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Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #1
Aquariums are easy to ?wire up? you just add a pump, and an air pump, some lights plug it in and???..

Original Image(Example of wrongly wired plug, do you see all that is wrong)

"Well it works, so if it works its ok? Isn?t it?"



No it isn?t. Please allow me to explain.

Obvious to most that it is, anything electrical to go in a fish tank should be water proof, not just water resistant. If its to go near or above the tank, water resistant is often acceptable.

Once you have your equipment set up you can plug it in. Plug it into what? If you only have say just two items you should never open a plug and connect them to what is there, most electrical items now come with a fitted plug anyway, its there for a reason, please don?t cut it off. If a fuse ever blows, find out why. Has the cable become damaged or chewed? once the fault has been corrected you can change the fuse, but always use a fuse of the SAME rating never bigger, this is because during a fault the "weakest point" (The fuse) is designed to blow, if you put in a bigger fuse, the fuse may no longer be "The weakest point"

When you are happy with everything you can then plug each item in to one of these.

Original Image

However its still does not finish there. Its best to secure the 4 sockets to a wall or back of the tank cabinet to stop it from moving or being pulled accidentally. There is also another reason. By mounting the socket on a vertical surface any plug plugged in should come from below the socket, this way you make a ?drip loop? This is so that if any water or condensation runs down the cable from anything in or near the tank it will not run into the plug.

How a plug normaly is

Original Image

A plug with a drip loop (arrowed)

Original Image

Also as it?s a fish tank, the 4 way socket should be plugged in via a plug in RCD

Original Image

Other brands of RCD are available In short an RCD could save your life if there is any water where it shouldn?t be.

Please look out for other articles for your guidance.
Fishlady Fishlady
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #2
Very useful post 2010
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #3
SarahF SarahF
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #4
Hello, it is dumb old me looking for a more simplified explanation please.

I am about to upgrade my tank and am going to get an electrician in to move some sockets and add more on so I don't have to have extension leads all over the place.

What do these RCD things do(other than stop you dying - I got that much) and can I get plugs with them fitted or do I need plug in ones?

Since I have never understood I didn't do it before Do I need 1 per appliance? or 1 per extension lead?
Formerly rubbish fishkeeper.
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #5
Hi SarahF no problem.

As you said an RCD is to stop you being killed, its a blunt way of putting it, but that really is what they are for.

I wont bore you with an explanation of how they work,

You can get RCD Plugs such as Original Image this one


and you can get plug in adaptors, such as Original Image this one.



Other brands of RCD are available. The "problem" (if you will) is that although they are "priceless", if you have one protecting everything, should a fault occur, then in doing its job, it will switch off everything, which is why it is some times a good idea to have one on everything plugged in, but it can work out "expensive *" at around ?10 each, I think its worth it, but to be honest, I don't have as many as I should.

*If for example you have 10 things plugged in, it soon mounts up.
Good quality costs. Bear this in mind before you start.

Sorry if my reply is NOT want you want to hear, but what I have said is true.

We can only go by what you type.

A "thank you" costs nothing, but goes a long way.
SarahF SarahF
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #6
Thanks. I guess it will depend on how the new sockets are fitted as to how many I can have. If it comes down to it, are there some appliences it is more crucial to have these on than others?
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #7
Quote:

SarahF wrote:
........... I guess it will depend on how the new sockets are fitted as to how many I can have.


Not really. You can have as many as you like. (Same as you can now)


Quote:

SarahF wrote: If it comes down to it, are there some appliences it is more crucial to have these on than others?


Anything that is liable to get wet should be RCD protected.
Good quality costs. Bear this in mind before you start.

Sorry if my reply is NOT want you want to hear, but what I have said is true.

We can only go by what you type.

A "thank you" costs nothing, but goes a long way.
SarahF SarahF
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #8
My electrician has told me that since I have new sockets added onto the main loop, they (and I) are protected RCD style by the circuit breakers I have fitted in the event of any wetness.

Always good to know I was safer than I thought
Formerly rubbish fishkeeper.
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Re: Aquarium electrics (A few points of note) #9
I use this RCD.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ARCADIA-CLA ... REAKER-PLUG-/190538503189

This one is specifically designed for aquarium use. Powercuts will cause most plug-in RCD's to trip. This one however will not trip in a powercut, so all your filters, heaters etc. will be reinstated immediately when the power comes back on. Other plug-in RCD's have to be manually reset. If you have RCD's in your circuit breakers as SarahF described, these won't trip in a powercut either.
As for what they do, in a nutshell they work on the basis that what goes in must come out. It monitors the current at live and neutral, if there's a significant difference then the current must be leaking out somewhere else (e.g. via someone touching a faulty appliance), so it trips.