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This is a discussion on heaters within the Freshwater Aquarium Equipment forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> are heaters supposed to fluctuate as much as they do this is my 2nd one now (petsmart) & they both went to nice tropical ...

Old 12-06-2012, 08:46 AM   #1

are heaters supposed to fluctuate as much as they do
this is my 2nd one now (petsmart) & they both went to nice tropical temps & then they can go down to....to cold I would think for the fish (mb 60's)
I have a 46 g tank & the heater is the right size (rated for over 100 gal)
I thought they should have a steady warmth to them?

1 more thing...are silver dollars & angel fish more susceptible or sensitive than others.
I think I just had a eurekai thought u r allowed 1 fish per 1 galllon so I had about 20 ass't fish (tetras, danios, platy's, guppies,guoramis, etc)& added some molly's & swordtails, but the 2 dollars didnt make it ( they were so neat)
but its actually 1" of fish per gallon (roughly) so I calcuated it & yeah I guess I was overstocking - I had fish die (angels, etc.)before...its been good for a month or 2 now (finally I thought I may be getting the hang of it) until these new additions (6 more)

I do regular changes every wk or 2 - 20-30% add water conditioner, clean the fluval 405 occasionially, only feed them 1-2 times a day (pinches)
the water seems ok... slightly high in alkilinity (prolly due to overstocking or high chlorine content)
I am new, mb 8 mos now (hanging in there)
now I see why they say that 80% of new people drop out within the 1st year....its frustrating sometimes

thnx, Dan
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:07 AM   #2
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Hello and Welcome.

Heaters are either 100% on, or 100% off. There is no inbetween, so yes they must cycle on and off or else you will eventually have boiling water (not quite, but in the 100's). Look at your thermometer, it should be pretty steady, within ~1 degree throughout the day.

As for fish, yes they are and you have quite the assortment of fish which do have compatability problems. First step would be to look over the profiles here, second link on the blue bar at the top of the page. All the fish you have are in there. Angelfish that you see mostly in stores would be under Scalare Angelfish (if you type the name exactly as it is shown in the profile, it will turn blue in your posts and you can click on that to view the profile).

The 1" per gallon guidline is not something you want to follow, not all fish are created equal. There are fat fish, and skinny fish, and they'll produce very different levels of waste. It can get you in the ballpark usually, but some things like a Pleco will throw it completely out the window.

I would increase your water changes to at least 33%, but up to 50% each week. Especially if you do not have live plants, and closer to 50% if you're overstocked. Do you have Ammonia, Nitrite, and Nitrate test kits? You want Ammonia and Nitrite to always be 0 ppm, Nitrates should be ~20 ppm or less (with less being much better).
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