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Thread: voltage in tank

  1. #1
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    voltage in tank

    guys\gals, i decided to check my tank with a voltmeter today after our teenager said he felt tingling while he had his hand in the tank feeding the cleaner shrimp. I checked things out with a voltmeter when i got home and did see about 2.0 volts on the meter. Been thinking for a while about getting a ground probe to shunt any stray low voltage but when reading different peeps views on how to deal with this there never seems to be a "right" way. I realize one should really find the source of the problem and correct it. There differing opinion on the use of ground probes, gfi, etc. What are you guys doing? The only electronic devices in the main water colomn are 5 powerheads. I've checked the sump where the heaters, main pump etc are and read 0 volts. thanks, JeffD

  2. #2
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    JeffD ....
    Check this out ... it was posted by Jammer ( good link Jammer) on another thread and is worth reading.

    http://avdil.gtri.gatech.edu/RCM/RCM...ingProbes.html

    Rob

  3. #3
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    Cool

    turn each power head off at a time and keep checking volts. aLso, check for salt creep in your lighting system. Sounds weird but ask Ivan about that! he now has curly hair.
    P.S 2.0 volts aint much from what I've read. just being salt water with power heads in there will cause volts to register. Even the friction of saltwater thru your pipes will cause static electricity.

  4. #4
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    Thanks guys. While i was watching the meter a little later i noticed the volts jump up to about 50v which sent me scrambling around unplugging everything one by one. What i noticed was nothing seemed to help until i unplugged my canopy fan. Volts dropped and when i tried to reproduce it by replugging the fan for confirmation it didn't happen again. I did notice allot of salt creep in the area where many of my wires enter the canopy for my lighting\fans. Not sure whats going on at this point. I would like to know more about the salt creep episode that Ivan experienced.. Ivan??
    tks, Jeff

  5. #5
    ijo
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    I went to pickup a frag one day and got a nice zap... I unplugged everything one at a time to find the stray voltage... it happen to be my 440 VHO lighting... I had a ton of saltcreep around the tank and the wires... I took the canopy off the tank and gave it a good cleaning... everything seems to be fine.

    On the zap note... I heard one hand is ok as you can pull it out before you become a DOA but if you have both hands in the tank its supposed to be a different ending... this is part of the hobby I do not like... electricity and saltwater jsut don't mix very well.

    IJO

  6. #6
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    I have been told that it is a good idea to give the waters surface a flick with the finger before reaching in if you insist on doing so with all power turned on.
    Rob

  7. #7
    Senior Member Aqua's Avatar
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    It is extremely difficult to measure voltage and current in aquarium since instruments available to us are neither designed nor capable of doing that job and results that we are getting are very misleading.
    Only safe way is to have GFCI Outlet for all your equipment. Ideally having two or more of these outlets will let you to distribute equipment in a way that activation of one will still have tank running.
    This way you will know rather then “feel” when something goes wrong.
    Man that goes to bed with itchy butt, wakes up with stinky finger!
    -Confusious



  8. #8
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    Originally posted by One Salty Dog
    it was posted by Jammer ( good link Jammer)
    Thanks, yeah there are a few interesting tidbits on his main site. He's really got all the little pieces firmly nailed down.

    No gear in the tank, at all, detritus filters plumbed into house drain lines along with skimmer collection cup overflow, auto top off with dry hands water changes, sinusoidal valves, surge tanks, rotating sump return thingey me bob for alternating flow, to name just a few. Good stuff.

  9. #9
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    Talking ONE SALTY DOG

    I laughed my ass off with your comment about flicking the water surface! I just pictured a reefer causiously walking up to his tank praying to the gods to spare him on this day and like a spry cat just flicking the water! I must be tired:biggrinbo

  10. #10
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    thanks for the input and suggestions guys. I've decided to skip on the ground probe and stick with the gfi's already in place. Been monitoring things with the powerheads unplugged and so far all is good. With the new tank setup in the midst i dont plan on using any in tank powerheads so i'm not going to replace them at this point. Will just plug 1\5 at a time and monitor. Thanks again

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