what is the best heater?

Reefski's

New member
what is your favorite heater? why? i need a few to go in various tanks from 100-400 gallon.

a digital readout would be a plus but not required. longevity, durability, and reliability are more important.

Carl
 

BeanAnimal

Premium Member
Carl,

Short and sweet. They are all junk and none of them should be trusted to control the temperature in your tanks.

You should be using industrial/commercial temperature controllers such as those made by Ranco or Johnson Control. They are magnitudes more reliable.

You can then set the thermostats built into the heaters to act as failsafes by setting them a few degrees above the controllers setpoint.

You would also be well advised to place the heaters in such a fashion that ONLY the envelope is submerged. Leaking seals are very common!

These two simple steps will amlost eliminate ALL heater problems.
 

phishlet

Premium Member
Agree with the above. Assuming you are using a controller I really like the Marineland Stealth heaters.
 

trmiv

Active member
I use an Ebo Jager and a Marineland Stealth on an Aqua Logic (rebadged Ranco temp controller.
 

BeanAnimal

Premium Member
Do yourself the favor and buy the temperature controller.

You will find favorable and unfavorable opinions for every brand of heater out there.

The reality is that they are ALL unreliable and should never be trusted with the critical role they play in your system. Their are countless numbers of tanks that have been wiped out due to a $25 heater sticking. BUY THE CONTROLLERS and keep your livestock safe.
 

Snowboarda42

New member
VisiTherm stealths. IMO, I would get two smaller ones, that way if one quits working, you still have the other one to keep the temp from dropping much farther.
 

pjf

Premium Member
Aquarium Heater Survey

Aquarium Heater Survey

Here is a survey of aquarium heaters from the cichlid forum: http://www.cichlid-forum.com/reviews/category_display.php?CatID=701.

While the Stealth heater ranks highly in the survey, I prefer a heater with an LED that indicates whether it is ON or OFF. I use the Eheim Jager heater because it has such an LED and because it can be easily recalibrated should its thermostat drift.

I operate my Jager heater fully submerged. Mounting a heater with its temperature selector above the water line exposes its thermostat to cooler air so you would need to recalibrate:

(1) Measure the water temperature with a thermometer
(2) Pry up the blue button
(3) Set the temperature selector to the measured water temperature
(4) Push the blue button back down
(5) Dial the desired water temperature

I don’t know what the best aquarium heater is but the thermostat on my Eheim Jager heater did save my tank when my controller’s probe fell out. The heater's thermostat is set a few degrees above the controller's set point. Should your controller drift or should its sensor probe fail, a good thermostatic heater provides a safety net.
 

BeanAnimal

Premium Member
Though many people operate heaters fully submerged, it is not a good idea. A large number of failures are due to leaking heater envelopes.

It is a much better idea to operate teh heater so that ONLY the envelope is submerged. I prefer to place my heaters through standard bulkheads in the sidewall of the sumps intake compartment. That way they can never run dry and the heads can never be submerged.
 

pjf

Premium Member
Read Instructions First

Read Instructions First

When you run your heater with the thermostat above the water line, how accurate is it?
Can cool air cause the thermostat to measure the wrong temperature?
Can the heating element “roast” the thermostat since it is no longer cooled by water?

I suggest we read the heater's instructions. Perhaps some heaters must be submerged for longevity as well as accuracy.
 
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Reefski's

New member
more input please.

here is another heater question.

where is the ideal probe and heater locations.

probe of course upstream but where. beginning of sump, end of sump just before the heater, in the overflow in the tank?

Carl
 

pjf

Premium Member
In my system, the controller sensor and the heater are located to facilitate water changes.

The sensor probe is in the main aquarium to monitor the temperature drop when I'm performing a water change. It usually drops 1 degree (77 to 76) while I'm mixing & heating the salt solution.

The heater is in the return compartment because that is the largest compartment available for mixing and heating a salt solution. When the LED in the calibrated heater turns off (79 degrees), then the salt solution is ready and I turn on the return pump.

While the salt solution is being mixed, I use a powerhead to stir the salt and ensure even heating.

The overflow is a bad place for either the heater or probe because it is emptied as one of the first steps of the water change. By pulling the standpipe, it empties into the sump which is completely siphoned into a basement sink.
 
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