12-15-2010, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by kaythenewbie
Today I was doing a weekly water change. I changed about 50% of the water. As I was filling up the buckets with fresh water for my tank, I heard a weird sizzling noise. I looked and my heater was sizzling. It also had melted the plastic plant next to it. It burned my hands to touch it.
It's a 100 watt Aqueon heater. I have a 20 gallon long tank kept at 78 degrees F. The heater is about 5 months old. Does it need to be replaced? Or did it just overheat since there was so little water in my tank? I've never had any problems with it before.
Also, does anyone know how the melted plastic will affect my fish? I have 5 glowlight tetra, 4 black phantom tetra, 3 otos, 1 dwarf gourami, 2 ADFs, and 5 ghost shrimp in the tank.
Throw it out. I don't think this is the fault of the heater though. Unless your heater specifically says it has a auto shutoff when removed from the water you NEED to unplug it when doing a water chage. It says this in the instructions. The room is colder then the tank thus the need for the heater it will keep heating out of the water because its colder. A heaters design requires it to be in the water when heating because water absorbs heat quite well and functions to cool the heater. You let it run out of the water and in the case of the plastic ones they tend to melt. The glass ones get really hot and can shatter when but back in the water. You need a new heater and you need to unplug it during water changes. I personally would unplug even the heaters that are suppose to auto turn off out of the water. It takes all of 10 seconds. Posted via Mobile Device