Size of Heater and Do I Really Need Bubbles?

TripleB
  • #1
I finally bought my son's aquarium today. Went with the Eclipse System 6 gallon...PetSmart matched Wal-Mart's online price of $49.97 (PetSmart's regular price is $74.99) without any problems at all.

1) I've searched and searched for a 25 watt heater in my town and I find plenty of 50 watt heaters and even a 7.5 watt heater but not one 25 watt heater. Is a 50 watt heater too much for my 6 gallon acrylic aquarium (someone had mentioned that a 50 watt heater may melt the plastic)?

2) Is have a Bubble Stone/Curtain beneficial to the fish and my aquarium? If so, which is better the stone or the curtain? I'm just wondering since it seems like I'll end up putting about $30 into the bubbles after you figure in tubing, stone/curtain, air pump, something to hold the tubing, etc. Just wondering if it's worth it?

Thanks for all your help.

TripleB
 
dvd_wightman
  • #2
A 50 watt heater should be ok, but I am not 100% sure on that. As for the "bubbles" (I believe you are talking about an air pump) it is not necessary. My 10 gallon does not have one, and the tank is fine. Good luck!
 
0morrokh
  • #3
A 50W should be fine as long as you get a reliable brand (I recommend Stealth heaters).

The only time an air stone is really necessary is if the temp is turned way up for medicating purposes, which can decrease the amount of oxygen in the water. However a lot of people like them anyway because they look nice and some fish love playing with them.
 
COBettaCouple
  • #4
I'm glad to hear that you got the tank for that price.

A 50w heater would be fine for your tank, you might find that you'll set the temp a little lower than you want the water because of the extra wattage, but we've had 50w heaters in the 5 gallon hex tanks for months without any problem. We recommend the Hydor Theo heater.

I know you'd have to pay shipping to get the heater from this website, but you'd be able to get a 25w and I think even with shipping, you would spend less or nearly the same as buying it at petsmart.

Aeration does benefit the tank and a lot of fish do love the bubbles but it's something you could put off if you wanted to break up the expense. I would definitely recommend it though.
 
TripleB
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
I'm glad to hear that you got the tank for that price.

I was pretty happy with the purchase as well.

But, I put it in my son's room today on top of his chest of drawers (where we will be putting the tank) and it looks HUGE....I don't think my wife is going to be very happy I'm hoping I can talk her into keeping it there or finding another spot in the house for it so I don't have to drop down to a smaller one.

I'll let you know the outcome!!!

Thanks again to everyone for all the information.

TripleB
 
pistorta
  • #6
An automatic 50 watt heater will be just fine. These things usually use suction cups and therefore will not come in contact with the side of the tank. As long as it is submerged, it will not have the capability of melting anything (unless you found a way to heat the entire tank to a melting point). Try this, take a plastic cup filled with water and place an open flame on it. The cup will not melt until the water heats up to the melting point of the plastic.

Bubbles are not necessary, as long as you do not overstock the tank. If the aquarium utilizes some sort of power filter, there is plenty of surface turbulance to exchange needed gasses.
 
COBettaCouple
  • #7
good luck!

I was pretty happy with the purchase as well.

But, I put it in my son's room today on top of his chest of drawers (where we will be putting the tank) and it looks HUGE....I don't think my wife is going to be very happy I'm hoping I can talk her into keeping it there or finding another spot in the house for it so I don't have to drop down to a smaller one.

I'll let you know the outcome!!!

Thanks again to everyone for all the information.

TripleB
 
0morrokh
  • #8
Oh btw you should be able to get a stealth heater at petsmart and/or petco. They're the only reliable brand I've ever found at either store. Bit more pricey but it's worth the extra imo.
 
Nessie!!!
  • #9
The only thing the bubble thing does is add extra air into the tank. Baby fish also play in the bubbles sometimes.
 
Cody
  • #10
what you should do is print off the online price of the stealth heater and bring it to petsmart..I did that recently and saved about 13 dollars just go to petsmarts website find it and welll it sounds like you know how it all works...its hard to believe the mark up there is huh
 
susitna-flower
  • #11
I love the look of air bubbles in the tanks, and yes the fish benefit, it helps with the exchange of air, not only does it add oxygen, it helps carry CO2 out of the water to have the bubbles.

BUT the most important reason to add bubbles is because the beneficial bacteria you are trying to establish in your tank need oxygen to do their job, (the nitrogen cycle). With low oxygen the anaerobic bacteria grow, which IF you want a NITRATE filter separate form the aquarium itself, works on this theory, but IN the tank, it just serves to create nitrogen gas, which can be lethal to your fish.......The bacteria you want in the tank are aerobic, they are the ones that convert ammonia to nitrite, and nitrite to nitrate.

Did you settle on the tank in this thread, I thought I read in another that you went with a 2.5 gallon tank. Am I confused?
 
pistorta
  • #12
Actually the addition of oxygen to the tank has no effect on decreasing CO2 concentrations. CO2 will equalize with the CO2 of the atmosphere depending on your pH and KH. The only way it will diminish CO2 levels is if you are adding CO2 to the tank in which case the surface agitation of the bubbles allows the release of the CO2 at a greater rate until equillibrium occurs, which is never.

Depending on the size of the bubbles, the main benefit is surface agitation which increases the gas exchange rate. Power filters will cause enough agitation to eliminate the need for an air pump (depending on tank population). It is dissolved oxygen that the fish utilize.

Nitrogen gas is the end result of the nitrogen cycle which is difficult to achieve in freshwater aquariums as opposed to marine aquariums, but is desirable. It is best to "house" both types of bacteria to help complete this cycle. When nitrogen gas is not produced, it is because nitrate is not being converted (hence why water changes are important). When you complete the cycle, nitrogen gas is released to the atmosphere and does not build up in the aquarium (depending on your altitute, which is not an issue for anyone living on Earth). The nitrogen cycle, simply put, is the conversion of ammonia, to nitrite, to nitrate to nitrogen.
 
TripleB
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
I've got my 3 gallon aquarium set up the way I want. Two plants (plastic) and a 'hide-away' little cave type thing. The tall plant hides the filter on my Eclipse tank and an LED thermometer hangs in the corner. I put the heater on the very bottom of my aquarium and then covered it up with rocks.

Here is the heater I have for my 3 gallon aquarium:

I have a couple questions concerning the heater:

1) In the directions for the heater it states: "Fix the heater, using the suction cup, to the side of the aquarium or postition it on the bottom. You can also cover it completely with gravel." But under the warnings it states, "Be certain that the heater is not in direct contact with the bottom of the tank." Which directions do I follow? Is it OK that I have it on the bottom of my aquarium covered up by gravel or not?

2) How warm should the water get? I had the heater on for about 8 hours and the temp went from 72.5 to 82.7. Is this too warm?

3) If that's too warm, how should I regulate the heat? Use a timer to turn it on at one part of the day and then off at another?

Thanks for any and all advice.

TripleB
 
jsalemi
  • #14
I think by direct contact they mean having it laying right on the bottom of the tank. If you have gravel under it, or the suction cup raises it up a bit off the bottom, you should be fine.

82 is kinda high -- most fish like it around 76-78. The timer sounds like a good way to regulate it somewhat. Maybe keep it on for an hour, off for two, and see how that works.
 
TripleB
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
I think by direct contact they mean having it laying right on the bottom of the tank. If you have gravel under it, or the suction cup raises it up a bit off the bottom, you should be fine.

Well, I guess I'll have to move it in the morning. I pushed the gravel out of the way and layed the heater right on the bottom of the tank, then covered it up with gravel.

TripleB
 
COBettaCouple
  • #16
That heater is one to keep an eye on since it doesn't aI'm for a set temp., but just attempts to heat the water to a point above room temp. You could try running it at night and see how the water does during the day.
 

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