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Monsterpony 05-02-2008 12:06 AM

Upgrading lighting
I am planning on adding in some low maintenance plants into one of my tanks and need to upgrade the lighting, but I am not sure what would be best without overkill. The set-up right now is two 36" fluorescent lights that are 30 watts each and are 3100K. My tank is a corner bowfront that is about 22" deep. I am planning on easy plants that don't require substrate or CO2. The more I look into bulbs, the more types I find and I can't decide on which to get. Any input?

herefishy 05-02-2008 12:13 AM

Aqua-lux, FloraSun, FloraLux(all brand names) are good plant lights for your requirements. All will do the job.

fish_4_all 05-02-2008 01:53 PM

This will get you in the right direction as far as what is the right amount and what might be overkill. I would say moderate light for your tank will meet your needs.

betz1106 05-02-2008 04:43 PM

that is a great site

unfortunately it has me rethinking my lighting strategy.

i think I might have went overkill, so I will have to only do 1 light on for now

I think understand what it is saying, but if I have a 50 tall (36 long, 12 deep, 36 tall) and I want to get to moderate light at the most (no co2 for me) and do low to moderate plants.......i am getting a dual 96 watt Compact Flo hood I would only want 1 of the bulbs to be on at a time in order to get that moderate lighting?

can someone clear this up for me?

fish_4_all 05-03-2008 01:57 PM

Moderate compact flourescent would be 61 watts for a normal height tank.
Add 25% 3 times as it is 12 inches taller than 24".

61*.25=5.25 3*5.25+61=76.75
61*1.25=76.25 76.25*1.25=95.3125 95.3125*1.25=119.14

Unfortunately I don't have the "correct" answer for exactly what is "moderate" light for your tall of a tank.

The best thing you can do is experiment. If money is not an issue, try doing this. Get 2 full spectrum bulbs, one actinic full spectrum 50/50 bulb, and one full actinic bulb.

Start with 1 full spectrum bulb and the 50/50 bulb. If it isn't enough, switch out to the full spectrum bulb. If you get too much algae, switch to the full actininc bulb with a full spectrum bulb.

If money is an issue, go with one full spectrum bulb and one 50/50. Is what I would do. Then I would have some Flourish Excel on hand just in case I started seeing some algae problems.

Actinic does not count toward your total wattage/lumens but it does count for spectrum and I know many plant keepers who swear by it for lush thick growth and better color than not using it.

betz1106 05-05-2008 09:12 AM

thanks for the help with this fish.

money is an issue, so I think I will follow your second suggestion.

I only have low to medium in the tank now so we will see.

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