A lighting dilemma ??? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-20-2020, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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A lighting dilemma ???

I know this topic has probably been addressed somewhere in these 1118 pages of lighting topics, however I am currently at my wits end trying to find a definitive answer to the question : " Do LED lights cause excessive temperature increases " ?
I have been battling with Hagen Canada for a while now because my new Fluval Flex 32.5 gallon aquarium is consistently 80 degrees or higher ! I DO NOT have a heater in this aquarium. I emailed Hagen, as they are the distributor for Fluval in Canada. I have been getting the "run around" being told by their customer service rep that my led lights are causing the temperature increase. Hmmmmm, I have been experimenting with that theory by leaving my lights off for extended periods of time, with no difference. So I naturally assumed that it must be the submersible pump that is creating the high temperatures. The latest correspondence with them again states it's most likely the led lights, even though Fluval recommends an additional light strip if one wishes to grow anything more than moss or java ferns !! Needless to say, this is getting quite frustrating ! I currently have my aquarium heavily planted with Tropica tissue cultures, all in the medium light/C02 category, so decent light spectrum is critical for their development. Since I setup this aquarium 4 weeks ago I have never had the lights over 50 % output, so I can't even imagine how hot things will get in warmer months, or when I ramp up the light intensity !! I am curious to know if there are other people on this forum with similar issues with LED lights ? I have been reading a lot about leds and I just can't justify the high temps, especially when the lights do go off at 6:00 pm, the temp is still holding at 80 degrees at 8:00 am ,before lights come on, so that's a concern. I welcome any thoughts on this subject ! Rant over ....


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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-21-2020, 01:21 AM
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I use Beamswork LED's and have never noticed them adding to the heat of the water . I do have pc fans blowing over them but that is to extend the life of the lights and keep them running cooler than without the fans . I would say that the pump is what is adding to the heat . Can you feel the pump and see how warm it is ?

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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-21-2020, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Deedledee View Post
Hmmmmm, I have been experimenting with that theory by leaving my lights off for extended periods of time, with no difference....
Trust what you found. Though water is pretty good at holding heat it is not THAT good.
most LED heat goes UP not down though photons other than Infrared can excite and produce heat..


I have little regard for most CS people ..sad to say.

Anyways that top is pretty restrictive though but the light is only 21W.
Is there a wall wart to run it? I assume the power supply is NOT in the hood.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-21-2020, 05:35 PM Thread Starter
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I am now convinced this is an issue with the lid/light combo. The light fixture is extremely close to the surface of the water & must be contributing to the consistent high temperatures. Once again I did NOT choose wisely when I purchased this aquarium. I foolishly believed it was going to be the perfect aquarium for my space, but after doing further research into this Fluval kit, I have come to the conclusion that this setup is not designed for long term success. Lesson learned ! It was nice while it lasted :-(


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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-21-2020, 08:11 PM
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Do you have a means of measuring the temperature right outside of the tank?

I keep my house set at 73 degrees during the summer. We just moved in last year and this past summer was our first summer in this house. I was surprised to learn therefore that even though my thermostat was set at 73, the temperature where the tank was located was actually 78 degrees. Just not good airflow in that area I guess. Anyway it would be interesting to test the temperature near the tank (like with an infrared temp gun) to see the difference.

I'm surprised that a pump would put out that much heat though if there is a big difference. Frankly even 1 degree seems like a big jump from just a pump. My Fluval Spec V certainly didn't have any noticeable heat coming from the pump. In my vivarium (completely enclosed tank) the LED lights add a solid 5 degrees when on. But all that temp bleeds off by the next morning. That tank has no standing water in it though /shrug.



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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-22-2020, 04:52 PM Thread Starter
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Do you have a means of measuring the temperature right outside of the tank?

I keep my house set at 73 degrees during the summer. We just moved in last year and this past summer was our first summer in this house. I was surprised to learn therefore that even though my thermostat was set at 73, the temperature where the tank was located was actually 78 degrees. Just not good airflow in that area I guess. Anyway it would be interesting to test the temperature near the tank (like with an infrared temp gun) to see the difference.

I'm surprised that a pump would put out that much heat though if there is a big difference. Frankly even 1 degree seems like a big jump from just a pump. My Fluval Spec V certainly didn't have any noticeable heat coming from the pump. In my vivarium (completely enclosed tank) the LED lights add a solid 5 degrees when on. But all that temp bleeds off by the next morning. That tank has no standing water in it though /shrug.
Yes, I keep a barometer on the shelf next to the aquarium. It is very accurate. It measures not only the temperature of the room, but also humidity. My condo is very constant with temperature ,always around 74 degrees, so for the aquarium to climb up to the low 80's ,says it has nothing to do with ambient room temperature? I am really starting to think its the led fixtures, as they sit almost in the water, but it makes no sense how the water maintains those high temps after the lights have been off for over 12 hours ! So far my plants, fish, and shrimp are managing with these temps, but I do worry about the warmer summer months, as I set up this aquarium just 4 weeks ago when things were cooler, so time will tell. Thanks for your input :-)


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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-22-2020, 05:36 PM
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Yes, I keep a barometer on the shelf next to the aquarium. It is very accurate. It measures not only the temperature of the room, but also humidity. My condo is very constant with temperature ,always around 74 degrees, so for the aquarium to climb up to the low 80's ,says it has nothing to do with ambient room temperature? I am really starting to think its the led fixtures, as they sit almost in the water, but it makes no sense how the water maintains those high temps after the lights have been off for over 12 hours ! So far my plants, fish, and shrimp are managing with these temps, but I do worry about the warmer summer months, as I set up this aquarium just 4 weeks ago when things were cooler, so time will tell. Thanks for your input :-)

Sounds like a collection of things inc lights and pump.

Also no mention of if it gets any window light of any kind.




Could go so far as to suspect microwaves from somewhere.. LOL.

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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-22-2020, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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Sounds like a collection of things inc lights and pump.

Also no mention of if it gets any window light of any kind.




Could go so far as to suspect microwaves from somewhere.. LOL.
There is a window near by, but sunlight doesn't hit the tank, so nope !
I guess in time I will see if there are any risks to the plants & livestock .


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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-22-2020, 09:00 PM
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You could try to elevate the light a few inches. I did on my tanks and it helped cut back on algae and spreads the light out better. I don't have issues with my lights heating up the tanks however..
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-22-2020, 09:28 PM Thread Starter
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You could try to elevate the light a few inches. I did on my tanks and it helped cut back on algae and spreads the
light out better. I don't have issues with my lights heating up the tanks
however..
I wish I could raise the lights, however this is an integrated hood system & it is not a possibility.
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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-22-2020, 09:58 PM
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https://www.reddit.com/r/PlantedTank...after_i_added/

https://www.fishlore.com/aquariumfis...heater.339541/

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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-23-2020, 12:02 AM Thread Starter
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@jeffkrol,
Thanks for those links. I saw them last week, but I did some further research & it doesn't sound like those fans work too well. From what I have seen I think I would need to put 3 -4 fans along the back, but the lid cutout isn't going to cooperate ! Gotta chalk it up to another Fluval design flaw. When will I ever learn ???


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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-23-2020, 02:39 AM
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@jeffkrol,
Thanks for those links. I saw them last week, but I did some further research & it doesn't sound like those fans work too well. From what I have seen I think I would need to put 3 -4 fans along the back, but the lid cutout isn't going to cooperate ! Gotta chalk it up to another Fluval design flaw. When will I ever learn ???

Replacement hoods are $32 soo you might think about modifying the hood .. Drilling a row of holes above and along the LED should have enough passive venting..
along w/ one or 2 front holes.
Drilling holes in thin plastic can be an issue..

Most heat is back and up and there is no IR direct heating so it shouldn't be too difficult.
I'd not rule out replacing the current pump either though.
Sicce synchra silent seems to be a direct replacement.

https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/fl...advice.769251/
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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-23-2020, 11:01 AM
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So, I was having this problem a while back. Here is what I found after exhaustive research on LED lighting.
LED have a problem with temperature, that is to say that they get really hot, so, what I did was this:
I went onto Amazon and bought a little fan made by a company called AC Infinity. It was $18 for a little "muffin fan" (go to amazon and type in muffin fan and they come up first)and I just sit in on my H.O.B. filter and aim it at the lights and it keeps them cool. I also bought a little speed controller for it, too, and I put it to a timer that is the same time schedule as the light itself. It keeps 5 different LED lights cool to the touch. It uses less than 5W watts of power and it doesn't cool down the water either. I also have a tank with a pump in it, but, it doesn't produce any heat that I have noticed at all. Also, it looks like there is a little area in the front right that opens up to feed the fish? If so, you could set a fan on top of that with it open and the fan would suck out the heat. These little fans have a "mounting kit" that comes with them and you could actually screw it to the hood, that would be what I would do, if it was me. It seems to me that not having a hood on has helped a ton with the problem I was having. Might be worth a try? I have had one fish jump out over the last 3-4 years, but, I also have different fish than you. I can't tell what you have. If there is a vent on the hood, sitting the fan on top of it may help, too. I am not %100 sure of what the aesthetics you are going for because that is a personal thing that differs widely from person to person. I didn't mind getting rid of the hood, so, it wasn't a problem for me. Mine are also in the basement, so, they aren't ever seen by other people.
From what I could find out about LED lighting, I understood this, the LED's produce a lot of heat and that heat will eventually destroy the LED's. I have 5 lights on a single tank, but, they are all at about %50 or less. That way, they don't get too hot and die before their time. I spent about $30 to keep my $150 running as long as possible. Seemed like a good investment to me. I like the lighting aspect of planted tanks and I have done a lot of different experiments with different lighting styles. I keep my tanks at 77'ish and my house is at 68 degrees. The LED's don't seem to affect the water temperature too much and I have an open top on all my aquariums. As I said above, I keep the lights at %50 or less, but, I do realize that not everyone can afford to have multiple lights on their tanks and I would suggest to keep the lights at %75'ish, if you can. If you can afford it, I would get a couple lights on top and keep them all at %50'ish, but, I do understand not everyone can afford to do this. I consider lighting to be one of the most important aspect of planted tanks and I believe you shouldn't skimp on them if possible.
This is all just my opinion, though and I am SURE others will disagree with me. If you do, that's fine, just please don't be nasty about it. Thanks and good luck to all!
I am trying to add pics, but, I can't figure out how to do that, so, sorry. I think if you go to my page on here, there are pics of the whole aquarium and you might be able to see the fans, but, my pics are upside-down and it might be more trouble then it is worth.
Here are links to the fans that I bought:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1 $17.99
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1 $17.99
Here is the speed controller for them:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1 $14.99

I would get the smaller of the 2, the other is a little large for my tastes. These are really nice fans, imho. They seem like they are made solid and made well and it seems like they're made to last, too, but, it is ultimately your call. I don't know if you can find them much cheaper than this. You can get cheap Chinese ones, but, I know nothing about them, I won't pretend to be an expert on tiny fans. Type in DIY fans and a ton of them will come up. Gorgeous tank, btw! Sorry, I rambled a lot in this post, but, I really hope this helps! Good luck!

Nick

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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 11-23-2020, 03:02 PM
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I wish I could raise the lights, however this is an integrated hood system & it is not a possibility.
This is my fivestar 16G with a jebo 828,11w turbo twist co2 etc..
I cut out the flip open top and integrated the led strips into the lid so they could cool properly. My tank has no heater and I live In Canada. Between UVS and light say tank stays at 78 a touch higher in the summer , UVS goes on at night only in the summer.
Led's need venting if have anything more than low light power levels. Led's will also last a lot longer if run cool. I use a laser infrared temperature gun for checking temps , allows to spot check water surface temps at diff levels , led housing etc . This will give a better idea of what is going on.


This top has two Nicrew high output full spectrum 18W strips mounted (36w total) Over 16G yes it will grow anything)
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Aquastyle Ar380 9G custom 5730 leds and filter modded for plants and shrimp
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12G Long with Oase thermo100 filter, JC&P 5730 full spec led strip
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