I am thinking of setting up my first tank. I want a 20L so I can put it on some empty counter space in my kitchen and I only have about 18 inches of clearance under the cabinet (19 inches under the lip).
My thought was to get a shop light fixture (24 inch) and attach it to be the bottom of the cabinet and buy appropriate bulbs.
My question is about moisture ... There will probably only be six inches of clearance between the top of tank and lights (depending on the fixture) ... Do I need to worry about that?
I do want plants and fish in the tank and haven't planned that far yet. Was pricing out the hardware.
Moisture shouldn't be an issue unless u are enclosing it. Just make sure the fixture you buy has a ground on the plug and is sutible for use in high humidity enviroments. I use the 24in version of http://www.homedepot.com/p/t/1006543...m0&R=100654395.
Sits right on top of my tank. Note that these do not come pre wired so you will know how to do that or know someone that can do it for you.
I have gone the el cheapo route on a few of my tanks using $4 clamp lights from the local hardware store with 6500k spiral fluorescents. I really like the look better than a light that spans the whole tank.
Fixtures that are labeled as "Suitable for use in a damp location" will be fine supported under the cabinet, 6" above the tank.
I use fixtures so labeled, and sit them on top of the tank, glass lid over the tank. Those fixtures are fine.
Others, purchased at the same time, but not so labeled, are falling apart.
Location: West coast of the east coast of the USA.
Outlets in a kitchen area are required to have GFCI protection anyway. Think about adding a GFCI outlet instead of the strip. One outlet will protect all the outlets downstream of it.
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I have a lowes shop fixture above my tank. It was sitting directly on top of the tank. Before I made a light bar and it started to rust, but after I hung it over the tank instead of sitting directly on top it seems to have stopped. One of the bulbs burned out prematurely too but I don't know if I can blame it sitting directly on top or if it was just a faulty bulb.
If you get a fixture that you have to do the wiring for, I use the wire nuts that are used for outdoors. They are usually blue, and they have some type of Gel in them to keep your connections dry. I use them just in case something gets more damp than it should.
Thanks for those suggestions; I checked out the fixtures at Lowes and Home Depot but couldn't find any that were for high humidity environments. They actually didn't have a great selection either for 24" fixtures. They run $15-$30 without bulbs. And they only offered T-12 or T-8 (was sort of hoping for something with a lower profile). Could look some more online but ...
I also stopped at the local aquarium shop and they recommended the AquaticLife Dual-Lamp T5-HO (30") ... looks really nice. It's on Amazon for about $110. Twice as much, at least, as the DIY route but I may end up going with that ... looks prettier and I think my wife would be happier seeing that on her kitchen counter all day. Smile.