc=1
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Last edited by cl3537; 02-02-2019 at 02:37 AM. Reason: More Info
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-02-2019, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cl3537 View Post
The cleanest solution seems to be just running a sump with a decent sized reservoir. This is my first tank with inline heat and co2 so I'm not quite ready to add a sump yet, but that seems like the cleanest way for the future. Any reason you prefer the Bayite to Inkbird? Both go to 0.1 degrees. I do see the B TC201 comparably priced. https://www.amazon.com/bayite-Temper...ntroller&psc=1
I needed a 15 amp solution. I tried their 10 amp version and regularly tripped the onboard breaker. I contacted the seller and they sent me the 15 amp solution free of charge with no return required.

And, Yes, sumps cure a multitude of ills.

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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-02-2019, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
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I needed a 15 amp solution. I tried their 10 amp version and regularly tripped the onboard breaker. I contacted the seller and they sent me the 15 amp solution free of charge with no return required.

And, Yes, sumps cure a multitude of ills.
Can't say that I would argue with your experience as "real world" counts more than theory but it seems like something must be wrong with the 10 amp limit. Ten amp at 110 volts should give you nearly 1200 watts and most of us never get near that much heat. I use the little cheapo from the auction site, both for my tanks as I got into needing a bunch, but also for my RV and a greenhouse. The only place where power becomes a problem is when running the electric heat that has options for 750 or 1500 watt heating. Those, I do have to keep on the lower setting to avoid burning the controller. But do you have more than 1200 watts of heating on your tanks?
My guess might be more along the lines that the first, ten amp, was defective rather than an actual problem with not being enough capacity??
But that's where I'm really guressing and not knowing what you have going on. What I see and what you have may not be the same!~
Thoughts?
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-02-2019, 04:29 PM
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Quote:
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Can't say that I would argue with your experience as "real world" counts more than theory but it seems like something must be wrong with the 10 amp limit. Ten amp at 110 volts should give you nearly 1200 watts and most of us never get near that much heat. I use the little cheapo from the auction site, both for my tanks as I got into needing a bunch, but also for my RV and a greenhouse. The only place where power becomes a problem is when running the electric heat that has options for 750 or 1500 watt heating. Those, I do have to keep on the lower setting to avoid burning the controller. But do you have more than 1200 watts of heating on your tanks?
My guess might be more along the lines that the first, ten amp, was defective rather than an actual problem with not being enough capacity??
But that's where I'm really guressing and not knowing what you have going on. What I see and what you have may not be the same!~
Thoughts?
Right enough - on paper.

But with an AC source and a coil (inductive) load inrush comes into play. Add to that 110v is RMS. Peak voltage is 1.414 times that taking it to 155v. (110v^2)/1000w = 12.1 ohms impedance. 155v/12.1ohms = 12.8 amps if the relay is energized close to a wave form peak. Add to that most inexpensive breakers will experience some cumulative build up over multiple stress cycles.

This was an occasional issue. With two 500 watt heaters I was on the bleeding edge of good engineering design tolerance practices. I gambled and lost. I feel fortunate that the seller was nice enough to laugh off my mistake and help me out.

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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-02-2019, 05:29 PM
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WOW! It's the 1000 watts of heating that I would have missed. I'm more into the 200 watt range with my 125 gallon. That amount of heat would let me boil it dry!
But then that's why I wondered. With that amount of heat it would be running much closer to the edge. Thanks for the explanation. Good that they took care of the issue.
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-02-2019, 06:10 PM
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The 155 gal water column pushed me over the top when you factor in a backup. I run the BU live but there's just a small chance of both failing before I could get a replacement.

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