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Thread: Now to worry about heat

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    Registered Member Imperialdiscus's Avatar
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    Default Now to worry about heat

    Basically, if you've seen other of my recent threads, I had to do a flurry of building new shelves etc.

    I ran out of available house space and have moved my cars out of the garage and into the driveway. I've no doubt that this will annoy the neighbors no end, as I have a few too many cars in my stable as it is.

    Anyways, we have managed to add about 1200 gallons of new tank water and an additional 525 gallon storage tank.

    Fortunately, being in Southern California I don't have to worry as bad as someone in the midwest about freezing temps. However it can get pretty cold here, which concerns me a little bit.

    Any fellow So Cals here using their garage for fish? And if so, how are you managing temps during winter months?


    Thanks.

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Here down in FL inside the greenhouses, we use large propane heaters which heat the air. Now it isnt the most efficient way to do it, but it is among the easiest ways. Other ways which I have toyed with in the past is using a hot water heater/heat exchange system. Fairly simple design, but can cost more to install....efficiency wise it is far superior. Which way you go depends on how the tanks are setup (recirc vs independent). Of course there is always the traditional bar-type heater, which will work well if your tanks are all on a recirc system as you can get them at almost any size you need (from 1kW to 20kW+).

    -Ryan
    -Ryan Karcher
    Aquatic Eco Systems Technician

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    Registered Member Imperialdiscus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Quote Originally Posted by Dkarc@Aol.com View Post
    Here down in FL inside the greenhouses, we use large propane heaters which heat the air. Now it isnt the most efficient way to do it, but it is among the easiest ways. Other ways which I have toyed with in the past is using a hot water heater/heat exchange system. Fairly simple design, but can cost more to install....efficiency wise it is far superior. Which way you go depends on how the tanks are setup (recirc vs independent). Of course there is always the traditional bar-type heater, which will work well if your tanks are all on a recirc system as you can get them at almost any size you need (from 1kW to 20kW+).

    -Ryan

    No recirc, I was putting some spare tanks back into service that I had "retired" several years ago as I'm currently desperate for space. Tempered so I can't drill them.

    However I will have 36 20gal H that will be drilled coming from glasscages.com, and those will be recirc'd.

    Toying with a few ideas, but I haven't had to deal with the garage here before, so I'm just not sure what to expect. Looked at the heat exchanger like you suggested some weeks back. Also toying with the possibility of a couple space heaters out there along with some large titanium heaters in the tanks, although that will no doubt just play havok with my electric bill.

    FYI: My books came in, Recirculating Aquaculture Systems (Timmons) and small scale Aquaculture.

    The RAS book is AMAZING.... great detail in there and a lot of valuable info. Well worth the cost.

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Unfortunately there is no cheap way to heat the water. Electricity is by far the most expensive, with natural gas/propane being far cheaper per BTU produced.

    I have seen some farmers here use a make shift heat exchanger system to recover heat from waste water. From what they tell me it helps save them enough money to warrant such a system as they arent wasting all the heat energy. Basically take a huge storage tank (1,000 gal for example) and all the water from water changes goes into it. This storage tank is sunk into the ground for better insulation. In this tank is a circulation pump that pumps water through a counter-current heat exchanger in your new water storage tank (there is a pump in the new water tank as well pumping water for the other end of the counter-current design). The warmer waste water gives up a percentage of it's heat to the colder new water. At bare minimum this will reduce the amount of energy needed to bring the new water up to temp.

    As for the rest of the hatchery....a natural gas/propane space heater is going to be your best bet IMO. Dont forget to insulate the garage to minimize heat loss as much as possible.

    -Ryan
    -Ryan Karcher
    Aquatic Eco Systems Technician

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    Registered Member Imperialdiscus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Quote Originally Posted by Dkarc@Aol.com View Post
    As for the rest of the hatchery....a natural gas/propane space heater is going to be your best bet IMO. Dont forget to insulate the garage to minimize heat loss as much as possible.

    -Ryan

    The walls are finished, but I am doubtful they were insulated.

    My precaution list is as follows:

    garage door. insulation stuffed in and taped inside the door panels. hanging some sort of barrier over the doors to reduce airflow. Large thermal blankets etc.

    tanks. wrapping 3 sides in a thermal insulator, I found a foil thermal material at Home Depot. And possibly draping the tanks at night after lights out.

    a couple of appropriately placed space heaters.

    An expensive alternative, I'm considering the addition of Solar heating. While I do plan to move everything out of my house and into a warehouse within 6 months, I did want to start becoming energy independent anyway, and installing household solar on my flat roof.
    This would certainly be a reason to go ahead and start the switch.

    I figure I'm going to take a bit of a hit on the electric bills, but it's only a couple months here as our weather is usually pretty good. If it was just my Angels, I would be less worried as they can handle lower temps than Discus. But since I've been increasing my supply of Discus over the last year, I can't afford to take stupid chances.

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Solar panels or solar water heating? If it is solar water heating, UF has a decent article they produced several years ago using relatively cheap materials to build the solar collector, and they had good results from what I remember. I'll try to find it for you.

    -Ryan

    ** Here is a link to the article: http://www.owr.ehnr.state.nc.us/ref/12/11342.pdf

    It should work, if not Google: UF IFAS, Circular EES-114
    Last edited by Dkarc@Aol.com; 09-28-2009 at 07:18 PM.
    -Ryan Karcher
    Aquatic Eco Systems Technician

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Quote Originally Posted by Dkarc@Aol.com View Post
    Solar panels or solar water heating? If it is solar water heating, UF has a decent article they produced several years ago using relatively cheap materials to build the solar collector, and they had good results from what I remember. I'll try to find it for you.

    -Ryan

    My home intent had been to add an array of solar panels on the roof to reduce our energy dependence. Which I'd use to power my heating in the garage until we move the fish.

    solar water heating is certainly something I would look into if you have a reference.

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Previous post edited for solar heating article.

    -Ryan
    -Ryan Karcher
    Aquatic Eco Systems Technician

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Reclaiming heat from wastewater is really easy if you plan for it upfront, particularly w/ systems plumbed to a single drainage point. Operation is free, once the initial investment is made.

    The basic item required is a bath type heat exchanger, where the wastewater runs through an overflowing tub having the inlet water flowing thru a coil within. It'd work really well on continuous flow drip systems with auto temp control valves. For batch feed aged water systems, two aging reservoirs would work best- fill one thru the heat exchanger while draining the tanks, use the other for makeup water in the tanks, switch reservoirs the next time around.

    Variants on the theme are widely used in the restaurant industry, where they have lots of hightemp wastewater from dishwashers, probably in commercial laundries, as well. You won't get nearly the savings they would, but it's something, anyway.

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Ok, so I'm not in Calinfornia, but Sydney Australia. Not sure how our climates compare, but we have a temperate climate with a mild winter, averaging more than 340 sunny days a year. Average minimum temperatures in the winter months of June through to August is around 9 degrees Celsius (47-48 degrees Farenheit).

    I store 264 Gallons in my uninsulated single brick garage. I wrapped the container with insulation bats (like would normally go in your ceiling) and then wrapped that with Builders Plastic to protect the bats from splashed water.

    I heat it with one eheim jaeger 300W heater and have no issues with keeping it warm enough. You are keeping larger volumes of water than me, but thought this might help.
    Last edited by TankWatcher; 11-03-2009 at 04:41 AM.
    Cheers
    Robyn

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Quote Originally Posted by Dkarc@Aol.com View Post
    ** Here is a link to the article: http://www.owr.ehnr.state.nc.us/ref/12/11342.pdf

    It should work, if not Google: UF IFAS, Circular EES-114
    Ryan,
    Awesome article. Thanks for finding it and posting the link.

    Tim

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    Registered Member Imperialdiscus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Quote Originally Posted by TankWatcher View Post
    Ok, so I'm not in Calinfornia, but Sydney Australia. Not sure how our climates compare, but we have a temperate climate with a mild winter, averaging more than 340 sunny days a year. Average minimum temperatures in the winter months of June through to August is around 9 degrees Celsius (47-48 degrees Farenheit).

    There are some differences between our climates. I was stationed on Guam for 4 years, which is roughly similar to Sydney. That would certainly be workable.

    In Los Angeles, we are pretty temperate most of the year, but winter months like Nov - Feb can get down into the 30's F for overnight temps.

    currently I am looking at space heaters as well as insulation types. I remember reading somewhere about insulation sheets that were reflective silver, but I'm not sure where I saw it. Currently my plan is to provide insulation around and between the tanks, and wrap them with an insulation "tarp" of some kind.

    I've already stuffed the panels on the garage doors with insulation, duct taped it up and then added a couple of large padded "blankets", the big blue colored heavy duty stuff you get from Uhaul as padding when you rent a truck, to act as insulation.

    Most likely, I've gone overkill on this, but I don't like to take chances. Better overkill than fishkill. I have a heat sensor gun that I can use to take spot readings of the air temperature which is kinda neat. So far, with no heat applied to any tanks, I'm holding overnight temps to around 72 degrees. (no, no fish in them yet) But we haven't had any really cold weather yet so we'll see what happens.

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    Registered Member yim11's Avatar
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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    I can't find a good picture or link for it, but one thing that can really help is a ~2" rubber liner around the outside of the garage door. Kind of like this:

    http://www.improvementscatalog.com/h...therstrip.html

    It helps seal around the door to prevent drafts. You can get it by the roll at Home Depot and install it yourself.

    Insulating the attic area above the garage may help also (if its not already insulated, most in TX aren't).

    The reflective silver material you are thinking about may be Reflectix, I know a few people that use this on water storage and fish tanks:

    http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1...atalogId=10053

    HTHs,
    -jim
    President NADA

    SOS Crew - Texas

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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    I heat the room (which is insulated) to 85 degrees using a natural gas space heater. Works great and it's cheap. The more you can stay off the electrical grid the better.

    Best wishes!
    Chad Hughes
    www.sandiegodiscus.com

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Registered Member Imperialdiscus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Now to worry about heat

    Cool. I will most definitely check out the weather strip material. Great find.

    And yes, Reflectix was the product I couldn't remember. Just needed to see the name again.

    Looks like yet another trip to Home Depot tonight.


    thanks!



    Quote Originally Posted by yim11 View Post
    I can't find a good picture or link for it, but one thing that can really help is a ~2" rubber liner around the outside of the garage door. Kind of like this:

    http://www.improvementscatalog.com/h...therstrip.html

    It helps seal around the door to prevent drafts. You can get it by the roll at Home Depot and install it yourself.

    Insulating the attic area above the garage may help also (if its not already insulated, most in TX aren't).

    The reflective silver material you are thinking about may be Reflectix, I know a few people that use this on water storage and fish tanks:

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