Emergency backup

Discussion in 'Reef Aquarium Discussion' started by Curryb15, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. Curryb15

    Curryb15 Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    For all those who don't have generators what do you do for emergency power supply if you find yourself without power?
     

  2. jenkinscrew2578

    jenkinscrew2578 Well-Known Member

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    Extension cord, power inverter and my truck lol
     
  3. MaddyP

    MaddyP 'Til Reefdom Come... R2R Supporter SCMAS Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I'm using a APC UPS to support my tank. Currently, with everything running the backup will support the tank for about 20 minutes. But, I have my Apex programmed to turn off unnecessary electronics so the UPS lasts 90 minutes. APC offers a backup solution with expandable battery packs, this will be my upgrade when finances allow.

    IMG_4271.JPG
     
  4. THolden

    THolden Member

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    I remember those days. Lol
     
  5. lawise

    lawise Well-Known Member

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    Me too!!
     
  6. Curryb15

    Curryb15 Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    So what is the essential equipment you have it run
     
  7. bif24701

    bif24701 Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    I have a car battery hooked up to my Vortech MP60 in the main display and a MP10 in the sump. The battery supplies power to the Vortechs for 2+ Days! Been tested several times without fail.

    The battery is automatically charged and maintained with an BatteryMINDER.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Better than any ready made battery system or generator. I instantly supplied 12v DC. I did have two barriers wired in parallel and that gave me 3-4Days but I didn't need the second one, unless we have a hurricane and in that event I can easily add another from one of my vehicles if necessary.
     
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  8. MaddyP

    MaddyP 'Til Reefdom Come... R2R Supporter SCMAS Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Apex turns everything off except return pump (Varios 6), auto top off (pmup), and auto feeder (AFS). If temp drops to certain point, it will turn the smaller heater back on but it's generally not needed.
     
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  9. Curryb15

    Curryb15 Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Sweet yea my return pump heats my tank enough on its own esp this time of year
     
  10. Curryb15

    Curryb15 Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    So what's everyone's opinion on the APC backup? Are they worth it? I've been living in my current house for about 3 years and the longest we've been without power is about 5 hours (knock on wood) trying to figure out some sort of emergenxy plan
     
  11. William Norman

    William Norman Well-Known Member

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    I believe in having levels of backup. You need something for short power outages which can quickly take care of the basics and then a longer term solution. I looked around a few thrift stores and found an APC unit that need a new battery. It was $15 and the battery at Batteries and Bulbs was $30. It covers me for a 5 hours. If you search youtube you will find many videos on how to hack them and put in more batteries. I live in S FL so we will lose power through out the year usually it is just a few mins, but it has been an hour. So this will cover me. The key thing is I wont have to do anything. During hurricanes in the past, it has been days without power. I have never experienced one of those yet. (knock on wood) But I have a gas generator to run a refrigerator + one window ac unit. I have been thinking about getting a small extra unit from Harbor Freight that could run the aquarium, plus a few other things. They have sales which bring them down to $80-$90. They are loud and not efficient but they are cheap.
     
  12. chipmunkofdoom2

    chipmunkofdoom2 Well-Known Member

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    I did something similar to @bif24701 except I have the battery hooked up to an inverter. This way it can power any equipment, be it AC or DC:

    backup.jpg

    The magic is in the transfer switch, which I made out of a simple DPDT relay:

    transfer switch input.jpg

    transfer switch output.jpg

    There are two inputs and one output: one input is plugged into the wall, and the other is plugged into the inverter. My critical equipment is hooked up to the single output. When the power fails, the transfer switch starts drawing from the inverter. When the power comes back on, the transfer switch starts pulling from the wall again. There's a battery maintainer hooked up to the battery, so it automatically charges back up when the power comes back on. I have a 50 Ah battery, so that'll give me about 12-24 hours of run time on my critical equipment when the power fails.

    Personally, I'm not a huge fan of the APCs or other UPSs. To me, they're relatively expensive for the amount of backup they'll give you. UPSs are a few devices in one, they're a battery, a charger, an inverter, and a transfer switch. If any one of those components fail, you need to throw the whole thing out and get a new one. With a DIY system that you piece together yourself, any off the shelf battery, charger, inverter or transfer switch will work with your system. You also can customize a DIY system to match your needs. If you live in an apartment and can't run a generator, you could conceivably stack your closet full of batteries and run your aquarium for a week in the event of a power failure.

    This is just my opinion. Not everyone likes DIY or wants a more polished look. But that's just my preference.
     
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  13. bif24701

    bif24701 Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Completely agree with you on APCs and UPSs.

    I didn't need an inverted because all the equipment I need to run accepts 12VDC.

    My plan is to get the second battery I had back and in parallel first. Second, add Tunze safety connector. This allows me to supply 12VDC from the batteries to my Tunze pumps for additional flow during outages. Third, the APEX base unit has a 12VDC power input and I will wire it to the batteries also. Forth, I have a small APC lying around that I will put on my internet router/mode. Lastly with all the above complete I will have plenty of life support in the display and sump for 3-4 days and additionally my APEX will be able to send me alerts (like "power outage") when the power is out. After all that I might feel some comfort and leave my tank completely alone for a few days maybe weeks without extreme anxiety lol.
     
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  14. chipmunkofdoom2

    chipmunkofdoom2 Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like a really solid plan. I really prefer the way you did it, just hooking a battery directly to the backup port on DC pumps. The system is cheaper and less complex: no inverter, no transfer switch, just a battery and charger. Sadly I still have some AC equipment I want on in the event of an outage. If not, I'd be right there with you.
     
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  15. crabs_mcjones

    crabs_mcjones I'm shiny! R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    I have one of the Ecotech battery backup. So while my return pump isn't running, my two MP10's are still going, which is good enough for short power outages. If its going to be an extensive outage my father has a generator that he lets me use whenever I need to....With that being said, I've been in my home 7 years now and not once ever had the power go out....yet
     
  16. ps2cho

    ps2cho Well-Known Member

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    Someone who has a better background in electronics, can we use an old car battery with a dead cell? So it outputs 10v. Is that an issue? I mean if the other cells hold a charge, is that OK?
     
  17. RyanCSGO

    RyanCSGO Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad SCMAS Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    anyone know how long a 1500VA back up unit would last with a Tuze 6015 nano? (3.5watt)
     
  18. amps

    amps Well-Known Member

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    I posted this in another thread but here's the backup solution for my 180G+10G display tanks and my 50G frag tank.

    Battery Tender > 4x Deep Cycle batteries > Inverter > Transfer Switch > Apex EB8

    When my Apex detects a power outage (power monitoring on the 12vdc port), it turns off any non-essential gear and keeps the life support gear running (pumps and powerheads). After 36hrs, it turns off the least important gear to prolong battery life. I should be able to get 10+ days of runtime easily.

    My main fear is a prolonged outage in the winter. I'll need to run the heaters intermittently to keep the tank at 70+ degrees which will cut down on my battery life by about 80%. I figure in an event like that, I'll hopefully have time to get a generator installed to run my furnace before I run out of juice.
     
  19. Tiger-Paws

    Tiger-Paws Well-Known Member

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    I have a 1350 APC back-up power supply which should last several hours and a 2000w portable genset as well.
     
  20. Robink

    Robink Well-Known Member

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    I have an APC which runs the return, circulation pumps, and heater, will last about 45 minutes. Then I have a generac IQ2000 portable generator.
    I am going to have a standby generator for the whole house installed this fall so I don't have to worry about any of these anymore.
     

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