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Heaters

This is a discussion on Heaters within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> I'm new to the aquarium thing, I tried searching the site for anything on heaters but I couldn't find anything. What do i need ...

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Old 02-17-2011, 01:28 PM   #1
 
Heaters

I'm new to the aquarium thing, I tried searching the site for anything on heaters but I couldn't find anything.

What do i need to know about a heater before buying?
How do the heaters work, Some have a set temperature? Others how can you tell what temp you have set it at?
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Old 02-17-2011, 02:11 PM   #2
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SlimStretch View Post
I'm new to the aquarium thing, I tried searching the site for anything on heaters but I couldn't find anything.

What do i need to know about a heater before buying?
How do the heaters work, Some have a set temperature? Others how can you tell what temp you have set it at?
Generally you need about 3-5 watts per gallon. I don't care for the preset ones as they never seemed to keep the temp right. Look for an adjustable one which will have a knob with the temp settings on it. You'll need a separate thermometer such as the glass submersible ones like this PETCO Thermometer with Suction Cup at PETCO to check the temp of the tank. Often you'll find that the temp you set on the heater is off from what the thermometer reads. It seems a lot of heaters are like this so make sure you use a thermometer to confirm the temp. I like to place the heater near the outflow of the filter so the heat gets evenly distributed and place the thermometer in an opposite corner furthest away from the heater.

Nice features to look for on heaters are an indicator light so you know when the heater is operating and an auto shut-off that helps prevent heater failure if the water level drops below the heater (such as during water changes).

Hope this helped some.
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SlimStretch (02-17-2011)
Old 02-17-2011, 02:19 PM   #3
 
Yes it has helped. Are there heaters with a digital read out?

These are two i was looking at for my 10 gallon tanks and my 30 gallon tanks

Theo Submersible Heater
Visi Therm Submersible Heaters

And then for my 55 gallon.

Titanium Heaters
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Old 02-17-2011, 02:48 PM   #4
 
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As far as I know, there aren't any heaters with digital read out. You would have to buy a controller with digital read out which the heater would hook up to. These are very expensive and kind of overkill I think unless you have a saltwater/reef tank or something like that. There is a digital thermometer you can buy such as this Battery Operated Digital Thermometer
I've used them before and did find they were off by as much as 5 degrees F. They also get a bit flaky when the battery starts to get low. So I just use the good ole cheapo glass thermometers which have been very accurate.
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