Glass top for planted tank? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 01:21 AM Thread Starter
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Question Glass top for planted tank?

Hey everyone. I'm starting up a low-tech 26g bow front planted tank very soon and need some advice. I'm going to be running two fluorescent tubes aiming for 1.5-2.0 wpg. I plan on using a glass top (more specifically Versa-top http://www.drsfostersmith.com/Product/Prod...fm?pcatid=3790). Are glass tops a good idea or do they interfere with the gas exchange that aquatic plants thrive on? The back of this top is made of clear plastic which can be cut to accommodate hoses and what not; should I cut slits in it or will this cause too much evaporation? Ack I'm confused! So i guess my question is glass top or something else for my set-up?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 01:28 AM
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Doesn't matter really. With a glass top, you get warmer tank temperatures, usually, and condensation on the underside of glass top which may block some light from getting through.

Do you have fish that jump?

As far as the gas exchange, etc, etc, I don't think the use of a glass top will affect it much.

Evaporation in a planted tank is quite little IME so you won't have to worry much about it.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 02:19 AM
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There's positives and negatives going either way.

I do use glass tops both to discourage "carpet surfers" and evaporation; I have to top off my 90gal as much as 5 gal per week during the hotter weeks if I leave the tops open, versus 5 gal every 2 weeks if I close them.

I don't use the plastic strips, though I will start using them if I get hatchetfish. I do lose the occasional jumper through that 2" gap, still...





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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 03:02 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input! So I haven't seen any negatives for glass tops yet. Anyone think otherwise?
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 03:13 AM
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I have had glass tops and open top tanks. The glass top tanks tend to be slightly warmer than the open top tanks. Every month or so I need to clean them off a bit but thats the only real negative of it. I have also lost several expensive bettas because they decided they wanted to go exploring.

Overall I would say there are more positives to them than negatives.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 04:18 AM
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Pros:
Stop fish from jumping
Less evaporation
No danger of fish splashing exploding expensive light bulbs (@#$$% cories )

Cons:
Open top looks nicer
Light loss
Must be cleaned
Higher tank temps

I prefer glass tops because I don't deal with losing fish to jumping very well.
I do open them during the day in the summer to let out the heat, and I remove the center strip so it doesn't cast a shadow. Cleaning them only takes a few seconds a week. The loss of light is noticeable, but I don't feel it is significant if you have more than enough light anyway (most of us do).


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 12:17 PM
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I use a glass top on my 46 gallon.... all of the previously mentioned things apply, except I think I would change 'higher temp' to 'more stable temp'. I keep tropical fish at 80 degrees and my air temp is always below that.

I use the plastic strips because of jumpers and evaporation. Without them I loose an inch of water a day from evaporation. I live at 9100ft altitude, so very dry and cool all the time.

I have my plastic cut for a very tight fit around the wires and tubes so very small gap. Upside to this for me is almost zero evaporation. Downside is I MUST run a bubbler to put fresh air to the tope of the tank or the fish gasp withing a day. I leave mine burried deep in the substrate so I just have large bubbles breaking the surface. But I have also tried just having the open tube above the water line and it works as well to inject air.

46 gallon bowfront, Dalmatian Mollies, Swordtails, Otos
75 gallon Lake Malawi African Cichlids
3 gallon nano desktop with Betta at the office
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2008, 04:28 PM
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I used to use glass tops on my tanks but it increases maintenance time and I'd rather spend my time doing more important things.

I also think you loose quite a bit of light..... Just my opinion
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