Summer Sweet Spot For Tank Temperatures: What's your max?

BRS

What temperature do you think it too high for your reef tank?

  • 79

    Votes: 74 11.4%
  • 80

    Votes: 118 18.2%
  • 81

    Votes: 106 16.4%
  • 82

    Votes: 149 23.0%
  • 83

    Votes: 96 14.8%
  • 84+

    Votes: 84 13.0%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 20 3.1%

  • Total voters
    647

Tom Davey

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Long ago I read a very well-written article on how high temps will kill the bacteria in the tank and cause it to recycle. In the article, it said it starts to die around 83F. I have been pretty paranoid since I have also when my tank spikes my skimmer gets very active. So this is my first year with a chiller and I am very pleased with my purchase, the tank has stayed right in the range I would consider being safe.
 

salty joe

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If you walk up to your thermostat trying to make your electric bill $150 rather than $300.... I question your "means" to be in this hobby.


Everyone wants to be in the Corvette Club on a Chevrolet Sonic budget


.
Another way to approach a tank is design it so that it is as inexpensive to run as possible...such as using low pressure-high output propeller pumps to run water between fuge and tank. Very doable using 2" pipe if tank and fuge are on same level. If a big tank is out of reach, build one. Cool with geothermal and heat with gas. Use the sun to light things up. I've done those things and it's the only way I could afford a big tank. My utility bills hardly went up. :cool:

My Ranco fires up at 81 and goes off at 79 in the summer.
 

dyno

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Most people have never experienced a natural reef during the summer, which may have led to a lot of misconceptions out there about coral temperature tolerance in the hobby. Both in the Caribbean and Indo Pacific I routinely observed temperatures between 82 and 88 on reefs. The higher end is usually around the patch reefs in lagoons (but not always). The most sensitive corals to temperature stress are the corals in the family acroporidae (acros, montis, anacroporas) and even with these corals, temps generally need to remain over 86 F for several weeks to cause widespread damage/bleaching (which unfortunately is happening more and more frequently these days).
There is nothing wrong with maintaining reef aquariums in the mid/upper 70s, but people don't need to fear deviations into the 80s. If your corals are dying at 82-83 then you have other issues at play. I have maintained acros successfully between 84-85 for extended periods and they continued to grow well. I maintain my current sps dominant system around 82 (I live in a warm climate).
Thank you for sharing @Reeffraff I always wondered about what temperatures occur on the reef in the summer. I have a question, I have always believed and experienced that corals are so much easier to keep than fish even though everyone in this hobby says the opposite. Anyway, if corals can withstand short temperature fluctuations up to 86 what about marine fish? Are they more sensitive to higher temperatures than corals? I mean corals are close to the sun always. Fish stay deeper under the thermocline and probably don't face the heat of shallow waters long-term right?
 

dyno

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Long ago I read a very well-written article on how high temps will kill the bacteria in the tank and cause it to recycle. In the article, it said it starts to die around 83F. I have been pretty paranoid since I have also when my tank spikes my skimmer gets very active. So this is my first year with a chiller and I am very pleased with my purchase, the tank has stayed right in the range I would consider being safe.
@Tom Davey

My cousin has a fish-only tank in his garage here in So California. I was taking care of it while he was away and out of the mix of 40 fish two large Angels died all of a sudden when his tank was at 86. I couldn't understand why and I tested the tank to see high Ammonia and Nitrite levels. I couldn't understand how that could happen on such a well established tank with an enormous amount of surface area for his nitrifying bacteria. What you said makes me think that the temperature could of killed the bacteria off!
 

Gup

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Here in Wildwood New Jersey, its very humid due to the ocean water. We seldom get an ocean breeze. I have my 2 Cobalt heaters down in my sump tank. I keep the temps set at 78 degrees. With the house air conditioning set at 73 - 74, the tank generally runs 77 degrees
 

Machpoint89

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Have an Inkbird controller on my apex

(Apex is the backup temp controller turning OFF the Inkbird in case of failure like a stuck ON heater or bad temp sensor of the Inkbird )

Inkbird turns ON:

Heater at 24.6c ( and OFF at 25.3c )
Fans at 25.7c ( and OFF at 25.2c )

Apex turns OFF:

Inkbird below 24c / 75.2F
Inkbird above 27c / 80.6F

Lights at 27c 80.6F

Just got these cheap clipon fans for evaporative cooling for now until I can get a GHL PropellorBreeze - works great though! (The bad part = it works great so your ATO empties faster)

8244832E-1CE2-40CF-84CB-718955968F15.jpeg

E344E417-2C1E-4CA2-A6DF-3F2A43D1B4B1.jpeg
 
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JCM

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I dont "temp control" my tank very much. I have 2 75w heaters on my ~80g system. One kicks on at 73F, the other at 75F. No thermostat controller or tank controller.

Tank normally stays around 75F regardless of season. I'd probably intervene if it dropped below 70 or much above 80. Though honestly I probably wouldn't know because I never check.
 

Reeffraff

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Thank you for sharing @Reeffraff I always wondered about what temperatures occur on the reef in the summer. I have a question, I have always believed and experienced that corals are so much easier to keep than fish even though everyone in this hobby says the opposite. Anyway, if corals can withstand short temperature fluctuations up to 86 what about marine fish? Are they more sensitive to higher temperatures than corals? I mean corals are close to the sun always. Fish stay deeper under the thermocline and probably don't face the heat of shallow waters long-term right?
Fish can tolerate wider fluctuations in environmental parameters/water conditions than corals so from that perspective fish are hardier. However, a single species of fish is generally subject to a greater array of diseases/parasites than a given species of coral. A fish disease that becomes established in a reef tank (ich, velvet, euronema etc) could easily make certain types of fish more difficult to maintain than corals in that aquarium. If proper QT and treatment procedures are followed prior to introduction of any animal (fish or invert) to a display tank, then I am firmly in the camp that fish are easier to maintain than corals.
In terms of temperature, I've witnessed schools of different reef fish living quite happily in shallow mangrove lagoons that were almost degrees 90 F during the middle of the day. Fish, like most animals, have a suite of heat shock proteins that act to mitigate damage and potential denaturation of critical enzymes, during times of extreme heat stress. The biggest issue for fish in warm temps is the fact that water holds less O2 when it warms up. Without sufficient mixing/surface agitation a fish is likely to succumb to oxygen depravation before heat stress. Unlike corals, fish also have the ability to swim. Thus, if the water stays too warm for too long a fish has the ability to move to another (usually deeper area) to avoid extended durations of heat stress.
 

green behind the ears

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Part of this hobby is the "means" to absorb auxiliary costs.... increased electric bill, increased water bill.

The room where my tank sits has AC supplied to where the house temp doesn't get hotter than 74°

With AC in the Summer and furnace heat in the Winter.... my tank sustains 78° year round.

If you walk up to your thermostat trying to make your electric bill $150 rather than $300.... I question your "means" to be in this hobby.

I knew going in, my tank would cost me an extra $100-$150 a month in auxiliary expenses

Everyone wants to be in the Corvette Club on a Chevrolet Sonic budget


.
What a snotty nose comment , maybe people do want cut costs on bills, so what , maybe people also worry about the impact on the environment this hobby does , maybe let’s encourage that so that this doesn’t end up getting banned
 

ClownWrangler

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Do not use an IR thermometer as shown in the first post for this purpose. It will not be accurate. Those thermometers are only good for flat, non-reflective surfaces. Even then, they are inherently inaccurate if you do not know the emissivity value for the surface and account for it. And more importantly, they can not see through glass, but rather reflections off the glass.

I've never thought about my tanks overheating. I guess it would be a concern if I were away on vacation and did not run the AC in the summer, but I would likely have to with all the other animals I have. During the warmer summer days, my house stays at around 78, so my heaters, which are set to 78, get a short break. I go with 78 because its what most preset heaters are set to.
 
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ClownWrangler

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Another way to approach a tank is design it so that it is as inexpensive to run as possible...such as using low pressure-high output propeller pumps to run water between fuge and tank. Very doable using 2" pipe if tank and fuge are on same level. If a big tank is out of reach, build one. Cool with geothermal and heat with gas. Use the sun to light things up. I've done those things and it's the only way I could afford a big tank. My utility bills hardly went up. :cool:

My Ranco fires up at 81 and goes off at 79 in the summer.

I brought that point up when people were talking about noisy tanks. No need to fight 5 ft of head pressure with high flow. Power = pressure x flow rate. You only need a small pump to the refugium, then power heads or wave makers in the main tank for added flow. All of this is moot point in the winter though as any power used by the tank goes to heat the house, so no power is wasted.
 

ClownWrangler

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Another way to approach a tank is design it so that it is as inexpensive to run as possible...such as using low pressure-high output propeller pumps to run water between fuge and tank. Very doable using 2" pipe if tank and fuge are on same level. If a big tank is out of reach, build one. Cool with geothermal and heat with gas. Use the sun to light things up. I've done those things and it's the only way I could afford a big tank. My utility bills hardly went up. :cool:

My Ranco fires up at 81 and goes off at 79 in the summer.

Also, whether you are heating or cooling, foam board insulation on the sides and back of the tank can cut energy consumption in half (give or take)
 
BRS

Is your aquarium water as CLEAR as you would like?

  • YES

    Votes: 309 60.6%
  • NO

    Votes: 173 33.9%
  • Don't care that much

    Votes: 20 3.9%
  • Other

    Votes: 8 1.6%
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