Supplementing lighting
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:57 AM   #1
Shawn123
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Supplementing lighting


I have an aqueon 15 gal tall tank. The stock light is an 8w t5. Is this good enough for low light plants like java fern, annubias, swords, or should I add more lighting? I have seen people using the compact cfls to supplement. Does it have to shine down from the top or would shine through the side glass work(like a swing arm desk lamp pointed through the glass)? I don't want to have to modify the hood. If this would work, what kind of bulb is best.
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Old 01-29-2013, 08:25 PM   #2
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Old 01-29-2013, 09:41 PM   #3
kochman
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CFL do work in small tanks. I have a 10gal going strong right now with 2 13watt 10000 k bulbs. shining through side wont get you what you want. IMHO doing it right the first time will make it easier in the end. Around here you can get hoods fairly cheap or if you are handy head down to home depot and diy yourself something.

is the t5 a HO? if so you can grow low light plants. If it is not i am sure you can grow something. I have grown java fern with the old style 3watt tube bulbs so i am sure you can do something if you dont wanna get into it.
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:34 AM   #4
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I don't think it is HO. It is just the stock light that came with the kit but I can't find much info on it. Actually, i am having difficulty finding 12" bulbs because i want to have a spare here. I only have java fern,annubias and swords right now, I am not trying to grow anything fancy. I was just thinking what I could do if this is not enough. I don't know much about lighting so I am trying to learn here:

1. Why won't it work shining through the glass?
2. How do you know which bulbs are good for plants?
3. I was looking in the light aisle in Walmart today and they have led strips that the packaging says to use as accent lighting in bookshelves/under cabinets, etc... Would these work for a tank or are there certain types for plants?
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Old 01-30-2013, 01:19 AM   #5
kochman
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I will try and answer the best I can...

1. If u shine light through the glass , the light if it is intense enough to make a difference would more then likely make the plants grow towards the glass and not the top. This would result in the plants also growing odd.

2. Bulbs that are good for growing will normally be in the lower kelvin range. The lower the number the more yellow the light will look. Usually runnning a higher k bulb in front of it looks better. Some are labelled plant bulb. I believe GE may make one.

3. As for LED, they are new to me . I know little but from what I do know they are better in higher wattages and in specific red ,blue and white spectrums

Hope this helps
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Old 01-30-2013, 02:10 AM   #6
LyzzaRyzz
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I have a standard 15 gallon, and I use a standard ten gallon hood, with 2 cfl 13 watts, which leaves a bit of the tank unlit. I have a mother lamp shining through the glass but near the top, and I find it helps a lot!
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:59 AM   #7
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I ended up ordering a small finnex fuge ray that I think I will be able to mount right next to the stock light.
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:28 AM   #8
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Can someone tell me.....with the 8w t5 plus the led fugeray would this tank be low, moderate, or high light?
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