Open tank in a basement - lighting choices? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-23-2005, 02:36 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Sicklerville, NJ
Posts: 7
Open tank in a basement - lighting choices?

I'm trying to set up a 75 gallon planted tank in my unheated basement. Would an open tank be a bad idea due to the temperature difference?

Assuming I can go with an open tank... Can anyone recommend a good hanging fluorescent fixture? Would two metal halide pendants be a better choice?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-23-2005, 04:53 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Monterey, CA
Posts: 15,385
I'd see three issues.

First, simple, you need a lot of heat(ers) to keep a tropical tank in a freezing basement. I have a tank in the garage, but it is insulated on sides, bottom, back, and partially top, and I cover the front with a styrofoam pad when it gets cold.

Second, don't get any labyrinth fish, like Gouramies. They wouldn't like inhaling icy air.

Third, I'd be very concerned about evaporation and all related issues, like dripping ceilings, mold growing on walls, etc. If there is any chance moisture can get into walls I would cover that thing.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-23-2005, 12:51 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Sicklerville, NJ
Posts: 7
Thanks Wasserpest. The basement isn't freezing, but it's definitely cooler than the rest of the house. I'm guessing it's about 10 degrees cooler year round. My garage on the other hand is freezing!

I'm not bent on an open tank. I do like the look and think it would make maintenance easier.

I've been debating between building a canopy (AH Supply retrofits) that would sit on the tank or going with metal halide pendants. I was leaning towards the canopy based on the price of halides. Just wondering if any of the hanging fluorescents were comparable to the halides. I've only seen a couple fixtures that actually hang from the ceiling.

My gut says to stick with a covered tank, but knowing myself I will debate that decision forever unless I ask.

Thanks again for responding.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-23-2005, 02:15 PM
Algae Grower
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: thurmont md
Posts: 19
check out the tek t5 lights
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-24-2005, 02:19 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 944
I just did a odno shoplight for about $40 ($26 for ballist, $2x2 for t8 bulbs and $10 for the light. Two of these would almost be excessive light. Not pretty though, but pretty is not that important in a basement.

58 gallon oceanic, 250w 10k pendent, pressurized co2, eheim pimp #179 - 2217 and diffuser
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