What to Do When the Electricity Goes Out

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When the electricity fails and the lights go out, your aquarium filter shuts down too. You could be looking at disaster. Here are some tips on what to do if the electricity fails.

  • Don’t feed your fish. Fish that are digesting food require more oxygen and their waste products will not be as efficiently handled if the filter is not functioning. Don’t worry about them starving. Believe it or not, most pet fish can survive for a week or more without food.
  • Stir aquarium water every hour or two with a wire whisk. This will help put needed oxygen back into the water. Better still, keep a battery-operated aerator on hand. These are available in many fishing-tackle shops
  • To avoid problems in the future, make certain you haven’t overloaded the circuit to which you have connected all of your equipment – heater, light, air pump, filter. Plugging your equipment into a surge protector will prevent power surges from ruining your filter motor.
  • Be careful when making water changes to keep water from spilling onto the electric outlet.
  • If the power has been out for some time, replace the filter material in your filter so that when it starts up it will not be clogged.
  • If the tank is located in a drafty place, try to insulate the tank to prevent the temperature from dropping too quickly. When the power returns, raise the temperature slowly. Sudden changes in temperature are extremely hazardous to fish.
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