Tank Grounding....

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Tank Grounding....

Post by Nannook on Mon May 17, 2010 6:10 am

I have a cut on my finger. When I touch my refugium water I get a tingle at this cut. Ryan (our resident electrician are you listening?) I obviously have a flow of electricity to the salt surface of my tank.

Researching this I have found this to cause lateral line disease etc.

Remedy is to go to a bike shop and get a titanium wheel spoke, attach a stainless wire to this spoke tightly then go to the center screw on the electrical outlet. This will do away with any electrical buildup caused by "salt creep" (isn't that Phil's knick-name?) and lots of electrical plugs. Checking with my meter I found this to be 20 volts AC. Probing different areas of my tank brought interesting readings. My 55 gal tank base was a little higher at 24.5 VAC. My Coralife hood, all aluminum was zero. Why? Because it has a 3rd prong and everything is grounded inside.

Now understand I have no disease problems with my fish. Well I am combating Ich on the Fox Face and I had the unexplained death of some babies. And stress could certainly account for both.

Have you probed your tank today?
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Re: Tank Grounding....

Post by ranger_reefer on Mon May 17, 2010 10:09 am

I have a grounding probe in my tank Smile it was pretty cheap and essentially it is what you describe.

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Re: Tank Grounding....

Post by cdness on Mon May 17, 2010 10:20 am

The big issue with the grounding probes is it's a band-aid and not the solution. Yes it can protect you and could potentially save your life in the case of a total short out. Unfortunately the electricity is still in the water. It's now just got a place to go so YOU are not the ground for it.

The best thing to do is find the offending piece of equipment and toss it as far into the trash as you can. Cut the cord so noone else ever uses it and get a replacement. This way the electricity is out of the water and you are no longer in danger. Remember, redirecting the current is by no means fixing the issue.

Typicaly the causes of these are heaters and cheaper pumps or powerheads. Just unplug the items and test the voltage. Keep unplugging until the voltage goes away and you know what's causing the electricity leak. Your fish will be much happier.

Think of it this way, would you go jumping into a pool with a live electrical wire in one corner and a grounding probe in the other? Wink
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Re: Tank Grounding....

Post by Nannook on Mon May 17, 2010 7:38 pm

Excellent advice. I did unplug a cheap light over my fuge, but that was not it. But I will do as you suggest.
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Re: Tank Grounding....

Post by danreefs on Mon May 17, 2010 8:33 pm

Its a pain in the butt. Just unplug one item at a time youwill fined it.
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Re: Tank Grounding....

Post by Nannook on Wed May 19, 2010 10:35 pm

Well, I am not sure I found it, but my voltage is gone. I had a leaky skimmer, once I got that stopped, and DRY. No more voltage. (scratching head) Don't look a gift sea horse in the mouth.
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Re: Tank Grounding....

Post by cdness on Thu May 20, 2010 12:58 pm

odd... I would keep testing. If you moved the skimmer enough you could have sealed up the leak. Maybe pull it out, dry it off good, and silicone the power cord outlet and see if that helps keep it sealed a bit better...
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Re: Tank Grounding....

Post by Nannook on Sun May 23, 2010 7:13 am

I remember from Chemistry that pure water is not a conductor of electricity. Lab was add salt. Then it is an excellent conductor. My skimmer has no electricity. I mean it is a brand new, (the plot thickens) Sedona 3500 but unplugging it made no difference the other day, but drying the leak, placing a cedar shake under it to give a little tilt back into the tank so the drip went back in fuge than down the side has seemingly made the difference. Still looking but it has been nearly a week with no more tingles. On a positive note, my Foxface has now purged its Ich. Related? Stress can do it I have read.
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