Heater malfunction, killed fish

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mjn5647

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Feb 1, 2005
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I have a 20 gallon tank setup with a topfin heater. The tank was running fine for a month until one day i discovered all the fish were dead. After doing a little looking around, i noticed the water temp was over 90 degrees F. After some experimenting I discovered the thermostat in the tank had broke and the heater was not shutting off instead just kept heating past the 78 degrees it was set on. I brought the heater back to petsmart and they replaced it. However they wanted nothing to do with the tank full of dead fish. I have invested alot of money into those fish and i am going to miss them. I buy all my aqaurium products at Petsmart and this is the first time that i have been disappointed with them. Any advice?
Thanks
 

justintoxicated

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Dec 19, 2005
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Maybe call the manufacturer.

Sorry to hear about your fish.

I would recomend 2 Visitherm stealth heaters (each 1/2 recomended wattage), that way if one of them sticks on, the other will shut off, and the undersized heater will not be able to heat the entire tank.

I personaly only have 1 heater on my tanks because I learned about this technique later.
 

mjn5647

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Feb 1, 2005
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The manufacturer is Petsmart. They own TopFin and they control the top fin consumer calls.
 

justintoxicated

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Dec 19, 2005
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mjn5647 said:
The manufacturer is Petsmart. They own TopFin and they control the top fin consumer calls.
Right, but the person working there probably won't be able to help you, if there is a number on the package give tehm a call. I doubt they will do anything though :(

note to self "do not use Topfin Heaters".
 

Marinemom

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Apr 8, 2006
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Sorry to hear about your loss. Some times this happens when the heater gets stuck in the on position. Believe me I know. Last April, one of my heaters got stuck like that and heated the water to 110 degrees. It killed a tank full of discus and live plants. Bummer! I think this happens to just about everyone in this hobby at one time or another. Sad. Just don't let it get the best of you. You will have to start over again but I for one know that you can have a beautiful aquarium again.

Marinemom
 

sarcare

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Aug 3, 2006
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For some reason my heaters have the opposite problem, and don't seem to be able to keep the water up to the right temp. Well really just the cheep heaters I bought for my 10g. I've taken to sticking my fiingers in the water to check the temp, since my I just have those temp strip things.
 

icecubez189

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Feb 15, 2006
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sorry to hear about your losses

First heater i purchased was a Aquatic Garden's Profile 50watt for my 10G. Before i even got to use it, i read some reviews and found out it wasn't that great. i returned it, did some research and asked around before i purchased my heater, which was a Marineland Stealth Visi-Therm. worked great so i purchased another one for my 20G. so far, both are working perfectly. i hear Ebo-Jagers are good too.
 
ive been using the big als brand, and it has been working great, there is no temp control on the heater (i cant say put aquarium to 78, and it does it, i have to get the tank to 78, then turn the power down til the heater turns off, then it will turn on when ever the temp goes down) and it is working fatastically in my ten, and i am probably going to put it in my 20 as well.

sorry to hear about all the lost fish, the half wattage things sounds like a pretty good fail proof idea, but there are some new Digital thermometers available that are acurate, and work muich faster than the old style. most people watch there fish every day, or feed them. checking the temps are really the only safe way to go.
 

twig

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Apr 28, 2006
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I have jaegers in my 80 gallon and they are awesome!

I think they are owned by Eheim but i know they were one of the first companies to make a heater so they're pretty good stuff.

I also have a whisper mini in my 5 gal (rated for 5.5 gallons o.o) and it works ok.. it's tiny so the thing is really neat =)

i hear those stealth ones are highly regarded as well.

personally i like my heaters to have a number value on the dial so you dont have to babysit the tank when you readjust the temp. Consider that when you make your purchase.
 

justintoxicated

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Dec 19, 2005
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Dan the Moose said:
ive been using the big als brand, and it has been working great, there is no temp control on the heater (i cant say put aquarium to 78, and it does it, i have to get the tank to 78, then turn the power down til the heater turns off, then it will turn on when ever the temp goes down) and it is working fatastically in my ten, and i am probably going to put it in my 20 as well.

sorry to hear about all the lost fish, the half wattage things sounds like a pretty good fail proof idea, but there are some new Digital thermometers available that are acurate, and work muich faster than the old style. most people watch there fish every day, or feed them. checking the temps are really the only safe way to go.
I would ditch that thing ASAP, the whole idea of having a heater is not just to heat the tank but to maintain a CONSISTANT water temperature. Unless your willing to sit next to your tank all day and play with the heater...

twig said:
I have jaegers in my 80 gallon and they are awesome!

I think they are owned by Eheim but i know they were one of the first companies to make a heater so they're pretty good stuff.

I also have a whisper mini in my 5 gal (rated for 5.5 gallons o.o) and it works ok.. it's tiny so the thing is really neat =)

i hear those stealth ones are highly regarded as well.

personally i like my heaters to have a number value on the dial so you dont have to babysit the tank when you readjust the temp. Consider that when you make your purchase.
I thought they just got bought out by smeone else and people are recomending their old heaters as teh best but some are starting to shy away from their new ones? or am I thinking of another company?
 
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