Why is my tank overheating??

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optimisticdingo

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Hello all. I'm extremely confused right now and am not sure what to do. For the past 2 weeks my tank has been running hotter than usual. It's usually 78 degrees but recently it's been getting hotter and hotter. I first thought it was my thermostat going out so I contacted the manufacturer and got a replacement sent out. However, the problem is still persisting. I decided to unplug the heater today as my tank reached a temp of 84 degrees. Earlier today it was 82 and the heater has been off all day. I'm not sure what is causing the temperature to rise. Here are some details.

Tank: Red Sea Reefer 450 (116 Gallon)
ReefOctopus classic 152-s skimmer
Pentair UV sterilizer w/a sychee syncra silent pump
BRS 600w heating element
Inkbird Thermostat
Vortech MP40 Wave Pump
Lighting: AI Hydra 32HD
I've also got a GFO reactor using a small pump as well

I've checked the temp with other thermometers and they all read around the same. My fish are fine but my corals are extremely unhappy and I've got some expensive stuff. I'm worried specifically about my Holy Grail Torch.

I can't see any reason why the tank is getting so hot. The ambient temp in my house is usually 73 degrees during the day and goes down to 68 at night.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 
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Chrisv.

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What’s ha-pending with your pumps and your UV? Any chance one of those is cooking? If they are raising the temp that much they will likely be warm to the touch. do you have the ability to measure power consumption on each device? (kill-a-watt or apex with power monitor)
 

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I kind of got the similar idea too. I was thinking his return pump. He has a 116 gallon & sump tank. So the gph on his return pump are pretty significant. Needs a pretty big pump. I’m looking for something that is causing friction and friction will cause heat. Wave makers and flow pumps, in the tank, generally aren’t a big enough mechanism to create that much friction to create a sizable amount of heat
 
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Gtinnel

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I kind of got the similar idea too. I was thinking his return pump. While I don’t know how large his tank is or what size return pump (fog) he is using, I’m looking for something that is causing friction and friction will cause heat. Wave makers and flow pumps, in the tank, generally aren’t a big enough mechanism to create that much friction to create a sizable amount of heat
I agree I'd see if the return pump feels hot to the touch. He said in the post that his tank is a reefer 450 (116 gallons), and it can't be a powerhead because he uses an MP40.
 
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optimisticdingo

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What’s ha-pending with your pumps and your UV? Any chance one of those is cooking? If they are raising the temp that much they will likely be warm to the touch. do you have the ability to measure power consumption on each device? (kill-a-watt or apex with power monitor)
I do not. However, I could try to see if any of the pumps are warm to the touch.
 

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Hello all. I'm extremely confused right now and am not sure what to do. For the past 2 weeks my tank has been running hotter than usual. It's usually 78 degrees but recently it's been getting hotter and hotter. I first thought it was my thermostat going out so I contacted the manufacturer and got a replacement sent out. However, the problem is still persisting. I decided to unplug the heater today as my tank reached a temp of 84 degrees. Earlier today it was 82 and the heater has been off all day. I'm not sure what is causing the temperature to rise. Here are some details.

Tank: Red Sea Reefer 450 (116 Gallon)
ReefOctopus classic 152-s skimmer
Pentair UV sterilizer w/a sychee syncra silent pump
BRS 600w heating element
Inkbird Thermostat
Vortech MP40 Wave Pump
Lighting: AI Hydra 32HD
I've also got a GFO reactor using a small pump as well

I've checked the temp with other thermometers and they all read around the same. My fish are fine but my corals are extremely unhappy and I've got some expensive stuff. I'm worried specifically about my Holy Grail Torch.

I can't see any reason why the tank is getting so hot. The ambient temp in my house is usually 73 degrees during the day and goes down to 68 at night.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
You got a check everything that is motorized, everything. They are the only things that will cause he besides your heater. Now I’m assuming your tank isn’t getting direct sunlight somehow even if the house is cool, Because that too would do it plus in a date your tank with Algae.But I am certain you would have figured that much out yourself. You have to feel everything with the motor, something is causing friction
 

Chrisv.

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For now, consider killing the uv unless you absolutely need it. That will be two fewer sources of heat. The bulb itself gets hot and the pump can be the one that's malfunctioning.

I'll get on my soap box and say that this is a really good example of why controllers are worth it. You can easily set up a controller to start turning off non essential equipment as temps rise to avoid major spikes (e.g. uv, skimmer, light in the extreme case), even turn on a cheapo fan that's pointed at your sump. The newer ones monitor power consumption, so if a pump motor is going bad in a way that might produce heat, you will see it.
 
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optimisticdingo

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You got a check everything that is motorized, everything. They are the only things that will cause he besides your heater. Now I’m assuming your tank isn’t getting direct sunlight somehow even if the house is cool, Because that too would do it plus in a date your tank with Algae.But I am certain you would have figured that much out yourself. You have to feel everything with the motor, something is causing friction
I felt all of the pumps. Every one of them was fine except for the return pump. The return chamber was way warmer than the other sump chambers and the pump was warm to the touch. Looks like I found the culprit. I unplugged the pump and will order a new one tomorrow. Thanks guys I would have never thought to check that.
 
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optimisticdingo

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what’s the temp now
84.2. I've killed the UV and the return pump to try and minimize any heat until after the tank has cooled. I figure it is best to let it cool on its own so as to not shock the coral or fish but maybe I'm wrong.
 

Chrisv.

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not sure how long it will take for your tank temp to fall, but if you’re killing the return, you may want to move the heater up to the display, that way you don’t get too cold while you’re waiting on a pump.
 
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optimisticdingo

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not sure how long it will take for your tank temp to fall, but if you’re killing the return, you may want to move the heater up to the display, that way you don’t get too cold while you’re waiting on a pump.
Sounds good. I'm gonna see if one of the LFS's has a good option that I can get tomorrow. If not I'll have to order one off of BRS.
 
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I felt all of the pumps. Every one of them was fine except for the return pump. The return chamber was way warmer than the other sump chambers and the pump was warm to the touch. Looks like I found the culprit. I unplugged the pump and will order a new one tomorrow. Thanks guys I would have never thought to check that.
Thank goodness you found the problem. I thought it would be that return pump since it is the largest electrical mechanism in your system. Do you have a back up pump to use temporarily? I keep an extra pump On hand just for such an emergency.

I’m happy you found the problem and you can get things back to normal.
 

Chrisv.

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Amazon prime may be another option too. You may opt to buy a sort of crappy one as stop gap, just to have a backup for the future. On that note if you have a random pump around (or even want to temporarily poach one from your skimmer or w/e that could get you through until a more suitable pump arrives.
 
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optimisticdingo

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Thank goodness you found the problem. I thought it would be that return pump since it is the largest electrical mechanism in your system. Do you have a back up pump to use temporarily? I keep an extra pump On hand just for such an emergency.

I’m happy you found the problem and you can get things back to normal.
I don't have one unfortunately. Hopefully I can get one soon. My small 500 GPH pump that's feeding my UV closed loop is currently all that is running. I turned up the speed of my Vortech to try and increase surface agitation.

The pump was for sure the issue. After being unplugged for just a few minutes the temp has dropped from 84.2 down to 84. It doesn't seem like much but previously it would take hours just to drop 1 degree.
 

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84.2. I've killed the UV and the return pump to try and minimize any heat until after the tank has cooled. I figure it is best to let it cool on its own so as to not shock the coral or fish but maybe I'm wrong.
not sure how long it will take for your tank temp to fall, but if you’re killing the return, you may want to move the heater up to the display, that way you don’t get too cold while you’re waiting on a pump.
I’m thinking 116 gallon tank plus sump won’t cool down that much overnight. But on the safe side, he could raise the temperature on his air-conditioning a little higher
 
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