View Full Version : Power Outages This Summer?

06-27-2003, 01:06 PM
i read somewhere that the power companies in new york might have blackouts this summer. i've been lucky in that there have been no outages in the city since i've been doing this multiple tank madness, but the pigeons may be coming home to roost this summer and i may be in trouble with my mega overstocked tanks. i need some suggestions that are more cost effective than a battery-powered pump for each tank. i think that a generator would be a problem(not to mention expensive). any thoughts? if i could find something like this that is powerful enough to aerate about 5 tanks ranging in size from 33-90 gals.:
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06-27-2003, 01:49 PM
I've been thinking about investing in a small gas generator. The temp sometimes hits 120 here in the summer and if we had a outage I'm afraid my fish would parboil! Whadda ya think? I also have a battery powered pump.

06-27-2003, 02:09 PM
i'm hoping to avoid the generator, but it may be unavoidable.

07-09-2003, 06:53 AM
You could get a battery backup device like those used for computers. If you had one large pump driving air into all your tanks (jehmco.com has a good selection and they're always helpful) you could power it via access to the backup unit.

John at Jehmco can help you with all of these issues......

07-09-2003, 09:08 PM
sounds good...thanks, chc!

07-10-2003, 05:26 PM

Do you have a power outlet in your car? If you do you could rig an extra long cord to run into your house if that is doable.

DOABLE not sure if it's a word, but you get what I mean.



07-10-2003, 05:49 PM
hi matt...unfortunately, i am one of those odd folk who don't drive, and i don't think that my dad would take too kindly to me hooking anything up to his car...he's already had it with me and my tanks!:D

07-11-2003, 02:34 AM
I have a marine power inverter that can be run off my car or two marine batteries. This will filter, heat, and aerate the tanks for however long needed.
I did this because gas generators are messy, loud, take up too much space, are expensive, and throw a great deal of heat. Plus where the gas gets stored is an issue.
The marine power inverter is silent and lasts indefinitely (as long as your batteries do.) I got mine on eBay for $150. It can handle my 120, 55, 20, 3 10's and 5 when the power goes out.

Since you live where you do, you might want to look into it. All you need to do is add up the wattage of the filters, heaters, etc. and that will determine what size inverter you need.

07-11-2003, 04:30 AM
that sounds pretty good...i would only need it to run a pump(or pumps) to aerate the most heavily stocked tanks.

07-11-2003, 10:33 PM
If you get one, buy the heavy duty 3 cycle marine batteries. They will run pumps alone practically forever!:lol:

07-11-2003, 10:41 PM
Sorry Gypsy,
I wasn't thinking about air pumps (I have several battery powered). When it's this hot nothing takes priority over your air conditioner!

07-11-2003, 10:43 PM
How true, how true. If I get a smaller inverter, we can run a window AC too.

07-19-2003, 11:43 PM
How long do the batteries last on the inverter you mentioned, I like to know more about it? When I said a gas generator, I was thinking about something like one of the little Honda generators. They are pretty quiet and it would be running on my back patio. We use evaporative coolers here on the desert, so all the generator would have to handle would be a 1/3 hp electric motor and two cooler pumps.
Thanks, Sam

07-20-2003, 12:24 AM
Hey Sam! If you get the heavy duty, deep cycle ones, and use them constantly with what I power: 10 filters for about 300W, 9 heaters for about 700W, and maybe 100W heat lamp for my lizard) I run close to the max of 1200W. The batteries should last about 42 hours. That is if I run everything, which I probably wouldn't, and haven't in the past. Of course, it can always be hooked to the car too, if I need to charge the marine batteries. We've never actually needed to use it more than 10 hours or so, so the true test is difficult to say.

My husband, who was an electrician, told me something that may be useful if anyone is going to get a power inverter; be sure it is the type that puts out a continuous stream of wattage. I have to check for the exact info on what the technical terms are, but it has to do with the Sine Wave. One kind of sine wave is more constant than the other.

He's at work right now, so can't ask him particulars, but will check in the A.M. Maybe someone with electrical experience can better explain it for the time being.

07-20-2003, 01:56 PM
I was wrong (as usual!), the only thing you need to be concerned about for a power inverter used to power fish tanks is the modified sine wave type. True sine wave inverters cost more. In this case all you really need to worry about is how many watts it puts out.
You can get a decent power inverter at a place like West Marine.


Of course if you go to the store, there are many more selections. You can check eBay too. Just know what you are looking for. All you then need is a set of cables to hook up to your source (or you could make them yourself if you are electrically inclined).