Power Outage Help 

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MissNoodle

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During a heat wave, we are under a heat advisory so im not worried about temperatures, but i am worried about filtration.

One tank is run under a sponge filter and the other two have HOB plus an extra sponge filter... how long can the tanks go without filtration? Two have live plants.

We dont know how long the power will be out, its only our block. Pretty sure a car knocked out a pole.

I have two bettas and a dwarf gourami which are air breathers, but im worried about my mollies, tetras, cories, and loaches...
 

CheshireKat

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I doubt it'll be long before power is restored, so I wouldn't be too concerned. If the tank conditions are good, it shouldn't be a problem. I've had fish live a day or two without filtration due to power outages, but they were hardy fish. I'd be concerned about your cories and loaches.

For the future, I've heard lots of good things about the nano USB air pump at aquariumcoop.com. And if you get a good rechargeable power block like for cell phones and keep it charged for emergencies, you can run the air pump without power.
 

BevM

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The first time I had my aquarium set up, Hurrica'ne Ivan hit the Gulf Coast in 2005. My power was out for 7 days and I just did daily water changes to keep fresh water in there. Afterwards, I did invest in a battery power source for the bubbler. Since then, I haven't needed it. Temperature wasn't a problem since the daytime temps were in the 90's each day with plenty of humidity. Save yourself some stress and worries, and invest in a backup for the bubbler and you'll be fine.
 

CheshireKat

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BevM said:
My power was out for 7 days and I just did daily water changes to keep fresh water in there.
We had a well so water changes weren't possible without electricity.
 
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MissNoodle

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Yay our power is back on, 6 hours later, but thank goodness.

No casualties and everyone seems happy to have flowing water again. Though, my two cories are breathing pretty heavily so im watching them.
 

JenC

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I'm glad it's back on.

I have a few of these, they're $8.77 on Amazon, in my aquarium power outage kit (yay New England winters!) and they've worked great for me. You might consider having one just in case.
 
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MissNoodle

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Well my cories went back to normal in their blackwater tank along with the loaches.

But since the power came back on, my air pump isnt working so good anymore so two of the sponge filters stopped working. The one in my 5gal betta tank and in the community tank.

Sundae, the betta in the 5gal is fine and i got his filter to work okay.

The community tank though, my month old molly fry has clamped fins and isnt swimming so well and his/her mother is flashing on ornaments. Also the betta in the community tank had clamped fins and is hiding. Plus one of my tetras has his faded colours while the others are fine. I got their filter working, its only the secondary filter so i dont get it.

Water parameters are all really good. I did the tests today ironically just before power went out.

pH 7.8
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 10ppm

Tank temp stayed at 79F where its normally at.

Theyre fed a mix of betta pellets, bug bites pellets, tropical flakes, live mealworms, dried shrimp, cooked peas, and the odd algae wafer for the mollies. Tank inhabitants are a betta, 2 mollies (mother and single fry), and 3 black skirt tetras. Oh, and some pest snails.


Nothing has been changed other than adding water wisteria, which has been thriving, well before this started.

These guys were all fine yesterday before the outage, so what the heck??? Ill see if theyre like this again later today and do another water change to be safe, though it was just done the day before yesterday.
 

CheshireKat

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That's strange, there shouldn't be anything causing such behavior. Maybe they're just stressed from the sudden currents and things after getting used to it for 6 hours? Sometimes it's kinda weird when power is restored after awhile and you've gotten used to being without power.
 
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MissNoodle

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CheshireKat said:
That's strange, there shouldn't be anything causing such behavior. Maybe they're just stressed from the sudden currents and things after getting used to it for 6 hours? Sometimes it's kinda weird when power is restored after awhile and you've gotten used to being without power.
Im really hoping thats the case, though i thought clamped fins was more due to feeling unwell rather than stressed?
 

CheshireKat

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NoodleKeeper said:
Im really hoping thats the case, though i thought clamped fins was more due to feeling unwell rather than stressed?
I don't see how they've gotten sick within a day. Stress makes me feel unwell though.
I know you tested right before the outage, but have you tested after to see if there's a difference? Maybe something got stirred up. But if you primarily use sponge filters, it's not like debris got blown around or something or the BB died off.
Also strange that your air pump stopped working well. Makes me feel kinda silly, "oh, don't worry about it, you'll be fine" and then everything goes wrong to prove us wrong.
 
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MissNoodle

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CheshireKat said:
I don't see how they've gotten sick within a day. Stress makes me feel unwell though.
I know you tested right before the outage, but have you tested after to see if there's a difference? Maybe something got stirred up. But if you primarily use sponge filters, it's not like debris got blown around or something or the BB died off.
Also strange that your air pump stopped working well. Makes me feel kinda silly, "oh, don't worry about it, you'll be fine" and then everything goes wrong to prove us wrong.
I use both a HOB filter (which kicked back on as soon as power came back) and a sponge filter in that tank, because mollies are ecological terrors on tanks lol i figured two filters would be helpful with having the mollies.

Granted, my air pump is just a 10 gallon one, divided between 2 sponge filters and just a regular bubbler in one tank. So thats supplying air to 3 tanks. The power went out and it stopped supplying air to the sponge filters, but went back fine to the bubbler. In the end i had to give up on the bubbler in the blackwater tank to get the filters to work. Ill be getting another air pump next month to supply the 5gal anyways, and the tank with the bubbler has all plants so im thinking oxygen wont be an issue.

Its because i asked, thats why everything went wrong lol but im hoping it is just the stress. I mean the one tetra whos black skirt turned white, that individual is easily stressed compared to his other tetra buddies. So he is hard to say if hes a real big concern. He may just be a diva over it.

Im most concerned over my molly baby. Fin clamping is abnormal for this guy, hes been so robust and healthy and pretty bomb proof with handling stress. Though, his tail fin has a bit of fading too, so something to consider? Ill try for photos if he cooperates. Hes a tiny thing still. The photo attached was taken sunday evening i think, so its really recent.

I will test my water again tomorrow (later today i think for most people--i work midnights) just to be safe as well, but 6 hours shouldnt have affected it... id be pretty surprised. But, you never know. A power outage for only a few hours shouldnt have done anything, but apparently it triggered something.
 

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pagoda

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I had a lightning strike nearby last week that caused a power cut for around 4 hours. The aquariums were obviously without anything for that time, the fish were a tad peeved with me over it but soon perked back up after 24 hours....I just had the electrician run tests on the electrics in my flat and that meant turning power on/off about a dozen times to test everything and the fish are seriously sulking and giving me the evil eye....but they should be OK, if a little bit bad tempered for a while...a little extra treat later will cure their mood
 
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MissNoodle

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Peeked in on them to feed them this morning and i cant find my little guy :/ though his mom is out begging for food. Our betta still has clamped fins too and isnt as active but she ate
 

pagoda

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Your little one is probably hiding thinking everything will stop again.....give him time and find his favourite treat, wait for the others to go back to their business and try to coax him out....lights off if need be
 
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MissNoodle

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I lost my little molly baby and his mom was shimmying today too. I took a sample of the water before i did a 50% water change. My pH went up 0.2 since yesterday, nitrates went up from 10 to 20. My ammonia went from 0 to 0.50ppm.

I gave the community tank inhabitants a salt dip to help.

I dont understand how 6 hours without power would cause an ammonia spike :/
 

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Oh nooo, poor little fella. I don't understand what's going on at all. How'd the pH change?? Where's the ammonia coming from?? How'd the cycle get so messed up?? Some BB must've died off. Did the HOB media dry out?
 
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CheshireKat said:
Oh nooo, poor little fella. I don't understand what's going on at all. How'd the pH change?? Where's the ammonia coming from?? How'd the cycle get so messed up?? Some BB must've died off. Did the HOB media dry out?
The cycled media was inside my sponge filter. Since the cycled HOB filter cartridge fell apart and couldnt be used in it anymore, i put it into the sponge filter instead. But that filter failed yesterday longer than the 6 hours. The cartridge filter in the HOB is new, though i do have some bio media in the HOB, i dont think it was enough to handle the start up after 6 hours no power. Mollies are eco terrors, so it wouldnt surprise me if the HOB wasnt able to handle the sudden heavy load solo.

The pH has always been around the 7.8-8 range for me, sometimes its hard to tell the colour between the two. I have naturally high pH water here, which is great for mollies lol i cant even get it lower than 7.6 in my blackwater tank with all of the tannins and such.

For now ill use an ammonia blocker and water changes daily until this is fixed. Im worried most for my betta, shes the most sensitive of them in this tank and shes the one affected most of those left. Two of the tetras are totally normal.

Tomorrow i may take out all the ornaments and plants to do a very thorough gravel vacuum too, just to clean that out super well. Normally i vacuum the bare areas every week, but perhaps it cant hurt to get all of it. Theres no bottom feeders besides some pest snails to stir up the sand, so perhaps that had something to do with the sudden spike without the filters going.
 

CheshireKat

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Yeah, sounds like there wasn't enough to keep the cycle going after the power was out and now you've got a mini-cycle. That sucks.

I've got a ton of Molly and platy fry, so you don't need to tell me twice about how messy they are! Combined with snails, I was doing weekly filter cleanings. I've upgraded to an Aquaclear 110 which is waaay overkill for a 25 gallon in terms of flow rate but the media space is awesome. I've just put things in to lessen the outflow. I've noticed a few of the older fry enjoy swimming through the current and being swept around in it like it's an amusement ride.
 
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CheshireKat said:
Yeah, sounds like there wasn't enough to keep the cycle going after the power was out and now you've got a mini-cycle. That sucks.

I've got a ton of Molly and platy fry, so you don't need to tell me twice about how messy they are! Combined with snails, I was doing weekly filter cleanings. I've upgraded to an Aquaclear 110 which is waaay overkill for a 25 gallon in terms of flow rate but the media space is awesome. I've just put things in to lessen the outflow. I've noticed a few of the older fry enjoy swimming through the current and being swept around in it like it's an amusement ride.
Im heading out now to grab a new air pump to fix this issue because the pump is still failing on me. It supplies 2 filters but only wants to run one. So ill grab a stronger one for the two and use the weaker one on the 5gal filter.
 

pagoda

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When my power went out I threw some of my favourite bio gel balls in the aquariums, I guess that kept levels of nasties under control sufficiently cos my fish are gallivanting all over the place today, no issues at all despite losing filters etc for over 4 hours
 
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