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Old 04-29-2012, 09:28 PM   #1 
BlueStar
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Lightbulb Need Help-5Gal Incandescent Tank Light socket problem

Light by Perfecto and can use flourscent bulbs but haven't bought any yet (3 tanks).

These lights are working okay on 2 tanks that have about 2.5 gallons of water in them that soon will be seeded so they can be cycled faster.

The one tank I have cycled has burned out 2 light kits (4 sockets). It only uses one light bulb so when the socket stops working I turned it over and used the other sides socket. Perfecto has been really nice and send me a new light after the first one had both sockets fail on 03/14. Only took a few weeks before that one had also been through both sides of it's socket so on 04/24 I called them again and they sent another light kit that came in yesterday. She said they have not had any other customers having my same problems, thus she is thinking I got 2 lemons.

What is happening to the sockets is when I take the light out after it stops working the gold contact on the bottom of the socket falls off. I am thinking it's due to the moisture from the heater which collects in the top of the hood, but that also happens with the other 2 uncycled tanks that have half as much water. I'm using Tetra submersible heaters that keep the temperature at 78* automatically. If that is the problem it's about to stop since we have hit warm weather and I'm trying to keep the A/C off as long as possible and when it does get turned on it will be set to 78*.

The hoods just have a plastic guard over the socket and about the lenght of the bulb. Since it will be quite a while before the heaters are running again (about the time their warranty expires), is there some other solution I might try? Lights I had in the past sit on top of a plastic cover that was over the tank, thus no moisture ever got in the light hood area.

Is tapeing syran wrap to the hood a good ideal or will it possibly melt if the light was left on longer when I get some plants or be a problem coming in contact with the water? Right now I only have Moss Balls so I only turn the light on when feeding. Is there some kind of plastic sheets you can get that would be safe to use on a fish tank that would work better than syran wrap and if so where do you get it and what specifications should it have?

Hope you can help. Filters/etc. have been in the cycled tank about 4 weeks so I'm ready to start getting the other 2 tanks cycled one by one, but I'd like to have the light problem solved before then since I don't want their sockets to start burning out when the tank if full of water. Most of the time after the first replacement light came in the heater wasn't running much since it was fairly warm in the house.
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Old 04-30-2012, 03:23 PM   #2 
Goldie2nd
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I have no idea but love your screen name.
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Old 05-01-2012, 03:39 AM   #3 
BlueStar
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Thanks Goldie2nd. It's my dogs name, but had to shorten hers to just Star since an older dog was named Blue Girl and they both responeded the minute I said Blue. Star got her name because I rescued her from a highway where her buddy had been killed on my way home one evening. They had been dumped since she got sick right after I gave her a bath a few days later (loss of protoz.). Anyway she was worn out and slept in the back seat and was depressed (blue) over the loss of her friend and we drove home under the stars, so later that formed her name. I took her to the vet to see if she had a microchip and had left a note in the area she came from at a vets in case someone wanted to claim her.
What is really strange about it all is she looked exactly like a dog I had adopted from the shelter (Aust. Sheppard mix named Lady) that died years earlier (I had gotten Blue Girl to keep Lady company) with a blue coat & white across her chest. She was younger than Lady, but grew to be about the same size. Made the other dogs accept her a lot easier although they knew she wasn't Lady.

LOL guess 27 other people who read the post had no ideal either or wondered what the problem was. If it happens again I'm sure the people at Perfecto will help me resolve it some way, but figured if it was a common problem with warmer tanks the solution would be found here-guess not.
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Old 05-01-2012, 04:17 AM   #4 
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Is ok don't worry someone will come and help you. Coool story by the way.
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:29 AM   #5 
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The problem with pretty much every hood is that is collects condensation. Maybe try to make a riser for your hood so it's not completely sealed to the tank to allow for evaporation into the air instead of collecting in hood.
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:37 AM   #6 
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LOL coool story until you end up caring for as many critters as I have :).

Thanks Zero186. Did a search on condensation and found others that have the same tank as me are not having the sockets burn out like I have been doing. Yet a lot of them replaced the incandescent bulb with a flourscent one pretty quick. Others mentioned leaving the feed door open too (about half of the back end has some opening due to the filter) to keep the condensation down.
Bought a flourscent bulb today and put it in. Seems to completely fit/fill in the socket which the incandescents didn't seem to do snuggly even when completely screwed in part of its gold rim was still seen. Cheap lights came with it, one after a socket went and I tried to unscrew it, it came apart from the base. They sent 2 replacement bulbs which seemed to be a better quality yet not fit snuggly like the fourscent did. Have to agree with the posters here, it definately puts out a lot more light than the incandescents.
Since the heaters are off now not a lot of condensation is building up so I won't know until winter if this one or the others won't have problems until then more than likely. From there I'll consider making a riser or drilling holes in the top of the hood away from the light area.
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