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Ack

Heater recommendation

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I'm looking around for a heater for my new IBC system. It's outdoors and will only be running during the spring and summer. I'd like a heater to let me start cycling earlier in the year and extend my tilapia growing season a little later.  The fish tank is 250 gallons. The entire system holds around 350-400 gallons all together. 

 

Heater requirements:

 

--As cheap as possible

 

--Safe (I stick my hand in there!)

 

--Thermostat

 

--Can raise my water temp from 65 to as close to 85 as possible. 

 

What wattage should I be looking at? Any recommendations on particular products?  Thanks!

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Thanks! How many watts would I need to heat a 250 gallon fish tank (total 400 gallon system including fish tank) by 20 degrees F? 

 

Also, forgive my ignorance here, but do I need to encase or secure these heaters in the fish tank somehow or just drop them in? Is it possible that they'll injure fish or melt pvc or the sides of my IBC tote if they accidentally come into contact?

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I use a 1000 watt titanium aquarium heater and controller I got on Amazon for my 250 gallon aquaculture indoor systems that are in the basement. (Water volume in tank about 150 gallons). Cost was just over $100.00. If I didn't heat the water it would be about 62 F. in the winter in the basement. Probably not much warmer in the summer as we use geothermal heating and cooling. 

 

i think it's plenty big enough for the 250 gallon system but my thinking is bigger is more efficient as the heater doesn't have to kick on as often. 

 

I just hang my heater over the side and have never had an issues with my plastic tanks. 

Edited by Cecil (see edit history)

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one other option is to run water through a black sprinkling hose in the sun and solar heat your water.  This will cost you the least of any option, but is dependent on sunlight.  A timer to make your system only flood and drain once per hour after dark will minimize heat loss.    I used such a setup in the fall with air temps in the 40's at night and kept the temperature in the high 60's  to low 70's.

 

I've also used 3 x 300 watt aquarium heaters as well just dropped in the tank and it did not melt the plastic It laid on. most of them have a covering on the bottom to keep the glass from contacting the bottom of an aquarium if not used with the suction hanger.

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Hi Ack

Like Cecil, I'w used them hanging over the edge In plastick tubs (2000W), without any problems.

The most important is tank insulation (wall/top) when you set the thermostat they don't use any power once they reach the "high"

You also have to think about where does the water circulate to, in a cold spell.

Is it to one or more, unisulated deepwater/sand/rock growbed, and/or to a sump/filter barrel(s) that will work as coldsink(s) ?

You have to look at all these factors when sizing the heater(s) so that you have enoughf power to get you thru the coldest day(s)/night(s)

without jepordaysing your fish.

I woul'd start with one of those Early linked to, they came with a thermostat/waranty, looks cool to me, then maybe get one more if needed anywhere in your RAS

 

 

cheers

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