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Old 08-01-2010, 02:27 PM   #1 
RUx911
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Help me set up my tank

I have two bettas. They are currently in one gallon bowls that undergo 20% changes every other day and full water changes weekly. They will be moved into a 5 gallon mini bow in about two weeks when I move into my dorm. I can not do it before then because I would have to set up the tank, cycle the water, and then just have to pack it all up again. I am close to ordering everything that I need, but no matter how many customer reviews I look at or how many google searches I do, I cannot find the opinions and advice that I need.
So here it goes:

I will be using API aquarium salt along with Amquel+ and Novaqua to treat my water. Since I am using aquarium salt, am I better off using the API Freshwater or API Saltwater Master testing kit? I have read that the saltwater testing kit can use used for both saltwater and freshwater aquariums but the freshwater kit can only be used for freshwater.

I am at a lose for what heater to use. I know I need a submersible heater, not a hang on. I have heard that I need 5 watts per gallon, but also read that some people are using 50 watts to heat a 5 gallon. And after hours of reading about the visi-therm and stealth pro heaters by Marineland have exploded, shattered, cracked, ect., in some instances, I have decided to stay away from those. I have ready relatively good reviews about the Eheim brand. So, can someone please tell me which one of these is better? They are pretty much the same price:

It does not mention it being submersible and says up to 15 gallons, so can I use it for a 5 gallon?
http://www.thatpetplace.com/pet/prod/196276/product.web

This one says it is submersible, but says 7-15 gallons:
http://www.thatpetplace.com/pet/prod/249475/product.web

I am trying to stay under $30 for a heater but at the same time get one that will not horribly malfunction. If you guys have any other suggestions, let me know.

Sorry this post is so long, I am just trying to set everything up right the first time.
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Old 08-01-2010, 04:13 PM   #2 
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Welcome to the forum! I use this one in my 3 & 5 gallon and it has been great (and I bought it from this seller as well). Easy to adjust, responds to adjusting, and as long as you don't empty the water while it's on, there should be no probs. I unplug all of my heaters when I do water changes.
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Old 08-01-2010, 04:47 PM   #3 
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Welcome to the wonderful world of Betta keeping.......

Long term aquarium salt use is not recommended or needed for this species, it is a great product for short term treatments when used in correct dosage/duration.
Long term salt use can cause resistant pathogen/parasites and may not be as effective for treatments when needed.
It can also cause internal problems and kidney damage and often symptoms of dropsy, popeye, bloat and swelling type issues can show up for unknown reason in an otherwise healthy tank.

API freshwater master test kit is what you need to get-to test for: ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH
IMO/E-the only chemical additive needed is a good dechlorinator if on city water supply, but even with well water it is a good idea to have some on hand.
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Old 08-01-2010, 08:36 PM   #4 
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Thanks!
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Old 08-02-2010, 12:52 AM   #5 
Kittles
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Hold the phone.
Quote:
They will be moved into a 5 gallon mini bow in about two weeks when I move into my dorm.
You're not moving two bettas into the same tank, are you? That's a no-no for sure. Also, I'm going to assume you're doing a fish-in cycle?

Now, in regards to everything else:

The API Master Test Kit is a good kit for you to have on hand; they're trustier than strips. There shouldn't be a problem using the freshwater kit. That's what I use, afterall, and I've added salt on occasion. I don't think adding salt to water qualifies as legitimate 'salt water' anyway.

Most heaters should be fine for you to use. I'm sorry I don't know the appropriate wattages per gallon, or even what I used in my 10 gallon, but as long as you use it properly there should be no explosions, crackings, or anything of the sort.

Lastly, as oldfishlady mentioned above, you should have some water treatment on hand to neutralize chlorine and what not. Would benefit your fish, for sure.

Also, good luck, and welcome. :>
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Old 08-02-2010, 07:54 AM   #6 
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Of course they wont be in the same tank. :)
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Old 08-02-2010, 08:02 AM   #7 
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Also, as it turns out, I will not be able to have 5 gallon aquariums, so I am switching to the 2.5. Am I good with a 25 watt heater?
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Old 08-02-2010, 01:51 PM   #8 
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Yes, 25 watts will work fine with a 2.5 gallon.
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Old 08-02-2010, 02:25 PM   #9 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RUx911 View Post
Of course they wont be in the same tank. :)
Lol, I just had to be sure. :>

Sorry about not being able to get the 5 gallons, but I'm sure you'll work wonders with the 2.5s.
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