How to Choose and Install an Aquarium Chiller
Hello folks and thanks for watching. Summertime can be a real bear for us reef hobbyists because even just a slight increase in ambient temperatures can wreak havoc on our aquariums. While your aquarium may have operated with a stable temperatures throughout the winter, when summer hits we really start to see temperature fluctuations. This can really cause stress to both the corals and fish in our aquariums for a number of reasons.
Thankfully we have a great solution to this problem which brings us to the topic of our video, Aquarium Chillers. We are going to show you how to choose and install an aquarium chiller and help your tank make it through the scorching, long and lazy days of summer.
When choosing a chiller it is all based on the amount of water in your aquarium and how much you need to drop the temperature in your tank. Most manufacturers rate chillers based on aquarium size but may not take into consideration the amount of heat that needs to be removed. Therefore, slightly over-sizing your chiller is your best bet because this will ensure your tank is cooled efficiently and avoid the need for constant on/off operation of the chiller.
We chose the Â¼ HP AquaEuro Max-Chill. While this may seem to be a bit overkill for an aquarium of this size, we can be confident the unit will cool the aquarium quickly and survive for many summers to come. The Apex chiller features a built in digital temperature controller and therefore, the only other equipment needed for installation is a water pump and plumbing.
When choosing a water pump for the chiller you want to ensure you follow the manufacturer recommended flow rates. Most chillers are advertised with a suitable range of flow and choose a pump that can provide a flow rate within this range.
Assembly is quite simple and in this case, I simply had to attach the inlet and outlet fittings to the chiller that are sized to accept Â¾\" vinyl tubing.
We found a suitable location to place the chiller which is important to the proper operation of your chiller. Your chiller needs to be in a well-ventilated area where it can properly dissipate heat that is being removed from your tank. Chillers can also be a bit noisy when operating so be sure to take into account the other members of your household when placing the chiller.
We utilized a couple of 90 degree hose barbs in order to make a clean installation along with a u-tube return pipe to return the water back into the tank.
Since we have an all-in-one aquarium, I will be placing the pump in the back filter chamber and return the water to the back pump chamber. If you have a sump on your aquarium, you can place the pump directly in your sump or even utilize your return pump if the flow rate is appropriate for the chiller.
Upon applying power, you will need to program the temperature controller. Thankfully with digital temperature controllers this is pretty strait forward. You will program the chiller with a target water temperature and the chiller compressor will turn on and off as needed to maintain that temperature in your aquarium. Once programmed, most chillers will also display the real time temperature of your aquarium water making it easy to monitor through the first few days of operation.
You can view Aquarium Chillers on our website via the link below.