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Results 1 to 3 of 3
  1. #1

    Default Massive Power Outage -- Everyone Survived !!!

    0 Not allowed!
    Following are excerpts from my handwritten aqua-log:

    TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 2010:

    "The worst possible scenerio has occurred!

    "I awoke at 2 A.M. this morning and found our electrical power out! The revertible pump hasn't arrived, so no way to power the aquarium pumps.

    "I had hubby load new batteries into two of my birdbath agitators. I then removed the door panel from the lid of my tank and suspended the domed agitators into the strip of open water, supporting the battery housings on the frame of the tank and the edge of the remaining lid. At least these will keep the water moving, somewhat.

    "I then put a towel over the tank so no fish could jump out. And also to keep the water from getting too cold. Being it's a coldwater tank to begin with, this isn't as big an issue as it would be with a tropical tank, but still, the Rosy Barbs can only tolerate down to 64F. Any colder, and they could suffer.

    "I also wanted to keep my fish calm, and covering the tank seemed a good way to do it.

    "I left the openings in the back of the lid over the Maxi-Jets and Venturi airline uncovered. This would still allow some oxygen to enter the tank.

    "Later today, I added a third agitator to help circulate even more water. The three are placed close enough together, with floating plants blocking the open spaces between them, that I then felt I could safely remove the towel and any fish that tried to jump out would have difficulty exiting the tank. I felt I needed to let more air into the tank by exposing more open water area to the outside.

    "Thus far, nobody has exited the tank.

    "I felt the water and it was really quite warm. I tried to trap the ambient room heat inside the fish room by closing all the thermal drapes and keeping the curtain over the entrance closed.

    "The water being so warm to my touch is another reason I uncovered the tank.

    "This evening, I felt the water again, and it had cooled down considerably. So, I covered the tank again with the towel.

    "I have intentionally left the fish room dark so the fish would be less active and would expend less energy. I also have refrained from feeding them, so they will expel less waste in the water. I can only get by with that for one day, however, then they'll need to be fed.

    "These measures might help in a pinch to keep at least some of the beneficial bacteria alive, but unless the power is restored soon, there could still be serious consequences.

    "I called our power company and they don't expect restoration unto tomorrow morning, and then they can't guarantee it. A huge windstorm took out the main transmission lines.

    "I can only do so much to save the beneficial bacteria in my tank, and to save my fish (and snails). It remains to be seen if any of these measures have done any good, and how much damage has actually occurred.

    6:00 P.M.:

    "I've just now removed the towel, again. This opens the water strip with the three agitators to the outside air, again. So more oxygen can enter the tank for the agitators to circulate through the water. Just hope it works, and the water doesn't get too cold. Most of my fish could take it, but I'm still concerned about the barbs.



    4:15 P.M.:


    "Preliminary head count shows all tank residents have survived. Good color, no sign of disease.

    "Tank water is just a wee bit cloudy.

    "Water tests reveal:

    Ammonia: 0.25
    Nitrate: 40.

    "This is to be expected, under the circumstances.

    "This morning, while the power was still out, I broke an O-Nip tablet in half and sent each half sinking into opposite ends of the tank. This limited feeding was meant to sustain them without drastically polluting the tank. It has completely been consumed -- both pieces.

    "A huge water change is in order! Now that the well pump is back on and working -- no problem.

    5:10 P.M.:

    "I've just completed a 50% water change. Will retest the parameters, shortly."

    This ends my aqua-log entries over this period of time. Had the power not been restored, things could have been a lot worse, in my opinion. I feel very fortunate, because the power company was telling neighbors who had called in that the outage could continue for another 24-hours to three days! I can only admire the diligence and dedication of the power crew. The outage was widespread, and they certainly have done a fantastic job!

    -- mermaidwannabe

    Last edited by mermaidwannabe; 11-18-2010 at 01:02 AM.
    20 gal. high: planted; 8 white cloud minnows, 10 RCS, 2 blue shrimp, several snails; AC50, Azoo air. 65 gal: planted; 7 rosy barbs, 6 glofish,, 2 zebra danios, 6 rosy red (fathead) minnows, 3 dojo loaches, several snails; AC110 x 2.

  2. #2


    0 Not allowed!

    "The revertible pump has finally arrived, along with the 4" airstones and 25-feet of flexible airline I ordered. I have cut the airline to fit, and connected the airstone, which now lies horizontally on the substrate in the rear of my tank, about due center. I have the pump positioned above the water level so there'll be no back-siphoning (I still ordered check valves, because I wasn't sure where I'd be putting it). I plugged it in about ten minutes ago, and set the battery control to "low". I am getting wonderful, massive bubbles from the airstone, and it's really beautiful! The battery is still charging. I assume when it is charged up, the indicator will switch to "power" instead of "charge", the led which is now lit.

    If a power outage occurs again, this pump will switch over to battery power and keep the airstone bubbling. That should keep plenty of oxygen in the tank and water circulation even when the Maxi-jets and Venturi aeration no longer functions.

    With the battery control on "low", when the battery takes over, the pump will run at 50-second intervals. I feel this lower setting will lengthen the life of the battery. It has a "high" setting, which will power the pump continuously after the electrical power is off.

    This should solve the problem of keeping beneficial bacteria alive during a power outage. Hopefully, I'll never have to see how well it will work, but it's there in case it's needed."

    -- mermaidwannabe
    20 gal. high: planted; 8 white cloud minnows, 10 RCS, 2 blue shrimp, several snails; AC50, Azoo air. 65 gal: planted; 7 rosy barbs, 6 glofish,, 2 zebra danios, 6 rosy red (fathead) minnows, 3 dojo loaches, several snails; AC110 x 2.

  3. #3


    0 Not allowed!

    10:40 P.M.:

    Retested the water after having done the 50% water change. Vast improvement!

    Ammonia: 0-0.25
    Nitrites: 0
    Nitrates: 10-20

    I know I'll need to do another water change tomorrow to bring the Ammonia to absolute 0.

    I'm learning things all the time!

    Like how to read the led lights on my new revertible pump. When I hooked it up, the red led came on with the word "charge" beneath it. The other led, which is supposed to be green, didn't light up at all. I should have thought that strange, if I weren't so technologically challenged! What it really meant was that the battery was in NEED of charging, and wasn't doing so!

    I found the Q&A sheet that came with the pump, and after reading that, I realized I needed to connect a wire to the battery before it would function. Now that I look back -- DUUUHHHH!

    So, I opened the housing where the battery is kept, unscrewed the clamps that held it down, and connected the red wire. The black one was already connected. As soon as I did that, I heard the battery starting to hum and vibrate. It was now being powered! I clamped it back down in its housing and clamped the lid back down. NOW the green led light has lit up, which it should be. According to the Q&A, that means the battery is charging, and when it is fully charged, that bright green led will turn dark. The red "charge" led is also still on, but I guess it will switch off when the charging is complete.

    I'm sure glad I caught that BEFORE the next power outage, or the back-up would never occur.

    Yeah, I'm not much when it comes to these things, but I can still learn. I'm more right brain -- (artistic) -- than left. Not the most analytical person in the world, but when dealing with aesthetics -- that's my thing!

    Glad I got it straightened out.

    -- mermaidwannabe
    20 gal. high: planted; 8 white cloud minnows, 10 RCS, 2 blue shrimp, several snails; AC50, Azoo air. 65 gal: planted; 7 rosy barbs, 6 glofish,, 2 zebra danios, 6 rosy red (fathead) minnows, 3 dojo loaches, several snails; AC110 x 2.

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