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Old 06-22-2010, 09:19 PM   #1 
Azure
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Am I baking my betta?

I have a 6 gallon tank and I bought a 10 watt heater. It's supposed to be automatically set at 78 degrees. Well according to my sticky strip thermometer, the temperature is ranging from 82 degrees to 89 degrees! (It could be even hotter since the strip only goes to 89 degrees.) Options are 1) return the heater saying that it's defective; 2) reset the timing for the hot halogen lights (right now they are on from 7am-11pm because I have live plants; I could turn them off during the hottest part of the day); or 3) not do anything since my betta seems perfectly happy; he's swimming around and eating.

What's my best option?
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Old 06-22-2010, 09:25 PM   #2 
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I would change out the lights. That is probably what is causing your tank to heat up so much and not the filter. Switching to Fluorescent lights would be ideal and getting ones built for plants even better.
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Old 06-22-2010, 11:26 PM   #3 
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I agree with the above. I found a bag of ice in the tank helps lower the temp quickly if need be. I don't think it's the heater making it that hot. Your lights are on for a long time... why do you keep them on so long? 7 to 7 would be sufficient.
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Old 06-22-2010, 11:35 PM   #4 
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I have the lights on that long because I'm only really at home/awake from 7am-8am and 7pm-11pm. (I work a lot!) I like to have the lights on when I'm home.
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Old 06-23-2010, 06:29 AM   #5 
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I work a lot also. I usually leave at 8 am for work and get home at 9 pm at night. I honestly don't have my tank lights on when I leave. I have them set to come on at 11:30 and go off 10:30-11. Plants only need 12 hours max and bettas I think need like 6 or 7 hours? Having the lights on as long as you do usually promotes algae growth eventually (I know that because I did what you did for my first tank for a while and it did).
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Old 06-23-2010, 12:10 PM   #6 
sarbear
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I had the same issue with my heater and I returned it and the new one did the same thing. So now i just leave the heater unplugged since the water temp stays between 78 and 82 without it. I'm sure I'll have to plug it in during the colder months. I do leave my lights off during the hottest part of the day as well. Did you try to leave it unplugged and see what the temp is?

Also, are those strip thermometers accurate? I have a digital one and I've heard strip thermometers for other things, such as my ball python, are not accurate.
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Old 06-23-2010, 12:17 PM   #7 
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Why not get a timer for your light? They don't cost too much and you can set it to come on at a certain time and go off at a certain time.
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Old 06-23-2010, 12:59 PM   #8 
52cherish
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Is it possible your lights are effecting the outside stick on thermometer? It has been in the mid 80s here for the last week and I noticed my outside stick on thermometers are reading 84 and 86 degrees during the day. Last night I went out to buy in tank thermometers, one standing, one floating. Both tanks read at just 80 degrees right now with the outside stick on showing 6 degrees more... so check the real water temperature inside the tank before you return the heater. I would agree with above statements on switching to fluorescence light...
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Old 06-23-2010, 01:38 PM   #9 
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I would not use such a hot light over the tank because turning the lights on and off every day causes dangerous fluctuations that could weaken the immune system of your betta. You also should return the heater and get a 25 watt adjustable heater with a good thermostat. This will help keep the temperature stable and stop the tank from overheating. Non-adjustable heaters cannot turn themselves off when the water gets too hot.

I would not put a bag of ice in an aquarium. It will change the temperature of the water much too quickly--instead, point a fan at the tank. It will slowly lower the temperature and is more effective than it sounds.
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