Interesting Facts about Aquarium Fish and Aquarium Heating
- Though fish are mute they are extremely sensitive towards the light, smells, touches, sounds, and tastes. Taste buds cover their entire body.
- Fish are extra-sensitive towards water temperature. Even 2-3 degrees can be crucial for them and even cause the death of some species.
- Never try to heat an aquarium in a natural way by placing it under direct sunlight. It is dangerous for its inhabitants.
- In 95% of cases, fish die because of improper feeding and housing conditions.
- Fish are not animals, but like all living beings, they can experience stress, pain, and fear.
Why Do You Need A Heater For Your Aquarium?
Unlike mammals, fish can’t maintain their body temperature; they are cold-blooded, which means that their bodies do not produce heat. That’s why fish are entirely dependent on the environmental temperature. Some species feel good at room temperature, while others (especially tropical fish) need warmer water. But even if your fish live at room temperature, you need to keep in mind that the temperature in your room is not constant. It tends to fluctuate throughout the year and even throughout the day. So, a fish aquarium heater is a must-have anyway.
What Are The Different Types Of Aquarium Heaters?
Though all heaters perform one and the same task – regulating water temperature – they can significantly differ in terms of their construction. They are chosen based on the aquarium size, fish species, and personal preferences of a fish owner. Here are the main types of heaters:
- Immersion heaters are hanged over the tank’s wall. Their heating element is hidden in a glass tube that is placed into water.
- Submersible heaters that are fully placed right in the water. They are safer and more convenient than immersion-type heating devices.
- Filters with built-in heaters. Two-in-one devices can be convenient but beware that you won’t be able to regulate the temperature, and if a heater goes down, you’ll have to replace the entire unit.
- External in-line and in-sump filters. The first one is placed between the sump and the tank, while the second one – inside the sump. They are used for larger aquariums and are more expensive than compact devices.
Immersion and submersible heaters are most popular in the market. They are affordable, easy to use and compact. However, submersible heaters are safer and more efficient, so they are more frequently recommended by experienced aquarists.
How to Care for an Aquarium Heater?
Though for the most part aquarium heaters are quite easy to use and don’t require special maintenance, don’t forget that they are electric devices. It means that you need to observe basic safety precautions to prevent possible dangerous situations. Here are some tips for everyone to consider.
- Choose an aquarium heater size suitable for the size of your aquarium tank. This information is usually provided in the list of the product’s specifications.
- Read a user manual before switching on a heater. It helps to reduce risks. For example, from the Top Fin aquarium heater instructions, you’ll know how to mountain the device correctly for its maximum efficiency.
- Keep in mind that even the best saltwater aquarium heater models tend to rust over time in the salted water. If you see the signs of rusting, replace the heater. If water gets inside, it can result in a short circuit.
Also, try to prevent shattering of the aquarium. Though modern heaters are considered shock-resistant, they still can break. Breakage of a heater inside a tank can be very dangerous.
How and Where to Place a Heater Correctly?
Beginners in the sphere of aquaristics often wonder where to place aquarium heater inside the tank. In fact, there can be several possible variants. An important thing here is to adhere to some principle rules.
Submersible heaters must be covered by water completely. Some models are mounted only vertically, other – horizontally, and still others can be mounted in any position. If you use several heaters (in a large tank), place them in the opposite corners of the aquarium in order to let water be heated evenly. If you don’t know what size heater for aquarium is best, read the product’s specifications.
Aquarium Water Temperature for Different Species of Fish
Different types of fish have different demands to water temperature. Moreover, some of them are more sensitive to the temperature fluctuations, while others are more immune to slight changes throughout the day. These factors need to be considered when you are choosing the fish for living in one aquarium.
- Coldwater Fish
Coldwater fish are considered the least demanding, due to which they are rather popular, especially with the beginners. Well-known examples of coldwater aquarium fish are the goldfish, the coi, and guppy. These fish feel comfortable at the temperature of 65-68 F.
- Warm-Water or Tropical Fish
Tropical fish can’t live in cold water. The comfortable temperature range for them is 75-80 F, which can’t be maintained by a special aquarium heater. These fish are also more demanding in general, so if you have no or little experience in fish breeding, you’d better begin with coldwater species. Examples of tropical fish are the danios, barbs, angelfish, and others.