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Old 05/08/2017, 03:01 PM   #1
tkeracer619
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Yes... Another heater thread... ISO Suggestions

I'm in the process of installing a 600gal SPS tank in my home. With this build comes a dedicated filtration and fish room. I breed BTA anemones and am moving from a system that shares water filtration to 7 independent systems. Reason being is that some of the BTAs I have do not play well together. 6 of those systems are 20L tanks that I will convert into all-in-one setups. I have had a tester system running for about a year and like the setup except for one thing... The heaters I have always used are Jagers but they don't make one that fits in the tiny sump compartment

Here is the setup as it stands now...


I just realized I don't have a pic of my test setup but will post one later. Essentially the right side is chambered off so that I can fit a return pump (eheim compact 1000) that also provides flow to the tank, float switches for the ATO, bio media, media bag, heater, and a skimmer (I've been using a SCA301 with success.) It's a simple setup that is designed to be friendly to nems and easy for me to maintain.

Each tank will have a temp controller installed before livestock is added but I would like to get some heaters installed sooner than later to give them a test run without the temp controller.

There isn't a lot of room to work with here (7x6.5x1) so they can go vertical if shorter than 6.5 or horizontal if shorter than 7. I am considering the 50w Aqueon Preset heaters but they seem rather cheep compared to the Aqueon Pro or Ehiem. I don't mind spending good money for these. Cobalt brand heaters are not an option. I'm looking for reliable brands that have 50w heaters shorter than 7 inches. They can be up to an inch thick and still leave room for the skimmer.

Most all of my experience in this hobby involves tanks between 150gal and 1500gal so this has never been an issue, thus, I come to you Nano folks! I hear you are a crafty group of reefers ! Any suggestions?


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Hobby Experience: 9200ish gallons, 26 skimmers, and a handful of Kent Scrapers.
Current Tank:
Vortech Powered 600G SPS Tank w/ 100gal frag tank & 100g Sump. RK2-RK10 Skimmer. ReefAngel. Radium 20k.

Last edited by tkeracer619; 05/08/2017 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 05/11/2017, 03:37 PM   #2
ReefWreak
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You're an advanced hobbyist, so you probably know more about nano heaters than most of the folks around here...

Looking at the standard F&S and MarineDepot, I'm seeing the Hydor Theo (currently on sale on F&S) that fit your size range for 50w, and that's about it. None of the other brands make shorter heaters, they're all the long glass or titanium tubes, but they're also 10" or longer.

I know you don't want to hear it, but I've been using cobalt neo therm heaters for the 2.5 years my tank has been up without any hiccups. The main heater is in my nano tank on a ReefKeeper controller, and the other is used for water change water. So far, so good with both. Sorry you had a bad experience (or have seen bad experiences). Excluding them, I don't think there are any other options I'd even consider having in my tank that meet your size requirements (I'm sure there's some really ghetto chinese knockoff of a knockoff of a knockoff on ebay, but I wouldn't bother with that).

Good luck, that's a really cool RBTA breeding setup you're building!


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Old 05/11/2017, 03:53 PM   #3
tkeracer619
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Thanks . It's going to be a great setup (I hope). The tanks are very low maintenance utilizing water changes for nutrient export until I need skimmers.

I'm just cautious about using plastic heaters. I found out the Aqueon presets are made with a plastic tube as well so they were ruled out. I did however end up ordering 6 LifeGard (they've been around forever) Preset heaters. They use a glass tube and are sized just right in the 50w range. Will update this post once I see how they do!


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Hobby Experience: 9200ish gallons, 26 skimmers, and a handful of Kent Scrapers.
Current Tank:
Vortech Powered 600G SPS Tank w/ 100gal frag tank & 100g Sump. RK2-RK10 Skimmer. ReefAngel. Radium 20k.

Last edited by tkeracer619; 05/11/2017 at 04:03 PM.
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Old 04/18/2018, 12:28 AM   #4
stuccodude
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i have two heater tubes in the sump, still feels cool, if i put a third in and it touches one of the others is that okay? im asking cos my husband is outta town and he usually does things to the tank, i just don't want our fish to freeze, any advice would help


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Old 04/18/2018, 11:18 AM   #5
tkeracer619
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What temperature is your tank now? It's ok if they touch. Not ideal but shouldn't really be an issue.

Just let us know the temperature because it's probably better if the tank is a little cool than too hot.


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Hobby Experience: 9200ish gallons, 26 skimmers, and a handful of Kent Scrapers.
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Vortech Powered 600G SPS Tank w/ 100gal frag tank & 100g Sump. RK2-RK10 Skimmer. ReefAngel. Radium 20k.
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Old 04/18/2018, 11:19 AM   #6
tkeracer619
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Also... updating this thread.

These lifegard heaters pretty much suck. I've had a 33% failure rate in the few months I've run them.


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Hobby Experience: 9200ish gallons, 26 skimmers, and a handful of Kent Scrapers.
Current Tank:
Vortech Powered 600G SPS Tank w/ 100gal frag tank & 100g Sump. RK2-RK10 Skimmer. ReefAngel. Radium 20k.
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Old 10/09/2018, 01:05 AM   #7
tkeracer619
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkeracer619 View Post
Also... updating this thread.

These lifegard heaters pretty much suck. I've had a 33% failure rate in the few months I've run them.
Update confirming that these lifegard heaters suck. 4 out of 6 of these heaters have failed, at least they all failed in the off state. I sent lifegard an email, they wanted me to mail it back. I get it but shipping would be about 1/3 the price of another brand heater and at this point I didn't want their product in my tanks so I just trashed them and went with the little aqueon heaters. So far so good...

BTW: Here is what they looked like once wet. They didn't do so well the first go round with all the artificial structures I had used so this time around I went with live rock and each system has an auto water change system. I needed to reduce maintenance on them.


Each tank is obviously a little different but this is what they ended up looking like in their current form...



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Hobby Experience: 9200ish gallons, 26 skimmers, and a handful of Kent Scrapers.
Current Tank:
Vortech Powered 600G SPS Tank w/ 100gal frag tank & 100g Sump. RK2-RK10 Skimmer. ReefAngel. Radium 20k.

Last edited by tkeracer619; 10/09/2018 at 01:14 AM.
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Old 10/10/2018, 05:15 AM   #8
homer1475
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In my QT, and FW tanks I use those cheapy heater from walmart(forget the manufacturer. Think they might be pennplax or something similar). Whats nice about them is they are plug in and forget about them. They are preset for about 78 degrees.



I have had one in my fresh tank for about 6 years now with 0 issues. Might be something to consider as at least for me they have been rock solid. Sometimes cheap isn't always bad in this hobby.


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Old 10/17/2018, 12:08 PM   #9
E.intheC
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Bulk Reef Supply has a great heater video on YouTube.

I have stuck with Eheim heaters for the most part but they’re pretty big.

Regardless of brand I always recommend buying new heaters yearly (or every other year) as they’re one of the least reliable and problematic pieces of reef gear.


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