Too hot! Too hot! - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 6 Old 05-20-2012, 04:35 PM Thread Starter
Too hot! Too hot!

My poor fish are cooking in this heat. I have both of my tanks upstairs (no room anywhere else in the house) and my betta's 4 Gal. is registering 85F on the thermometer. I thought maybe the heater was malfunctioning in the 4 Gal., but my 20 Gal. is reading 83F. So nope, it's just because they're hot like the rest of the house.

I don't know what to do to get the temps back down to a more healthy level.
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post #2 of 6 Old 05-20-2012, 06:11 PM
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From what I have read before 85 degrees doesn't seem that bad for a betta. I keep both my betta's in a tank that is about 83 degrees and they are doing great. I think over 85 would be too hot though.
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post #3 of 6 Old 05-20-2012, 06:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Stormfish View Post
I don't know what to do to get the temps back down to a more healthy level.
Some people will freeze bottles of water, and float them in the tank. You can also get a fan to blow across the top of the tank, but that requires leaving the lid open. If you've got $500 to spend you can get a chiller

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post #4 of 6 Old 05-20-2012, 07:05 PM
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This question is asked every summer. But the answer is the same.

Temperature variations occur in the wild and fish will generally adapt. If the daytime temperature in the room reaches 85F then the aquarium will be that warm too; while the larger the tank the longer it takes to warm, the average home aquarium will eventually heat up to the room.

It is better to leave this, than do something that results in up and down swings. The cold water/ice floating/water changes is not advisable, and these cause rapid temperature fluctuations that are stressful on fish. If it is really hot, opening the cover (but many fish will jump, so use caution), turning off the tank lights (if no live plants, leave the lights off; if plants, turn the lift off earlier in the day), and aiming a small fan across the surface can help. In the tank, increase water circulation (even add an airstone) to keep oxygen entering the water, since the warmer the water the less oxygen it can hold and fish have to work harder to get it. Overnight, the room will likely cool a bit, as will the tank with it.

Don't feed as much, even missing alternate days. It takes energy for fish to eat, and this adds to the sttress in high temperatures. Keep the fish as calm as possible. If they can just "chill out" under a plant leaf they will be better; just as we on hot days like to sit quietly in the shade.

I have all my tanks in a fishroom, and it will get well over 90F in the summer, in the room and the tanks. I now have a portable air conditioner in this room, that keeps it about 82F on hot days. But before I got this, the tanks were left alone and I never lost a fish. It will cool at night, so it is not the same as a constant too-high temperature.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If youre going to take it under your wing then youre responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

Last edited by Byron; 05-20-2012 at 07:07 PM.
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post #5 of 6 Old 05-20-2012, 07:07 PM
That temp is fine. Most of my fish are kept at 80-82 degrees.

.... I'm probably drunk.

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post #6 of 6 Old 05-20-2012, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
Whew! Good to know. Thanks for the responses, folks! If any of them seem stressed, I'll turn the lights off sooner (although the 20 Gal. is live-planted), and feed less. I already run airstones.
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