I don't think a hot tub is good for my fish!
Hahahaha.... ok here is the question. I live in Phoenix AZ. It kinda gets hot here. For some reason I can't seem to get my tank below 80 right now. My fish are looking lethargic. I need a good way to cool my tank down daily, or nightly. I really don't want to spend a bunch of money on a refrigeration unit. I keep the temp in my house around 78 during the day. 76 at night.
I need a low tech solution.
Any ideas?? Or is this ok??
Byron had said that it is a good idea to lower the tanks temp a couple of degrees when doing my water changes..... BUT HOW?!?!?
Instead of heating the water up to tank temperature when performing a water change, run it slightly colder but NOT cold as this could shock the fish and kill it.
Another solution is to put a fan near the tank blowing mainly at the top, this will keep some of the hot air away.
Also have a look here as well if the temperature is going to be a constant problem, an investment in an aquarium fan may be necessary.
Put ice in the tank! Water change with cooler water!
BAD IDEA. This can stress the fish and potentially kill it.
I have a tank that I have to keep cooler in the summer, too. I make sure to have the tops open to facilitate evaporative cooling, and I have a fan on in that room at all times. Doing water changes with slightly cooler water also helps. It might also induce some fish to spawn as it simulates rainfall.
If it really gets to be a problem, there are DIY refrigeration units you can make using an old water fountain. Maybe if you have a buddy who is really handy, you could ask for his help.
I'm sure that in Phoenix you have central (or some) air conditioning. If your house is 78 during the day and 76 at night, the tank should never be more than 78. I'm not sure how you're seeing 80 in the tank?
I agree with those who advise not to keep fluctuating the temperature with ice and water changes.
During the summer, admittedly not as hot here in Vancouver for so long as it would be in Arizona, my fish room never gets below 80F in the day so naturally (as AD said) the tanks will be the same. I have a portable air conditioner that keeps that room no higher than 80F. The fish will manage, and it does cool down a bit at night of course.
There is more variation in the tropical regions with respect to temperature and pH of the water than many realize. But the changes are not sudden (like the water change/ice issue would be). For the short term the fish adapt. They will have a higher rate of physiological activity of course, requiring more oxygen, so other considerations should be taken into account: don't feed as often, ensure a stress-free environment (no shocks to the fish), etc. No new arrivals to risk disease that will highly stress the fish. Ensure good water circulation and surface disturbance can be increased to keep oxygen in the water.
In other words, just as humans like to do on hot days, take it easy sitting in the shade with a cool drink. In fish terms, leave them alone rather than making them work even harder when they are already having difficulty just maintaining their equilibrium.
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