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Old 03-15-2013, 07:19 PM   #1 
Blue Fish
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Location: East Tennessee
DIY tank lighting?

I have a question. I have several tanks, and I'm looking to light them. I am not a fan of the big black hoods, and I usually use either plexiglass cut to fit the top of the tanks, or saran wrap across the top to hold in humidity/prevent water evap. (Also, hoods are expensive, and I'm poor/cheap.)
But, I would like to get some sort of light going directly for each tank without having to leave the overhead lights on for 12 hours at a time.

I had considered desk lamps with the mobile "arms", and just putting them directly behind the tanks and bending them to shine over the top.

My question is, are there any bulbs to avoid?
Certain colors?
Certain wattages?
Incandescent vs. regular?
Do some bulbs heat up the water more?
Certain wattage to gallon ratio to stick with?
I only have bettas, a small amount of water wisteria, and *SOON* an assasin snail...(to eat the ridiculous pond snail explosion from the wisteria)...in the tanks, so no real big concern about plants and lighting for them.

Any help is appreciated!!
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Old 03-15-2013, 07:34 PM   #2 
Matilda
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I have a few different desk lamps over my tanks. Some are LED & the others are compact fluorescent. I like those better then incandescent because they're much more efficient & cheaper to run. The CFL ones are all 60 watt equivalent. Not sure about the LED ones but they're pretty bright. I prefer the bright white ones as opposed to the warm white ones because the bettas colors look better. I wouldn't worry about color temp or anything if you're not trying to grow plants.
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Old 03-15-2013, 08:38 PM   #3 
InfiniteGlory
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I have a thread on LED lighting that I just upgraded in my tank. I can't be sure of the results they are with my plants but the lighting was inexpensive, easy to install and much better/brighter than the stock LED 'pods'

http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=131693

My question is, are there any bulbs to avoid? Not sure
Certain colors? Any bulb that has a color temp of 6500k. mainly this is for flourescent bulbs
Certain wattages? Depends on tank size and purpose
Incandescent vs. regular? People tend to go flourescent
Do some bulbs heat up the water more? Yes incandescents can heat up the water if placed close enough
Certain wattage to gallon ratio to stick with? If you want to live plants the ideal is at least 2 watts per gallon

Last edited by InfiniteGlory; 03-15-2013 at 08:42 PM.
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Old 03-16-2013, 05:39 PM   #4 
Blue Fish
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Thanks so much for the information and the link! :)
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