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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

They are calling for some nasty weather in my area, thunderstorm snows, blizzard conditions, and most importantly, up to 4" of ICE accumulation, BEFORE the two feet of snow. Here's the problem, I'm told that 1/4" of ice weighs 500 pounds on a power line, well, what's 4" gonna do? We had about HALF that ice back in 2006, and I was out of power for 12 days. We had a generator then, we don't now.

My question is, what are some solutions for long (or even short)-term power loss? I have a 75 gallon Lake Malawi tank, and a 29 gallon fry tank. Budget constraints won't allow me to pick up a generator or a UPS (besides, wouldn't a UPS only give me an hour or so?) And as you can imagine, anyone I know who owns a generator, will be using it.

They are also in what will be the coldest part of the house. If we lose power, it will be wood heat only, which is clear on the other side of the house. I will also be unable to do water changes, despite the fact that there will be no hot water, I use a private well, those things take electricity as well.

Additionally, what would be a reasonable timeline before it would become an emergency situation? How long could a tank like this survive without electricity? My girlfriend has a 10 gallon housed at her house, she was out of power for two days in the summer, but it's a heavily planted tank, I told her to open the blinds and let as much sunlight in as possible. I don't have that luxury of plants to take care of waste and oxygen, I have none at all!

I look forward to anyones input. I'm hoping the outage is short if at all, but the madness around here has me fearing for the worst. (The three nearest grocery stores have no bread, canned food / hot dogs, that sort of stuff is going like crazy. My girlfriend part-times at a grocery store nearby when she doesn't have class, she was there tonight and her checkout line was all the way to the back wall. The local news said this will be the worst storm we've had since 1982)

-John
 

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To solve the heat problem, I might move both tanks into the warm part of the house where the wood stove is. Moving a tank is not TOO much more of a task than a PWC.

To solve the oxygenation and biofilter problem, I would take the media out of the filters and float it in the tank. And buy a bunch of battery operated air pumps ($9 each) and air stones.

Via overnight from one of the online vendors you should be able to get some in time, right?

I usually wait 2 hours in a power failure before considering turning on the generator. My tanks are already in the room with the wood stove though. :thumb:

I have gone as long as 8 hours with no action and the tanks have been fine. In this situation the power went out during the night and I was not aware of any problem until everything was back on in the morning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks DJ,

I don't know about moving the tanks, I don't have anywhere to put anyone, meaning I have to leave some water for the fish, meaning this thing will weight a ton. The room with the fireplace has a very uneven floor as well, and there isn't a free wall in the adjacent room without blocking the hallway. I don't think it'll be a good idea. (For the record, what the heck is a PWC your comparing moving a tank to? Jeeze, you people and your abbreviations, LOL)

I will probably buy a few power operated air pumps at the chain stores, unfortunately, this couldn't happen at a worse time budget wise, just had to pay tuition for the semester and buy books (why couldn't I just save my money and go into debt like everyone else? Stupid 'responsibility', gets me every time). But I can maybe grab a couple.

As far as getting some in time overnight, I can almost gurantee it won't get here. It's a comin'!

I'm crossing my fingers that the power doesn't go out, but the National Weather Service has just labeled this a "Potentionally record-setting weather event". Wonderful.

-John

Edit: On the PWC, my guess is gonna be partial-water-change. What are you smokin' man? I've got a python, a water change is about as effortless of a task as can be, and doesn't involve spinal injury :lol:
 

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As long as the temperature stays above 70, your fish will be just fine for 24-48 hours. When you loose power, wrap the tanks in blankets to conserve their heat.

In preparation- stop feeding and do large water changes and vacuum the substrate. Do not feed until you are sure you are going to keep your power on. Clean your filters (gently, in tank water) to limit the amount of decomposing gunk- and yes, float the media in the tanks

If you are going to be without power for more than a couple days, then move your fish to some place that has power- 5 gallon buckets with a sponge filter will do just fine, assuming you can keep the temperatures up. grab your heaters and rotate them among the buckets to avoid dropping below 70.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
triscuit said:
As long as the temperature stays above 70, your fish will be just fine for 24-48 hours. When you loose power, wrap the tanks in blankets to conserve their heat.

In preparation- stop feeding and do large water changes and vacuum the substrate. Do not feed until you are sure you are going to keep your power on. Clean your filters (gently, in tank water) to limit the amount of decomposing gunk- and yes, float the media in the tanks

If you are going to be without power for more than a couple days, then move your fish to some place that has power- 5 gallon buckets with a sponge filter will do just fine, assuming you can keep the temperatures up. grab your heaters and rotate them among the buckets to avoid dropping below 70.
My heaters aren't gonna work without power :lol:

Thanks for the tips, they are wrapped in blankets now. I also have an extra car battery on a charger, power inverter on standby once it hits e 12 hour mark, or gets below 70, so far power is on.
 

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John27 said:
On the PWC, my guess is gonna be partial-water-change. What are you smokin' man? I've got a python, a water change is about as effortless of a task as can be, and doesn't involve spinal injury :lol:
:lol: :lol: :lol: Instead of removing half, remove all. I guess you would have to remove the rocks as well. Unless you have a 72" tank it's not too hard to move a tank with just substrate.

I like triscuit's idea of buckets too, but I'd be afraid of fighting. The buckets could go in the fireplace room however.
 

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I have a tank that's built in the wall in my finished basement, however the back of the tank is
located in my pump room which is very cold in the winter but also very warm in the summer.
I've adjusted for the large seasonal temperature changes by wrapping the back, two sides, and
bottom of the tank with 2 inch heating duct insulation. This keeps the temperature no lower than 77*
in the winter and no greater than 81* in the summer. You might try to wrap all sides of your tank
temporarily in 6 inch building insulation. This may prove to be better than the
blankets depending on the length of time the power will be out.
 
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