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What To Do In Case Of Power Outage?


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Hello everyone, Today we had a power outage for 2 hours. The two tanks I have were quiet. No filteration, no aeration, nothing. to top it all the temp started rising and I panicked. I did a 20% water change in both tanks to help cool and aerate the water. Luckily the power came back in 2 hrs. How long can GF stay without filteration and aeration? Does anyone know what else can be done in an emergency or if the power goes out for longer periods. I wish we could have an emergency plan for our fish tanks. Can people help me make one that will be useful for all? Its better to be prepared than land up with sick fish.

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Guest Angel

Posted (edited)

Changing water is good. I bought a couple of air pumps (B11 Silent Air) that plugs into the wall and uses batteries. In the event of a power outage, the pump detects it and turns on. They are small and fairly inexpensive (around 13.00) but provide some air in an outage. I've been very glad to have them!

Edited by Angel

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Open the top of the tank to let the fish get oxygen. Goldfish aRE rather tough guys and can survive short power outages. If the tanks temp starts rising drop a few ice cubes in. Ice cubes will cool the tank and provide entertainment for the fish. Clip on fans are also good.

Angle- where did you buy the pump? I would like one of those! During the summer last year we had daily power outages due to construction nearby and hot weather. I hot its not that bad this summer.

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The battery powered airpumps are available at vvvv and like stores. They will only last for an hour or so on a set of batteries, so get extra batteries to have on hand.

I have purchased backup batteries that are sold (Frys) to back up computers and other electronic equipment. These have the ability to carry 3-4 tanks for approximately 8 hours - complete filtration and aeration. I intend to pull extra filters and airpumps if needed at the time. They are not cheap batteries, but they do provide a little peace of mind. We also have a generator backup - gas powered - for longer outages.

The fish may be tough - but in a tank that is borderline on water parameters (if your tank was hit just before a weekly water change) it can be a huge stressor, opening doors to opportunistic disease and parasites. So after a poweroutage with out proper filtration, be very observant for problems.

It is also adviseable for you to pull your media from your filter and drop it into the tank to keep it wet. If it dries out, you can lose your cycle.

So the power goes out you:

1. Pull the media from the filter and drop it into the tank.

2. Open the tank lid to increase air exchange with the water surface.

3. Set any battery backups you may have going.

4. Change out water if you have it and can.

5. Do not feed the fish until after the power has been restored.

6. Check water parameters carefully even after power has been restored and keep an eye out for disease/parasites.

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Good point! I didn't even think about if the power outage happened right before a water change! I think I need to write your steps down and tape it to the side of the tank. :goodpost

I've been lucky enough to never have them last more than 10 minutes, but I guess one day my luck will run out. Ah! Today was the first day we had to turn on the air conditioner. The weather man said its only going to get hotter. Hot weather + every family in the city+ air conditioners = power outages. :yikes

I've never seen them there, then again my local smartpet doesn't even carry UV filters or Hikari Lionhead. I bet I can just order them along with the UV filter and food I've been wanting.

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Guest fish

Posted

Thanks everyone!!!! I will make a checklist and post it near my tanks.

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I think this might be pinnable...anyone else think so? I know I have asked this before, as have many others. :-)

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A couple of years ago, I was extremely lucky with my gf. Hurricane Ivan hit the area I live in pretty hard, and we didn't have power for 10 days. I had no type of backup pump to use. I said a little prayer and kept my fingers crossed every day that they wouldn't die. I had four gf in a 55g tank and somehow managed to keep them all alive.

The day before the hurricane hit, I did a huge water change and cleaned the tank really well. After we lost power, I took my media out as Daryl has suggested put it in the tank. After the power was restored, I put the media back in the filters. I tested like crazy for several days after that, and only had a little bump in the cycle.

I'm in the process now of working on setting up a new tank, and I plan to make sure I have battery backup in case something like this ever happens again (which I sincerely hope doesn't!) :exactly

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I think this might be pinnable...anyone else think so? I know I have asked this before, as have many others. :-)

:bingo:

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I should add that during a big windstorm last year we were without power for 5 days. As recommended here I pulled my media and put it in the tank, kept the tops open, added a hefty dose of Prime and crossed my fingers. All went well with only a small bump in my cycle. :-)

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Guest avalon

Posted

I've never bothered to do anything whne power outages are shorter then 6 hours, but after that they need some sort of aeration. We often have blackouts that last more then 3 days (the joys of living in the country) and I removed three buckets of water and drip them back into the tank using the drip acclimation method. This increases surface area of water and aerates it enough to last at least a few hours, depending on how many fish are in the tank.

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We have a generator for long power outtages, but I want to get the battery backup deals. I'll look for those today.

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Living in FLorida - Land of Hurricanes - we have a generator for power outtages that last more than an hour. DH also has one of those battery backup things for our computers and they aren't too terribly expensive. We've pondered getting one for the tanks, but we'd hook the gen up anyway (for the fridge and stuff) if we lost power for any length of time anyway.

I do keep a few battery-operated pumps on hand, as well. When our power goes out, I fill a bucket with tank water and drop my media into it with an airstone running.

I never thought about removing the tank lids, though. Good idea, Daryl!

And I agree, this is a pin-worthy post.

Lisa

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Guest Angel

Posted

Sorry for the slow response Sushi. I did indeed get my air pump at vvvv. Thanks for all the tips Daryl, I didn't even think about the media bags! Great tip!

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I lost power for about an hour tonight. I was kind of upset because I was trying to remember this post with the power failure tips. Anyway I started blowing into the airstone tubing creating bubbles. Then I started to worry that maybe I was just adding carbon dioxide to the water. So I stopped that and then started agitating the water manually thinking that would create oxygen. I am now going to invest in a battery operated air stone.

I started thinking where I would bring my fish if I lost power for an extended amount of time and how crazy I would look bringing my ten gallon, buckets of tank water with me to a friend?s house. I don't sweat that too much as if they spent some time with my fishy they would understand why I care about them.

It also gets cold here in winter. I remember reading in another post to wrap the tank with blankets to keep the water warm.

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Here's a long power outage for ya. ?Had to evacuate for a hurricane, the storm made landfall where I live, the power was out for 9 days, and every fish lived - unbelievable.?

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Guest Yankee Kwon

Posted (edited)

I'm surprised no one has suggested this cheap and simple solution:

Use a car battery with an inverter as an emergency AC power supply.

The advantages:

1. Water quality is guaranteed to remain precisely the same, since you will be using the same equipment (same filter, same air pump, same lights, etc).

2. Car batteries are cheap, large capacity, and simple to charge, as opposed to high-tech Li-ion, Nimh, or Nicd, which are expensive, lower capacity, and require complex charging algorithms, thereby forcing you to spend more money buying a charger! :(

3. There are a myriad of things you can do with a car battery hooked up to an inverter (you can run your cellphones, laptop PC's, and other electronics on it), many more things than, say, a battery-powered fish filter!

What you need:

-12volt car battery

-AC adapter (output should be between 13-14volts DC).

-Inverter (at least 100watt capacity)

-some wiring

-voltmeter

How to do it:

-Keep the automobile battery at 100% charge by using the ac adapter.*,**,

-When there is a blackout, simply connect the inverter to the automobile battery using the wiring. Then connect your air pump/filter/light to your inverter, using a power strip if necessary.

-How long the car battery can keep things running depends on battery size (how many amp hours?) and power consumption of your devices (lights, filter, air pump, etc). You may connect 2 or more car batteries in parallel to increase capacity.

*You can check the battery's state of charge by using a voltmeter. 12.65V = 100% charge, ~12.3 = 50%. NEVER let your battery run down below 12volts or you will damage it, thereby shortening its life.

**Disconnect the AC adapter from the battery when you are not charging.

Hope this helps!

Edited by Yankee Kwon

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I have a generator for long power outages since Louisiana is the target of hurricanes, but I also have a simple solution for short outages. I bought a 500 gph bilge pump at Academy. I connect 2 long wires (different colors) and attached alligator clips to the ends. Since I have a sump, I simply remove the hose from the return pump, attach it to the bilge pump, submerge the pump. I run the wires out the door to my car battery, attach the clips, and presto, I'm in business! If the power stays out awhile, every couple of hours I start the vehicle and let it run for about 15 minutes to charge the battery.

If you don't have a sump you can still use this. Simply wrap a clean cloth around the pump to prevent it from sucking up any gravel and put it directly into the tank to keep circulation up and thus keep air moving.

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Guest Goldfishluver

Posted

I have a generator for long power outages since Louisiana is the target of hurricanes, but I also have a simple solution for short outages. I bought a 500 gph bilge pump at Academy. I connect 2 long wires (different colors) and attached alligator clips to the ends. Since I have a sump, I simply remove the hose from the return pump, attach it to the bilge pump, submerge the pump. I run the wires out the door to my car battery, attach the clips, and presto, I'm in business! If the power stays out awhile, every couple of hours I start the vehicle and let it run for about 15 minutes to charge the battery.

If you don't have a sump you can still use this. Simply wrap a clean cloth around the pump to prevent it from sucking up any gravel and put it directly into the tank to keep circulation up and thus keep air moving.

Another good thing to do is fill up a bag of whatever water temperature you want and just put it in the tank and let it float there

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