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Fan Notes

Posted 08-30-2010 at 11:48 AM by NASAGeek
Updated 09-08-2010 at 02:49 PM by NASAGeek

Fans are a simple way to augment the heat rejection from your tank. There are two principal means that fans can help with relative to aquarium water: 1) Blowing hot air away from the tank such as under a hood with metal halide lights and 2) Blowing air over a water surface to increase evaporation and cool the water. The first technique is obviously done near a heat source such as your lights. The second can be done in the sump or the display tank. Either can be effective for small amounts of decrease in temperature. It is not the most efficient choice from a thermodynamic point of view, but it is effective from a cost point of view. Fans are most effective when the temperature between the air being moved and the ambient air temperature is greatest. Thus, fans near MH lights make more sense and are more efficient.

Fans for lights are not primarily for keeping the tank cool. These fans cool the ballast electronic to increase the life of the components and help maintain safe touch temperature for the equipment. Fans for cooling aquarium water is not recommended and only effective typically for a few degrees.

Conclusion, include fans for electronics cooling and maintaining safe touch temperature. While you can use fans for water cooling, it is not recommended as the preferred solution.
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