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RE: Water Temperature Problems

You need to:

- move the balast from under the hood, either on top of the hood (not
pretty) or into the stand. Requires running two or four wires to each tube,
depending on the type of the tube;

- switch over to an electronic balast (spend $ on the balast, save $$$ on
the power bill);

- install a small fan (like the one in PC power supplies or CPU coolers)
blowing along the fluorescent tubes. Requires cutting a hole in the canopy
and finding a 5VDC or 12VDC power supply, alternatively find a 110V fan in
Radio Shack;

I reduced the overheating from 85F to 80F just by moving the balast into the
stand. That required running 17 wires from my fixture (four tubes x four
wires + ground), but the result was great. The wires must be good quality
stranded, 18GA is thick enough. I actually used a two wire 18GA power cord
from Home Depot. The wires are soft and have double insulation. This is
importand as they bend every time I open the canopy. Also, I used a series
of outlet/plug sets to connect the canopy lights to the balasts under the
tank so that I can take the canopy off without cutting any wires or dragging
the balast from under the tank.

My setup: 75 gal tank, 4x40W tubes, full canopy (oak board, home made), the
fixture with the tubes is attached to the cover of the canopy (the lamps
lift with the top of the canopy), glass covers on the tank, 1/2" distance
between the lamps and the glass covers.

As always, ymmv.

Slawomir Janicki
janicki1 at earthlink_net

-----Original Message-----

Date: Sun, 19 Mar 2000 02:48:10 -0800
From: gordon.woodward at db_com
Subject: Water Temperature Problems

While doing some routine maintenance of my Aquarium this weekend,
I decided to test the temperature of my water using a professional
digital thermometer that my Brother-In-Law owns. Much to my shock
and anquish I discovered that my water temperature was at 28deg
Celcius (approx 82 deg Fahrenheit), 3 degrees above my desired

I quickly turned off the lights and was in a panic on what to
do to ease the problem (I was wondering why my fish were acting
a little jittery). After switching off the lights I removed a
small amount of water to lower the level away from the glass
cover (and further away from the lights). I have also reduced
the temperature controller for my substrate heating cables to
22deg celcius and I'll be monitoring what happens with my water
temperature over night.

Obviously it is my lights that are causing this overheating dilemma
but my next problem is how to keep the temperature at a steady
25deg celcius? Anyone got any advice?

My tank is 4ft x 18in x 18in (250 ltrs) and the water level is
at about 1cm (now 2cm since I removed some water) below the top
of the tank. The lighting used is 3 x 4ft Triton Fluorescent
which are mounted in lighting hoods sitting on top of the tank
and are run for 10hrs/day. Glass covers cover the top of the
tank and the lighting fixtures are placed on top of them. Enclosing
the tank is a hood which is(lighting fixtures are kept underneath
this) which is fully opened at the rear to allow pipes and cables
to be fed through and also to allow heat to escape. When the
lights have been on for a while the glass covers do get awefully
warm, do I have the water level to high which is resulting in
the lights heating the water? Also, the glass tank covers fully
enclose the entire top of the tank and only have some small corner
pieces taken out to allow tubes and cables to be fed into the



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Date: Mon, 20 Mar 2000 12:11:53 +1000
From: gordon.woodward at db_com
Subject: Aquarium Overheating Problem

I'm currently having a problem with my Aquarium overheating, this is being
by the Aquarium lights when they are on during the day. I only managed to
discover this problem when I was testing out a new industrial digital
thermometer that I borrowed from my father, the tempertature it reported was
28deg celc. which is 3 degrees above my desired temperature. I was a little
annoyed that the thermometer I got from the LFS was not working properly

Anyway, my dilemma now is trying to get the water temperature back down to a
steady 25deg celc. with the lights turned on or off. Here are the details
for my

Tank:          120cm (4ft) x 46cm (18in) x 46cm (18in)
Heating:  Dupla 500 Substrate Heating Cables set to 25deg celc via
Cover:         Full glass cover lids placed over the top of the tank
Lighting: 3 x Triton 36W Fluororescent bulbs mounted in two reflector hoods
& x1) and seated on top of the glass lids.
Hood:          A nearly fully enclosed lamenated wooden Aquarium Hood that
the rear panel missing to allow pipes and cables to be feed through and also
     to allow ventilation to dissipate heat.

The lights are on for 10hrs a day and when they are on, the glass tank lids
rather warm from the heat given off by the tubes during the day. My tanks
level is 1cm from the top edge of the tank, this might be a little too high
the tank (not enough airspace between the water surface and the glass
lids?). I
was monitoring the temperature of the tank over night when the lights were
it dropped by 1.2degs overnight. I have also reduce the temperature setting
my heating coils down to 22deg celc. The whole aquarium back is about 4in
from a wall.

What do people suggest I do to correct this problem? Do I need to lower the
water level in the tank? Should I be look at screwing the lighting reflector
hoods to the underside of the main Aquarium hood to allow more airspace
the lights and the glass lids (allowing the air to circulate better)? I
prefer not to do this as it will make it hard to remove the hood when I wish
do a lot of maintenance inside the tank.

Thanks for the help,


(Mmm..and I was wondering why my fish were acting a little skitterish)