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How to deal with possible power outage

2080 Views 13 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Agent13
I have 3 freshwater aquariums at my office and I am worried that there will be a power outage after a snow storm and I won't be able to get there.

I have battery operated air stones to keep the water oxygenated that will only turn on when the power goes out. But my filters well drained and then when the power comes back on start to run dry. I don't know how to manage them should I not be able to get there.

I plan on wrapping the tanks with emergency blankets to prevent rapid heat loss. Is there anything else that I should do?

Thanks in advance
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You mean plastic plants?

Kidding. I do have live plants in all three tanks.

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that will keep the O2/CO2 in better check
a power outage for under a day should be fine for temperature
after that i'm sure you'd be itching to get to work to check on them, even if you had to walk

"if" there is a power outage, what do you think is the longest it would be out ?
have plants

The concern here is the temperature dropping and plants aren't going to keep the water warm. With the colder water, the fish's metabolisms slow down which means their requirement for food and oxygen also decreases. For the time it would take for the water to become hypoxic, the fish will be long dead.

Contrary to popular belief, plants are not the answer to everything :)

Neither is salt ;-)
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your right, plants won't do anything for temperatures
plants will help the O2/CO2 levels, that's about it
It takes a while for the O2/CO2 to become a problem in the event of a power outage. I've got a fish right now that's been in a tank with no filter (and no water changes) for a couple months. But my experience is with non planted tanks.
I don't see a power outage being longer than a day. No matter how bad the storm as I imagine I can get there. I check my tanks everyday including weekends. But say the power does go out for 4 hours there be a significant temperature drop that quickly?

In other words, how long without power before the temperature will become an issue? Even without power I don't imagine the room becoming colder than 50 degrees.

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4 hours you won't notice much difference at all
a day (unless the building is poorly insulated) the tank may feel it, but i doubt it would cause more than discomfort, ... i wouldn't expect any stress
When I lost power from hurricane sandy the temp dropped to 58 degrees by the second day.
I don't think you mentioned how large the tank is. We can probably do some fun math equations to figure out how quickly the temperature change based on initial temperature, room temperature, and amount of water. Maybe someone smart could come by ;D. If its not gonna be long and the building is not too cold, and the tanks are large, I'd think it would change temperature pretty slow. I think wrapping it with towels or other things you can think of that would "insulate" it would be a great idea!

And also, how will plants help? If the lights are our wont they produce CO2 as well as the fish?
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I lost power for almost 2 weeks after sandy. Only thing I had was a battery powered pump which became useless after the 1st few days due to batteries being impossible to find. I even went as far as running a 100 ft. extension chord from a power inverter in my car to my heater and filter for a few hours 1 day. My neighbors thought I was crazy cuz gas was scarce as well. After all that I only lost 1 angel fish cuz the outside temp dropped to 21 deg one night. I hope this gives you an idea of how long fish can survive in less than favorable conditions. Its amazing how farwe will go for our finned friends.
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My main concern would be lack of light and heat.

Hopefully the surrounding building will prevent rapid temperature drops which affect the fish before the power returns.

Light could be a factor but that would take IMHO days. and could be augmented by sunlight from windows and so on.

Either way I think you would be safe for a power outage less then a day or so.

my .02
If you think the building will get cold enough to stress the fish you could get a battery backed up outlet to plug the heaters into. I wouldn't worry too much but then again my home doesn't get too cold in a power out..
I believe places like office depot and office max carry them . Some are fairly expensive but I'm sure there are simple ones that aren't too bad. I'd look in any office supply store or online for one.
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