Mr. Saltwater Tank

How To Prepare Your Saltwater Tank For Hurricane Sandy

Hurricane Sandy is looking like it is headed for a direct hit on the east coast of the United States. Here’s how to get your tank prepared if you are in the storm’s path.  Note: These tips are useful for any natural disaster so even if you aren’t anywhere close to the hurricane, you can use these tips!

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Comments for this article (30)

  • donny says:

    hey mark great tips, i live in newfoundland canada and a lot of these hurricanes pass over us and then we have major snow storms to tend with as well. its not un common to have 2-3 day power outages here after a major storm. luckily i do have a generator which i bought specifically for my tank. just hope my food in the freezer dont thaw out lol

  • NICK says:

    Great video, i’m waiting on the emergency kits.

    I live in france and people hear do not even know what a hurricane is lol.

    But i think that this can also be applied during power outages.

    By the way you make great vids.

  • james says:

    I just hope if it hit New York we don’t get that big power outage we go years back.

  • matt says:

    A little off the topic, but what type of nano tank is that behind you? it looks like the same one that sits behind Francis the Fish Geek from Fish Tank Kings when he is does his interviews. Ive been trying to find out what type of tank that is, he has a rad looking coral growing in it on the show. Do you know what im talking about? do you also know what coral that is?


  • Mark H. says:

    Thanks for the tip Mark, i bought a large APC battery backup to run the vital parts of my tank, small powerhead, air pump and heater.

  • Steve Barta says:

    If you need a battery powered air pump….consider a local fishing / bait / tackle store or the sporting goods department of a larger store or a Sporting Goods Store.

  • Jeff says:

    Hey Mark:

    Great video, for the coming storm, the coming winter!
    Looking for your thought on this – I run a Tunze Nanostream 6025 & a Nanostream 6045 running on a battery backup. These 2 pumps will run for a couple of days or so.

    My thought has always been that these 2 will ensure O2 into the tank.

    What is your thought on this?

    Thanks Jeff

  • Jay says:

    The tank sitting behind him is the Ecoxotic ecopico tank. 6 gallon.

  • Bruce Hall says:

    Here in Fla. we use generators, to keep everything in the tank going. Especially the ice maker and blenders for the margaritas.. Its windy here in Jacksonville, but no rain. Hope everyone up north prepares better than we do.

  • Mike Mueller says:

    Thanks for the great tip Mark! Nothing coming this way in Idaho, except cold weather. Good Luck to those in the path of Sandy!

  • Bruce Hall says:

    Seas offshore Jacksonville 28 to 35 ft on Saturday, I think I will pass on diving for lobster this weekend.

  • charles says:

    Can you use the same sump tank to filter water for main tank and quarantine tank ( for new fish )

  • Darren says:

    Thanks Mark, I’ve been worried about power outages for awhile now. Doesn’t happen here in Toronto to often, although we had that big brown out a few years back that lasted 3-4 days. I’ll be looking for a generator soon enough but for now I’ll have to rely on a battery powered unit. Good luck to all in the path, let’s hope the media has just blown this out of proportion like they usually do. FrankenStorm, is it Halloween already. Hey Mark, no bloopers this time. What’d you do, send the misses out with your son, the dog, and the cleaner shrimp for ice cream. Lol

  • darren…a couple of screw ups for sure…they just didn’t make the final cut!

  • Mike says:

    Most bait stores or even Walmart and Kmart (In there fishing department) usually carry battery powered air pumps with stones to keep your minnows alive. And work well on your tank in a pinch.
    Thank you for all your great videos and info Mark

  • Dave B says:

    Mark – Many thanks for the tips. I am unfortunately directly in the path being in coastal New Jersey. During the recent durico, which i had no power for 4 days, I did the following:
    From a Computer Battery back up, running about 4 hours at a time, twice per day I ran one circulation pump and a small air pump. It worked great and I only started to run out of battery on the fourth day.
    The tank got warm and I floated bags of ice. Note that this was in the summer, so I did not need heat. If so, i would have had an issue.

    Good luck to all!

    I now have a generator and one of the top priorities on the list is my tanks.

  • Fernando says:

    (In case no one has already mentioned it)
    WARNING! When using a generator, make sure the generator sits OUTSIDE YOUR HOUSE! Carbon dioxide generated by it can KILL YOU. I live in texas, and when we had a hurricane pass by a few years back, it was heart-breaking to hear the news of people using generators that were placed inside the house because some didnt know it could be deadly and some others didnt want the generator to be stolen if left outside. As much as we love owr tanks, they are not worth dieing for. I know everyone here knows this, but you’ll be surprised. Reading this wont hurt you. Please be safe!

  • calolinger says:

    Thanks for the tips Mark! I have already anticipated a tank emergency. I recently purchased a Marina battery powered air pump with nice switch and standard air line tubing fitting from my LFS for $12. The generator is of course a great idea, however I have been developing a power plan of my own. I have plenty of room under both of my tanks for my back up power supply. What I am thinking, is purchasing a brand new Deep cycle marine 12V battery or 2 and link them. Then purchase a cheap DC to AC adapter with like 3-4 AC plugs from Autozone or Walmart. Whichever is cheaper. They can be had for Give or take $20 now days. Also needed is a cheap constant trickle charger to keep batteries at full voltage and amps. These are cheap also. Finally encase the setup in a nice painted wooden box for cosmetics. You would be surprised how long a fully charged deep cycle batt. or two could keep a heater and powerhead running. Also of course a small air pump, or reduce draw on Batts. and use the $12 2 D size battery pump! Just an idea I have been thinking of the last couple days. I lived in Florida for 8 years and have been without power for weeks. Now I live back in MI but we have ice storms here too! OH, lets not forget solar power too. And assuming you do run out of juice, hook the deep cycles to your car and charge with alternator. Just trying to plant some other ideas for fellow reefers! What do you think Mark? Thanks for reading everyone. Hope this helps your back up plan with at least some of my aspects of this backup system. Happy Reefing all! Happy Haloween!!

  • thea says:

    Right now in Canada Costco has APC battery back ups on sale

  • calolinger says:

    Ya, I have had several of those and even the most expensive one won’t give you a 1/10 of the current marine batts will. They are made for a few hours not days. Thanks for the info though!

  • Chris Kennedy says:

    Hey Mark the old man toy on your desk if you would take the coat and tie off of him he would look like Peter Boyle or he played Frank Barone on Everybody Loves Raymond.LOL

  • Darren says:

    Just wanted to say thanks to Fernado for his comment on keeping generators outside. Most of us probably do know this, but it would have been a real shame to find out someone was injured trying to save their tank.
    And Mark, my comment was meant in good fun ( as im sure you already know). Its always great to see your son helping out his dad while working. As well the dog ( hes a part of the family too). Never seen your wife in the clips but im sure shes a lovely woman. you might have to have a word with the shrimp though. its probably one of those Union shrimps.

  • Jimbo says:

    Hey thanks for the vid, I am smack dab in the middle of where ever this thing hits ( like literally my house is going to be right in the middle of the eye). I plan on trying to get a generator tomorrow and a battery air pump. We are already starting to evac some people in towns down the shore here in NJ, and I have already been called for emergency procedures.

  • John says:

    All have there lists to look for or have ready:
    Battery air pump and air line with air stone plus extra batteries.
    Generator and 5 gal Gas Can outside plus lock with chain so not one takes it.
    Deep cycle marine 12V battery and constant trickle charger.
    APC battery back ups.
    small powerhead low watts to use less of battery.
    12 volt DC to 120 Volt ac inverter.
    solar power battery charger for marine battery.
    Extra mixed water to do water change when power come back on.

    For you:
    flashlights and batteries.
    solar power battery charger for cell phone.
    potable ac-dc TV and radio.
    Gas grill to cook and gas bottle.
    Bottle Drinking water.
    Some person do not forget have there MEDS for days.
    Food as can food or other non refrigerated.
    ICE bags in freezer.

  • Eric says:

    I had a 14 hour power outage and got a wooden spoon and stuck it in my battery powered drill and stirred up the water for 15 minutes every hour. It saved my fish.

  • Jeremy says:

    I’ve used a whisk (battery on drill was dead) and beat the water aggressively for 15 minutes every hour. The fish didn’t make it.

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