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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm petrified I'm going to have a power loss that will endanger my fish. I have a battery-powered air stone for each, but that doesn't seem like enough. I'm looking at gas and diesel-powered generators and extension cords just to the tanks (who needs lights?). It seems somewhat complicated to me (I'm very unmechanical). I can't seem to find a battery back-up (not temporary battery) but something that would last a bit and be able to be recharged. Any thoughts out there in handling power outages?
 

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Do you have power outages often ? If you're only without power for a short time the battery powered air stones should be fine. If you think you'd have days without power then you can either get a generator or maybe something that will use solar power.
 

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I've wondered about this myself. What about an Uninterable Power Supply for a computer? I use to be able to run my desktop P.C. for an hour or 2 with mine, and that took gobs more power than a few hob's or air pumps. I'd think they could run a couple pumps for a day or two (and it would be completely automatic). I've noticed my battery pumps don't pump nearly as much air as my regular ones.
 

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I went and bought a generator after I my power was out for about 2 days. About a year ago I was doing some remodeling and some how I tripped the power strip for the tank and didn't realize it untill the next morning. By that time I lost half my fish. It made me realize though the generator is only good if you know the power is out. Their to many times I am away from the house for 14-16 hours and if the power were to go out while I am not home the same thing could happen again. So as soon as I figure out what size battery back up I would want I am going to get one of those as well. So I guess what I am saying is it is good to have both. A battery back up and a generator is still alot cheaper then it would be to replace everything.
 

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I've had ups-es on my tanks. However all batteries are dead by now. They unfortunately don't last forever. Replacing the batteries was rater expensive so I did not do that. Recently we had an apache helicopter fly into our power grid which caused a two day blackout in a ceratin area... A ups would not cover that anyway. I am going to buy a generator. Can get a 2KV on for 200 euro...
 

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Just buy a car AC adapter and an extension cord. Last year we lost power for 8 hours. I used the AC adapter I bought to power my son's laptop during long trips. I plugged the adapter in the cigarette lighter and ran a 100ft extension cord to the basement. I kept one HOB running in four tanks. Every few hours I would start the car to change the battery. Didn't lose a single fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
VFC -- very interesting option. I'll look into that. One end goes into the cigarette lighter and the other end has a three prong plug for an extension cord?
 

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Last year we had a two day power outage in the middle of December. I was totally unprepared, but even with water temperatures in the mid 50s and no filtering, I only lost two fish (fry) out of 11 tanks. I know I was really lucky to have so few losses.

This year I am better prepared. We went out and bought a generator and recently had an electrician come out to do some work with the wiring. Now when the power goes off, which happens a lot around here, all I have to do is go out to the breaker box and turn the main power off, then turn on a switch that will power certain selected circuits, including the ones that my tanks run on. He installed a special outlet to the outside of the house where the generator will plug right in, so there will be no need to run extension cords all over the house. :thumb:
 

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If you're going to go the car adapter way you might be better off getting one that connects to your battery. I THINK you can usually get them to power more things than the ones that only plug into the cigarette outlet.

Here's an example. I'm not sure how much you'd want to spend or how much power you need for your tanks but this was the highest watt power inverter Home Depot had on their site.

http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/sto ... =100387890

 

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That's about the best method possible Aura. :thumb:

Until I get 'round to it..... :roll: ....I picked-up one of these

http://www.theinverterstore.com/the-inverter-store-product.php?model=pwrinv800w-top-rgb

And one of these:
http://www.derbycycles.com/cgi-bin/eShop/index.cgi?pid=2601

and a spare battery for my truck. The battery tender keeps the spare battery fully charged at all times. When the power goes out I plug my air pump into the inverter. If the outage was to last for a long time, I'd be able to switch batteries from truck to fishroom and recharge the fishroom battery by running the truck.
 

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Here's an option that's not cheap, but is still an option and may be cheaper than replacing fish. Runs on your natural gas supply and kicks in automatically if the power goes out. Depending on size, they'll handle 8 - 16 circuits, so added benefit of powering much of your house at the same time it's saving your fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you! These are great suggestions. I'm going to look at the gizmo that attaches directly to the battery. More expensive, but it should easily run three tank heaters and filters that way. I'll need a loooooong extension cord, though . . .

Is there anything that hooks directly to some sort of rechargeable battery that I can have in the house?
 

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I'm not sure how long a heavy duty truck battery would last running the tanks if it wasn't actually hooked up to a vehicle to recharge it. It would be expensive but you could buy a few batteries and just set them up in the house until the run out then recharge them. I'm not sure if that's a good idea though, but it is an idea.
 

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lead acid batteries that are found in cars or in a UPS generally are best for intermittent usage where the charge never drops below something like 75%. If you're completely draining the battery then recharging it and draining it again you'll end up with a battery that won't hold a charge pretty quickly. If you're going to run an inverter off of your car battery that's fine, but there's a good chance you'll need to buy a new battery afterward. It's your call, a battery is cheaper than a generator, but you can take a generator camping, or use it where an extension cord won't reach in the back yard, or run other appliances like your refridgerator when the power goes out. I don't live in a part of the country where a prolonged power outage is very common so I don't stress out about it too much. I have a UPS that I switched from the computer to aquarium when the power went out a few weeks ago, about the time I got everything connected the power came back on. If I was concerned about power outages I'd save the money for a generator instead of trying to save a dollar here or there and end up having to spend on a new car battery, pay for gas to run the car engine in the driveway to charge the battery (a generator needs gas but will use much less,) replace the food in the fridge along with whatever other losses I may suffer. An approprately sized generator will let you heat water, cook meals, and do many of the other day to day things you'd normally do, a battery and an inverter will do all that but only for a very short amount of time.
 

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Try this, Someone else posted asking the same question but I cant seem to find the thread.
1) Inverter/charger
http://www.topsalesdepot.com/1000.html
2) Dry Cell Deep Cycle Battery
http://www.1st-optima-batteries.com/opt ... ations.asp

The 2nd link also shows you how to determine the size battery you'll need. It's really very simple. The inverter/charger is plugged into your AC wall outlet and your filter heater are plugged into the inverter/charger. The Battery is also hooked up to your inverter/charger But while the power is on the filter and heater run off the AC power then when power goes out it switches to the Battery. When the power Comes back on your Filter and heater switch back over to AC power and the I/C charges the Battery or Batteries back up for the next power outage. Here is the important part tho. The battery has to be a Dry Cell battery. Normal lead acid car batteries gas off hydrogen sulfide which you don't want inside your home. Its a little pricey but If you have a lot invested in your fish then its also a good investment.
 

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5 gallons of gas and a 1000w portable Honda runs the entire tank (including lights, and heat), the 'fridge, and a table lamp for approx. 24 hrs. 5g's of gas a day.
Add gas ~every four hours and have no dead fish or spoiled food as long as the gas station has power. I not drive 'till you find one that does.
Inverters work, (still use gas to keep the car batt. charged, and the car may need gas = no power to the tank while refilling the car).
UPS's sort of work in a minimal "survival mode", but go dead like the car battery if not re-charged), and, to me, these are PITA's.
Dollar for dollar in the long run, and maybe in the initial setup cost as well, a generator is the most cost effective, easiest to use/maintain, option available for running an aquarium, and other things, in the event of a prolonged outage.
Though I've not checked prices, I'd venture to say a UPS or inverter large enough to run the entire tank (everything included) for 4 hours is gonna cost a **** of lot more than a three dollar gallon of gas and the price of a 1000W generator.
The generator never needs new batteries, only maybe a cheap spark plug and quart of oil every year. Plug in the 'fridge, or a lamp to either a UPS or inverter, and listen for for dreaded "over current" alarm.
Unless you want to surf with the computer while the tank slowly dies, and the food slowly spoils, buy a generator, It's more than worth it. Been the other routes, won't go back.
 

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Yellow-Cichlid said:
I was just doing some research and found that supposedly Marine batteries last longer (Boat batteries).
They might, depending on the amp/hour rating, but they still discharge during use and need recharging by some means.
Living a block from a hospital means really nothing either, as they most always have huge diesel back-up generators to run essential epuip. for days on end 24/7, as well as a predfined re-fuel schedule.
 
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