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-   -   Best lighting for non-planted freshwater tank? (

brian l 11-17-2013 09:38 AM

Best lighting for non-planted freshwater tank?
Right now I am ready to buy a light system.

I am thinking of getting a shop light with 2 bulbs from Homedepot.
I do not have a heater system and only have goldfish
My tank is 90 gal and 48w and 18D and 24H

My tank had a saltwater light, it was too much and killed off my goldfish
What's the best lighting for a non-planted freshwater tank?

So, what kind of lighting will give me the closest color to sunlight?

jaysee 11-17-2013 09:48 AM

Light killed your goldfish?

Any old "daylight" bulb will work.

brian l 11-17-2013 09:51 AM

I think too much light

jaysee 11-17-2013 10:13 AM

You did turn it off sometimes, yes? :-) I don't know, I can't see how - never heard of such a thing. Maybe someone else has.

Too, getting your bulb from the hardware store is cheaper than the fish store.

thekoimaiden 11-17-2013 12:11 PM

I have also never heard of light killing fish. I know that too much light and a bright substrate can cause partial blindness. AND that too much sunlight can give lighter colored koi skin cancer. But that was in a pond outside.

I agree with jaysee. Just get some bulbs from the hardware store. If you're not growing plants, all you need is a light that looks good to your eyes.

SeaHorse 11-17-2013 12:28 PM

I think the potential is there. Think about it from this angle. Fish need a circadian rhythm when it comes to light and dark. It's nature. We all need it. Reduced sleep, incorrect housing, be it lighting, will cause stress and stress can kill. It will not be instant of course, but over time?!! So with that logic I would tend to agree. It is a big leap tho to say... My lights killed my fish.

Otherwise, why DO we need to turn our lights on and off with a timer if we don't have live plants? Is there something else I'm missing?

Chesh 11-19-2013 11:11 AM

I think you're right, Seahorse - if the lighting was over-bright and left on for long periods of time, it would theoretically lead to increased stress, and ultimately death. . . the circadian rhythm is important to humans and animals alike. But . . . yeah, it's a big leap for sure, and more likely that something else was the cause of the deaths in this tank. I know many people who use the same types of lights in salt and freshwater tanks.

Either way, sorry for your loss, Brian. :(

A shoplight with two bulbs from HomeDepot will work perfectly for your tank, and as was mentioned by the other posters, you will want a 'daylight spectrum' (which I believe is 6500K) to get you closest to sunlight. Daylight spectrum is required by plants, but since you don't have those, you can go with any type of (cheaper) bulb. There are lights manufactured in a color spectrum to best allow the fish's colors to show, and many prefer to use these in tanks that have no plants, but I'm not sure off-hand what that spectrum is. . .

Hope this helps!

brian l 11-22-2013 04:22 PM

Thank you

last question does the lumens matter at all with my tank? I was thinking of getting a bulb with about 2700 lumens

UncleEasy3000 11-22-2013 04:57 PM

I love the knowledge around here.. I learn something new every day. :-)

Yesterday I picked up another "Hidden Marineland LED Daytime/moon-glow" light for my 75 i payed 35$ for a 36" model (I had inherited two 12" ones of these in the past and really liked them-they are on the 84g now). They work great for a non-planted tank. They are slim and have two settings. Regular white light (not too bright), and "moon-glow" (which is a darkish blue led) I like leaving the moon glow on at night if I'm awake. When I leave for a few days, I will leave the blind up on the other end of the room, (where no direct sunlight can get in the tank) It lights up the room some, enough to keep the fish happy and on a good/natural schedule.

There are so many ways to go with lighting and I'm still a newb to them, but I've had a good experience with this light.

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