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SPS Dying help! (A Explanation & Lesson)

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sanddune600 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sanddune600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 26 2010 at 12:43am
GET A GFI I cant stress these enough they should be the first thing to get on a tank not having them causes fires I build mine into my stand that way if I move the stand I move the GFI
Andy Jorgensen
My number is four three 5 7 six four 8 0 three four
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sanddune600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 26 2010 at 12:46am
Originally posted by Mark Peterson Mark Peterson wrote:


That's a good question.In my experience the benefit of running our tanks at lower temperature is that less bad things can happen and if some problem does develop, it happens slower, giving the hobbyist time to correct and avoid a major catastrophe. Because of limitations on gas exchange, our tanks are not like the ocean which is constantly moving and moving a lot.ShockedRecognizing that a lot more oxygen can stay dissolved in water at 75 than at 81 degrees, means that life can do much better in a cooler tank. I have seen the figures somewhere in the past. If I recall correctly, it seems like water contained as much as 25% more oxygen by just dropping the temperature from 81 to 75.With hotter water, flow becomes more critical. If the water is always at 80+, when a mishap occurs and the flow stops, the life almost immediately suffocates. In a 70-75 degree environment the same mishap may not even lead to suffocation. I've seen tanks of all types of coral and fish in 70-75 degree water survive more than a day when the power went out. The life we keep can withstand 65-80 degrees with little problem. I have to say that in Hawaii I was surprised and pleased to find that the water was at ~74 degrees. There were warm pockets of up to around 82 degree water that flowed by in the surf zone and upwellings were around 70.It's also important to realize that all it takes is for a few temporarily bad water parameters to simultaneously combine and our little piece of the ocean is in serious jeopardy. I would not risk allowing my tanks to stay above 80 degrees.For what it's worth. Smile


this is all very true I dont suggest running tanks on the high temps my only point is higher temps arent murder its swings and in this case ele. in the tank my new tank has been from 85 to 74 this has been resolved and I now maintain a desired 77-79
Andy Jorgensen
My number is four three 5 7 six four 8 0 three four
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Mark Peterson View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 26 2010 at 9:39am
<EDIT>I wrote the stuff below before I saw the previous page and the real reason. ShockedOuch That looks like a faulty connection. This would mean there was arcing/sparking between the UV plug and the power strip receptacle. This caused the plastic holding the electrical contacts to melt, allowing a complete short circuit which tripped the house electrical breaker <EDIT>

That's certainly true as well. Thanks for adding that about temperature swings.

And I should add that if a GFI/GFCI is used, it should be used in combination with a grounding probe plugged into the same circuit. We recently saw here that a GFCI did not do it's job, possibly because a grounding probe was missing. Ouch

Unless I have pumps on two different house circuits, I don't use a GFCI and grounding probe because I don't want the pumps to shut down. There are more stories here on this MB about pumps shutting down and creating problems than there are for electrified reefs.Wink

When I've had incidents nothing bad happened because the electricity had nowhere to go and the water kept flowing. I am in the habit of poking my finger in the water as I walk by the tank. This is my check to see if there is an electricity problem. Then I look around the tank to see what's going on. If nothing can be seen, there is an easy method for isolating and finding the cause of the extra electricity.


Edited by Mark Peterson - August 26 2010 at 10:44am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 26 2010 at 10:08am
This is very important for everyone to note. When plugging into any electrical socket, watch for the following:

1. Loose connection. The metal prongs in the outlet are supposed to be tight to make a good connection. If they are not tight and it is too easy to plug in, there is a fault that could cause arcing/sparking which leads to melting and short circuit causing the breaker to trip which cuts power to the aquarium. In extreme instances, fires have started this way.
2. Strange smell. Electrical arcing/sparking creates Ozone which smells like the air after a good thunderstorm. If you smell this around the electrical outlets, there is a problem. As the arcing gets more serious it creates heat just like a Welder. This heat melts metal and plastic. Melting metal, melting plastic and burning plastic each have peculiar smells which if noticed, must be addressed immediately.
3. Strange sound. Electrical arcing/sparking has a distinctive buzzing or crackling sound. After a plug is inserted, if a funny sound is heard, there is a problem. Some outlet connections are okay at first but may be just loose enough that when they get bumped they start to arc. The effective test of the connection is to listen carefully while wiggling the inserted plug. If any buzzing/cracking sound is heard or if the electrical unit seems to flash or stop intermittently, there is a problem.
4. Power Strips. The fancy power strips are not worth the extra expense. They have no advantage over the ordinary lowest cost power strips. Extra features do not benefit our aquarium.
5. Mounting. All electrical connections should be mounted off the floor and away from water overflow routes. They may be fixed or hung vertically and upside down to the back or underside of the stand. Mounting vertically and away from where water could drip into them reduces the risk of a slow short circuit and or fire caused by saltwater around the metal contacts.
6. Make a friend. Get to know or just ask a knowledgeable hobbyist that can come check on your valuable aquarium while you are away.
Feeding is not necessary.
Knowledgeable checking is absolutely indispensable.

The hobbyist can come by every 2 days or so to be sure that everything is running correctly and looking good. A neighbor or family member that has little or no experience in the hobby is not good enough. If you just met the knowledgeable hobbyist and don't know if you can trust him or her, that's okay. Don't give them a key. Have them go with your neighbor or family member present.
Some people have webcams and internet access/control of their tank. This is great but there is still no substitute for the occasional checking by a real person that knows reef aquariums.

Hope this helps. Smile


Edited by Mark Peterson - August 26 2010 at 10:42am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bur01014 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 26 2010 at 11:37am
the biggest problem.....everything was fine....until the vacation!!  Why couldn't this have happened when I was at home?  Anyways, this stresses to me, no matter how self-sufficient your setup maybe (auto top off, auto feeders, etc.)  always have someone lined up to check on your tank periodically while you are away from home, furthermore, get fire and water damage insurance Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sanddune600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 26 2010 at 5:57pm
I guess getting a gfi is up to the user but I would rather see my tank die before coming home to ashes this could have been alot worse being away from home if it would have started a fire there is a better chance that the house would have been a total loss before the fire was put out not to mention that currents in your tank can kill you
Andy Jorgensen
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark Peterson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 27 2010 at 9:41am
Actually the current that can flow through all that saltwater will give you a buzz, or if you are standing barefoot on a wet cement floor could give you a good shock, but is not going to kill you.

It's very useful not to be afraid of electricity, but to understand and respect it. The correct knowledge will make your aquarium experience much more enjoyable.
Reefkeeping Tips, & quick, easy setup tricks:
www.utahreefs.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=9244
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