Jump to content

Advice On Keeping Tank Warm


eather.hey

Recommended Posts

  • Regular Member

Hi all...

I just got a letter from my landlord saying that the electric company will be doing some work on the lines next week and I won't have power from 8am-5 or 6pm on Wednesday. I don't have gas...so everything is electric including my heat. I was wondering if anyone had any ideas of how to keep my tanks warm. The temp. should be in the 40's that day! I'm not so much worried about my goldies and catfish as I am for my dwarf frogs and my turtle!! The goldies could probably handle a drop in temp. better?? I read once about putting containers filled with hot water in the tanks, but I don't know how long the water in my hot water tank will even stay warm. Any ideas? This really has me worried. You think they'd wait till summer to do this! Ughh...

Thanks!

Heather

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Do you have a friends nearby that is not going to loose his/her power. If so maybe you could ask if you could come over every two hours or so to borrow some hot water. You can also go to your nearest hardware store and get a pretty cheap small gass heater. I have one about the size of a computer moniter. :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

I would be more concerned with the filtration and aeration of your tank. A power outage that long can cause stagnant water in your filters that will suffocate your bacteria and 1) will cause disgusting water to be pumped back into your tank when they go back on and 2) can kill the bacteria causing an ammonia spike. The loss of aeration... well no oxygen in water = goldies suffocate. I don't know how you have your tank set up (i.e. if you even have filtration and aeration) but those would be my concerns over whether they stay warm. Your apartment should be able to retain most of its heat over a 10hr period (mine does), and so a drop of even say 10 degree in ambient air temp will not affect your goldies adversely since water takes longer to cool than air.

So if you do have a filter and bubbler on your tank, I would suggest putting your filter media in a big bucket of tank water before the outage to protect the bacteria levels... and either aerating your tank by creating waves at the surface with your hand or buying a battery operated pump.

To other members of the board... Am I completely wrong here? The lack of filtration and aeration will be a problem over a 10hr time period correct? The stagnant water in the filters will also be a problem... correct?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

As for keeping your turtles and frogs warm... well, do you have a gas stove?? If you do, just heat some water and do as jdude said. Otherwise do the neighbor route. Don't add the water directly though... put it into a bottle and let it float in the tanks. It will let the water gradually rise in temp, so as not to stress animals.

Goodluck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Is it okay to use a gas heater in an enclosed space? they put off CO, you know, which is really dangerous.

How well insulated is your home? I know that our place is REALLY drafty, and even on a cold day the temp doesn't drop too low in here while we're out at work (heat off). I would say turn up the heat in your house to 85 or even 90 if you can stand it prior to having the power off. Make sure you have all draperies closed unless some nice strong sunlight is coming through. If you've an upstairs, keep the frogs up there; it'll stay warmer longer. Find the least drafty place in the house. Wrap tanks in blankets/comforters. Temp should be just fine! Also, keep in mind that the bigger your tanks are, the more stable your water temp will be.

BTW, I don't know what sort of turtle you have, but most North American freshwater turtles can withstand a fair amount of cold... much more than your turtle will be exposed to in the short time your power's out. They just slow down a bit.

Obsidian is right about your air circulation. While your fish and frogs probably would be fine w/o filtration for that short time, you do need to get some air into the water, particularly for the fish. A cheap, simple solution is a battery-operated air pump. We keep a couple around just in case. Stirring the water might work, but it would require a TON of frequent effort. The air pump is probably your best bet. Have extra batteries on hand. Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member
To other members of the board... Am I completely wrong here? The lack of filtration and aeration will be a problem over a 10hr time period correct? The stagnant water in the filters will also be a problem... correct?

Yes you are correct. :)

Eatherhey, you can buy a battery powered airpump to oxygenate the tank (you don't want to be swishing your hand up and down in the tank all day!).

As for filtration, it doesn't matter if the tank isn't filtered for a day because you can simply do water changes if ammonia or nitrite begin to rise.

However, the water may stagnate in the filter and also the bio-bugs won't tolerate being without oxygen all day either. Personally, I would leave the filter in the tank during the day because if you have a battery-powered airpump running this will help keep the oxygen levels up in it. But when you re-start the filter, take it out of the tank and let it run for a few minutes in a bucket of old tank water first to expel any nastiness that has built up.

How low do you expect the temp to drop in your home? Are you in a particularly cold area? If not, then I wouldn't overly worry about the temp drop. You could do the hot water bottles trick just before the power goes off though - that will help keep the temp steadier for longer.

Good luck! :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

If you have an external filter, aerating the tank won't keep O2 levels up in the filter. I wouldn't even rely on it oxygenating an internal filter, since they are closed compartments, too, and without something forcing water through, the water inside would become stagnant and O2 depleted. I would dump the water out of the filter and float the biomedia in the tank.

Sounds like there isn't much you can do to keep the tank warm. You could try insulating it to help it hold on to the heat already in there, but unless you have a source of power/warm water, I don't know what else you could do.

I agree with Obsidian - keeping the water oxygenated and your biofilter alive is a bigger concern than tank temp. I also keep dwarf frogs and turtles, and I use to live more "in town" where our power was shut off pretty frequently whenever someone ran into a pole somewhere or construction was going on. The temps probably never dropped below the 50's range, but they all pulled through without any problems.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...