Electrical question

moz

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I seem to have a bit of stray voltage, when my hand is in the tank wherever I have cuts on my fingers it stings, when I disconnected a 40w pump I had in the tank, the stinging was a lot less so I am assuming that there was a problem with the pump. Also how do I check the voltage/current in my tank and what is acceptable?
 

Rory

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Hi Moz

You can get a cheap voltmeter from makro/game/pnp hyper/any hardware place/any electrical place. Then put the one end of it in the water and the other end on something earthed. If it isn't already you should probably earth your tank stand.

Wearing shoes helps. Not having cuts helps. Using the voltmeter to monitor the voltage and turning off each thing you can see which ones contribute the most (such as the 40W pump).
 

moz

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Thanks Rory, I think I'll get some safety boots and one of those earthing straps that should help prevent electrocution. But earthing the stand, and finding my voltmeter would probably be a good start.
 

Rory

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Earthing strap? As in around your wrist and connected to earth? That is probably the opposite of what you want to do... The point of the rubber boots etc is so that you aren't earthed so the current doesn't flow from the tank, through you and into the ground. Connecting your one hand to earth and sticking the other in the tank is a rather bad idea...
 

Kanga

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Earthing strap? As in around your wrist and connected to earth? That is probably the opposite of what you want to do... The point of the rubber boots etc is so that you aren't earthed so the current doesn't flow from the tank, through you and into the ground. Connecting your one hand to earth and sticking the other in the tank is a rather bad idea...
damn I'd say:lol::lol:

would be reeftank/toaster
 
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Most earthing straps have a large resistance resistor in series with their earthing lead. Normally in the mega ohms. So you won't become toast. But it will not help too much either.

Do as Rory says.
 

moz

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OOPs, I think I'd better just do what Rory suggested and not get too creative, my knowledge of electricity it seems, is likely to get somebody hurt.
 
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I will be in the area on the 24th/25th if you need help. Will probably have a major hangover tho.
 

jacquesb

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Hi moz - this seems to be a "common problem" - me too HAD the issues previously. I contributed it to the following:
- worn out wiring going to the power-heads in your tank (even though the wiring does not seem frayed) -> what to do to test: switch off the power-heads, ONE BY ONE, and see which one "stops the shocking feeling"
- IF you are using the y-type fluorescent ballast connectors for the globes, which are not sealed in any way (not guaranteed to be water-proof) - these might be arcing, and "leaking current", as seeing that the water is so close-by.... and the wires are so THIN.... check to see if you are still being "shocked" when the lights are switched off....

These were my conclusions - possibly worth checking...

Good luck!

PS: I don't get that anymore since I removed a LOT of the smaller power-heads in my tank (only have a few very strong ones), and also changed my lighting to T5's in purpose-made lamp-units.... no more shocking experiences from the tank ;-)
 

Alan

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I have found that the voltage normally comes from the fluorescent fittings. Anyway an easy way to find out where the problem lies is to unplug everything and start plugging in one at a time and test the waters after each piece is plugged in. Now how you test the waters is up to you personally i would use a multi meter.
 
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No nothing works better than the good old finger shock test. :lol:
 

Mike

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Are you sure there is stray voltage? if you have cut fingers then the salt water alone will sting, try wearing gloves. Failing that try out the turn everything off method as suggested by Alan, if not, stop playing with sharp things;)
 

viper357

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No nothing works better than the good old finger shock test. :lol:
Nah, use your tongue, nice little tingle, you know like how you lick the 9v batteries :D
 
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Nah, use your tongue, nice little tingle, you know like how you lick the 9v batteries :D
Ha Ha read somewhere that 4 to 7 Australians die every year testing batteries like that. Think we should contract them to test all our batteries too?
 

moz

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Done the finger test, since I took out the 40w pump, no more problems so that seems to be the source.
 
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Then you should be OK.
 

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