Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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TED45 01-10-2011 07:36 PM

Question about lighting
I have a 55 gal. planted tank in my basement office. How long should i run the lights?

cbirk 01-10-2011 08:16 PM

I think this mostly depends on what exactly you have in there. I run my lights on for 14 and off for 10. I would venture to guess your safest bet would be to time it with sunup and sundown. At least until someone has a better idea, it would help as I mentioned to know what kind of plants and fish you have just in case there is something that requires something out of the ordinary.

Calmwaters 01-10-2011 09:05 PM

I have all low light plants in my tanks and my lights in the 55 are two 6500 daylight bulbs on a timer that is on 10 hours a day and off 14 and it works well with my tank. What kind of bulbs do you have?

Byron 01-11-2011 06:23 PM

Welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.

As previous member's responses have mentioned, the answer to your question depends upon several things. Plants need light in balance with available nutrients in order to photosynthesize (grow), and if any one essential is lacking, they can't. So the light duration must balance the nutrients. If light exceeds the available nutrients, algae will take advantage. Light should always be the limiting factor in plant growth to avoid this.

I would use a timer and have the light on during normal viewing periods, probably trying 12 hours to start with, and monitoring plant response and algae. If the latter increases, reduce the duration by one hour, and so on. We could go into more detail if we knew your light specs, plant species and number, and fertilization data.


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