Electrical GruView Badges
R2R Excellence Award
Reef Squad Leader
Reef Tank 365
North Alabama Reef Club
Partner Member 2020
- Aug 14, 2016
- Reaction score
- Decatur, AL
I feel like you are ignoring the continued release of contaminant into a system without a ground probe/GFCI. I agree that electrocution isn't likely. I also agree that some tanks have been wiped because of not designing redundancy into the GFCI. But, there are plenty of cases here on R2R where there were massive fish and coral losses due to failed electrical equipment that wasn't detected.It's clear that some people prefer one risk, while other's prefer a different risk. There's no such thing as risk free. Some would prefer a catastrophic but extremely unlikely risk - that of electrocution or injury from shock. Others would prefer a lesser, but much more common risk - that of the GFCI tripping and killing or injuring the tank.
I changed my vote from Not Sure to Optional. I have a ground probe in the sump only, at the moment. Probably install another in the tank just for redundancy, but I'll keep GFCI out of the system.
I have a master kill switch, very conveniently located, and I don't need to get into the cabinet to switch off the power strip.
In fact, that might be the best safety feature of all - a master kill switch, conveniently (but not too conveniently) located.
I have a piece of red tape covering it, so it can't be easily switched off by accident, but it's easy if you mean to. When I'm going to put my arm in the tank, take water out, or put it in, if there's ever an emergency - there's the master switch on the wall away from the tank itself. It's just a switched outlet, into which I've plugged my power strip / surge protector, and also my ground probe (which doesn't care if the switch is on or off; it's permanently grounded.
So, a master kill switch - yes there's a choice of risks. But I'm thinking that I'm avoiding the pitfalls of the GFCI by simply cutting the power when I'm messing in the tank. One day I could get struck by lightning or hit by a meteorite.
For me, the main reason I use GFCI isn't personal protection. It is to minimize the release of copper and toxins into my tank if a heater or pump housing cracks. I can design redundancy in my GFCI system. I can't prevent copper from killing my coral.