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DIY IBC Fish Tank Heater with Digital Temperature Controller

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  1. The temp sensor is just hanging in the water of the tank. 

  2. Can you share how you wired the contactor? Can’t get mine to work. Thanks

  3. Do you have a list of parts so I don’t have to try and guess when I go to
    the hardware store? :)

  4. It looks like you are wiring in 110vac, Most of those heater elements I’ve
    seen are 208vac. Are you using a special element?

  5. why not use a hot water heater thermo and relay? it’s already made for that
    set up

  6. Could you please give me the part number for that relay you are using.
    Thanks much for such a great informative video.


  8. Where did you mount the temp sensor for the controller? Is it wet mounted
    or does it need a dry thermowell?

  9. Hi David I like your heater set up for your ibc tote. I am thinking of
    adding heaters to 2 ibc totes is there anyway you can draw up your wiring
    diagram? If so let me know and I’ll give you my email address. 

  10. That heater element will end up killing your fish. You need a
    stainless-steel element, not a nickel-based element

  11. An interesting note: If sound matters to you, you can replace the $20 relay
    he has with a solid state relay, such as the CrydomTD-1225. If you’re
    comfortable with a soldering iron and a desoldering pump, you can even
    replace the internal (12vdc if I remember correctly) relay inside that
    temperature controller.



  12. This is very well thought out and completed. I’m having to figure out some
    sort of supplemental heater for my aquaculture system I’m building as well.
    I’m in Houston, Texas, where we rarely get below freezing. I want to say
    January 2014 boasted some of the coldest temps ever when it hit 28°F for a
    few hours over night….

    Anyway, I’m a PVC nut so this is a great fit too.

    One thought: why put this in the tank vs the sump? Or do you not have a
    sump? I was planning one such heater in the sump with the thermostat probe
    located somewhere in a middle tank.

    You mentioned in the comments an increase in electric bill. Was it
    significant or just more than you liked? I was thinking a solar coil heater
    on the roof of the fish room as daily heat and could use this as a

  13. Thanks for the video. Do you have any estimates on the electricity cost of
    running this heater

  14. Did you ever get around to drilling more holes in the outlet cap? I know if
    you put pressure on your pump because of there being a blockage(hence not
    enough holes) you can damage your motor. Great design on the heater and I
    like the after thought of putting a hole behind the heater to pull in dead
    space water. I’ll design my unit after yours, thanks for the video.

  15. Have you tried the 12 volt dc heating elements. That way you could use
    solar with battery back up.

  16. i just purchased all the parts I will use to do something very similar. I
    will be using a 2000 watt element in the sump tank. I will not be using any
    sort of shroud either since no fish are present. I might try to make a
    video of itI will also be making a solar heater over the winter. I saw
    where a guy used stainless steel gas flexible line with the sheathing
    removed as his heat transfer coil in the fish tanks. That is my next big
    project after this heater installation. Thanks for the video.

  17. This is by far the best DIY heater I have found and I think i will plan a
    setup based on your design when I get a system set up. I will definitely
    need it here in the Portland Metro area for pretty much every season but

  18. Thank you very much. I will give it a shot. I really appreciate your video.
    Very helpful.

  19. I would have reversed the water flow, It would have allowed for more
    reaction time between the water and the heater element. But other than
    that, nice job.

  20. Has it melted yet in the PVC ?

  21. Can you tell me exactly how you wired the relay to the digital heat
    controller. Thank you.

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