Great Aquariums Start Here
Live Chat Support
    Free Shipping
  • FREE Shipping ON $75+
  • 14-Day Low Price Guarantee
  • Low Price Guarantee
  • Same Day Shipping
  • Same Day Shipping
99% of items we carry qualify for FREE SHIPPING in the contiguous United States if you spend $75 or more. Learn More
If you find a product we sell for a lower price at another online store, we will match their price to ensure you always pay the lowest amount when you shop with us. Learn More
Same Day Shipping
We promise to ship your order as fast as humanly possible. In fact, 99% of orders placed before 2 pm EST ship the same day! Learn More
How an Aquarium Chiller Works

How an Aquarium Chiller Works

Most aquarium chillers use a vapor-compression method to chill your aquarium water. While the science behind this process can be a little complicated, it is a good idea to understand the basic principles and components in order to properly operate and maintain the chiller.

The diagram above represents the basic parts found on common aquarium chillers and we've outlined the functions below in order to help you better understand exactly how your aquarium chiller works.
  1. Aquarium water is pumped into the chiller and enters the heat exchange. Inside the heat exchange, aquarium water flows around a series of cool metal coils filled with refrigerant. This is where heat is transferred from your aquarium water into the refrigerant.

  2. Heated refrigerant is compressed and changes from a liquid into a gas inside the compressor. The pressure created inside the compressor is what moves the refrigerant through the cooling system.

  3. Gaseous refrigerant is sent into the condenser from the compressor via pressure. A fan blows air over the condenser cooling the refrigerant inside and expelling heat into the atmosphere around the chiller. This is why it is important to place your chiller in a well-ventilated area. This process is similar to what happens in the radiator in your car.

  4. As the refrigerant passes through the condenser, it is cooled and transformed back into a liquid.

  5. Refrigerant from the condenser passes through an expansion valve which reduces pressure inside the refrigerant line controlling the rate at which the aquarium water is cooled inside the evaporator or heat exchange.

  6. A temperature controller monitors the temperature of your aquarium water and automatically switches the chiller ON when the temperature rises and turns it OFF when temperatures are within a suitable range. The temperature controller is built into most chillers, but sometimes sold separately depending on the brand of the chiller.

Quick Tips

  • Choose a water pump that can provide the proper flow rate through your chiller.

  • Always place your chiller in a well-ventilated area.

  • Never let your chiller run dry; this can quickly damage internal components.

  • Chillers use a substantial amount of power; be sure to allow for the necessary electricity consumption in addition to all of the other equipment on your aquarium.

  • Clean the fan and condenser fins regularly to remove dust and increase air flow.

  • Calcium build up inside the heat exchange can reduce chilling efficiency; regular back-flushing with a freshwater/vinegar solution can help remove build-up and keep your chiller performing optimally.

  • A properly sized chiller is important for longevity and proper function. Your chiller should only be ON for roughly 15-20 minutes per hour.

How to Setup an Aquarium Chiller

How to Choose and Install an Aquarium Chiller

This item is temporarily unavailable but will be back in stock soon.

Item #
Click the Add To Cart button below if you'd like to reserve this item today. Any other items included in your order will be immediately processed and shipped. We will ship this item separately as soon as it arrives. We will not charge you for this item until it ships and you will incur no additional shipping charges.

Enter your email address in the field below and click the Notify Me button if you'd like us to send you an email when this item becomes available. Although you will be immediately notified when we have stock on hand, we will not reserve any units for you; you must return to our website and place an order.

Your Email:
Just enter your email address below and we'll let you know when the product you are looking for becomes available!

Item Code:
Your Email:
Email Specials
Subscribe to our newsletter feed.
Newsletter Tips & Tricks! New Products!
Discounts & Promos!
October 14, 2016
"Great source for all my needs. I look forward to all the new products and technology you have in stock."

October 13, 2016
"I read reviews on all your products and watch all of your videos. They help a lot. Keep up the great work MD."

October 12, 2016
"Marine Depot is my #1 go-to source for information and they have most definitely made me a better reefer!"

WIN A MEDIA REACTOR! Sign up for hot deals, helpful videos, and a chance to win an Accel Aquatics FR-30 Media Reactor!