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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My power went out the other day for around 2 hours or so and, I scrAmbled to get battery operated air pumps running for 13 tanks. They estimated the time being around 6 hours till power was restored. I was lucky and it came back on after two. I don't want to get a generator I live in an Apartment and gas is thru the roof anyways. Is there a way to mod the battery powered diaphragm air pumps to run off dry cell batteries? My idea is to put back UPS under each tank so when power goes out I can hook up the tubes to the back ups and turn them on. Has anybody got any ideas. Looking for a relatively cheap solution.
 

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THis is why I have a generator. My power was out for 5 days a few winters ago due to mSsive I e damage. I like being prepared. You could get a good power inverter and a car battery or two toe run your pumps. They should run for quite a while on a setup like this and it's fairly cheap to maintain. :wink:
 

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If you dont want to go with the generator route, then I would also do the inverter and car battery thing. Only thing is if they die, you will have to hook them up to your car with jumpers to charge or a battery charger on a generator.

Considering finding a cheap generator myself just for that type of occasion. Only would have to use it once every couple years so its not like you will be buying gas for it constantly, besides it would be nice to have laying around for various other jobs.
 

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Being in Florida, also with 13 tanks, I bought a large air pump, .....

$50.00, shipped, eBay. 40L/min. To buy enough bubblers would exceed that, I think.

...and this runs 9 out of 13. They all have a HOB as primaary filter, and sponges there for backup. A car battery and a small inverter run it for two days, just fine. Perhaps a small solar panel of 45watts or less(airpump uses 20watts) could act as a recharger.
Hope this helps.
 

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An old car or marine battery and a power inverter is all you will need to keep your back up air pumps running... no need to get 12 volt specific air pumps as these will not last nearly as long and buying all those alkaline batteries will become expensive over time.

A power inverter will allow you to use your regular 110 volt AC air pumps during the power outage.

Another great thing is that it will not give you any of the fumes and noise that a gas generator will.
 

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TIP: When researching my wind turbine, I found that golf courses often have tons of old golf-cart batteries they don't know what to do with, and they are usually still viable, just throw a trickle charge on them for a couple of days, they work out just fine, and cheap or FREE!!
 

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Ya know, I've had power go out 2x in the past few years. Both times in the dead of winter, even in VA it gets below 30. Once for 4 days, once for 3 days. The first time I was away, by the time I got home the power was on. I lost -0- fish, not even my discus. The second time I did loose all by rummy nose and a few cory's. But my rainbows, cpd's, angels, were all alive. We have looked at whole house generators, but we can't justify the $$$ as in 16 years in this house, those are the only 2x my power went out for more than a few hours.
 

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Coleman makes really small, portable gas generators you can pick up in one hand with a handle, they look like a fat suitcase. If you live in an apartment and don't think you'll use it for anything else, those are great. I see them on craigslist all the time for $20, and they are around $100 brand new. They have 2 110V outlets (or one outlet with two sockets, however you wanna look at it) with plenty of power for bubblers, and filters, and maybe even your refrigerator (The gallon or two of gas you'll burn isn't nearly as expensive as a weeks worth or more of food, especially if your like me and like to buy bulk!)

The only thing about the small ones is they tend to have run times of less than 4 hours, so you've gotta keep topping them off, but we're talking about something that MIGHT happen every couple of years. These small generators are smaller and lighter than the car batteries, and while they can't run inside like a battery/inverter setup, if you have a porch your good, and they are very quiet, you shouldn't get too many complaints.

-John
 

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If you are using an inverter, a marine battery will hold up to this use better than a car battery. If you can get golf cart batteries free, go for it of course!

I picked up a used salt tank for my cousin. It had several computer power supplies with it to back up essential power to the tank. It seems like a good idea as long as you don't try to run the lights, heaters or other high power consumption equipment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks everyone for the helpful responses . My power goes out many times during the year. Living near the bay and hurricane seasons don't mix to well with power here. Plus we have a bunch of drunk divers around here who tend to crash into power poles and transformers :? . I have lost power for 8 days during hurricane Isabel. I will not be running light, filters, or heaters for this purpose. Just looking to agitate the surface to keep an ample amount of oxygen in the tanks. Wc are no problem. I have not lost water in Va the last 18 years I have been here. I will check out the golf courses for the batteries. Maybe that will be my best option. I was looking at powering with drycells but seems to be a way more expensive setup for all 13 tanks.
 
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