11-21-2009, 03:53 AM
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A 200 watt is enough for a 55 gallon tank if its in the house or somewhere that has fairly constant heat. The higher above the room temprture the tank needs to be the more power that will be needed.
So if your home has central air that keeps it at a constant 72*F then your only raising your tank temperature a few degrees. In which case the 200Watt is great.
If however your tanks are in a area that sees larger temperature swings or you don't have constant heat in the area, such as a wood stove, then more power may be needed to deal with the lower temperatures. If it were to drop to 60-65 in the room you'd be trying to raise the tank temperature by 10-20 degrees. It takes a LOT of energy to heat water. So keep that in mind. If this is the case you'd probably be safer with a good quality 300 Watt.
These are things I've learned and things I've read. Just something to think about. I use a 200 Watt on my 55 and stays very consistent temperature.