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Heating the room VS Heating individually


Wild Nut
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Because we have been having issues with humidity, all of my fish tanks are being moved down into this weird room we have at the back of the house. It's on a slab so I don't have to be as concerned about weight, and there is access to water so my dad is going to put in a sink.

However, the other day my dad mentioned an idea I'd been tossing around for a while. Heating the whole room, versus heating each tank individually.

Our last couple of electricity bills have been over six-hundred dollars (there are only two of us in the house). Once my fish room is operational it will hold 20-30 tanks, so I'm wondering which method of heating is going to be more economical?

My dad planned on insulating the whole room so it held its heat; however, I am concerned there might be still be some temperature fluctuations since it gets very cold down there in winter.

Should I put back-up heaters in their tanks just in case? I don't have to factor in the number of available power points as an issue, as my older brother is a sparky and does it for free. It's more an issue of cost, and the fact I hate looking at my nice, clean tanks only to have this honking big heater taking up most of the space :lol:

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I heat the room rather than individual tanks, The room is insulated and we have a massive window that lets sun in and hats it up. My large tanks are heated wich provides a massive thermal mass and I have several hundred watts of lighting. It doesn't work in the dead of winter but works great through Autumn and spring.

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I'm guessing that if you can insulate the room really well (ie all walls, ceiling, concrete slab AND exclude draughts/heat loss from standard windows) then you will be able to keep the room toasty warm with less energy expended compared to multiple tanks individually heated in an uninsulated room. It's all about the adequacy of the insulation, and trying to prevent heat loss from the room itself. If you don't insulate the room, and keep individual tanks heated, then again you'll waste energy because the tanks are in a cold room and lose heat to the environment.

I would love to set up something like this, but to do it well would take more effort than I can muster! Lol!

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in my fish room area I currently have 26 x 20L plus a 2' and 2 barracks. I have worked out that if I increase my 20L tanks to 35+ the it becomes more econimcal to use a 1kw split system to heat the whole room over individual tank heating. Good excuse to get more tank eh....

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heating the room sounds like a pretty feasible idea. like Matt said, you'd still need heaters in the winter... but with all that insulation you'd be using less electricity in winter too.

I'd just be a little worried about our summer. last year's wasn't so bad, but this summer feels like we're going to have a couple of 40C + days... trapping in the heat then is not so cool

just my 2 cents ^_^

Edited by MT Syndrome
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i Have thought about this idea, i had played with the idea of using plastic over the walls to create a kinda of hot house inside a room. The problem being then condensation, then again I've only got 3 tanks so im not that worried. I will however be interested in what you do Wild Nut and how it works out for you.

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Thanks for the input everyone. I'll pass it onto my dad as he is the official builder/hole digger/architect/mover-of-heavy-things around here.

I'm still not sure how well he'll be able to insulate that room. It's the old part of our house and has a window looking out to the underside of our deck. It sort of gives off 'The Shining' vibes so hopefully a fish room down there will make it seem less gloomy.

I think I might just heat the tanks' individually. I worry about the condensation that would build up although the cool breeze coming in from under the deck might help. However, the room opens onto our rumpus, so unless he planned on installing a wall there I think too much heat will escape to make it feasible.

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I think running that amount of tanks at 600 dollars is not bad,I have 2 tanks plus other luxuries and just running under 1k a quarter in melbourne

I have seen so many people over the years do the sane type of thing and unless its done right it doesnt save all that much and then work out the cost of doing the job?

For melbourne you really need to run a gas heater to save money.

some people still need to run heater due to to heat variations from top to bottom level tanks if things are not right

you also need to run some sort of a fan to circulate the heat to try and keep temps more even, high humdity problems.

If you can do it right go for it, but do a lot of reading up first

Ray

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I think we were going to use an oil heater, but I always worry that something like that is going to cause a house fire. I swear since we got a Smart Meter our bill is much higher than it used to be.

Instead of having as many tanks as I intended down there, I'm selling off some fish and hopefully going to end up with only ten or so tanks. I decided to focus on my wilds and get some natives. There's always some problem with my splendens so I'm only keeping the unsellable.

I figure I might as well just run individual heaters as my wilds prefer slightly colder water than my splendens, and if I cut down the number of tanks it's going to automatically cut down on our electricity bill.

Thanks for the advice. I figured unless I used some kind of central sump system to heat my tanks it would probably be easier and more efficient to use individual heaters.

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