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Paratore

My Fish Room Caught Fire..

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Well I can honestly say In all the reef planning I never planned for this. One of the electrical outlets in my fish room burst into flames yesterday. Nothing was plugged into it and the outlet hadn’t been used for about 6 weeks. I’m still unsure what caused the fire but the leading theory is corrosion. Thankfully it was caught before too much damage was done. I am also lucky that the fish shed is detached from the main house. I wanted to share this so other reefers could start planning for how to avoid electrical fires in there fish rooms.

I was very luck and I count my blessings.

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Man that sucks, good thing it didn’t go further. Did you have a smoke detector?

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Man that sucks, good thing it didn’t go further. Did you have a smoke detector?

No smoke detector. Saw smoke


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Amazing, Burst into Flames!

I've had outlets corrode in my fish room over the years.  I've had two "blow flames sideways", and then trigger GFIs.  but never an outright fire.

BUT...   I don't have a fire extinguisher in the room.  Actually, it's in a completely different side of the house.     

Thank you for this timely post, I am now going to add a Costco-Sized extinguisher to my room.

 

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Oh dang, I'm glad it wasn't more serious, anything I can help with? Shoot me a message if there's anything I can help with.

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Wow, good thing it was a seperate structure. Glad your ok.

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Yikes!  That is scary.  Glad you were around to catch it.  I have to admit I have never had an outlet fail in that fashion and hope never to see one do so.  

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Thanks everyone, I was very, very, very blessed that it was caught early and didn’t burn the whole building down.
So far it looks like damage was minimal. Just need to replace some insulation, 2x4s and chip board. And try to get the smell of smoke out of the shed.

Going to be replacing all the outlets in the shed and add an anti corrosive gel to all socket connections. Hopefully that helps make sure this never happens again.

Also it’s amazing that the frag tank is totally fine. Skimmer running and everything during the fire (I’ve since shut it off). The whole room was full of smoke. Kinda crazy that the skimmer wasn’t pulling in all that crap and pumping it into the tank.
Definitely got very lucky with the whole situation.


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That’s scary. I run all my equipment in the garage and now I’m thinking a smoke detector might be needed for safety.


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That’s scary. I run all my equipment in the garage and now I’m thinking a smoke detector might be needed for safety.


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I plan to do the same. Out of sight, out of mind. So an audio alarm would be helpful to grab your attention.


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@Paratore Just curious, how old was the outlet?

I few years old. But that shed gets a ton of water evaporation. It is home to my frag system and a koi pond filtration system. It’s a rough atmosphere in the shed. So I’m pretty confident that corrosion was the culprit. Shed wasn’t intended to be a fish room so it doesn’t have the best layout for frag tanks haha.


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Good thing all is OK and repairable.

Please note, saltwater condensation will result in deposit of salt and overtime it will started electrical short.

Do check electrical outlet in the fish room. Replace it if necessary.

 

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Ummm.. there is no such thing as salt water condensation.

Water vapor can not contain salt. Water vapor on cooler surfaces causes condensation.



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4 hours ago, pdxmonkeyboy said:

Ummm.. there is no such thing as salt water condensation.

Water vapor can not contain salt. Water vapor on cooler surfaces causes condensation.



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You will be surprised ...

The same reason why metal will rust faster in the room with saltwater aquarium, even when the metal suspended

Come to my shop I will show it to you the unlikely deposit of salt crystal

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I am glad to hear everything turned out alright. Scary. Thank you for a reminder to check the smoke detector and gets bigger fire extinguisher.

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A lot of us are aware of GFI but I think we should also be considering installing arc fault interrupts. It is new electrical code for all living spaces. An internally arcing device can draw a large current without tripping a breaker and this is what caused the fire. A GFI will only trip if ground carry's 5mA more than neutral and so can't prevent these hot-neutral arc failures.

It only takes one splash to deposit enough salt for a humid environment to create a new ground path months down the road...

Arc fault breakers can be used in conjunction with gfi devices. Im very glad you and your property are okay. Thanks for sharing. 

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So glad that worked out.

My fish room fire thread from a few years back... (my office!)

 

 

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55 minutes ago, TheClark said:

So glad that worked out.

My fish room fire thread from a few years back... (my office!)

 

 

I was going to looking for that - glad you cross posted it. 

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