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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hey everyone. my tank water in my 75gal is staying at 84 deg. but my heaters are set at 78 deg. I am using 2 rena smart heaters. one of them kept flashing from time to time (which means temp is too high or too low).

I am running a catalina 216w solar t5 fixture with an open top tank setup. the fixture is 9" above the water line. I have never had this happen before so why now?

the room temp is 78 deg right now so it shouldn't be any higher than that or just slightly with the heat generated by the filters.

The way the heaters are designed is this.. if the water temp is 3 deg in either direction the dial light will flash. These heaters are very accurate with water temperature btw. One of the heaters right now isn't flashing and it should because the water temp is 6 deg above what it is set for. Could that heater be broken and only continuing to heat the tank higher since it isn't registering a warning signal?

should I unplug it and see what happens?

TIA for the help or suggestions.

Ken
 

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Are these real?
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It's Summer, your tank is overheating, unplugging heaters takes only a couple of seconds. I don't understand why folks wonder about malfunctioning heaters in Summer... yes, the thermistor should turn them off, but why risk it if they are not needed. Pull them already.

Lights transfer a lot of heat. Did you run that same fixture last year in Summer? Try turning off half of it for a couple of days and monitor the temperature.

Are your filters in an enclosed stand? If so, open the doors to keep them cooler, otherwise they turn into little heaters.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It's Summer, your tank is overheating, unplugging heaters takes only a couple of seconds. I don't understand why folks wonder about malfunctioning heaters in Summer...
With all due respect.. that comes off a little harsh.

I understand it is summer and the heaters do not have to run very often but as I said in the original post this just started happening. I do not live in AZ, CA, or any other scorching hot state and the tank is in my basement which is always cooler. I had some really hot days this year and no issues until now so I don't think that has anything to do with it. So that means that the light doesn't factor in either. There is no reason other than a malfunction that would cause the heaters to heat the tank water 6 degrees warmer than room temp. My filters are both enclosed in my tank stand but the back is open and they run fairly cool.. barely feel any heat from the motor head. I can't leave it up because of my young children, electric plugs(many of them) and my co2 tank.


I just unplugged both of them for now and will see what the temp is in the morning. I had the one that I thought might be malfunctioning unplugged for the last few hrs and no change so I unplugged both of them and will see if the temp drops. Tomorrow morning I will plug one in with it set to 78 and see what happens.
 

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Do you have a glass top? If so take them off if you can(no jumpers) and you'll see a good drop in temps. I have open top tanks and even with UV sterilizers running the tanks would never get above 84F even when my room would get to 86ish at times. If you aim a fan at the open tops you'll get even more cooling.

If the heater was truly broken and stuck on I would imagine the tank would be a lot warmer than just 6F above room temp. Try sticking your hand into the tank and feeling if the heater is warm.
 

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Tb,
I would suggest checking and or calibrating your thermometers
I have found most thermometers sold for aquariums to be mostly junk and not very accurate.
Now this part I dont recommend for most aquariums and aquarists. My home is kept around 72 deg year round. Very comfortable for me and I have found all my aquariums do not require heaters at all!
All systems are open top with t5 lights and they generally run about 4-6 deg higher then room temp, day or night.
They must vary in temp by a couple of degrees over 24 hour period but I have yet to see it. If you are heating the water up during the day "with room temp changes or when lights are on" then a heater would be recommended to keep large temp. swings down. Much of this Is imho old school, I guess for older homes that dont keep a very constant temp. I have found over MANY years of observation that in newer homes with a more constant interior temperature, heaters are just not required. Of course this varies from house to house and climate to climate.
md
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have had the heaters unplugged now since my last post and the temp has dropped 2 degrees overnight. so I will check it again later on in the day once the lights have turned on. I am betting that for some reason the heaters have taken a crap which sucks.


anyone have any experience with the inline heaters, realiability and functionality?

Ken
 

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The Rena smart heaters are really new on the market, so I haven't heard much to date.

I always use Hydors and they've got a good rep (though of course no one is fail-proof...). I've never had issues with mine, but then they also aren't plugged in but a few months each year...
 

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Might sound dumb but I doubt the heaters are heating to what you set them. The reason I say this is because I've never really had a heater keep the water at, or near, the setting I have it on.

I had a Rena and set it to 76. I'd come in and find my tank at 80-82 constantly, so I turned it down to 72 and sure enough, tank stayed around 76-78. *shrugs* 200w in a 70g system, not like I was under/over heating.

Never used an inline, too afraid too. Just another fitting to come dislodged or tubing to pop off.
 

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I would plug just one heater in for a day and if no change, unplug that one and plug in the other one. Assuming that you didn't change the settings higher during the summer, one of them might be bad. It would be doubtful that both went bad at the same time.

As mentioned already, the numbers on the adjustment knob usually, don't coincide with the targeted temperature. I find the numbers arbitrary ie... 72 might mean 78 degrees.
 

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I've had the same problem here (tank > 84 with room at 78-80) in NorCal where the temp outside hits high 90 most days and is pushing 105 today. On recommendation of the forum members, I tried the fan and it works great ("swamp AC" I was told!). The light in combo with the hood was the culprit for me. I went out and got some legs for my light, ditched the hood and voila! Temps sitting at 76-78! I even got rid of the fan which was really evaporating a lot of H20 and it's still sitting at 76-78 after 2 days. I was also using frozen water from the our watercooler - that helped and the fish really follwed the ice around. I could imagine them all saying, "Ahhhhhh!"
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Might sound dumb but I doubt the heaters are heating to what you set them. The reason I say this is because I've never really had a heater keep the water at, or near, the setting I have it on.

I had a Rena and set it to 76. I'd come in and find my tank at 80-82 constantly, so I turned it down to 72 and sure enough, tank stayed around 76-78. *shrugs* 200w in a 70g system, not like I was under/over heating.

Never used an inline, too afraid too. Just another fitting to come dislodged or tubing to pop off.
these rena smart heaters have actually been dead on the money with temps.. I periodically check them and they have been spot on.

I would plug just one heater in for a day and if no change, unplug that one and plug in the other one. Assuming that you didn't change the settings higher during the summer, one of them might be bad. It would be doubtful that both went bad at the same time.

As mentioned already, the numbers on the adjustment knob usually, don't coincide with the targeted temperature. I find the numbers arbitrary ie... 72 might mean 78 degrees.


as I just posted above these heaters are very accurate winter/summer doesn't matter. I have had them for over a year and a half with no issues and I believe that there are still no issues.









84 deg 12am- unplugged both heaters

82 deg 12pm today unplugged uv sterilizer

82 deg 2pm just before lights come on ( so 14hrs of no light and temp up)

82 deg 3pm opened the tank stand doors

82 deg 10pm at end of photo period.

I have checked it with sinking, floating thermometers, digital, and instant grilling digital thermometers and all of them reading 82 deg.

I am at a loss as to what to try. I am running a danner mag pump for co2 injection. running 2 rena xp3's. the danner pump is ran inline on one of the filters in the discharge. I am thinking that I will try to unplug one filter at a time to see if it drops.

? though.. can the motor head get warmer if it needs to have the impeller mag cleaned? The filters have great flow and were cleaned about a month ago if that.

thanks, Ken
 

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I think water is actually pretty good at absorbing heat, especially 75G of it. It'll take a long while for the heat to dissipate unless you have a fan at the surface or aeration.

My little heater recently malfunctioned. I noticed the light stayed on even if I set the thermostat to the lowest degree. I think heaters have a life span like light bulbs. The heater either dies or the thermostat dies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I think water is actually pretty good at absorbing heat, especially 75G of it. It'll take a long while for the heat to dissipate unless you have a fan at the surface or aeration.

My little heater recently malfunctioned. I noticed the light stayed on even if I set the thermostat to the lowest degree. I think heaters have a life span like light bulbs. The heater either dies or the thermostat dies.
I just unplugged my needle pump and one of my canisters to see what happens. should I drop in an airstone to see if it helps it drop?
 

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My tank has been running warmer since I added a magdrive. It figures though, every piece of electric equipment is going to add some heat. Though I'm not sure why your tank would suddenly start warming if you haven't changed anything...

If you just want the temp to drop, a fan really does work great. Point it right at the water. It sound like you want to figure out how much heat everything is adding though.
84 isn't that bad, the only things I've ever seen die from that temp are shrimp.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I just plugged the filter and needle pump back in and set the discharge to make a very heavy agitation, loud enough to be heard in the next room.

I will wait til morning to see it it helps it come down or not. if not then I will unplug one filter at a time to see if it drops.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
My tank has been running warmer since I added a magdrive. It figures though, every piece of electric equipment is going to add some heat. Though I'm not sure why your tank would suddenly start warming if you haven't changed anything...

If you just want the temp to drop, a fan really does work great. Point it right at the water. It sound like you want to figure out how much heat everything is adding though.
84 isn't that bad, the only things I've ever seen die from that temp are shrimp.
it isn't good for some plants though right? I also have shrimp that I don't want to die either.

You are exactly right.. I want figure out what is causing it all of a sudden to jump in temperature. The smart heaters have red led's in the dial. if it is on then it is heating the tank. If they are flashing then the temp is either 3 degrees too high or low from the current setting. I know that it works because when I do water changes it sometimes flashes if the water is too cold. Not easy to get exact temp straight from the faucet... damn close but not perfect. That tells me that the heater warning me now was right and not malfunctioning.

I have had the mag pump for about 5-6 months now I believe, so that is it either.
 

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A water pump will add exactly as much heat as it’s power rating therefore a 40 watt water pump will add 40 watts of heat as the kinetic energy of water flow degrades into thermal energy.
C.Delbeek, J Sprung the reef aquarium v3
md
 

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Ken, can you ID ANYTHING that changed for the tank or the room the tank is in within the past week or two?

Any chance that the tank is getting more sunlight than it may have at other times of the year? Or that the room the tank is in is getting more direct exposure?

That's a huge issue in my own office, as it's a south-facing room... the temperature difference depending on the seasons is really dramatic.
 
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