Has anyone ever used these successfully? The reviews I've found are no help. I'm concerned about not being able to control the temp. They're on clearance(!) at Petsmart - 2-5 gal for $4.50 & 5-10 gal for $6.50. Since I can't afford a real, 25 watt adjustable heater, I was thinking about getting one of these for a 2.5 or a 5 gallon container so I can separate 2 of my guys out of their divided tank (my (really) elaborate measure to ensure they can't see each other are failing with a big fat F). Your thoughts would be appreciated.
I would get the Hydor over the Walmart ones. The walmart ones need a filter to work the best and I kept having issues with them. Some others on here have as well, but then others don't it depends I think. When I have used a Hydor on two different tanks (a 2.5g and 1.5 g) it worked fine, It never overheated the tank. just kept it a few degrees over room temp. or a few degrees over the temp of the tank with a light on.
But that is just my experience with both of the ones mentioned above. Others might have had better or worse experience with them.
I don't use non-adjustable heaters--they are unreliable, and if the ambient temperature of the room is low, around 70-72 degrees, they won't heat the water enough, if the room is 78-80 degrees, it will overheat the water. I only recommend heaters that have an adjustable temperature dial--they are a few dollars more, but I believe it is worth the investment. After all it is a higher quality product that will last longer and will provide you with more security, stability, and control. If you have some other supplies you want to order, you could save a ton of money by ordering your heater and other products online.
Actually, I have a good setup: 2 10 gal hooded tanks with filters & 50 watt adjustable heaters. All the fixins. Problem is, 2 of my guys can't handle being in a divided tank. If only I'd known...They're so stressed, and all the suggestions given to me didn't work. I need to separate them completely, but I just can't afford any other equipment - I can't justify spending so much on my boys when money is so tight. I could easily put one in another container, but how long can he handle 68-70 degree room temperature?
It's a really hard decision, but I think I need to find a new home for one of my little guys. I don't know of anyone in my area who keeps fish. Anyone live near Dallas, TX who can adopt either a tail-biting 4-color doubletail OR a manically active pink dalmation veiltail?
Well, I know I have an unpopular opinion, but my Tetra HT10 heaters have (so far) been perfectly reliable for my 2.5 and 5 gallon tanks.
My house has been "cold" too, as low as 60 degrees while I am at work. I check the tanks the moment I get home, and the lowest temp I have seen on the LCD thermometer is 76. When I double check with my digital meat thermometer, it reads no lower than 77.
They are a 50 watt unit, and pre-set to 78 degrees. There is a light on it that is green when the unit has power and the light turns red when it is actively heating the water. The temperature doesn't fluctuate more than a couple degrees.
This has been my personal experience. I know of some other people here on the bettafish forum that also have had good results from the Tetra brand pre-set heaters. Still, I think it is just all up to you and what you want to try. If the heater didn't work properly, I know Wal-mart (and I assume any other store) would refund your money. I think at Wal-mart they are around $12, and at my local petstore they were $16.
All I know is that they work for me and I am very happy with the Tetra heaters.