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[APD] acceptable temperature range

I have recently gotten back into the hobby, after a hiatus of about 10
years (Hi George, I visited you in Loveland while I was going to CU...
remember? I didn't think so...). This time around I've had the financial
ability to do everything "right", and it seems to be going well. I've
been enjoying the list for several weeks now, and I thought I would jump


My tank setup, in short, is a 265 gallon, 84x24x30" high. I have three
250w HQI lamps, using electronic ballast and AquaLine 5000k bulbs. I'm
running an AquaMedic CO2 reactor with a Milwaukee controller. I built a
twin-tower wet/dry filter and am using apx. 40l of Hydroton clay
hydroponic pellets. Above the pellets is a tray with replaceable
Marineland filter pads. I'm using an Iwaki pump, rated at about 1200gph
(probably more like 900 with head). I also have the largest Dupla
heating coil in the gravel substrate (1-4mm river gravel, with
laterite), running off a homemade transformer. As I will explain in a
minute, this is not turning on much.


I had some hair, thread, beard and BG algae issues at first (whew), but
those are under control. I received some of Greg Watson's PMDD supplies
a few days ago (shameless plug: great service, superfast shipping, and
unbelievably low prices), and that seems to have helped a lot. 


Anyway, enough background info, and on to my real question. I live in
South Florida now, in an air conditioned house. The a/c is set to keep
the house at 79 degrees or below, but the tank has stabilized at between
82 at night and 84 or even 85 during the day. That is according to my
temp. controller; the Tetra stick-on thermometer even indicates 1-2
degrees higher. I am planning on having discus in this tank, when I have
enough shade cover built up for them, but I also have some dwarf
cichlids, 75 neons, and assorted housekeepers. Will this temperature
work long-term? I tried to select plants that were suitable at higher
temps., but the reality is that I'm several degrees over what I thought
I would be. Between the lamp ballasts and the Iwaki pump, the inside of
my enclosed base is quite warm. 


Do I need to bite the bullet and get a chiller? From the size of the
tank, I think I'm looking at $800+. Worse, I don't think I can put the
chiller in a completely enclosed base, and my wife won't like it humming
there next to the tank. 


The fish and the plants all seem happy, but the tank has only been up
for six weeks or so. I guess I would feel more comfortable at 80-82
degrees. Am I heading for trouble, or am I worrying too much? 







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