New T5 bulb require different fixture? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 12 Old 12-11-2010, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
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New T5 bulb require different fixture?

I've been trying to grow a few easy plants in my 75G native freshwater tank. Spears, moneywort and a couple others are said to have moderate light requirements. Anyway, for a few different reasons I thought it would be a good idea to replace the bulb that had been lighting this aquarium. It was a standard 48" daylight spectrum flourescent bulb. I relplaced it with a T5 that's supposed to have the right spectrum for plants. I suspected too many reds had contributed to a BGA problem.

Anyway, the new bulb definitely has a very blue hue to it. It's not quite as bright as the old bulb and flashes on/off quite a bit when it's first coming in. Is this normal and should I look for a new "fixture" to install this bulb in?

Thanks for any advice!
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post #2 of 12 Old 12-13-2010, 01:16 AM
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What markings are listed on the new bulb? Are you sure its not actinic?

Dawn Moneyhan
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Juneau, WI
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post #3 of 12 Old 12-13-2010, 03:08 PM
What do you mean by standard? Most tanks come with "standard t8 fixtures" but a t5 uses a different fixture because its thinner and fits in differently...
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post #4 of 12 Old 12-13-2010, 08:42 PM
Yeah I don't think a T5 can physically fit in a T8(standard) hood. Anyway if you did someone magically accomplish that I would turn it off before you blow that bulb or kill your ballast.

.... I'm probably drunk.

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post #5 of 12 Old 12-13-2010, 08:48 PM
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I missed the T8 reference with a T5 bulb. I agree with the others... T5 bulbs should not even fit into a T8 fixture. Something sounds very "off" with this situation... can you post a photo of the fixture you are using? That would help to clarify things for us.

Dawn Moneyhan
Aquatics Specialist/Nutritionist
Juneau, WI
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post #6 of 12 Old 12-14-2010, 09:00 AM Thread Starter
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You all answered my question.... also, the weird flashing stopped after I took apart the light and re-secured a few of the wire nuts internally. The physical dimensions of the new bulb are exactly the same as the previous bulb and fit perfectly into the fixture. Looks like I'm good to go, although I really think I'm going to need a double fixture with two lights for these plants to thrive.
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post #7 of 12 Old 12-14-2010, 09:54 AM
Its very strange that your"standard" light came as a T5, T5s are usually fairly expensive and bought separately as a lighting upgrade for more light intensive tanks.
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post #8 of 12 Old 12-14-2010, 10:49 AM Thread Starter
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Just to be clear, I purchased this T5 bulb for $20. I purchased it to help plant growth and also heard that reducing red spectrum/old bulbs contributed to BGA growth.
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post #9 of 12 Old 12-14-2010, 01:30 PM
i use two t5 bulbs and i still get tons of BGA. BGA is caused by excess organics, type of light is still just light, there are t8 bulbs of the correct spectrum as t5. t5 bulbs just have a stronger output and, IMO more likely to cause excess algae than t8 bulbs.

What im interested in is your fixture, did you buy your light fixture second hand or separate from the tank? T5 fixtures are considered high tech, my new one that i just ordered was 120 dollars for a 2 bulb fixture. Tanks u buy in stores that have hoods are all t8 except for the eclipse series.
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post #10 of 12 Old 12-14-2010, 03:09 PM
Till I see bulb numbers I'm going to assume its a T8. Wattage would tell this too... If its one bulb that is about the lenght of the tank a T8 is going to have a different wattage then T5.... Also technically a different length which is why this is so confusing. Standard hoods are always T8 and can not run with T5s

By bulb numbers it should say on the bulb somewhere something like F40T8....

IDK why reducing red spectrum would effect BGA.... which is a photosynthetic bacteria not a algae at all >.>

.... I'm probably drunk.

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